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I want to start my own gamedev business

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Ok, now this isn't a thing I just came up with last night, but a long time ago. I want to begin a new third party video game dev company. Please don't assume that I'm trying to be the next Nolan Bushnell overnight just yet, but what I want to do is start off making some simple games like games you'd find on WildTangent such as BlackHawk Striker (a very fun game) for PC's and maybe Mac and Unix. I have some great game ideas and implementations and I'd like to take them to the next level. I was pondering a few questions like, what should I do to help prevent piracy? What are some precautions to take when starting a video game business? How much should I sell my games for? And this is my biggest question, the area that I reside in (middle eastern america, state of Indiana) is a VERY bad place for video game business, if my small business gets big, should I move where the business is thriving more, like the western states? Also, if you have any other comments, please post them. I really appreciate it. Thanks.

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Starting your own business is definitely a laudable goal. The primary thing to consider is not the details like "how much should i sell my games for". The primary thing to consider is financing. It costs LOTS of money to run a company, especially a game development company.

You'll need to pay the people that work for you
You'll need to buy hardware
You'll need to buy lots of software
You'll need to do this all up front before you've made a single dollar

In order to get financing (you're talking easily a few hundred thousand) you'll need venture funding or some rich family/friends. To get venture funding you'll need people with at least 3-5 years industry experience with a few published titles under their belts.

Now if you're just wanting to start a little hobby company that's a totally different ballgame.

Certainly your locality will hurt you. It's tough to get game industry people in the first place, it's harder to get them outside of major metropolitan areas (Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin, Montreal).

But basically your most challenging task will be getting people to work for you. Generally small game companies are started by groups of people who've spent 5-10 years working in the industry, are already friends, and already have a good network within the industry. Everyone and their brother has the next great game idea. What's going to get you people is a proven track record and/or really nice salaries in a place where they want to live.

[EDIT: the trick with venture funding is of course that you'll already need to have all the people together before they fund you. So you'll need upfront self-provided money to get those people in the first place. Funtimes with the chicken and egg. But that's why new game companies are typically groups of friends with experience.]

-me

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Hello Blu, you wrote:

>I want to begin a new third party video game dev company.
>I have some great game ideas and implementations and I'd like to take them to the next level.

Great. How much experience working in the game biz do you have? Read http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson29.htm. If you wanted to start a plumbing business, you'd need to have experience as a plumber first... am I right?

>Indiana) is a VERY bad place for video game business, if my small business gets big, should I move where the business is thriving more, like the western states?

Why, what's the matter with doing business in Indiana?

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>> Ok, now this isn't a thing I just came up with last night, but a long time ago. I want to begin a new third party video game dev company.

I hope you've done your homework. A software business is not just the people who write the code. I assume you know that already.

I've been at a startup business, and it is not easy. It was much easier to be a wage slave for a bigger business with a regular paycheck, insurance, and other benefits.

>> but what I want to do is start off making some simple games like games you'd find on WildTangent such as BlackHawk Striker (a very fun game) for PC's and maybe Mac and Unix.

Do you have the resources to do it?

You need either your own ability to do it, or the ability to bring people together to do it. If you aren't a programmer, you will need money.


>> I was pondering a few questions like, what should I do to help prevent piracy?

Don't worry about that until after you have made a few thousands in revenue. Before then, every pirated copy is word-of-mouth viral advertising.

>> How much should I sell my games for?

Ask an MBA. It is a difficult question that varies individually.

>> (middle eastern america, state of Indiana) is a VERY bad place for video game business

Really? Why?

>> if my small business gets big, should I move where the business is thriving more, like the western states?

If your business is able to grow, let it grow at a rate that you control. If the natural and controlled growth says to move into game development hubs, then move. If you are able to support yourself where you are and you are comfortable there, then stay.


Quote:
Original post by tsloper
If you wanted to start a plumbing business, you'd need to have experience as a plumber first... am I right?

