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I fell in love with Unity: Where do I go from here?

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Hi there, my name is Redouane, I am currently finishing up my second year in Computing. This year, we had a project where we had to make a Marble Madness remake in Unity.  had 0 experience in game development and to make a 3D game with minimal experience seemed very intimidating at first. However, I was greatly mistaken! Unity was super easy to get the hang of, and to successfully advance on my project.

 

With that said, I would like to create a personal project in Unity. It has always been my dream to create a management/tycoon/business sim game, and I think that it will be possible with Unity. Now, I am still not an expert with Unity/C# (obviously), but I do believe that with this project I can greatly increase my experience for future projects. 

 

Now comes the dilemma. I don't know how to design nor do I know any designers. My Marble Madness game was feasible because it required a minimal graphical interface, however, I would like to make a game with slightly more advanced graphics (Such as Game Dev Tycoon).

 

To summarize, my question is, do I need experience with design to make a a graphical interface like that of Game Dev Tycoon? Or will content packs from the Unity store suffice? 

 

 

 

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Yes, good tools help quite a lot, and can convert parts of development from drudgery into a joy.  (Bad tools, conversely, can eat away at you and drive you to insanity.)

 

 

If someone has created the content that matches your style and placed it on the store, and if you are wiling to buy it for what they charge, then the store is sufficient.

 

Otherwise you will need to build it yourself, buy it from elsewhere, or pay someone to build it for you.

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Note that you don't have to find the final art now, just some temporary art would work too for making the game.
Once you have something up&running, you can consider how to construct the final art.

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Note that you don't have to find the final art now, just some temporary art would work too for making the game.
Once you have something up&running, you can consider how to construct the final art.

That's a really good point ! You're right, I shouldn't dwell too much on the creative part. If I see potential in my project, I wouldn't mind investing into some artwork. 

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I just saw an advice list for beginners the other day. And one of the primary pieces of advice was "Do not work on your dream game!".

 

Your first 10 games should be small projects that you learn from. Not the end all be all of games. They should be things like Pong and Space Invaders or Angry Birds.

 

Learning game programming is a marathon not a sprint. Pace yourself.

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I agree with BBeck. You would probably get frustrated trying to skip ahead to doing something like a Tycoon game. Those games have multiple systems that interact with each other, and can be quite complex in all sorts of ways. 

 

If you want to eventually do a tycoon game, maybe you can start by doing a simple game that only implements 1 of the main systems. So, if you eventually want to make a Railroad Tycoon Clone, you could make a game that involves building train track layouts, and omits most of the other systems. If you make several small games like this, maybe not even releasing any of them, you can eventually merge the systems together and make a nice game that you can release.

 

The sweet spot for learning involves focusing on projects that push your abilities a little farther, but not a Whole Bunch farther. That way you keep gaining experience points without getting overwhelmed and frustrated.

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I would agree with the previous posts. I think the key for you is  to keep going and be motivated to learn more; one simple way to do this is to give yourself little projects to complete, each involving an increasing number of new skills. This means that because they are so small, you will complete them relatively easily and keep motivated. You will also challenge yourself.

 

Next: maybe you could focus on mechanics and the core of the game rather than graphics; there are professional designers out there and packages available for most of the game art that you need; however, the game mechanics are really your own creation/inspiration. I usually suggest to use simple geometrical shapes like boxes and spheres, and then, when all the mechanics work fine, you can think of replacing them with polished and good looking graphics or 3D models.

You could even venture into minimalist games for a while; so you can create great games that don't have to use advanced graphics, but still look polished and include a great game play.

 

As to Unity, maybe you could try to map-out the skills that you want to learn, and then try to include them in each game (or version) that you create; starting with very simple games and then add some levels of refinement that your new skills can bring.

 

 

I hope this helps.

 

if you want to learn more Unity skills, this blog might be of interest. it includes weekly posts on Unity programming (JavaScript and C#), on several topics, ranging from 3D character creation/animation to simple 2D games or game design tips. You can also, of course, look at Unity's official documentation, and learn new skills there too; but its really a matter of knowing where you want to be and trying to map-out your way to it.

 

All the best,

 

- Pat

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