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XBLA Development Time

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What is the average development time for an XBLA game? I know this is very nonspecific and I assume that the dev time could range form a month to five years, contingent on how much content and effort is put in. I am just looking for a ball park of a typical, quality title on XBLA (with the exception of UNO).

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Five years? Is Daikatana 2 coming to XBLA?

The platform will be all but dead in 5 years. These are small games with small file size limits. They are usually small, simple, games or ports of older games.

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As with any game project, it depends on what kind of game, how large the game will be, how many people, how much time you spend, your talent level, and waht you're starting with (having some nice, tested base code sitting around can really speed things up)

a hand full of programmers with a half dozen games under their belts could make a simple game in months, a duo of inexperienced programmers could take a few years to complete an rpg of some sort


the key is to not get in over your head, come up with an idea, see if its feasible, and give it a go

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How about three college educated programmers, that have dabbled in mods and some application writing, creating a game on par with Age of Booty, with a rudimentary code base and a little art work done?

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Quote:
Original post by CoffinNail
How about three college educated programmers, that have dabbled in mods and some application writing, creating a game on par with Age of Booty, with a rudimentary code base and a little art work done?


To answer your question, I've heard of XBLA titles being announced and then appearing within three months. Of course they don't always tell you when development actually began, I would allow 6 months for a decent game. Hell, even Halo 2 was apparently built in 10 months and apparently Halo:CE in 6.

I don't want to shoot you down, but if you're actually trying to put this into production for XBLA then you might have problems getting the 360 development tools from Microsoft given your current circumstances. The devkits etc. are expensive and Microsoft are often quite careful about who the stuff is issued to and, to be brutally honest, I don't think three indie programmers with a vague idea really fits the bill. You are always free to try, however, but I wouldn't say get your hopes up or anything.

I would suggest you use XNA and submit this as a community game instead. If it's really good and catches Microsoft's eye, they might allow you to upgrade it and submit it to XBLA as full retail with achievements, leaderboards etc.

@Daaark - I think XBLA will carry over onto the next Xbox - the platform will evolve but probably not die. Pity there's so many absolutely crap games on it *cough* Space Giraffe *cough* *splutter* Alien Hominid HD *splutter I really should see a doctor.

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Quote:
Original post by ukdeveloper
To answer your question, I've heard of XBLA titles being announced and then appearing within three months. Of course they don't always tell you when development actually began, I would allow 6 months for a decent game. Hell, even Halo 2 was built in 10 months and apparently Halo:CE in 6.


The XBLA games don't require devkits, they typically use XNA (that's the whole point of XNA: to drive hobby games to the otherwise restricted platform by providing free access to slightly hobbled development tools.)

-me

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somewhere along this line:
(scale of the project * (1/experience of the team)) / amount of resources available

Halo took years to develop, you can watch the evolution of Halo video to see how it went from an RTS game to the FPS game we know today

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Quote:
Original post by Palidine
The XBLA games don't require devkits, they typically use XNA (that's the whole point of XNA: to drive hobby games to the otherwise restricted platform by providing free access to slightly hobbled development tools.)

-me


My bad, but don't you still need to jump through a few hoops to get them on actual XBLA listings as opposed to the Community Games section?

Quote:
Original post by eedok
Halo took years to develop, you can watch the evolution of Halo video to see how it went from an RTS game to the FPS game we know today


I think Halo 2's campaign was scrapped halfway through development and was done in crunch time within the last 10 months before shipping. "The mother of all crunches" Bungie apparently called it.

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Age of Booty quality (SWAG from looking @ screenies): 1-2 years.

less if you've done game programming before, less if you've used XNA before. I'm assuming you already know graphics, animation, lighting, AI, data structures, etc. If you've never written a large application, used source control, worked on big group projects, don't have artists making assets for you, etc add a lot of time.

A team of 3 engineers who've previously shipped similar quality games backed by artists who've done game art/animation/lighting/etc working full-time (60+hour weeks) could bang it out in probably 6mo-1yr or less. Dunno how deep that gameplay goes hence the big range.

-me

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