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I'm dreaming too high?

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i used to be hardcore player of dark souls, i played every game of the series except for demons souls cause i don't own a ps3, although i would love to play it

but at the same time i hate playing ds3 i just feel like it took so many wrong turns such as ruining poise and making magic not track properly that the game disgusts me beyond redemption

i played bloodborne and nioh for some time and the extra rpgs elements such as runes and set bonuses they added sure felt like what was missing from the game

every time i play one of these games i hate the patch notes i hate the developers and i cannot help but think how great these game would be if only they did it the way i wanted

and this is what motivated me to start learning about game design but it ddn't take long until i realized how hard it would be to do one of these games

i'm dreaming too high is making a souls-like game alone too hard for a single person?

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1 minute ago, matt77hias said:

If you make the game, it should be somehow playable in the end. If you design the game, you can pitch it to some company in which case the game still needs to be made.

please elaborate on the part of "pitch it to some company" i'm not sure i understand it

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1 minute ago, ObjectivityGuy said:

please elaborate on the part of "pitch it to some company" i'm not sure i understand it

Well who is going to actually create your game? Do you intend to do everything on your own or only the design phase in which case all the remaining phases need to be done by some 3th party.

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1 minute ago, matt77hias said:

Well who is going to actually create your game? Do you intend to do everything on your own or only the design phase in which case all the remaining phases need to be done by some 3th party.

i don't think i can afford a entire company to do make the game so yeah i guess i will have to do it myself

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1 hour ago, ObjectivityGuy said:

i don't think i can afford a entire company to do make the game so yeah i guess i will have to do it myself

Okay, so you're saying you will not only design it but make it too. (That answers the "make or design?" question.) 

2 hours ago, ObjectivityGuy said:

i'm dreaming too high is making a souls-like game alone too hard for a single person?

Since you are asking if it's too hard, it probably is. You have to learn how to program, you have to create graphics and sound, and you have to spend the years of effort to make it happen. 

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2 minutes ago, Tom Sloper said:

Okay, so you're saying you will not only design it but make it too. (That answers the "make or design?" question.) 

Since you are asking if it's too hard, it probably is. You have to learn how to program, you have to create graphics and sound, and you have to spend the years of effort to make it happen. 

you are right maybes i should try something less technical like writing a book

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Making a game is similar to making a movie. You are probably more aware of how many people and how much money it takes to make a movie, so you probably don't come out of a movie thinking "I am going to make a better version of this movie by myself, with no budget".

A game like Dark Souls probably costs tens of millions of dollars to make. Now re-read this thread with that in mind, and see how silly what you are asking sounds.

 

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2 hours ago, ObjectivityGuy said:

what is the difference?

One is actually making the game, the other is just designing how all the in game things work.  Look up 'game design document', it might give you a clearer picture of what it means to design a game.  Not all games were made using a game design document, and my guess would be most games change their design during the process of being made.  If you were to try to try to do it yourself using a premade engine like Unity or Unreal I'd say it would take you at least a decade or two.  There's alot of in game art to be made and doing it all by yourself would take a long time even if you go at it non-stop.  You'd still need to learn how to use an engine and the the basics that you'd need to learn irregardless of what engine you use.

edit - you could always form a team.

Edited by Infinisearch

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1 hour ago, Kavik Kang said:

I've never heard of an instance where a lone designer's game was submitted to a game company who then made that game.  It just doesn't work that way.

I didn't mention a probability, but I wouldn't rule out a possibility. If you can be inventive, creative and very concrete while still ensuring a high chance of commercial success compensating production costs (which are lots of ifs). Why not? What would make this different from an in-house idea. Though, I am general. I do not think that an epsilon improvement for rebooting an existing game based on the mechanics of its direct competitors applies to these criteria.

Edited by matt77hias

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18 minutes ago, matt77hias said:

I didn't mention a probability, but I wouldn't rule out a possibility. If you can be inventive, creative and very concrete while still ensuring a high chance of commercial success compensating production costs (which are lots of ifs). Why not? What would make this different from an in-house idea. Though, I am general. I do not think that an epsilon improvement for rebooting an existing game based on the mechanics of its direct competitors applies to these criteria.

I don't know of any companies that would even entertain letting them pitch you an idea, unless you're willing to fund it. If they rejected it, but happened to develop something similar, they'd be opening themselves for a lawsuit.

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The first thing I was taught in the board game industry is that we returned all unsolicited game proposals unopened.  If you don't, there could be big problems in the future if you happen to make a similar game later.

Can you name a single computer game that came into existence through a lone designer submitting a proposal to a game company?  Has it ever happened before?

I was told this for many years, it took many years for me to realize that it was a lie.  It is wrong to lure late-teen to early 20's people into a false idea that they can design a game, and that is an avenue into making games.  It is not.  It will never happen.  You are potentially wasting the most important years of these kids lives, as you did mine, by essentially lying too them and telling them that the computer game industry works like the book industry.  It doesn't, and nobody should be giving young people the idea that it does.

If it didn't happen for me in 30 years of trying, who has a level of experience that goes back before your industry even existed, it isn't going to happen for some 20 year old just out of school with almost no game design knowledge or experience at all.  It really is wrong to be giving young people the idea that this is a possibility, it is not.  I prove that beyond all doubt.

Again, can you name a single instance of this ever happening?

 

 

Edited by Kavik Kang

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The closest scenario I can imagine is a small team of students who made a low, low budget student game, that were then all hired on to make a big budget version of the same game for a company.