Not quite right, but almost. In order to thrive, you need to have all the parts of the business in place.

Even if the plumbing business owner knows nothing about pipes or what flows through them, he can hire somebody who does.



It sounds like you already have a dreamer with creative goals.

You need to have one or more people who can program the games. If that means you are the person, then you better have the skill sets you mentioned, including Windows, MacOS, and Unix game programming. If the business doesn't have those skills then the business you described will obviously fail.

You need to have one or more people who can manage people. That is the taskmaster person. Without them, there is no responsibility or accountability, and the project goes nowhere. I've seen several lone wolf developers fail because they can't drive themselves to finish.

You need to have one or more people with advertising ability. You can have the best game in the universe but no customers because nobody know about it.

You need to have somebdoy who understands money, at least enough relative to the amount of money going through the business. When you start you'll need to keep books, then hire bookkeeper. At least, that's where we are right now. (We are looking for an accountant right now to work with our existing bookkeeper...)

You'll need more as the business grows, but the founders need to do a lot of everything. It is a lot of work.

I've heard it said that the hardest part of running a business is not what you know, but what you don't know. That is true in my job as lead programmer: programming is the easiest thing I do.

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> "Ok, now this isn't a thing I just came up with last night, but a long time ago. I want to begin a new third party video game dev company. Please don't assume that I'm trying to be the next Nolan Bushnell overnight just yet, but what I want to do is start off making some simple games like games you'd find on WildTangent such as BlackHawk Striker (a very fun game) for PC's and maybe Mac and Unix. "

Then why don't you start making them? Take baby steps. take the first step. Make something in small scale, and see how it goes. Stick with your day job, and build your business part-time. Start doing today.



> "I have some great game ideas and implementations and I'd like to take them to the next level. I was pondering a few questions like, what should I do to help prevent piracy?"

There are copy protection tools available. Easiest thing could be simply to have a demo version of your game totally separate of your full game. Like, have a 3 meg demo game and 15 meg full game with all the files.


> "What are some precautions to take when starting a video game business? "

Jeff Tunnel wrote quite a good article on this in the past:
Five Realistic Steps To Starting A Game Development Company. Check it out. I really must say that making games is much easier than making money!



> "How much should I sell my games for?"

Maybe this article can help you: 18 Approaches for Setting the Right Price For Your Game.



> "And this is my biggest question, the area that I reside in (middle eastern america, state of Indiana) is a VERY bad place for video game business, if my small business gets big, should I move where the business is thriving more, like the western states?"

When it gets really big... you have so much money that you don't need to worry about moving :)

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Ok guys, sorry it took me so long to reply, getting online isn't easy for me (because I have to walk to the library whenever I need to).

The indiana thing: It's not the doing business part in Indiana, its the game business part as a whole. Indiana is not a good place for a videogame business to thrive. First of all, it's not exactly a "land of opportuniy". There are no videogame businesses in Indiana at all last I searched. Plus, there are very few people that are even willing to work on games for a living here. And those that do usually don't have time, don't put enough effort into learning, or just don't know what to do to get started. There is also a VERY high shortage of gamedev schools in this state. So far, I have only found 2 (or was it 3?). It isn't offered much here because of the large lack of interest.

So far, I'm still doing research in business management and videogame businesses. I still have alot to learn and willing to learn whatever I can. As far as money and resources go, my day job only pays me $6.25 hr. Crappy I know, so saving up money is a bit hard to do atm, but when my new job pulls through, I can take a few steps. Keep in mind, I'm not trying to rush this whole business thing. I still have to save up to buy more professional dev tools.

Now... a bit more about myself. I've been interested in programming ever since I was young(er) back in '89. I didn't learn C++ until Jan 2003, but in the past 4 years since then, I have bought and read many books on game programming and stuff, both new and old books from the Win95 days. So my skills include C/C++, Win32, DirectX 3, 5, 7, 8, and 9 (Dx7 being the strongest), OpenGL 1.5, SDL, etc. So I do know how to program and stuff.

