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Guy Cecil

Best First Project?

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I am thinking that maybe I should practice a bit but maybe not. I am not a pro so I seek advice from those who know what they are doing. Should I practice by working on a fanmade game (yeah I know this is a very sensitive style of game design the only legal ones I see thus far to be openly distributed is touhou which is not an issue for me I like the art style) or jump right into my own series with no experience possibly wrecking any potential for story and plot and making a bad game.


1. I do have help and this game is going to be an action rpg and he is helping me script game maker studio to make the RPG mechanics built in to it.


2. I have no intent to throw RMXP away when I do go for the main series I plan on making it on multiple genre so RMXP will be my 2D turn based and maker3D will be my 3D turn based.


This is all hard work and I do not expect it to be done over night.


 

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I'm not sure how you're planning to divide the work between yourself and your helper, but if you're just starting out I definitely recommend using an original design. Other people will probably tell you about the legality issues (which are real), but I've found it hard to focus on good practices and workable design while getting excited about content. And, if you're using an existing franchise of any kind, 100% of what you're talking about is content.

 

Even an original design might be too much if you're new to a project like making a game. It's incredibly easy to get ahead of yourself and outpace your game-creation abilities; I know I have. I'd suggest focusing on an extremely small game idea, as in too small to even have much plot at all, and then once you've made that you can start messing around with more exciting features. If you can produce a simple, two-room adventure with a single enemy you'll have something you can build on with story and cool features later. If you go the content-first route you might end up with a pile of half-coded features floating in a mess that's nowhere near playable.

 

If this is genuinely your first project, even that might be ambitious.

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If you need practice then I would suggest that you do neither of the above and just focus on practice rather than expecting to produce a completed game on your first try; start by following tutorials, working through example exercises, etc.  Make small mini-games (that is, just the game-play, without menus, scoring, etc.) to test out your ideas and see how best you could implement specific features you want for your real project.

 

It's overwhelmingly likely that your first game -- probably your first several games -- will have problems and may not be your best work.  That's normal, and is part of learning -- everyone makes crappy games while they're learning.

 

 

Once you've learned the basics and had some practice I would then suggest working on your own original games (this is also what I voted for in your poll) rather than potentially wasting your time with "fan" games.  If you have your own original ideas why would you waste time working on a fan game that at best you won't be able to make money from, and at worst may not even be allowed to release and which could potentially cost you a lot of money.  Be original and make your own game.

tutorials are fine if you can comprehend them, and 1 way of teaching does not work with all people and since there is no way to communicate tutorials are one sided and the internet is a vast maze of tutorials I do appreciate the thought but I believe if I am gonna do tutorials I need someone to hold my hand and no one will teach for free that way so the best way for me to learn is to experiment and practice the engine exploring myself and doing projects blindly til I get the money for schooling.

Edited by GaiaBlast3r

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[background=#fffdfa]I am thinking that maybe I should practice a bit but maybe not. ... Should I practice by working on a fanmade game... or jump right into my own series with no experience ...[/background]


This isn't a Game Design question (or, if it is, I don't see it). I'm moving this to For Beginners.

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I recommend you to stay away from fanmade. Not that I think "stealing" intellectual properties are wrong but just to be safe, and it's nice to be able to say you made it all by yourself. :D

I think the best first project is a small one. When you are new you don't know how to structure the code in a good way and how much time is needed. If you try to make a big game as the first project the problems will add up until one day, when you have learned enough, you realize that the code is so hard to work with that it's better to rewrite everything from scratch. That is, if you have not given up before that. The patience of beginners are often not so good but something that will improve over time.

Now I don't know how much programming/scripting is needed in the programs that you mentioned but the same applies to almost everything, step it up, don't try to learn high school math if you have not yet learn second grade math, don't try to run a marathon if you have never ran for more than 1 hour before, don't try to build a house if you can't even build a tree house with straight walls.

In any way, good luck with your future game(s)! :)

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This is an ancient question, with a very good answer:

http://www.gamedev.net/page/resources/_/technical/game-programming/how-do-i-make-games-a-path-to-game-development-r892

-Tetris
-Breakout
-Pacman
-Mario

In that order, for very good reasons. It's going to be a lot harder than you might expect, and when you're done, you'll be ready to do any 2D game you want - or ready to step into 3D development.

Don't move on from one until you're completely done with the one before, including polish. You'll learn a LOT from polish, and you'll have something you can be VERY proud of (and can include in a portfolio). That's worth a lot. Edited by Haytil

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RPG's are a bit too much to start with and for practice I think that a simple side scroller is a good start.

 

That would definitely normally be the case, but isn't necessarily true when dealing with simpler purpose-specific software like RPG Maker.  The advice to start small is still good however and can still be applied by starting out with single-room, single enemy levels, small combat prototypes, etc.

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possibly wrecking any potential for story and plot and making a bad game.

 

Never worry about "what if i make a bad game". Do it for fun, and for yourself and enjoy it. If someone else thinks your game is bad, what does it matter, you wrote it for your own entertainment. If you think it's a bad game after you're finished, it's not the end of the world. Take a deep breath, sit back, get a pencil and paper and start on the sequel... which will be better than ever :)

 

Good luck!

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