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A starting rookie looking for some advice to start a long-running hobby

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Posted (edited)

As my Uni studies are gradually finishing up on the master's degree (IT student), I have been starting to seriously ponder starting a more serious push to actually try and make some concrete stuff about a certain project that has only stayed in my head and notes so far for many years.

 At this point i feel i'm ready to start going for the intricate stuff in the design aspects, which would require actual hands-on testing with prototypes to make some aspects of my thoughts clearer in terms of actual gameplay rather than just vague points like in my notes so far.



The core points of the game would very quickly be:

*The major inspiration source would specifically be a game called https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digimon_World.

*Specifically my goals here would be to create a game more closer to my tastes than what the official sequels in the series have provided so far (redigitize, new order). while avoiding and fixing the core issues from a fundamental level that the above inspiration had in its design. So in a way it would be a spiritual sequel in a way i guess although many of my initial thoughts for solutions deviate heavily from some of the original systems.


 As for what im asking help on:

* choosing an engine to build a prototype to test gameplay from a top-down perspective. I currently believe this is the best option to avoid certain issues with camera that the inspiration had + easier development ( i assume), but things might obviously change later on if i believe it to be not the best approach later on.

* The best artstyle method to realistically be able to create a varied cast of moving characters as this type of game requires plenty of em. I am currently looking towards sprites as they seem to be the simplest to make em look good in a realistic time as a solo dev. I have no clue if this is true or not though as i have never tried to create one myself. I'm not against 3d modeling either as i have  actually dabbled with Blender before in my studies so i at least know what that is going to be like.

* The gameplay in general will split between free roam and currently what i consider a  semi real time grid style based combat so any engine that would make it easier for me to prototype aspects of that would be real nice to start with.


my own current status:

* So far in terms of game engines before this i have mostly only done a few tutorials on using unity.

* I have done simple things with blender but have no knowledge in regards to creating sprites nor have never had an interest to drawing things on paper(so no real artistic talent built).

* Have decent understanding on how to code with python and java and many aspects in regards to coding as an IT uni student.  Im not afraid to try out another language as they should fundamentally have the same functions in them just done in a different way.

* have zero knowledge in regards to  AI coding (outside coding actions for remote cars  from 1 course), which is most certainly going to be a crucial thing to learn in order to prototype things.

*  zero experience in regards to any REAL LARGE programming projects

* zero actual work experience




At this point i'm mainly looking just ways to prepare myself for the real deal to begin, as i still prioritize my studies over starting an arduous hobby that will take years to finish. The end is starting to now close on my studies and i promised to myself to truly start something once its all done, so i'm starting these preparations for the hobby early to be all ready to begin once i do so.



Any advice in regards to choosing fitting engines to create prototypes with, tutorials, advice, and anything in regards to helping me prepare myself to try and start this hobby for real once the studies are done is deeply appreciated.








Edited by iciclefox

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I found the Udemy tutorials by GameDev.TV to be extremely helpful, and really helped me overcome a block of 3-4 years of non-progress.  I had originally tried to make my games in RPGMaker, thinking an engine with so much already done would be easier, but as it turned out the limitations caused me frustration and ultimately resulted in me never finishing anything. 

The aforementioned tutorials encouraged me to switch to unity, and each goes through building something one game at a time, beginning to end.  By the end of the 4th game, you really have a great grasp on effort that goes into what ultimate amounts to some very simple games.  This will give you perspective on what it will take to build the game you really want to make.  They also have a variety of courses tackling different platforms, art, and some more philosophical type points.  

Every journey is different, so this may not be your best place to start, but it's been hugely helpful to get momentum going for me.

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