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## Ideas are a dime a dozen...

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 02:58 AM

Kinda proved my point with your statement but *yawn* to exhausted argue the point.. Gnite ppk

I don't think this thread should be an argument.

It has grown into one, of a sort, but it shouldn't have.

Sinister, just reading the name of the thread, I would think you would support the idea that designers should not be idea-people, but rather a more involved and versatile tool  in the development process.

This thread started as a reasonable discussion about what it is to design versus develop a game, and the question of what is a designer's [practical] role. Early in this thread there is a lot of advice given (free-of-charge) for how to make your ideas tangible, to be able to present them to a development team and get them to want to code and mold and draw and render that idea of yours--but it involves more than just tossing out ideas, it involves getting your hands dirty and starting out all alone (or with friends) until you have something to convince that team that they want you as one of theirs.

Instead of being an argument, this thread should be a source of information, Ideas are a dime a dozen, so what? Concept sketches and diagrams of how a mechanic work (to show that this has really been thought out, and practiced) aren't. Prototypes are even better. You, the armchair-designer, as it were, probably can get a team to develop your idea, even if it's a group of hobbyists, but you have to show each member of that team that they want to want to spend their hours-in-a-day making that game, and it has to be something that the team as a whole can do in a reasonable amount of time. The bigger the project (and thus time-investment for each member of the team), the more work you need to put in to giving these artists and programmers a reason to pick your project over all of the other great projects out there. Concept sketches and diagrams of GUI and the like might be enough to present when working with a small project, but the moment you start introducing new and complicated ideas   you need to show prototypes of mechanics or design; really you want to be as precise as possible, and sometimes that precision only comes with an actual applet or mini-game (again, I think Jonathan Blow illustrates this nicely in this video).

Edited by NoAdmiral, 26 January 2013 - 07:51 AM.

Inspiration from my tea:

"Never wish life were easier. Wish that you were better" -Jim Rohn

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### #82SinisterPride  Members

Posted 26 January 2013 - 05:54 AM

I don't think this thread should be an argument.
It has grown into one, of a sort, but it shouldn't have.

I see it as more of a debate on opinions at times. But yes, your right, it shouldn't be. Like I said a few posts ago "its a needless prejudice".

Sinister, just reading the name of the thread, I would think you would support the idea that designers should not be idea-people, but rather a more involved and versatile tool  in the development process.

I was half asleep during my last post, poor choice of words. Yes, I do in fact believe "idea people" are useless in the sense that they are commonly refered to on here. I also believe that designers should have a hand in EVERY aspect of the development process. Especially if it is THEIR vision (as someone stated, a lead designer isn't always the one to come up with the idea being worked on. I'll look up who said that and edit this to give them proper credit when I'm more awake/coherent) that is being brought to life.

it involves getting your hands dirty and starting out all alone (or with friends) until you have something to convince that team that they want you as one of theirs.

Thank you for stating this because I'd like to reiterate something as I have a few times already. I haven't been day dreaming and spewing ideas for the last decade as so many would like to believe. Yes, I've been developing my ideas since some time around highschool when my goal of becoming a game designer/developer started to become clearer. Yes, I went to college for a year and some where I studied Multimedia Development and learned as much as I could before not being able to afford my college financially. My, at times, humble/modest demeanor/way of presenting myself may give off the impression that I am a complete novice, but I assure you I am not.  A while back, I stated in a post alot of the things that I have on paper/am/have worked on. I'll go find it so i can quote it real quick.

I'm not one to boast or speak of my achievements and capabilities with high regard but in this case I'll push it just a bit.

