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I'd like to present a game concept to a developer who could actually do something with it. I don't have resources or training, just an idea. I realize this is probably very common, and that it's unlikely to happen, but the idea is bugging the hell out of me. And just to make matters real complex, it's an idea relating to a licensed IP. So, does anyone have any suggestions? Do you need more details? Or should I just give up on the idea now and save myself the inevitable disappointment?

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Good news and bad news.

Good news: Your analysis of the issues is 100% correct.

Bad news: Those issues make it nigh impossible to proceed further with the idea.

Developers typically develop their own ideas first or contract their services out to publishers (EA, Activision, etc) only. Developers avoid IP issues if possible and let the publisher take care of it.

Effectively, you would need to become a publisher in order to do this; you need a massive amount of money to pay developers, a legal team to negotiate IP licensing contracts (along with more money to pay them), and after this you would still be at the complete mercy of the IP holder as to whether they would even allow a project to begin with.

Even finding developers is difficult. Many studios are owned by publishers, and don't take any contract work at all. Other studios have their hands full on existing projects - they may be able to expand, but hiring people skilled in game development is extremely hard. If you DO find a development studio, they might not have the particular skills you need for your particular project. You need to find a team experienced in the type of game you want to make. You wouldn't hire the FarmVille team to make Skyrim, for example. This process requires you to have extensive knowledge about established developers and how to get in contact with them.


You should probably give up, unless you're *extremely* wealthy and have a lot of time to manage such an undertaking. Edited by Nypyren

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Lack of confidence mostly. Also I don't want to irritate you guys, I'm sure devs on this forum see this kind of shit all the time.

 

But here goes.

 

My concept is for a Warhammer 40,000 stealth/third person shooter with heavy RPG elements. The player character would be an Interrogator for the Inquisition. You would have a variety of options for what sort of background you would have, tech priest, psyker, guardsman, ex-mercenary, that sort of thing.I personally like the idea of being able to play through your PC's rise from acolyte to Interrogator, but I recognize this that is most likely impractical. You would have a variety of characters from your Inquisitor's retinue to use, all of them would of course have their own backgrounds, stories etc. But in keeping with the tone of 40k, every one of them would be able to die during the game. Not as a result of a bullshit no win situations, always as a result of decisions you make. Anytime someone dies, it is absolutely the player's fault and it can be avoided. Other things that can happen as a result of bad decisions should be things like plagues, massive victories by xeno or heretical forces, and the deaths of many guardsmen. Detective work should be a major component, shooting your way through should be possible, but not ideal.

 

Haven't really started working on story ideas yet, this is just a rough outline. I'm sure I'll think of things I forgot later, but I'm a bit under the weather right now.

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Lack of confidence mostly. Also I don't want to irritate you guys, I'm sure devs on this forum see this kind of shit all the time.

 

But here goes.

 

My concept is for a Warhammer 40,000 stealth/third person shooter with heavy RPG elements. The player character would be an Interrogator for the Inquisition. You would have a variety of options for what sort of background you would have, tech priest, psyker, guardsman, ex-mercenary, that sort of thing.I personally like the idea of being able to play through your PC's rise from acolyte to Interrogator, but I recognize this that is most likely impractical. You would have a variety of characters from your Inquisitor's retinue to use, all of them would of course have their own backgrounds, stories etc. But in keeping with the tone of 40k, every one of them would be able to die during the game. Not as a result of a bullshit no win situations, always as a result of decisions you make. Anytime someone dies, it is absolutely the player's fault and it can be avoided. Other things that can happen as a result of bad decisions should be things like plagues, massive victories by xeno or heretical forces, and the deaths of many guardsmen. Detective work should be a major component, shooting your way through should be possible, but not ideal.

 

Haven't really started working on story ideas yet, this is just a rough outline. I'm sure I'll think of things I forgot later, but I'm a bit under the weather right now.

 

Well, basically what you're describing is a game based in dark heresy, so right now you would have a problem with the publisher of dark heresy game and the creator of the universe. And the creator, games workshop, is really picky with their licenses.

 

I always think about how awesome would be a rpg based in dark heresy universe, but for now we can only wait.

Edited by Elegarth

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Lack of confidence mostly. Also I don't want to irritate you guys, I'm sure devs on this forum see this kind of shit all the time.

