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      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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Weekly Update - 7/16/13

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Well, I totally spaced on this weeks update; I wrote the content locally, but I apparently forgot to upload it on Friday. So, I've updated it a little bit and posting it today, but we'll have another update this Friday.

Weekly Update Video

Youtube Video Link

Project Updates

Seeking Imagination

I have made quite a bit of progress with the initial build of the battle arena, mostly in the multiplayer area. I have to say that I have always been for local multiplayer, but I can definitely see why it has mostly been cut out (we're still going to provide it as I believe it is a feature that should be included if possible, but I can understand why not a lot of games support it anymore.) The hardest part so far has been handling the odd scenarios:
1) What if two controllers are plugged in, but only player two wants to play (or two controllers were plugged in and then the first was removed)
2) On PC, what player does the keyboard belong to?
3) Constraining the camera to X number of players (not splitscreen)
4) How to handle a controller being disconnected mid-play
5) Determining where to spawn a new player

It has been harder than I expected, but is definitely worth it! The other issue I have run into is with the shop and crafting system, mainly the fact that I didn't fully design them out so I'm not sure how to implement them. So, I am going to discuss it with Mikeyo on our call and we'll go from there.

Script-wise, Mikeyo has finished the primary story script for SI and has started the second pass (proofreading, continuity checks, etc). Once he has completed that he'll start fleshing out some of the other content.

We have also brought on an artist to provide a cover art piece as well as an artist to do the in-game art. So, we should have something artsy to show off shortly.

Here's another shot showing the current state of the prototype. My son and I were playing around and this is me talking to him to test the trigger system.
There is still tons of script integration to do (even the message screen is a placeholder at the moment), but it's working which is a step in the right direction.

The Lost Chapters

We are starting work on a new series that we will be providing free monthly episodes for, which is currently titled The Lost Chapters. We haven't quite nailed down the gameplay mechanics, but the games will be short (15-20 minutes long) story-driven games. Each episode will be completely separate from the others; the idea is based on short stories in a storybook. I'm not sure at the moment when we'll be able to start development on this or how many episodes there will be, but I've been fleshing out story ideas for several episodes.

That is all for this update. We'll have another update this coming Friday, possibly with a video with yours truly as well. I want to try to release a more technical video, but I'm not sure if time will permit it at the moment or if I can come up with enough content; we'll see.

Thanks for stopping in!

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