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Fidelis

Finding the right crew to hire

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Hello everyone.

So after many years with multiple ideas i am ready to reach out and make dreams come true.

To start with, i don't know if i want to start off with Android or Ios game - but it really doesnt matter at this point.

Let us say that this thread is about Ios.


The game it self is a open-world-mmo with RPG elements.

There are designs ready to get inspiration from (even if those have to be "re-designed" do to copyright issues) - the idea behind creating this game as mobile app, is to bring life back to the "long forgotten" games, which i am sure that many of you once played.

 

Please help me - people of which background, experience, and knowledge am i going to hire?

Edited by Fidelis

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Moving to Production and Management.

 

Let's start with a realistic assessment.   Are you sure you are ready to hire someone?

You wrote "open-world-mmo with RPG elements".  

MMO has a meaning although it is frequently abused. If you really mean an MMO, a truly massively multiplayer experience supporting several hundred thousand concurrent players then you need a budget of around $100M.  Unless you can afford to run colocation data centers around the globe, you probably don't mean MMO.

So I'll assume you mean an open world online game with RPG elements.  

But then you also mentioned a game on the phone. That's good, because they are cheaper to develop.

A good game team for that vague description will be in the $500K to $10M range. You will need to hire several people, each in the roles of production, design, software, and art. The exact cost will vary based on your location on the globe.  In the US game development hubs the cost is currently about $15K per person per month.  That isn't just their wages, but the total cost of employment such as payroll support, taxes, occasional other fees, and government-mandated insurance. 

Your first hires would be your senior development staff, meaning some people who can fit the role of producer, the role of designer, the role of either programming lead or project manager depending on naming, and the role of art director or art lead. These people will help you expand your ideas and craft it down to something within your budget, and they in turn will help you hire the people within your disciplines that you need.  If you have more ideas than budget, you will need to hire people with skills in multiple disciplines.  The people cost more in wages, but are also more valuable to the business.

But before you go hiring your staff, remember that usually development is about 1/3 of the total costs.  Games need marketing to be successful, and marketing costs for successful small games will typically equal or exceed the development cost.  So $270K to build it, you'll want another $300K to market the game to help ensure its success.

The other 1/3 of the costs tends to go into other costs as you explore ideas and for costs supporting the game and the team after development completes. Your online component means you'll be paying for servers and for server maintenance, you'll be handling customer support requests, and those take time and effort and therefore money. 

So there you go.  

If you have funds for (approximate monthly salary * 1.5) * (number of people) * (months in development) * 3, then start by hiring those four lead individuals (producer, designer, programmer, artist) and follow their advice.

 

 

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34 minutes ago, frob said:

Thank you Frob.

But i know, and do believe that this can be done much much cheaper :)

And then one can say "what about quality, quality cost money" yes indeed, but a greedy lets say american - might want 15k a month.

While a guy with same knowledge in India can do this for 5k, you see?

 

34 minutes ago, frob said:

 

 

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Subject: Finding the right crew to hire

I was prepared to answer that question, but then upon reading your thread, it sounds to me like you aren't hiring an existing crew but rather you're looking to hire individuals, and turn them into a crew. Is that right? Because it's a lot easier to hire an existing crew.

Quote

after many years with multiple ideas i am ready to reach out and make dreams come true.

... Please help me - people of which background, experience, and knowledge am i going to hire?

If you have to ask this, you are not ready to hire individuals to create a crew from. As Frob said, you need to begin with the team leads. They will guide you along the remainder of the way.

Quote

but a greedy lets say american - might want 15k a month.

While a guy with same knowledge in India can do this for 5k, you see?

Of course. But then you add in the extra difficulty of long-distance project management, for which you sound ill prepared. Much easier, as I said above, to hire an existing crew - one with a track record. YES, that'll be expensive. But if you hire cheap help on multiple continents, the management workload is going to add to the time (which adds to the cost), and any people who have to go through a learning curve again increase the time (thus increasing the cost). It is likely to take two or three or four times as long to make that game with cheap distributed team members than it would take if you hired a game developer (game development company) that already has all the positions filled and already has the work processes down.

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Hi Tom.
Yes i was thinking of hiring indivudals.

But no one has yet answered my question really, i never asked how much it will cost me did i he he.

Just, what the crew must be able to know before setting it off...

And for hiring internationally, for me theres no problem with that - i don't have any deadline, let it take the time it gonna take. I just  can't see why i should pay alot, and in monthly rates - rather than paying little, at a fixed price - for the whole project.... 

So again guys, please! - I need a senior development fella' , but what else?

 

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You need some programmers (one of whom must be not only a top-notch programmer but also a manager).

You need some artists (one of whom must be not only a spectacular artist but also a manager).

You need a game designer. 

You need a project manager.

You need someone who's awesome at audio.