I've done my own concept art, written my own lore, designed my own technical input/motion layouts, taught myself basic scripting in hopes of being able to atleast contribute or do some of the programing, designed skill and spell systems and trees, developed the way(s) I want to track expierience which isn't as mainstream as we're used to/have seen, designed multiple menus, huds, UIs and concepts for tracking things that are usually displayed on huds without having to clutter the screen, extensively thought of time mechanics to interact with varying other mechanics in the worlds' enviroment as well as for character development, explored methods for online multiplayer which localizes server loads between players wishing to play with each other (sort of like lan with a bit of a twist in networking) which would in theory allow large gatherings of adventurers without requiring dedicated servers by spreading the load of bandwidth allocation to each individual player wishing to play, developed professions which tie into character development in a direct way not just as varying side benefits, extensively tied the environment into said professions while theoretically eliminating extensive rendering of resources in the enviroment when entering and moving around areas, theorized on ways to minimize input lag by uniforming control and response methods between the world and the player/npcs (this ties into the combat system as well).. and other stuff that I probably cant think of off the top of my head..

I don't know if stating this gives an idea of what I have down on my notes but I have definitely gotten my hands dirty in my opinion.

Concept sketches and diagrams of how a mechanic work (to show that this has really been thought out, and practiced) aren't.

I love you right now NoAdmiral  You just put into words what I originally set out to say with my original post. This thread has definitely become what I envisioned it being, a large fountain of information established/built through debate and discussion. Do have to disagree with one definition within that statement though.

Prototypes are even better.

Concept sketches and diagrams ARE forms of prototypes as someone so graciously mentioned earlier (again I'll find and give them props later, haven't even had breakfast yet ).

The bigger the project (and thus time-investment for each member of the team), the more work you need to put in to giving these artists and programmers a reason to pick your project over all of the other great projects out there.

Thank you for the advice. You are truly and utterly corrrect. This is what I have set out to do with my chain of threads pertaining to Project: Alter Ego. I don't expect to find anyone willing to jump in whole heartedly with the reception I've received so far but hopefully as they see more and I clarify things more it will become a possibility.

Thank you for your contribution and input/feedback Sir NoAdmiral  It is in fact (in my opinion atleast) one of the most pivotal, productive and constructive criticisms/feedbacks/responses I have yet received.

Sin §• ɸ◦§

Edited by SinisterPride, 26 January 2013 - 06:09 AM.

### #83Legendre  Members

Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:27 AM

I've done my own concept art, written my own lore, designed my own technical input/motion layouts, taught myself basic scripting in hopes of being able to atleast contribute or do some of the programing, designed skill and spell systems and trees, developed the way(s) I want to track expierience which isn't as mainstream as we're used to/have seen, designed multiple menus, huds, UIs and concepts for tracking things that are usually displayed on huds without having to clutter the screen, extensively thought of time mechanics to interact with varying other mechanics in the worlds' enviroment as well as for character development, explored methods for online multiplayer which localizes server loads between players wishing to play with each other (sort of like lan with a bit of a twist in networking) which would in theory allow large gatherings of adventurers without requiring dedicated servers by spreading the load of bandwidth allocation to each individual player wishing to play, developed professions which tie into character development in a direct way not just as varying side benefits, extensively tied the environment into said professions while theoretically eliminating extensive rendering of resources in the enviroment when entering and moving around areas, theorized on ways to minimize input lag by uniforming control and response methods between the world and the player/npcs (this ties into the combat system as well).. and other stuff that I probably cant think of off the top of my head..

I don't know if stating this gives an idea of what I have down on my notes but I have definitely gotten my hands dirty in my opinion.

I'll bite the bullet here just say this frankly: Sorry but no, these do not count as actual "achievements" or "work". And what you are doing is certainly not "design".

Edited by Legendre, 26 January 2013 - 06:29 AM.

### #84SinisterPride  Members

Posted 26 January 2013 - 06:38 AM

You know what.. Legendre.. Do me a favor. Next time you feel like saying something you know is going to be a useless comment of no worth to anyone but your condescending ego, keep it to yourself. I'd like to bring in a mod or staff to share their opinion on this because frankly I've tried to be nice and I've tried to honestly take your criticism/feedback in an unbiased fashion. I've come to the conclusion that although you may have contributed quite a few times in ways I appreciate, the majority of your post have been of negative/tactless opinion and commentary. Either say something constructive (doesn't have to be nice, you can tear me a new one if you don't agree) or don't say anything at all, got it?

