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Nintendo DS development

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Hello all, I have been poking around for a little while now and I'm having a difficult time locating any information on developing games for the Nintendo DS. Does anyone know of a good place to start looking for more data? The websites recommended for DS development in this forums FAQ don't have any content. For reference my end goal is to develop a demo for a publisher, not just for homebrew goodness. Thanks, Joe Piepiora

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Quote:
Original post by jpiepiora
For reference my end goal is to develop a demo for a publisher, not just for homebrew goodness.


That's not easy to do, sadly. Just to get an idea of what's needed, here is what Nintendo is looking for in order to become an authorized developer.

Edit: Slow, and I fail at html tags [headshake]

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Thanks guys, this is some excellent information. I didn't exactly expect to waltz right into a dev-kit, but I can't meet the criteria at present. Perhaps I'll look into this again after my career has matured somewhat.

Again, thank you for the quick links!

Joe Piepiora

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There was a similar thread some time ago so take a look at the links I posted there:
http://www.gamedev.net/community/forums/ViewReply.asp?id=3068222

The examples provided with devkitPro are a good reference to start coding for the DS.

If your goal is to get a demo for a publisher try creating it for the pc instead. Following the same constraints as your target hardware (as I mentioned in the linked post, just a suggestion :-)

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Quote:
Original post by jpiepiora
For reference my end goal is to develop a demo for a publisher, not just for homebrew goodness.

Why?

Publishers don't want demos. Publishers want products they can publish to consumers and sell for a profit.

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This particular question may illustrate my ignorance of the process. The articles I've read seem to indicate that presenting a demo of your product to a publisher in advance is how you secure funding for the duration of the development cycle. After all the legalities of your company, such as the business plan and whatnot have been squared away that is.

If you're asking me why I'd bother trying to secure that money for the development cycle, I suppose it just seems to make more sense from a business standpoint. Operating entirely on start-up money seems dangerous.

Understand of course that I don't have a background in business management. I just perceive some publishing routes as riskier than others.

As ever, I would enjoy any feedback.

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I'm part of a student organization that creates games and the group I'm currectly with is in the process of developing a DS game using PALib. I would recommend checking it out.

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Quote:
Original post by frob
Quote:
Original post by jpiepiora
For reference my end goal is to develop a demo for a publisher, not just for homebrew goodness.

Why?

Publishers don't want demos. Publishers want products they can publish to consumers and sell for a profit.

True but demos are great to put on your resume and it allows developers to see your various talents and skills.

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Quote:
Original post by jpiepiora
This particular question may illustrate my ignorance of the process. The articles I've read seem to indicate that presenting a demo of your product to a publisher in advance is how you secure funding for the duration of the development cycle. After all the legalities of your company, such as the business plan and whatnot have been squared away that is.

That's not a demo, that's a pitched game. As an unknown company with no background an no experienced developers, your pitch has to include a complete game. Even then, you'll be fighting a difficult battle in getting a publisher to give you funding for publishing, marketing, or distributing your game.

Getting a title through Nintendo's lot checks, getting the minimum purchase of cartridges, getting them all burned, labeled, packaged with manuals, and warehoused will run you around $100,000. That's just for a minimum order of a couple thousand boxed cartridges -- your publisher deal would probably require 10x that much. Your publisher will need money to get your product to stores, and you will need to work out money for advertising.

Unless you have money for all that, you're essentially begging for the publisher to loan you the few million dollars required to get all that done.

Is your game completed up to the point that you can get a million dollar loan with it? If it isn't completed up to that point, how much additional money will you need to invest into it before you could get that far?



You are correct about the experience aspect. You need to get some deep industry experience, or have the funding to hire people with that industry experience. As a group you should be able to produce something that could get published. Also as a group, it would be easier to convince a publisher that you won't fail, meaning there is a better chance they would be willing to front you a little money for publishing, marketing, and distributing. It is easier to get the million or two for startup funds, but still very difficult.

[Edited by - frob on December 4, 2007 4:05:50 PM]

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hi there...

another questeion to nDS development...

is there ANY way... to develop with the "IS NITRO EMULATOR" without Metroworks Codewarrior?!!? This tool is..... mh... not very ergonomic^^

is there a way to use the codewarrior compiler in visual studio?!?! i dont believe, that there is a way to debugg in VS2005... but compiling?!!

does anybody know something about that?!

thanks'n'greeetz

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You'd really be best off getting some real industry experience yourself, by working for another developer until you have enough experience. You'll need to get other experienced developers before you can consider starting your own company and pitching to publishers.


Quote:
Original post by mlostek
is there ANY way... to develop with the "IS NITRO EMULATOR" without Metroworks Codewarrior?!!? This tool is..... mh... not very ergonomic^^

is there a way to use the codewarrior compiler in visual studio?!?! i dont believe, that there is a way to debugg in VS2005... but compiling?!!
Ugh, tell me about it. You won't be able to debug with it, since the Nintendo libs and tools are designed only to work with CodeWarrior.

In theory, you should be able to use any compiler that can read the Nintendo library formats and spit out a properly linked exe (Or use the CodeWarrior linker somehow). You can always use Visual Studio as an editor, and then just do the compiling in CodeWarrior - it's not that bad.

I heard a rumour on one of the DS Developer newsgroups that someone was compiling with GCC somehow, but I didn't really look into it.

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Quote:
Original post by mlostek
hi there...

another questeion to nDS development...

is there ANY way... to develop with the "IS NITRO EMULATOR" without Metroworks Codewarrior?!!? This tool is..... mh... not very ergonomic^^

is there a way to use the codewarrior compiler in visual studio?!?! i dont believe, that there is a way to debugg in VS2005... but compiling?!!

does anybody know something about that?!

thanks'n'greeetz


yes you can set VS up to use makefiles and just use make 3.80 to do the compiling, it means mantaining your makefile carefully though and I'm not sure exactly how you output debugging info, but it can be done
Code worrier for all its faults is simpler to use than a make file system....stick with it, it does get slightly easier with use, it's just that is so different to VS you start to miss the features VS has, but you won't get many of those features if you resort to using makefiles.



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