Also, thanks for the great links. These are really helpful as well as your advice. Is there anything else I need to ask myself?

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Just like bands, most good starter / indie game companies come out of colleges (and not "game" colleges).

If you can't find 2-3 dedicated copatriots within 2 years at college to begin tackling the job of earning a living making games ... your doing something wrong.

The key for any leader is vision and dedication (and social skills). If you have the vision and creativity to see opportunities clearly (not just faniciful dreams), and the dedication to push hard, for a long time with little reward - then you can create a game company anywhere (or at least anywhere with a college :).

You do not need a "game" college, anymore than an artist needs an art college. It will help you build your technique and connections quicker than other traditional channels, but everything they offer is available to anyone interested in pursuing it.

There is a difference between dreamers who "wish" for a great future they can see in their head and people who struggle daily to make the present more like that vision. The doers always focus on doing what can be done in the present, and they have things to show for what they've done in the past. The difference between them is a matter of personal choice - you have to choice to DO it, instead of just THINK it. Such a choice does not come without risk however - there are many many failures for every success. You have to find the confidence in yourself to pursue your goals even knowing the risks (and pick goals you REALLY have, goals that wake you up motivated to get busy and keep you up late into the night, not goals you think you should have or goals that promise some mystical carrot in the distant future).

Good Luck.

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Quote:
Original post by Xai
Just like bands, most good starter / indie game companies come out of colleges (and not "game" colleges).
Actually many of the best bands came out of other bands. Most student bands are awful. Likewise, most good start-ups come out of other developers. People learn their trade while being paid by a developer (and being exposed to a lot of talented people) and then strike out on their own when they are ready. The biggest cause of failure in new start-ups (in any industry)
is lack of experience (be it production experience or management experience).

[Edited by - Obscure on September 27, 2006 5:07:37 AM]

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True enough. Most great things come as refinements of things that we're good.

But most things that will eventually be good, start young :)

And I have to agree completely that A) Companies and people we know and respect, almost all came into their own AFTER being involved in previous endevors where the honed their skills, and B) Most startups and college groups suck and fail ...

But still, its one of the 2 best ways to start. Your 2 choices: 1) Go do something in a small group of similarly enclined people, so you can gain experience from your shortcomings and failures, 2) Get a job working for someone who has been doing it for a while and learn from them.

Unfortunately, the game industry is like the music and movie industry ... more people want in than the system can accept through normal channels, so most people have to find alternate paths to entry.

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Quote:
Original post by PolycountProductions
snip


I can highly recommend GameProducer.net as well. Great site.

/edit: heh you're actually the guy himself it seems. Keep up the good work!

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Quote:
Original post by Xai
There is a difference between dreamers who "wish" for a great future they can see in their head and people who struggle daily to make the present more like that vision. The doers always focus on doing what can be done in the present, and they have things to show for what they've done in the past. The difference between them is a matter of personal choice - you have to choice to DO it, instead of just THINK it. Such a choice does not come without risk however - there are many many failures for every success. You have to find the confidence in yourself to pursue your goals even knowing the risks (and pick goals you REALLY have, goals that wake you up motivated to get busy and keep you up late into the night, not goals you think you should have or goals that promise some mystical carrot in the distant future).


this is some beautifully put advice. it's inspiring.

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Games which requires subscription fee (Like Masive Online RPG) don't suffer the problems of piracy.

If your game depends of a sever, every is safe because you can control the whole game activities. (Not necessary 100% safe; hackers will be working around your online game, but the piracy incidency is relative lower than regular stand alone games)

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creating a game development company comes second to creating games. If you have no start up capital and no talented co-developers, you can always develop your games using a free language like java which has plenty of excellent IDEs available, linux for a free OS and locate other opensource development tools. If you cannot do graphics or sounds yourself find free sprite libraries, a good way for a lone developer to start is to find a simple, pretty and playable game and recode it yourself, match the gameplay, helps you encounter problems before your bank balance depends on it too much and you can see where your skills lie.