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I provided the list twice in my first reply, for different variations, so let me quote it to make it more clear:

6 hours ago, frob said:

Your first hires would be your senior development staff, meaning some people who can fit the role of producer, the role of designer, the role of either programming lead or project manager depending on naming, and the role of art director or art lead. These people will help you expand your ideas and craft it down to something within your budget, and they in turn will help you hire the people within your disciplines that you need.

Of these, if you are building a well-funded new studio the most critical role is your producer. The person needs to have worked on multiple projects before because you have not. Their job is to coordinate all aspects of development, including hiring.

If you are building a poorly-funded new studio with only a handful of people, the most critical role is your lead programmer or project manager, or technical director, whatever title they've got.  In a small group it is generally the lead programmer that serves as the hub for development and it is their responsibility to create the magical glue that binds the game together.

Get all four of those from a group of experienced people who work well together if you can.  If you cannot hire the group, then start with the most critical person (either producer or programmer) and let them hire the group.

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On 6/29/2017 at 2:23 AM, Fidelis said:

I just  can't see why i should pay alot, and in monthly rates - rather than paying little, at a fixed price - for the whole project

Because getting experienced people is expensive. I've seen the same situation a few times where a company hires 'cheap' labour only to end up paying much more than expected when they don't deliver and have to hire the people they should have hired in the first place to finish the project.

Also getting someone to agree to a fixed project with no hard deadline and project scope will be incredibly difficult.

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You need at least four visual artist:

Lead artist. If it's a 2D game your lead artist needs to be a pro at 2D, for a 3D game you need a pro at 3D art.

Concept artist. A lot of time is wasted if your other artist needs to keep designing the art before making it, they will make changes as needed it just makes things go faster with a concept artist. Also fills the role of UI designer.

General 2D/3D artist. This is the flexible artist, this artist helps the lead artist and does any odd jobs.

Animator. Animation is a skill on it's own, your 2D or 3D artist will maybe know the basics however they won't be able to do all the animations you need.

 

This is the smallest team of artist for a multiplayer game.

The rule of thumb is that each artist can make one static asset a day, so if you plan on making a 100 weapons it will take your 2 main artist 50 days of none stop grinding work to get it done.

If it is a studio team they should be able to give the other animator ways to help, reducing the time to around 30 days.

 

On 6/29/2017 at 0:43 AM, Fidelis said:

While a guy with same knowledge in India can do this for 5k, you see?

Yes but how do you know the person in India can actually do what they say?

If you think that you will just ask to see a portfolio then you are a fool.

First it is very easy to make a portfolio using art that can be found around the web. Second any art piece on a artist portfolio was something they spend months on making, it's no going to be the quality you get.

 

The worst part about game art is that it needs to work in a game.

More than 50% of my freelance work is fixing models for people like yourself because they couldn't tell a good model from a bad one.

If you wondering how much that costs it's between $250 - $1000 the same price you would pay for a working indie 3D model. Because there is no real way to salvage art, so instead it just acts as a concept.

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Look at the first few games all of the most successful studios made.  Blizzard, Id, Bethesda, Microprose, etc.  Compare everyone's first game, to their 3rd.  And their third game to their 5th or 10th.

You will see that these "games of old" that everyone remembers.  Done on a mobile app, with online support backed by cloud servers ... are all very light and easy on the spectrum of games that are made nowadays.

But they were beyond the scope of a small inexperienced team back then.  And they are still beyond the scope of a small inexperienced team now.  Back then, only the best of the best could slave away and make a game work well.  It didn't take long (by today's standards) ... many games back then were written in 3-9 months, some took longer of course.  But even then, most games never worked, most never got finished, most companies never made back the money their founders put in.

And now people expect art, and quality.  High quality graphics (very very time consuming and expensive), high quality sound assets.  Original ideas.  or GREAT execution of old ideas.  And high quality production values.

An experienced game developer with the right tools can create in a weekend game-jam something a college team cannot finish in a semester long project.  But that game jam winning entry, still makes NO MONEY.  It would still not pay the developers even for their food and hotels for the 3 days they spend making it.

Small, indie games are labors of love, not money.  So unless you want to go broke creating a game that is never as good as the vision in your head, and never gets the reviews it deserves ... you really should just start somewhere, making something very very small.  With a very small team, of unpaid people whom share a passion for working on the same things you do.  And work to make something happen.

If you can't make a formal game design doc, a detailed plan for the team to build it, a detailed marketing plan for advertising and monetizing it, a super great web portal all about it, etc.  Then you can't possibly make the game you are talking about.

So get your idea smaller, and smaller, and smaller ... until you can make it happen.   Not in 3 years, not in a year ... in 3 months or less.  Once you prove you can finish ANYTHING worth doing in less than 3 months.  Try something bigger.  Once you have done anything, you will be able to get help doing another thing.  And then another.  And after 6 months, a year, maybe 3 years ... if you find you really wanted to keep going this way ... and pursuing this path you will wake up and realize you now know the path forward, and you have the friends and contacts and experience to give it a real shot.

Edited by Xai
typo

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