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Game design, ideas and concepts

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Hello, After browsing a number of indie game forums you come across a lot of topics about people pushing ideas and trying to get someone with an actual ability to make games to work on their "brilliant ideas", in the end most of these attempts don't go anywhere, since there a LOT more ideas out there than there are "muscle"(actual game making skills) to make it work, in the end you can browse through loads of ideas and projects that just stuck, people who can make games have usually enough ideas on their own and people usually value their own ideas and concepts more than anyone else's.

Although there are thousands participants on the forums and many with technical skills, getting together and working on a single project is very hard unless you already create something attractive enough , if you just have a " brilliant idea" you will be dismissed or ignored in most cases rightfully so, since people usually unaware that their ideas suck, and as I said above - too many ideas and not enough "muscle".

What if people with "brilliant ideas" first get together and turn these ideas into well thought out game design/mechanics to a point where it could be presented to a gamedeveloper(s) as a blueprint for a game, like a scriptwriter who offers his script to a movie director.

What ya think? Edited by Champloo13

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What if people with "brilliant ideas" first get together and turn these ideas into well thought out game design/mechanics to a point where it could be presented to a gamedeveloper(s) as a blueprint for a game, like a scriptwriter who offers his script to a movie director.


Developers have their own ideas. If you bring an idea to a developer, you'd better bring funds too. SO, rather than pitch your idea to a developer, you should pitch it to a publisher (someone with money).

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What if people with "brilliant ideas" first get together and turn these ideas into well thought out game design/mechanics

That would be better, but in most cases still not enough when you're dealing with hobbyist developers, the overwhelming majority of whom have their own ideas and are rather difficult to sway towards working on someone else's idea.

If you're aiming to be a designer and have really written up your design properly you might try pitching to investors or a publisher as Tom suggests. If you can obtain funding you would then be able to pay your developers.


I think the real value in this type of forum is not necessarily for those without technical skills to find developers, but rather two other purposes:

  1. Those who do have their own technical skills can refine their ideas, get feedback, and might find some inspiration they were otherwise lacking. They can share an idea, ask some questions, and get all sorts of feedback from a large variety of people.
  2. Those who don't have technical skills can also get feedback and improve their skills. They can then potentially develop their ideas to the point where they may be able to either develop technical skills or can refine an idea to the point where they can successfully pitch to a publisher or investors.



Also read through the recent topic "so you're a programmer", where someone asked what might attract programmers to work on a particular project.

Hope that's helpful! smile.png

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If you want to attract people to work on a project formulated around your ideas, there are a few different ways to do this.

1) Offer money
Offering money upfront is best. If you say "you'll get a portion of the revenue" that isn't very appealing, because even the most simple games take a good amount of time before they're ready to be sold and there's no guarantee that your game will even get that point anyway. No one wants to work on someone else's ideas for free.

2) Contribute something more than just ideas
As others have said, we all have our own ideas and if people are working for free, they'd rather work on those ideas. No matter how good your ideas are, telling people "these are my ideas, now go make my game" is a very bad attitude to take. If you retain sole control of the game's design, you need to be working as well. If you have no talents as a programmer or artist, you can contribute by managing the game's website, being a play tester, managing the project and organizing people, etc.

3) Provide a core vision, but allow others to share their ideas as well
There's a lot more motivation if people feel like they can add their own input into the game design and get their own ideas improved for inclusion in the game. Let the game design be a team process, not just an individual one. Try to put together a core design and propose an initial set of the main features found in the game, then once people start joining your cause, allow them to comment and suggest alternatives or even remove existing features if they have a strong case for why they feel it would be bad, or want an alternative that they feel is better.


Also it's important to note you need to realize that if you have no technical skills or knowledge, you usually will not have a clue about how difficult (or impossible) it is to add certain features. And you also can't fully know if an idea would work well until you see it in action (some of my ideas have worked out better than expected, others were so bad that we tossed them out).

When I started my project years ago, I was already a capable programmer (and have improved very much since then) so I had something to offer (#2). And I welcomed people to submit their own ideas, especially during the initial period when the project was forming (#3). Although it was hard for me, some of the early ideas that I had for my game were voted on and rejected by my initial team, and I had to let go of them even though I was really excited about a few. But I think that was for the better.

The core vision that I laid out for our the game design (below) has remained. It has served us extremely well. Whenever someone proposed a new idea, we check it against this and if it is in gross violation of these principals, it is tossed aside.

  1. Create a role-playing game, free to the public, which may be enjoyed by as many people as possible. It will be playable on a wide range of computers from 1990 era PCs to today's, and on virtually any user operating system from Linux, to Windows, to Mac OSX. This game will also support multiple languages so that players from the world over may play it.
  2. Design the game such that the major focus is on gameplay and story, not advanced 3D graphics and physical simulations.
  3. As much as possible, remove the tedious, meaningless, and micromanaging aspects of many historical and modern RPGs.
  4. Require a high level of strategic thinking and planning from the player, and less mindless "button mashing" found in many RPGs.
  5. Make the source code and documentation to our game engine freely available under the GNU Public License, so that other game developers may absorb what we have learned and use our code to expedite the production of their own games.

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Hi,

As the size of game development grows, the demand for quality leadership increases.

Game development organizations are not necessarily pure democracies. Often with successful game developers, someone or a small group of founders have a solid or at least feasible game design and vision for future growth. Because of skills, talents, and experience - leaders will find people to join them who fulfill the goals of their plans.

Lack of effective and decisive leadership is one of the most common causes of the failure of organizations. Trying to make the group a pure democracy typically results in too many chiefs and not enough warriors and workers. Can you image the whole tribe sitting at counsil? Too many voices with too much power results in "grid lock". Opinions and advice of everyone in the organization should be valued, but only leadership establishes the structure, rules, guidelines, goals, direction, standards, and other basics which every highly successul organization needs.

Leadership is the most decisive area for the success of a game development team and the importance of leadership increases with the demands. Everything, including the success of the game design depends on leadership traits more than anything else in the field.


Clinton Edited by 3Ddreamer

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