That was Valve, the student project was Narbacular Drop, and the big budget version was Portal.

But that was a fully working game (though really fully working student games tend to be barely more than prototypes and held together with glue and adhesive tape).  

 

And yes, a Souls game, by yourself, without narrowing down the game considerably, would be hard to do.  Some fairly small teams have made souls-like 2d games, however.

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There was one closer than that, but still it was not a lone designer being hired into a computer game company.  I am not saying this out of malice, as it is always taken on this site, but the computer game industry does not hire game designers.  They generally "promote" a programmer or artist who has had good ideas over the years to "game designer".  But it's not their field, is it?  Giving someone the title does not make them a game designer, it just puts them into that position.  They spent their lives learning programming, or art, not designing games.

In the earliest days of computer games New World Computing made "King's Bounty".  You know "King's Bounty II" as "Heroes of Might & Magic".  King's Bounty was a board game by Task Force Games, this happened while I was working there.  I met the designer of King's Bounty back then.  But NWC never hired him as a designer, we made the board game and NWC simultaneously made the computer game version.  This was the first ever combined effort to simultaneously release a board game and computer game.

But the situation was very unique.  NWC had been founded by SFB Staff and Rated Aces.  Ron Spitzer is a legend among the SFB Staff, Jon Van Cannaghem was the 1986 National Champion, and all of the other NWC founders were either SFB Staff or Rated Aces from the tournament system.  NWC had bought TFG, and owned TFG at the time the King's Bounty project had started.  The designer of King's Bounty was a friend of theirs, and of John Olsen who NWC sold TFG too once they discovered that Paramount would not authorize an SFB computer game (the whole reason they had bought TFG.

That is the closest situation I know of anything like that ever happening.  I really think it is wrong to create the impression that you can design a game and anyone is going to hire you into the industry to make it.  It has never happened yet, and isn't ever likely too.  The computer game industry does not hire game designers, they designate programmers and artists as game designers.  The only way for a game designer to get into the industry is to found their own company from scratch.

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One can only admire your dream to create a DS inspired game - I guess we are all here because of one game or another that inspired us to take up games development...

As soon as games began to add full motion video,  3D graphics and and enhanced sound and music, the days of a single person making a game were pretty much over.  The time that happened was back when the first Playstation arrived during the mid-90s.

That said, could not you scale your dream down to something more managable?  If you truly want to go it alone, then perhaps you could aim for something in the "16-bit era".   Dark Souls is obviously a 3D world hack-n-slash game, but I could easily see the possibility of an overhead 2D game.  Granted, it would be simplified in comparision, and you would have to put in some serious hard graft...but it could be done. 

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Re @Kavik Kang

While I concur with your main point, no company takes an unsolicited game design doc and then hires the author and goes and makes it. 

You are wrong about designers not being hired as designers out of the gate.  I know plenty of folks who didn't come up from QA or programming or art, but went straight to design.  Nowadays, games are big, and there is room on the payroll for junior designers.  They need to be able demonstrate decent design skills, and may have to pass some sort of arbitrary design test or whatever, but it happens quite often now.  Having a polished game design doc to show will help in getting that position.  (Having actual prototypes or working games is always better.)

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1 minute ago, Kavik Kang said:

They must flip a coin to make those kinds of decisions, it certainly isn't based on experience, knowledge, or ability.  I am proof of that.

 

Or maybe, just maybe, it's something else. One (or multiple) of a myriad of possibilities for things they can dislike. You are a single data point. You are not proof of how the entire game industry works. You not being hired as a designer is not proof of designers never being hired.

What there is proof of, is that there are game designers being hired, not only promoted from QA, programming or any other field.

Continuing to ignore this actual proof is something I would suggest you stop doing.

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I don't want to get into this discussion, I will just get banned again.  Instead, I wasn't planning on posting this until next month, but I might as well go post my almost certain to fail attempt at assembling an indie team to make Space Hockey over in the indie games forum.  It's... obliquely relevant, and there is no reason not to post it here a month early.  I'll hold off on posting it to other indie sites until next month like I was planning.

All I'll say here is that if 40 years of experience, and the literal holy grail of simulation design that is the fundamental basis of "The Matrix", draws no interest at all and yet you will readily hire any 20-year-old... you must be flipping coins to make these decisions.

 

Edited by Kavik Kang

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I think you already have a good idea on the realism of this project, BUT, I'm gonna tell you that I (and probably most people here) started with over the top dreams. One of my first game ideas almost 10 years ago was a Lord of the rings story driven MMO like a Witcher 3 online, but with better graphics and bigger world. 😂

I actually put a lot of effort to reach that dream. Now, I'm still a million years from that, but it's the dream that kept me working hard and I'm now capable of making all kinds of simpler games. With that being said, it's not impossible if you work with other people. Huge games like Witcher 3 were really just kids dreams in the first place.

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13 hours ago, Myopic Rhino said:

I don't know of any companies that would even entertain letting them pitch you an idea, unless you're willing to fund it. If they rejected it, but happened to develop something similar, they'd be opening themselves for a lawsuit.

Not a 100% good example (nor a success story, nor an individual): Ideas from the Deep (the predecessor of id Software) built a clone of Mario on the PC to convince Nintendo to give them a contract. As impressed as they were, the Japanese firm wanted the Mario series to remain exclusive to Nintendo consoles.

Edited by matt77hias

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