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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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Jacob Groeblinghoff

Question from a noob!

11 posts in this topic

So, I have a question.  I'm a beginner game designer, and I really want to make my whole game from scratch by myself.  And, since the game is going to have semi high-end graphics, the game is going to take a while...probably years in the making.  What I wanted to ask, especially to the experts, what in your mind makes up the bulk of a game.  Is it scripting?  Is it dialogue?  Is it graphics?  

 

Thanks

-PaperMariolover

 

 

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what in your mind makes up the bulk of a game. Is it scripting? Is it dialogue? Is it graphics?

 

The bulk of a game project's schedule and work effort is the programming.

The bulk of a game's play experience is playing.

Not sure what you're asking.

Edited by Tom Sloper
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It really depends on the game. For my own indie project, a surprising amount of time has been invested in making the map editor and building the low level infrastructure that holds everything in place - but my game is 2D. If I was doing 3D, I'd use an engine where both of those problems would've already been solved, and most of the time would probably be spent creating content.

 

And yes, Paper Mario is an awesome game.

Edited by Servant of the Lord
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Thank you everyone, I just wanted to know.  Coding...ugh, it's my worst nightmare.  I'm trying to learn it via youtube, and, it's a killer.  That's alright, I just have to keep telling myself that, in the end, it's going to look fantastic, because it's gonna be years till I've got this down to an "art."

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Oh, and Tom, I just wanted to know what in your opinion is what makes up the bulk of a game.  I just threw out suggestions, since I still don't quite know what it is I'm doing yet.

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Coding...ugh, it's my worst nightmare. I'm trying to learn it via youtube, and, it's a killer.

You should start with a simple language to begin programming. I suggest trying Python or Java at first to get a grasp of imperative programming and then object-oriented programming. Then, make very simple applications, text-based. From there you may want to move on to making small games with a simple graphics API, for example by remaking Tetris or the snake game. With that experience, you can try tackling bigger 2d games, with more powerful libraries.

 

And, regarding your question, to add to what Simon Forsman said, in AAA games there are often many more artists than programmers, therefore the amount of man-hours dedicated to content is greater than the amount dedicated to code (engine or game code). If you're only starting, you are going to spend most of your time programming at first.

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Coding...ugh, it's my worst nightmare.  I'm trying to learn it via youtube, and, it's a killer.

Videos actually aren't that great of a way of learning things. Some things, like art, may benefit from the visual presentation - but programming is a primarily text-based skill. Learning by articles and books that are illustrated with the occasional image is much faster.

Why have someone take 15 minutes to explain something that could've been explained in a half-dozen sentences and a graph or snippet of example code? Why have videos of people typing out text, instead of instantly having the text already typed when the page loads?

I second the suggestion of starting with Python, and I suggest picking up two books (one heavy duty beginner textbook to read in-front of the computer, and one lightweight "fun" beginner book to read on a couch), and going through online tutorials. One book would suffice though - just read the reviews on Amazon to find a good one.

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@Servant - What would you suggest regarding the "hiearchial structure of coding?"  In other words, from what you said Python, and then what after that?  And then, what after the language after Python?  Just curious.

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Programming languages aren't very hierarchical - once you learn Python, even if you learn other languages later, you'll still find uses for Python.
Just because Python is easy to learn (which is why it's recommended as a good language to start off with) doesn't mean it's weak or otherwise hindered.
Python is used in games, small and large. It's used for the backends of websites. It's used as a programming language, and as a scripting language.

But that didn't really answer your question. smile.png

What do you learn after Python? Well, after sticking with Python for two or three years (which is what I recommend), the landscape of what is in style, and what people recommend, what is new, and what is stable and mature, may have changed.

 

After you learn Python, you'll either already have picked up what to learn next, or else you'll be better equipped to ask here or elsewhere for suggestions.

Maybe C#. Maybe C++. Maybe something entirely different. But even 10 years from now you'll still use Python in addition to whatever else you learn - whatever tool is best suited for whatever project you are undertaking at that distant point in time.

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I bought a book called something like Android 4 Games Programming (can't remember the exact title). It was really good. You start with super basic xml games and finish with more complicated directX games. Books like these go through every single step from vector calculations into game logic. Youtube and other online tutorials can be quite "cheesy" in the sense that they talk a lot about something, but leave very essential items out. Books are good since there are versions of them and they are thoroughly reviewed before let out on the market. So save yourself some time (=money) and go buy one of these books. There is probably one for each language/platform at Amazon. I chose Android since it's based on Java (popular language) and all the development tools are free. If you choose something like C# or any Apple languages you might have to pay some for the development tools.

  • You don't have to pick Android programming - but buy a good book!
Edited by mipmap
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I just wanted to know what in your opinion is what makes up the bulk of a game.

 

Still not sure what the question is. Bulk of time it takes to make a game? Bulk of cost involved in making a game? Bulk of code on a disc? Bulk of work it takes to make a game?

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