 

But here goes.

 

My concept is for a Warhammer 40,000 stealth/third person shooter with heavy RPG elements. The player character would be an Interrogator for the Inquisition. You would have a variety of options for what sort of background you would have, tech priest, psyker, guardsman, ex-mercenary, that sort of thing.I personally like the idea of being able to play through your PC's rise from acolyte to Interrogator, but I recognize this that is most likely impractical. You would have a variety of characters from your Inquisitor's retinue to use, all of them would of course have their own backgrounds, stories etc. But in keeping with the tone of 40k, every one of them would be able to die during the game. Not as a result of a bullshit no win situations, always as a result of decisions you make. Anytime someone dies, it is absolutely the player's fault and it can be avoided. Other things that can happen as a result of bad decisions should be things like plagues, massive victories by xeno or heretical forces, and the deaths of many guardsmen. Detective work should be a major component, shooting your way through should be possible, but not ideal.

 

Haven't really started working on story ideas yet, this is just a rough outline. I'm sure I'll think of things I forgot later, but I'm a bit under the weather right now.

 

Well, basically what you're describing is a game based in dark heresy, so right now you would have a problem with the publisher of dark heresy game and the creator of the universe. And the creator, games workshop, is really picky with their licenses.

 

I always think about how awesome would be a rpg based in dark heresy universe, but for now we can only wait.

 

The only thing is that recently we've seen three very lackluster 40k games. Armageddon was a turn based strategy game on a hex grid, not bad, but nothing compared to the quality of Dawn of War or Space Marine. Regicide was 40k themed computer chess. And then Storm of Vengeance, which was basically a Plants vs Zombies clone with cards (it sucked ass), so I don't know what the hell GW is doing with their licenses since THQ folded, but they seem to be throwing them at anyone who can make a game.

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I'd like to present a game concept to a developer who could actually do something with it.


But a developer doesn't have the money to do something with it. You'd need to pitch to a publisher. Not a developer.
 

it's an idea relating to a licensed IP.


Even more reason to go to a publisher rather than a developer. Only a publisher would have the capital for not only development but also licensing. But what else are you bringing to the table besides an idea you don't own? Read http://sloperama.com/advice/lesson21.htm and http://sloperama.com/advice/lesson11.htm Edited by Tom Sloper

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The suggestion I've received from other people I've talked to, is to learn Unity, make it myself (or with help from people more competent than myself) and submit it to a publisher. I'm not sure how feasible this is, or how much of the game I would need to put together before presenting the idea. It seems like it would be a massive waste of time to make whole thing only to find out that the game gets rejected.

Edited by DissMech

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Getting money out of publishers this decade is like getting blood from a stone :(

If you want to make games, then jump in unity and practice making games.

If you want to design games, then keep working on this design (and others!) and make a blog/etc to share them. If they're good, you can use them as a portfolio to help get a job doing game design.

What you've posted so far is more of an "elevator pitch" and a setting, rather than a game design. If you made that pitch to a developer, they'd probably have to sit down for a month to turn it into a fleshed out game design -- how everything works (combat, items, enemies, player movement, controls, menus, camera movement, cover, AI behaviours / flow-charts, interaction with enemies, dialogue, choosing paths, stealth, intimidation, different abilities, etc), detailed lists of all the assets that are required (characters + full animation lists, character gear/variations, weapons, locations, common background props, spells, special effects, cutscenes, sound effects, music, etc), what the main game mechanic loop is, what the pacing is like, guidelines for level design, etc...
All of that forms something that a developer can actually work with, and come up with a budget for. If you want to be a game designer, then practicing designing these specifics is far more import than describing the setting and story arcs.

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Yeah this makes perfect sense to me. I mean, to be perfectly honest, I have little expectation of this stuff actually going anywhere. I'm not a game designer, I have no history in the industry, I don't know anybody, and there are a few personal circumstances which make most of this more difficult as well. Mostly it's that I love games, I love 40k, and I would love to see a game like this. But of course, I have no record to look at, good or bad, publishers have plenty of people they can look at who have already proven they can make games that will sell.

