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ProfKrauf

Designing on Paper

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I was wondering if there is anything constructive or useful in writing out detailed ideas for a video game. I have been imagining my own games for years now and lately I've been extensively writing out the ideas for them. One of them I had written was a Captain Planet game. I made charts, tables, and small sketches for the game all describing how it would play and look. I took game manuals as an example or formula to go on.

The Story

The Characters
Getting Into the Game (Explains starting the game up)

Options Screen (Explains setting the visual and audio features of the game, as well as changing the controller configuration and turning the vibration function on or off)

Controls
Explains the controls of the game

The Gameplay (Describes the core concept of the game)
Game Screen (Describes the HUDS with a sketch pointing out and detailing the essential parts of the game screen while in gameplay.)
missions (Describes game missions and the co-op feature)
secret missions (Describes secret missions)

Character Stats and Abilities (Describes each playable character in the single player/co-op and lists their statistics, abilities and how they gain those abilities)

Multiplayer (Gives a brief description of the game's online multiplayer)

Game Types (Describes the objective game types in the multiplayer)

Multiplayer Characters (Describes the characters only available in the multiplayer component in the game and lists their stats and abilities in detail)

Trophies and Achievements (Lists Achievements or Trophies that are obtainable in the game)




This is essentially designing a game, but on paper. Basically I wondering if it is worth doing this if you're trying to get a job in the games industry. I know employers look for people with portfolios, but would they take the time out to look at something as detailed as this?

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Hello Professor Platypus (http://gamecareerguide.com/forums/showthread.php?p=21048#post21048),
If you want information on how to write a Game Design Document ("GDD"), just read http://www.sloperama.com/advice/specs.htm and http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson13.htm and follow all the links at the bottom of both pages. And THIS FORUM's FAQ (see the blue "View Forum FAQ" link atop this page) probably also has lots of info about how to write GDDs properly.
You asked:

1. I wondering if it is worth doing this if you're trying to get a job in the games industry.
2. I know employers look for people with portfolios, but would they take the time out to look at something as detailed as this?

The answers again:
1. Yes. Read http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson30.htm and http://www.sloperama.com/advice/route66.htm
2. No. If you want to make a design portfolio, read http://www.sloperama.com/advice/lesson12.htm and http://www.sloperama.com/advice/jobapp.htm

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Hello ProfKrauf,

What I found easy for me and most interesting on designing on paper was looking at the game book guides you would purchase for the new games or classic games you would buy at your local video game shop or book store.

I would read and examine on how the game book guide was developed and designed for the players to get through the video game they wanted to get through.

So in short for a role playing game guide book for example:

Main Title
Chapter headings
History Tree
Characters and Bios
Main walk through
World Map
Secret locations (optional)
Beasts w/ Statistics
Character Accessories
Character Armor
Character Items
Character Relics (optional)
Character Sub weapons
Character Transportation (optional)
Character Weapons
Traps
Sub bosses w/ Statistics
Bosses w/ Statistics
End Story or Continuation Story
End Title

Hope this helps you out in some small way.
If you need some other help in any of these topics of design and suggestions or ideas.Feel free to send a pm to me sometime.

Ghostknight

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