Be true to yourself, A man who wears a mask doesn't have a face.

Good luck.

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Ok this is my view on your "problem", (If you can call it that)

I suggest you think long and hard about the responsibility of owning/running a game development company. Also there are the costs, depending on your chosen projects, for example, small 2D games can be produced for next to nothing, where as the next fps, mmorpg, or other "online" game is another matter. Money plays a huge role in this market.

Take EA Games for example (not that you will get anywhere near that size of a company yet.) But they probebly couldnt afford to build the games the make now at the start. So they started out small.

Im not sure how old you are either but you have to be over 16 in the UK (not sure about the usa) to own your own comany outright. So unless your parent are willing to spend a fortune on such costs then you cannot protect your company.

Then there is the naming of your bussiness, "you may already have a name, yet that could be used by another company in a completly different market, yet can take you to court. So The Law plays a big part in this too.

Once thats over and done with, and youve started making your very first proffesional (retail) game, theres naming that (with the same problems) and copyrighting it. This costs a LOT of money (from previous experience) and can have a massive effect on the entire company.

When i turned 16 three years back, i decided to create my own games company, i got my parents to buy the name and website for me on their credit card, yet in my name, and i owned the company. We are still in the process of building our first game 3 years later. this proves that it takes a LOT of time to build both the company and the games.

My advice to you is to research more into this, its a great job, and once started brings in a tidy amount of money, which i used to fund collage fees :P

Then satrt this company of yours but dont lit it slip out of your grip. people can easily take advantage. Be careful of sponsewrs with hidden catches, etc. yet look out for real potensial in sponsors too.

Choose your team wisly, as you may be working with them for the rest of your working life. So choose people you know if possible, as this can help later on, for moral support an the likes.

I wish you all the luck in this dream of yours, remember! With Big Dreams comes a Big Reality, yet with Big Risk comes Big Losses!

Hope this helped you out.
(P.S. I am going to start to write articles on starting up game development businesses soon so keep a look out.

RocK

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Once again, I just wanted to say thanks for your replies to this thread. You guys are really a big help. I haven't been able to reply to this thread as much as I wanted to before because of my lack of time and connection, but now I've got a DSL connection and I can browse the forum articles alot and more frequently. Recently I just got a new job and I'm looking at a second job to help save some money so I can afford some new equipment, like a better PC that is suitable for game dev. The one I'm using isn't (Intel Celeron 2.6GHz, GeForce 5200, 256 MB Ram, etc.), it's just for basic computing like homework, research, internet surfing, etc.

Quote:
creating a game development company comes second to creating games. If you have no start up capital and no talented co-developers, you can always develop your games using a free language like java which has plenty of excellent IDEs available, linux for a free OS and locate other opensource development tools. If you cannot do graphics or sounds yourself find free sprite libraries, a good way for a lone developer to start is to find a simple, pretty and playable game and recode it yourself, match the gameplay, helps you encounter problems before your bank balance depends on it too much and you can see where your skills lie.

Be true to yourself, A man who wears a mask doesn't have a face.

Good luck.

I do have some dev tools, like Microsoft Visual Studio C++ 6.0 and 7.1, a 3D modeling tool called anim8tor, a terrain generator called World Machine and I do have the DirectX 9 and NVIDIA SDKs available at the respected websites. I have a large library of programming books mostly pertaining to games, but here's a list of books that I own that I think would be helpful in improving what skills I have:

GPU Gems 2 (OpenGL 2.0, Direct3D 9, HLSL, Cg, GLSL)
Beginning OpenGL Game Programming (OpenGL 1.5)
More OpenGL Game Programming (OpenGL 2.0)
Reversing: Secrets of Reverse Engineering
Assembly Language: Step by Step (X86 ASM)
3D Game Textures
AI For Game Developers
Awesome power of DirectX/Direct3D (DirectX 3-5)
C, Nitty Gritty
The Cg Tutorial
Game Coding Complete Second Edition
Open Geometry GL 2.0
Isometric Game Programming with DirectX 7.0
Linux Graphics Programming with SGVAlib
OpenGL Shading Language
Beginning Game Programming (C++, DirectX 9)
Physics for Game Developers
Spells of Fury (DirectX 2)
Tricks of the 3D Game Programming Gurus (Software Rasterization, Very good book!)
Visual Studio .NET 2003
Win32 Game Programming Guide (DirectX 3)
Zen of Direct3D Game Programming (DirectX 8)
C++ for dummies

And that's my entire library. There are alot more books I want to get. I have a subscription to gdmag, but I havent gotten a copy of the magazine in a while. So I'm always open to learning whatever I can even if the API is old and out of date. To be honest, I like programming with Direct3D 3.0 better than Direct3D 9.0c, and Direct3D 7 is my favourite :)

So here's my game plan so far. I'm going to get back into school hopefully this january and work on the best CS degree I can get. In the mean time, read up on the links you guys gave me, read some general business management books, write some business plans, build a resume, and buy some tickets to the GDC 07 in March. Code some simple games maybe similar to BlackHawk Striker from WildTangent and work my way up the ladder as I become more and more skilled in programming. When I finish my CS degree, take all the knowledge and build a presentable graphical demo to prove to other companies that I do have some skill for maybe applying for a job at NVIDIA so I can gain some actual experience with a larger company. Then after a few years, if possible start my business. How does that sound?

EDIT: Your post caught me off guard :P
Quote:
Original post by RedRock Games
Ok this is my view on your "problem", (If you can call it that)

I suggest you think long and hard about the responsibility of owning/running a game development company. Also there are the costs, depending on your chosen projects, for example, small 2D games can be produced for next to nothing, where as the next fps, mmorpg, or other "online" game is another matter. Money plays a huge role in this market.

Take EA Games for example (not that you will get anywhere near that size of a company yet.) But they probebly couldnt afford to build the games the make now at the start. So they started out small.

Im not sure how old you are either but you have to be over 16 in the UK (not sure about the usa) to own your own comany outright. So unless your parent are willing to spend a fortune on such costs then you cannot protect your company.

Then there is the naming of your bussiness, "you may already have a name, yet that could be used by another company in a completly different market, yet can take you to court. So The Law plays a big part in this too.

Once thats over and done with, and youve started making your very first proffesional (retail) game, theres naming that (with the same problems) and copyrighting it. This costs a LOT of money (from previous experience) and can have a massive effect on the entire company.

When i turned 16 three years back, i decided to create my own games company, i got my parents to buy the name and website for me on their credit card, yet in my name, and i owned the company. We are still in the process of building our first game 3 years later. this proves that it takes a LOT of time to build both the company and the games.

My advice to you is to research more into this, its a great job, and once started brings in a tidy amount of money, which i used to fund collage fees :P

Then satrt this company of yours but dont lit it slip out of your grip. people can easily take advantage. Be careful of sponsewrs with hidden catches, etc. yet look out for real potensial in sponsors too.

Choose your team wisly, as you may be working with them for the rest of your working life. So choose people you know if possible, as this can help later on, for moral support an the likes.

I wish you all the luck in this dream of yours, remember! With Big Dreams comes a Big Reality, yet with Big Risk comes Big Losses!

Hope this helped you out.
(P.S. I am going to start to write articles on starting up game development businesses soon so keep a look out.

RocK

I'm not sure how old you have to be in order to start a business here in the USA, but I'm sure it's 15 or 16 (I've seen young teens have businesses at that age here). Anyway, I'm an adult of legal age to start a business in the USA (actually I prefer not to post my exact age, lol) so thats not a problem =).