 

And it's intimidating to learn this stuff from scratch, particularly if, like me, you really don't have the money to go to school and get a degree for an industry that's as fickle and overloaded as video games. But the idea was bugging me, and I had to ask someone if there was something I could do with this idea, some way to get someone on board who is more knowledgeable and competent than myself. But yeah, I can see that I would probably have to teach myself and see how it goes from there. Not a pleasant reality, but not unexpected either.

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The suggestion I've received from other people I've talked to, is to learn Unity, make it myself (or with help from people more competent than myself) and submit it to a publisher. I'm not sure how feasible this is, ...

 

...to be perfectly honest, I have little expectation of this stuff actually going anywhere. I'm not a game designer, I have no history in the industry...


Clearly, you should not do that; the chances of success are low in the extreme. If you're not in the industry and don't plan to make a career in the industry, just put the idea aside. If you plan to make a career in the industry, put the idea aside for now, and come back to it when you're ready and have the knowledge and contacts and resources.

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The only way you are really going to see your "idea" come to fruition is either learn to make the game yourself or find the cash to be able to hire a team / found a company with the skill set to do it for / with you.

 

 

On the plus side:


My concept is for a Warhammer 40,000 stealth/third person shooter

 

Games Workshop seem to be giving out licences for their IP as though they were cereal box toys these days.

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Sounds like you have a passion for Warhammer and the stories it inspires.

 

In this situation, you need to focus on what is possible - not impossible.  Using Warhammer name, characters, events, designs etc - thats impossible from a practical point of view.  Producing a full-blown AAA 3D title is also impossible from a practical point of view.  However, what IS possible is taking your basic idea of "consequences" and development of the player character, and the party that follows them and applying that to a simplified 2D game with a "universe" of your design.

 

What is also worth considering - and strongly advised - is taking a look at how a games series develop with each game.  You might not be able to apply all of your ideas in the early entries but thats fine as it leaves a challenge for the games to come...

 

Look at the games of id software. Doom took the world by storm, but it was only possible by id making Wolfenstein3D first.  And Wolf3D itself was only possible with the Catacomb games and even then, further back, a game about a tank rescuing civilians from monsters(I think? Pretty sure it was)...

 

To get around the issue of inspiration of Warhammer - look at the development of the game itself.  Its just the classic game of historically-based war games - played by real-life generals - given a sci-fi setting. Hell, most of Warhammer 40K was a rip-off of ALIENS, Starship Troopers etc and thrown in with the usual Tolkien-stuff like Orcs, Elves, Undead etc...

 

If you have little interest in programming, but willing to put in a bit of hard-graft, then maybe look at either Unity or Gamemaker to at least knock together a "taster".  It will take a lot of hard graft, but with such packages - especially Gamemaker - you could knock out a 2D version of your vision.  Set aside the next two or three years and you'll probably accomplish that goal.  Just, move away from Warhammer, but keep that warm feeling it gives you.

 

Anyway, good luck!

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but the idea is bugging the hell out of me.

 

Maybe you just need to make some fanfiction ?
Rules about IPs are generally not enforced/sued for when making fan-fiction,

and you might find some warhammer-fans to help you.

It wouldn't be a triple A title, but then again, who still plays those nowadays ?

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My concept is for a Warhammer 40,000 stealth/third person shooter with heavy RPG elements. The player character would be an Interrogator for the Inquisition. You would have a variety of options for what sort of background you would have, tech priest, psyker, guardsman, ex-mercenary, that sort of thing.I personally like the idea of being able to play through your PC's rise from acolyte to Interrogator, but I recognize this that is most likely impractical. You would have a variety of characters from your Inquisitor's retinue to use, all of them would of course have their own backgrounds, stories etc. But in keeping with the tone of 40k, every one of them would be able to die during the game. Not as a result of a bullshit no win situations, always as a result of decisions you make. Anytime someone dies, it is absolutely the player's fault and it can be avoided. Other things that can happen as a result of bad decisions should be things like plagues, massive victories by xeno or heretical forces, and the deaths of many guardsmen. Detective work should be a major component, shooting your way through should be possible, but not ideal.

 

Well, apply for a job at GamesWorkshop (or any 3rd party they deal with) as a junior game designer and work your ass off up 'till you get the Game Director's position (in some way)

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