### #85Legendre  Members

Posted 26 January 2013 - 08:28 AM

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That is why I called it "biting the bullet". It is not a pleasant thing to say to someone and I certainly don't enjoy doing it. But IMHO someone has to do it in this thread because you (and similar folks who came before you) will not get what we are trying to say unless it is stated plainly.

1) Why are those not "achievements"?

Imagining a bunch of methods for multiplayer networking that probably doesn't work is not considered an achievement. Imagining a bunch of lore, HUDs and mechanics for your game, isn't an achievement. Coming up with things that you can prove to work or has tested/implemented, are actual concrete achievements. (it is perfectly fine to daydream about an impossible game or "that dream MMORPG you will never build", but it is certainly not an "achievement")

2) Why are you not doing "design"?

Dreaming of and drawing a flying car on paper does not make you a car designer. Daydreaming of building floating castles in the cloud does not make you an architect or blueprint drafter. These activities are simply not "design".

P.S.
I am sorry that this is a bit harsh. I am trying a new, more direct (and hopefully not too vituperative) approach since gentle advice seems to be going nowhere.

Edited by Legendre, 26 January 2013 - 08:30 AM.

### #86SinisterPride  Members

Posted 26 January 2013 - 08:42 AM

Rofl.. Yup, I'm 100% sure of it now. You're opinion means nothing to me. Trust me, it's not because of HOW you're saying something. It's because you gingerly assume you know EVERYTHING that I have done towards each stated point. You know nothing about me yet since you're first post you have had all sort of pretentious,condescending, assumptious remarks. Yes, you have the right to comment on what you THINK is wrong on my approach, yes you can ASSUME all you want about how little I've done, and yes you can bash any statement and opinion I may make or have. But no, you won't sit here with all certainty and tell me that my efforts aren't what I know them for a fact to be. I've lost all respect for your opinion Sir, you can choose to keep replying however you want but I won't give you the benefit of reading anything you say from here on. Again, I'd like a staff or moderator to interject please.

Posted 26 January 2013 - 08:45 AM

POPULAR

Do post-its and piles of notes "count as prototyping"? I submit that it really doesn't matter. If you have a vision, the best way to share that vision with a potential developer, designer, or publisher is the same way you'd want to share your vision with a prospective player: with interactive prototypes of your game. Mr. Sloper has a lot of write-ups on this, but this one talks about this point more or less specifically: Lesson 11. Late in the document it shares some tables that highlight (among other things) the difficulty of selling a game idea without a game attached to it.

The aspects of your design I've seen so far on the boards are the "learn by doing" skill system (which can benefit from post-its and piles of notes) and the kineasthetics, which would benefit tremendously from a demo. It's very difficult to describe to somebody how it feels to shield-bash an opponent in Skyrim, or how it feels to go wing-suit diving in Far Cry 3: describing how you execute it using the controls won't communicate how it feels...but if they have control of that aspect in the game for a matter of seconds, they get it.

I think where the thread became confrontational - a trap I fell into as well - is that there is already a "Doer vs. Dreamer" angle to gamedev.net almost at large and this thread brought it to the forefront. That's why the front of the thread is so loaded with free advice to help Dreamers step into the Doer realm, I suspect. It's also why some maybe seem frustrated later in the thread...as that advice often goes unheeded and, to wax bad poetry for a moment, another Dreamer refuses the path to Doer. Whether or not that's actually what's happening, it's not justification for getting heated. It can be a catalyst though.

If I could offer once piece of advice that would give you the best chance at communicating how good your game could be, it would be for your to learn Unity 3D or the like - some free, well-documented game engine - and show everybody how cool the game can feel.

I was previously serratemplar; a name I forfeited to share a name with an angry rank-bearing monkey.

### #88Stormynature  GDNet+

Posted 26 January 2013 - 08:47 AM

I think this thread has reached its use-by date. Which is a pity as I don't mind the debate over the nature of a game designer and how much is perceived to be non-vital Vs necessary skill sets as opinionated from the different perspectives.

### #89swiftcoder  Senior Moderators

Posted 26 January 2013 - 09:09 AM

I think this thread has reached its use-by date.

Agreed.

Tristam MacDonald - Software Engineer @ Amazon - [swiftcoding] [GitHub]

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