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      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.

Mike Bossy

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  1. Has anyone here successfully used Sublime along with clang for C++ dev?
  2. If you want to check out some general design considerations with VR and how they feel in practice you can check out the Unity sample framework from Oculus that gives you a feel for different locomotion techniques, UI, etc.   https://developer3.oculus.com/blog/introducing-the-oculus-sample-framework-for-unity-5/
  3. If you haven'ts seen this link it has a bunch of info on standard Hex map handling that is a great resource:   http://www.redblobgames.com/grids/hexagons/
  4. The following section from the indiefund site is the most appropriate point for indies: "Enforcement – In order for an NDA to be worth anything more than the paper it’s printed on, a developer has to be willing to enforce it, and capable of enforcing it. That means retaining lawyers and investing significant amounts of money, time, and emotional energy. Even if a developer actually chooses to invest their time and energy in enforcing an NDA (at the expense of actually making games), they are unlikely to have the financial means to do so, or they wouldn’t be seeking funding in the first place. For deals worth millions of dollars, NDAs make sense because enforcing them in court could result in huge payouts. For deals worth $100k the risk/reward ratio means a legal battle is a terrible bet." If you're asked to sign an NDA then ask for a mutual one. Just because someone gives you what looks like their "standard" NDA it doesn't mean it's their only one. It is most likely their most aggressive version trying to claw as many rights as possible. The same can be said for all type of contracts. If you aren't red lining half of the first contract that you get from someone like a MSFT or a Sony then you're getting hung out to dry.
  5. There are plenty of examples out there where a company will release an open source version that is essentially a fork of a commercial product. This can work successfully if the goal of the open source fork is to truly be a growing open source project. Too often in this scenario the open source portion is only meant to act as a "Demo" to interest you in the technology and purchase the full license. Once again there's nothing inherently wrong with this approach but it will limit the benefits that you would normally see from open source projects as fewer people will be interested in contributing.
  6. If the goal is to let a few people get access to the source and then eventually either open the project up fully or turn it into a source of income why not just use a proprietary license and then grant free licenses to a select group of academics? You can still provide source code to a licensee and maintain control of the source and any modifications they make. You can attach any dollar amount you want to granting a license and it doesn't have to be uniform across licensees so you could charge universities $0 but charge a business $1,000,000. As you say it doesn't fit the open source model but there's nothing wrong with that. If you find a model of licensing that you want to do then go for it but just don't try to shoehorn it into the open source name and you should be fine.
  7. I can't think of a license that fits your needs. I'm a big believer in the MIT license because it's straightforward and open for any use of the technology but that's my own opinion and what I look for in a license. A question that I would have for you is why are you looking to only grant a free license to academics but not others? If you want to be altruistic and provide the world with a great piece of technology why would you limit how it could be used if it could also bring value to the world through a commercial product as well?
  8. You can also sell Flash games instead of going the sponsor/ad route. I believe McPixel is a flash game and that is now sold as a stand alone game on Steam. I don't think there's anything inherently limiting when it comes to selling a flash game outside of needing to target platforms that support Flash.
  9. Super Tofu Boy was created by Peta as a parody of Super Meat Boy. I doubt they put the same amount of effort into the game that Team Meat did which is why it would seem sub par.
  10. I think with Steam moving to Linux we'll see soon enough if Linux has legs for gamers and game developers. If you're targeting the pair of Windows\OSX then you'll be looking at cross platform libraries anyways so adding Linux is going to be less of an investment than you might think. [url="http://blogs.valvesoftware.com/linux/"]http://blogs.valvesoftware.com/linux/[/url]
  11. Check out some of the games you can buy on Steam. There are Flash games, Unity games, XNA games, even a couple written in Java in addition to all the normal native code apps. If you make a fun game it doesn't matter the technology used or the amount of pre-reqs that need to be installed for it. That kind of thing only runs the first time you play the game.
  12. The Win8/WinRT split is going to be a huge cluster. Consumers can tell the difference between an iPad and a Macbook just by the name. They are going to fail to do the same with WinRT. My 2 cents on Windows 8 is that as a developer you need to support it or you're missing out on a bunch of customers. Just target the normal desktop instead of trying to do any Metro work and you'll be fine without any of the hassles.
  13. Nice! Tools can be a time suck up front but they are totally worth it when you get down to the hard part of adding just that one more level.
  14. You should try and contact the folks at Spiderweb Games. They do the old school RPGs and manage to get a bit following to their games. They might be able to give you some pointers on different communities and press that you can contact.
  15. I think the answer boils down to experience. People need to have a vast set of experiences in different situations to draw upon to make good decisions in any field. This may feel like a cop-out answer and something that you can't affect but in fact you can help your team gain experience by providing them opportunities. It might be the opportunity to make a decision, or learn a new piece of tech. It might end up being a success or a failure but either way they'll have more data to draw upon the next time they're in a similar situation. It's a fine line between letting a young team run off and fall flat on their face and providing them with enough guidance and freedom to be pointed in the right direction while still making their own way. One thing that you need to keep in mind is that not everyone can make it to the next level. Some people are bound to stay as junior contributors even as their tenure increases. That's just a fact of life and isn't a failing on your part. Not everyone will take an opportunity and run with it.