Also I see you just joined the forums 2 days ago, welcome, welcome! Allow me to be the first to rate you (positively). I look forward to reading your articles and enjoy your stay.

EDIT2: I have already chosen a name for my company, it's "Shogun3D Interactive". I did a google search, and it only appears to be a screen name for some people on various forums.

[Edited by - blueshogun96 on October 29, 2006 3:53:24 AM]

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Quote:
Original post by blueshogun96
Recently I just got a new job and I'm looking at a second job to help save some money so I can afford some new equipment, like a better PC that is suitable for game dev. The one I'm using isn't (Intel Celeron 2.6GHz, GeForce 5200, 256 MB Ram, etc.), it's just for basic computing like homework, research, internet surfing, etc.

Add RAM (1 GB or more, preferrably 2 GB) and upgrade your graphics card - the latter assuming you wish to make graphically intensive games. Other than that, your computer is quite adequate for game development.

Quote:
So here's my game plan so far. I'm going to get back into school hopefully this january and work on the best CS degree I can get. In the mean time, read up on the links you guys gave me, read some general business management books, write some business plans, build a resume, and buy some tickets to the GDC 07 in March. Code some simple games maybe similar to BlackHawk Striker from WildTangent and work my way up the ladder as I become more and more skilled in programming. When I finish my CS degree, take all the knowledge and build a presentable graphical demo to prove to other companies that I do have some skill for maybe applying for a job at NVIDIA so I can gain some actual experience with a larger company. Then after a few years, if possible start my business. How does that sound?

Complicated.

You're getting a degree. Good, focus on it. Write games in your spare time. While you're earning your degree, seek out internships, preferrably in the game industry. Cultivate contacts, and try to get a job in the industry. After graduation, work for a studio and help complete some games. Keep your eyes and ears open and learn all you can not only about your technical area, which looks to be software development, but about how the business functions as a whole, and particularly about how the creative process is driven.

Then learn this lesson, which Dan Merchant pointed out to me about a year ago: ownership is not management. Just because you start and own the company does not mean you are best-suited to run it. Your job will be hiring smart managers (and lawyers, and accountants) to ensure that you and your creative/technical employees can keep doing what you are good at doing: making games.

Good luck!

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Just for a point of info, and Red Rock is correct about the huge costs of starting a company (not just a game company, but any).

Googling is fine but is not a total Trademark check. If you want to pay for it yourself, do your checks at http://uspto.gov/ to make sure Shogun3D Interactive isn't taken by some company who hasn't got a web presence. To trademark and protect your company, you need to be doing commerce. Since you're alone and in school, I'd say have about 4-5 company names you'd like, keep checking Google periodically, and then when you're ready to do actual commerce, call a lawyer to do the trademarking (it costs maybe $1000-5000+, depending on the hourly fees and how many categories you want, color logo vs b&w or no logo.)

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Quote:
Original post by blueshogun96
So here's my game plan so far. I'm going to get back into school hopefully this january and work on the best CS degree I can get. In the mean time, read up on the links you guys gave me, read some general business management books, write some business plans, build a resume, and buy some tickets to the GDC 07 in March. Code some simple games maybe similar to BlackHawk Striker from WildTangent and work my way up the ladder as I become more and more skilled in programming. When I finish my CS degree, take all the knowledge and build a presentable graphical demo to prove to other companies that I do have some skill for maybe applying for a job at NVIDIA so I can gain some actual experience with a larger company. Then after a few years, if possible start my business. How does that sound?


Showing demos about your capabilities is fine, but once you join that "larger company", there may be no turning back because of contracts and NDAs that might make your "Then after a few years, if possible-" into decades! Also once you join the big wigs, that growing pride and need for fellow pros might cut you off from wanting present beginners like yourself and us from aligning ourselves into your company! I don't want to be offensive, but everytime I look at a job listing for game development, it usually involves the SKILLS of "4+ industry experience", "One AAA title shipped", ">SR.< Game Designer", and other things like "High School Diploma and a College Degree". That really cut off "new blood" into the industry like ourselves(meaning pre-industry gamers).

