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The_Good_Doctor

When do you need to find a programmer?

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Hi. I was wondering at what point it would be good to find a programmer to start getting game ideas off the ground. How much of the design needs to be finished before looking to find a programmer. Is it best to put out a help wanted for a lead programmer right off the bat or is it alright to get more focused programming positions filled first? What kind of information is a programmer going to need/want to get a good idea of the project and game idea? Any thoughts on creating a website or other presentable medium before getting started on the code? The questions is: Assuming you are not a programmer, at what stage of developement is it best to add one to the team? Thanks in advance.

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I would say that you have to find a programmer who wants to be with you frokm very early on, or you need to have at least a good grasp of programming yourself. Designs that are made without realistic ideas of what can be accomplished and with how much effort are going to get torn to shreds once the programming begins. If the design is made from the begininng with the point of view "What can we realisticaly do?" it is much better off.

I wouldn't look for the programmer you need here at Help Wanted though, this isn;t the kind of request that is responded nicely to. Honestly, your best bet is to find a programmer you already know or learn to program yourself.

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Thanks for the responses. I was actually considering a volunteer type project and didn't even consider the issue of money.
The realistic goals is a good point, I would say I know enough about programming to know what is do-able but not enough to actually get it done.
In any case, thanks again for the replies. Any thoughts on the other questions in the OP?

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Problem is... where are you going to find a programer?? Most programers are working on their own ideas and have no interest into making other's people design. Well, it could happend if the design is the most awesome thing in the universe, but I think that is vary hard to happend.

I believe that most people who program are also game designers. That is, you want to make a game, then you learn how to program and try to implement your idea, that's the way I took. You don't go looking for ideas and how to make a project for someone, because you have your own.

Now, I'm not saying it can't be done. Sometimes I actualy considered, when dreaming about making a simple-RPG, that I would really need someone to write dialogs and stuff. I never got the skills to make an RPG anyway, so this never happened, but I think that if you have a very, VERY solid project, then you can try to find help.

A practical way to see if your project is good enought is check at how many hours have you worked on it. My latest engine, wicth is quite crappy, took me around 30 hours to get done (copying and pasting like no tomorow). It's a racing game, and it's not even completed. I believe that programing takes a lot more time to be made than the game design (as the design really deppends on how the game is being developled in the end), but I know I wouldn't be willing to join a project where the leader has less background then me.

Answering to your question... the best time for adding a programmer is from start, I think... but maybe I'm considerating too much for myself. In your case, I think that you should get everything going as perfect as possible, if you want to find someone willing to make it.
Try to have other stuff too, like art, concept draws and stuff. Something I would really kill for is good art. Once I had a friend that joined me in a project, and he was great at those game graphics. Even thought I coded it in Visual Basic, had no game experience and etc, the game ended up awesome because of the great graphics. Moral of story: I would sacrifice my game-ideas in benefit of someone's game-ideas for cool graphics. I would not do that for great game design. That's how I deal with it. Important to remind that I'm a beginner programmer (wicth started around 5 years ago, but never went serious on it), and I don't know your game design. In the end, you only stand a chance if you have a really good design. But even then, it's not guaranteed.

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