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Questions about creating a Start Up MMOG

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I have the next great idea for an MMOG. Well thought out, highly marketable, truly different, yadda yadda Problem is I am not a programmer. I understand programming, have had courses in it, have read up on game design. But programmer I am not. Nor am I independently wealthy. Nor are my friends or family, either programmers (well some are but they are not interested) nor rich (same same). So how does one find 1) Freelance programmers to craft an engine and the world and game I envision 2) Someone to fund the project ???

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Original post by yello1
1) Freelance programmers to craft an engine and the world and game I envision
You'd need a lot of funding.

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2) Someone to fund the project
You'd need a full design document demonstrating your idea, and a working prototype.

Note the catch 22.

Unfortunately an idea is worth very little; most people that are willing to work for free have thier own idea that they'd rather work on instead of yours, and those of you who would be willing to help are both difficult to find and probably not of an appropriate level of skill.

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Sorry I didnt mean Freelancers to work for free, I meant ones to work for pay, piecework and probably part time. Spread it out over a period of time and maybe I could afford that. Obviously no one is going to work for free.

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Original post by yello1
Sorry I didnt mean Freelancers to work for free, I meant ones to work for pay, piecework and probably part time. Spread it out over a period of time and maybe I could afford that. Obviously no one is going to work for free.

The game industry consultants I've met are roughly 1.5x as expensive as people already working in salaried positions within the industry. Game development is not bridge building; you need game development specific contractors, and these are rare.

You could try and gamble on hiring amateur/independent contractors, and many have been very successful doing this, but this is a gamble and I'd suspect hiring professionals will come out to about the same bill in the end, assuming you're really serious.

This is not an insignificant amount of money. Your best chance is to learn enough skills to differentiate yourself, build a demo, find funding/workers with the demo and then enter full development, hiring salaried programmers and using contractors to fill in the gaps where necessary. Spreading out whatever funding you may have over a long period of time is risky, as there's a large burnout rate in game development, so you begin to have difficulty recruiting the reliable contractors/developers back to your stable. There's also the question of technological stability -- spend too much time developing the software and you risk losing a technological edge, which makes the non-developers at publishing firms drop your demo pretty quickly.

Game development is hard. Really hard. Online games are even harder. What you have proposed is the game development equivalent of producing an entire Hollywood feature film, out of pocket, using only contractors.

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You work you way up.
If you truely want to complete a project like this, you have to start by creating tic-tac-toe.

One does not go to the olympics before one can stand on two feet.

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Original post by llamaSong
You work you way up.
If you truely want to complete a project like this, you have to start by creating tic-tac-toe.

One does not go to the olympics before one can stand on two feet.


Very well said.

If you are serious, and if its truly "Well thought out" then you must create a design document. Put your "ideas" onto paper. Draw some sketches, create something and you will get attention. The more attention, eye candy, wow factor, and skill that you have, the more likely that your game will get into production.

Keep one thing in mind: Saying that you have the next great idea for an MMOG does not help you. There are millions of people just like you who think they have the next new idea, but rather they all share similar ones. I do not mean to indicate that you don't have good ideas, but rather that you may not be alone. In the future, especially when you're project is going well, stuff like that may cause people to irrationally "flame" against you/your project. Just be forewarned; the game dev. community tends to appreciate reasonable people whose goal is to develop rather than make the next best seller. Just keep it in mind; if it doesn't help, fine.

I wish you luck on your endeavor.
Cheers,

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I could fill alot of paper with ideas, concepts, flow charts even, alot of it is already written out in notes to myself. But will that really get me anywhere? Thats kind of where I am at right now, is going beyond this fantasy point worth my time? And if it is, who do I show those papers to?

As for the "next big thing" I was just being amusing and brief - I imagine everyone posting here thinks they have the next big thing as well. No sense in wasting time saying much more I thought.

___

As for the Tic Tac Toe suggestion, Im not looking to program something, so I do not see how thats really relevant. Im looking to produce something. I suppose I could spend money hiring someone to program some smaller game idea, but to what purpose? The wife is already looking askance at me now. Waste thousands before ever making a forward stride and its a canceled concept or a divorce heh.

But if you meant something else, do tell. How can I ease into this?

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Original post by yello1
I could fill alot of paper with ideas, concepts, flow charts even, alot of it is already written out in notes to myself. But will that really get me anywhere? Thats kind of where I am at right now, is going beyond this fantasy point worth my time? And if it is, who do I show those papers to?

As for the "next big thing" I was just being amusing and brief - I imagine everyone posting here thinks they have the next big thing as well. No sense in wasting time saying much more I thought.



Excellent! Format your ideas and post them on the Help Wanted forums. They'll help you out well.

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Well thats another issue.

If I truly have a good idea, but no way to legally claim it (so far as I know you cant copyright a concept and patents do not cover software programs let alone notions for how to make one) how do I share this idea with programmers who could actually make it without them running off with the idea and making it their own?

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You can't. You could make people sign a non-disclosure agreement, but nobody's going to bother signing one unless money is involved. And you're not going to get anyone to fund you based on ideas and concepts alone. Hence the 'work your way up' comment made earlier.

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Original post by yello1
Well thats another issue.

If I truly have a good idea, but no way to legally claim it (so far as I know you cant copyright a concept and patents do not cover software programs let alone notions for how to make one) how do I share this idea with programmers who could actually make it without them running off with the idea and making it their own?

This is generally why you need the demo, or at least some marketable skill. Just having the idea is only worth as much time as it takes to rip it off -- not much. The development talent and investment is pretty large for an MMORPG. The idea is the least of the effort, I assure you!

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Original post by yello1
Well thats another issue.

If I truly have a good idea, but no way to legally claim it (so far as I know you cant copyright a concept and patents do not cover software programs let alone notions for how to make one) how do I share this idea with programmers who could actually make it without them running off with the idea and making it their own?

From the top 10 business myths:

Myth #3: Someone will steal your idea if you don't protect it.
Reality: No one gives a damn about your idea until you actually succeed and by then it's too late. Even on the off chance that you do manage to stumble across someone who is as excited about your idea as you are, if they have any brains they will join you rather than try to beat you. (And if they don't have any brains then it doesn't matter what they do.)
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ideas are worth absolutely positively nothing at all. Even if somebody were to take your idea and make money from it... who cares? It isn't the idea that is making money at all it is the actual ability to implement an idea that breeds success. It is especially this way in game development where everybody has 10+ 'next big thing' ideas for the perfect game.

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These threads are rough because its hard to NOT sound disheartening. By no means am I suggesting give up on your ideas and goals. But you HAVE to present something to people in you want to get them to help you. Like others have said, a design document of some sort, maybe some art/concepts, ANYTHING. Because when people say 'I GOT AN IDEA THAT WILL CHANGE THE WAY THESE GAMES ARE PLAYED!' it usually boils down to them saying 'All we have to do is make it better than the other games!'.


You have to present your ideas to people if you want them to help you out. Also, usually in small teams, you have to bring more to the table than just 'ideas'. You already stated you arent a programmer. Are you an artist? Designer? DB admin? modeling? etc? If not, then you are just the guy telling the others what to do.

Also, Im not going to bother expressing how much work is involved in makig an MMO. Im sure you are already aware of that. :)

GOODLUCK!

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