Also if you want to go with some industry standard gaming companies, is to license a industry-standard engine, and that means either Torque, Unreal(3), the young Offset, Crytek(2), Vicious, and other ones that are the next level from open-source engines, but this for when you have the "green stuff" to get some groundbreaking stuff done.

(I forgot if you said you're aiming for "third party")

Also your company should be innovative, able to accept change through each gaming generation, and an equal opportunity job-poster. This means people from the top to bottom of the industry can strike a resume and land a job for your company. Such as modders looking for professional development, beginners, and pros who need to control the upper structures.

Also I suggest as an HQ or HUB(office) for your company is central/lower Texas, around or in Austin. This suggestion came upon me more because Austin seems to be becoming a gaming HUB(SOE Austin), than me actually going to be being there for awhile.

That's all of what I have for now. I hope you consider this advice hard like all the others because it IS REALLY a make/break desicion who you are willing to hire for your company.

[Edited by - BrioCyrain on November 2, 2006 9:07:32 AM]

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Ok, once again, sorry I haven't replied to this thread in a while, I've been a busy man. Been thinking of ways to make extra income to do some of the basics to get started. I have another question, what if I write/wrote my own game engine for writing games and stuff? Are there any pros and cons I should know about when using a game engine created yourself as apposed to paying for another like Unreal technology? I know that I can't make Unreal 4 engine overnight, or even in a year, but would it be a requirement to use existing engines?

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Using an existing engine saves time as it allows you to start developing the game straight away. However there is often a large up-front cost (at least for the triple A engines like Unreal) and it may also limit your game design as the engine may not support a particular feature you wanted.

Given that you will be a small indie developer (and as such self funded) I guess you won't have the $350,000+ for a triple A engine so it would be a choice between something like Torque or rolling your own. If an existing engine will do what you want then it is probably best to use one - it is one less thing to worry about.

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If you aren't going to go with a pre-existing engine, don't try to write one yourself. Just write your game. Writing engines is not the domain of the inexperienced -- you need a good number of finished projects under your belt to really be able to understand all the design considerations involved. An engine is not something that is required to build a game.

Given your position it will be much better for you to focus your efforts on the construction of a game -- a product that can get results, and sales -- rather than an engine, which will most likely just suck the resources out of your fledgling operation and yeild unacceptable returns.

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Original post by Obscure
Using an existing engine saves time as it allows you to start developing the game straight away. However there is often a large up-front cost (at least for the triple A engines like Unreal) and it may also limit your game design as the engine may not support a particular feature you wanted.

Given that you will be a small indie developer (and as such self funded) I guess you won't have the $350,000+ for a triple A engine so it would be a choice between something like Torque or rolling your own. If an existing engine will do what you want then it is probably best to use one - it is one less thing to worry about.

Can you (or someone else) list all the "levels" such as AAA, and describe them? And, if anyone would know, of what level would the Unity (http://www.unit3d.com)engine be considered, AAA perhaps?

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Original post by Obscure
Using an existing engine saves time as it allows you to start developing the game straight away. However there is often a large up-front cost (at least for the triple A engines like Unreal) and it may also limit your game design as the engine may not support a particular feature you wanted.

Given that you will be a small indie developer (and as such self funded) I guess you won't have the $350,000+ for a triple A engine so it would be a choice between something like Torque or rolling your own. If an existing engine will do what you want then it is probably best to use one - it is one less thing to worry about.

Can you (or someone else) list all the "levels" such as AAA, and describe them? And, if anyone would know, of what level would the Unity (http://www.unit3d.com)engine be considered, AAA perhaps?

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