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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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Mike and I have been very busy working on getting things rounded off so that we can move forward with our current projects. We're going to be doing at least weekly posts, he's working on fitting videos into his schedule (I'll be doing the same in the near future) and we're both working on keeping twitter and the facebook page active. So, basically there will be a lot more activity from both of us moving forward.

Sadly we don't have much to report on the art side at the moment. We've got a few portfolios for artist, so hopefully in the near future we'll have some art to show off.

On the design side, Mike is hard at work writing the script for our current project, Seeking Imagination [working title]. He has a few more milestones to reach and then that will be finished (the main storyline and it's dialogue anyway; we'll add some side stories and such once he is finished with that.)

I am currently working on designing the prototype for a a simple puzzler based off of the mechanics of Minecraft's redstone system. It is a level based arcade game where each level has certain objectives that you must accomplish using the supplied objects. You'll have a "wiring layer" where you can place wire, switches, repeaters, inverters, pulses, etc. which affect the object layer above it.

I am almost done with the prototype for Seeking Imagination; I have to create some brains in Scribe to verify that it will run fast enough and then add the combat system. I would provide a screenshot, but sadly I broke the engine last time I was working on it and have yet to fix it (I added the map system into the state machine and it's not happy that it is null.) I will provide some sort of screenshot for the post next week.

I do however have a screenshot of the Redstone Game prototype:
There isn't a lot going on in this screenshot; I was testing the new repeater block. The buttons along the bottom (left to right):
Pointer (clear the currently selected block), wire, inverter, power, light, switch, command, repeater, branch, TNT, and clear. This is just a prototype for a possible future project,

It was originally titled Block Coder as it was going to be a strictly programming based game (think Redstone and Command Blocks, which I didn't know existed when I started working on this prototype), but I didn't like the results so we switched over to this idea. I am working through adding rotation to the engine so that wiring and objects can rotate (turrets will be an object, so those should be fun with a pivot gear, a timer, and a resistor.)

Sage/The Mysterious Life of Aaron James
I have been asked by a couple people about Sage and the Mysterious Life of Aaron James - these have been moved back to the "Future Projects" pool for a couple reasons:
1) As much as I hate to say it, I can't bring myself to work on it anymore. Sage is a husk of what it was when I made the demo for Aaron James, the feature set is almost completely different and the fact that I want to make it cross platform means I basically need to rewrite it and I have absolutely not ambition to do so. I spent 2 months trying to rewrite an engine that took 14 days to write and all I had was a (barely working) title screen.

2) We cannot provide the art that we would like, nor can we afford an artist that can provide the art.

3) I was taking input from anyone and everyone and I was making it up as I went - causing lots of plot-holes, poor dialog, etc. I am going to convene with Cierra (this storyline was originally hers) and we'll work together to rewrite what we have and to finish the design document before I start developing it again.

Long story short: Sage WILL return in the future as we have at least one other point and click adventure game that we want to develop and The Mysterious Life of Aaron James WILL return, I'm just not sure when. Mike and I are both constantly working on two projects, so if we get bored we have something 'fresh' to work on, and Sage/Aaron James are my 3rd project - I'm working on them, but they don't get my attention very often.

I am working on updating the website - adding a control panel, database support, etc. I'm basically bringing it up to date until we can bring in a web developer to do it properly (I know the languages necessary, but I am terrible at web design and I abhor web development.) The new version will be up at some point this weekend, once I get Mikeyo's approval.

Last, but not least, Cierra is in the last couple weeks of her pregnancy, so I may not be able to get any development done in the near future. However, I will still post an update on what Mike has been up to and any news we have. I am going to try to keep the posts regular on Thursday evening or Friday afternoon, but it depends on where Mikeyo fits the videos into his schedule.

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Thanks Raymond!


Btw, if anyone is interested you can check us out on Facebook and Twitter as we will be keeping those updated throughout the week. Well, Facebook anyway, we mostly post our updates from our own twitter accounts.


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