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Old 09-16-2012, 09:17 AM   #1
AWSmith
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So, you thought you were going to write a game?


Ok... after over 2 decades of watching my ideas about games come out and make millions I decided to go with the next idea I had. I'm not kidding... I saw the addictive nature of MUDs in 1995 and was all over usenet trying to talk people into doing a graphical MUD to try and make $$. Ya'll all know what happened with Everquest. Whatever. We've all had great ideas implemented by those with more money and power and influence.

So... about a year ago I had this great idea - don't we all. The idea doesn't really matter. A year later and despite diligent work on it, I have only written the communications protocol, the map procedure generation, and a rudimentary client that connects to the server to get map information.

There is still: a database to write to store information, someone needs to pretty up the client because lets face it, its ugly... and then there's the whole implementation of character and npc objects... weather... technology tree....

I have concluded that this is way... WAY.... more work than I will be able to do solo.

Does anyone know how these sort of things typically work out for independent game developers? Do these guys live with their parents and quit their day jobs to pursue these dreams? I could NOT quit the day job. I have 5 little confederates running around the house that need to be fed and the day job does that. A whimsical, "Oh, this could work" dream about a game really can't.
 
Old 09-16-2012, 02:19 PM   #2
dugan
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I believe most indie games are written by people who manage to raise enough money to work on them full-time. That's certainly the case with the ones in Indie Game The Movie.

Kickstarter and Indie-Go-Go are currently popular ways to try to raise that money.

Last edited by dugan; 09-16-2012 at 03:37 PM.
 
Old 09-17-2012, 09:41 AM   #3
resetreset
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It just occurred to me that your 5 confederates would be extremely proud to tell their friends at school that the game that they're playing was made by their Dad (might even make up for their empty bellies..... well, maybe not! ).

No but seriously, I think I've found a kindred soul in you - I am somewhat in the same situation though I don't have kids - but I don't know or think I can tackle the programming all by myself. Right now I've made a website for which I'm still waiting for the $$$$ to come in. I have no money to market it, at least with proper ads on TV and in print, so I'm just hoping word of mouth will do the trick. I'd HATE for a game idea to end up the same way just because enough cash wasn't available to market it, so I haven't tackled that yet. (I have a couple of more ideas for websites which I want to do first).

Take a look at this:
http://archive.assembly.org/2012/sem...-startup-sauna
it could help you.

Another thing that occurs to me is - there are free open source game engines like Crystal Space - would these not work for you to make your game? Seems like a real way out to me!....


Oh and one more thing you should know about is the demoscene - Google it, read the Wikipedia page and go to www.pouet.net - introduce yourself and your predicament on the BBS, you may find some sympathisers.



And by the way, I DO live with my mum.....



I think we should keep in touch, could you PM me your email address? (Don't mail me cuz I don't check the email addr. that LQ has)..... See ya!
 
Old 09-18-2012, 08:43 AM   #4
H_TeXMeX_H
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You need more people working on it. It will take you a very long time to write a good game solo. Something like kickstarter may work like dugan suggests. You need money and you need people to make a good game in a reasonable amount of time.

There is of course no guarantee of success. I suppose most gaming companies play it safe and make clones of each others games varying only the plot and characters. I wouldn't play it safe, I would strive for something epic ... not that the payoff would be better in terms of money.
 
Old 09-18-2012, 10:41 AM   #5
AWSmith
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Quote:
Originally Posted by resetreset View Post
It just occurred to me that your 5 confederates would be extremely proud to tell their friends at school that the game that they're playing was made by their Dad (might even make up for their empty bellies..... well, maybe not! ).
Yea, but food in the belly is important too. 8) All of the kids are avid gamers (as much as they can be at age 7 and under) and ridiculously hooked on fiction. I read about 1 full length young adult novels to the 7 and 6 year old every 2 months. And they argue with me over what they think characters are going to and the plot. So, yea, they're of the right gamer mindset (pro-fiction, pro-wonder, pro-dreaming, pro-imagination). But I suspect I'd have to get laid off before I'd really go for trasitioning from a hobby / vaporware. Even if demand it gave me $150k which I could use to both live on myself and then to hire one other developer for a year I would seriously hesitate to leave the good job I have now.


Quote:
Originally Posted by resetreset View Post
No but seriously, I think I've found a kindred soul in you - I am somewhat in the same situation though I don't have kids - but I don't know or think I can tackle the programming all by myself. Right now I've made a website for which I'm still waiting for the $$$$ to come in. I have no money to market it, at least with proper ads on TV and in print, so I'm just hoping word of mouth will do the trick. I'd HATE for a game idea to end up the same way just because enough cash wasn't available to market it, so I haven't tackled that yet. (I have a couple of more ideas for websites which I want to do first).
Yeap. Entrepreneurs abound out there on the net. Its easy to tell someone to take the dive but really hard to take the dive oneself. My excuse is I'm "chicken" (chickens lack some things). I've seen too many entrepreneurial efforts die without making a dime and with costing a fortune.


Quote:
Originally Posted by resetreset View Post
Another thing that occurs to me is - there are free open source game engines like Crystal Space - would these not work for you to make your game? Seems like a real way out to me!....
Using pre-done engines is definitely the way to go for a lot of projects. In my case it just wasn't going to work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by resetreset View Post
And by the way, I DO live with my mum.....
Don't take it too hard. 8) Not sure what stage of life you're at. Lots of people these days can't get enough $$ to move out. I did a bunch of research on my own family history and saw similar issues after the War for Southern Independence in the united state. Noone had any $$$ and for like 3 generations you had people living with parents or parents living with children.
 
Old 09-18-2012, 10:54 AM   #6
AWSmith
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Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
You need more people working on it. It will take you a very long time to write a good game solo. Something like kickstarter may work like dugan suggests. You need money and you need people to make a good game in a reasonable amount of time.

There is of course no guarantee of success. I suppose most gaming companies play it safe and make clones of each others games varying only the plot and characters. I wouldn't play it safe, I would strive for something epic ... not that the payoff would be better in terms of money.
Yeap. Ya'll have confirmed my suspicions that its really something that has to be funded somehow before it can be moved to a full time job. It does take at least 5 people I suspect to produce something decent. While I'd love to take the plunge, the risk is just way too much for me at 39 and with 5 little ones to feed.

BUT.... hell... I never started this project with the intention of making $$ at it. Its merely a labor of love and a way to annoy Mrs. Smith when i come running over jumping up and down shouting, "I have just discovered that my old terrain generation algorithm from 1987 was really just an example of perlin noise!!!!! Can you believe it??? It was perlin noise all the time, I just didn't realize that was what I was doing. This really smart math guy wrote a huge fancy library around it!!!! come see! come see!" She humors me but she also tunes me out when I get that excited.
 
Old 09-18-2012, 11:34 AM   #7
resetreset
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Does she love you? How about HER getting a job while you craft your epic? (not sure if she already HAS one of course, if so then please ignore).
Oh and you didn't send me your email....?
 
Old 09-18-2012, 11:49 AM   #8
AWSmith
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i've never been able to get private messages to work on lq.

ROT13 this:

Nyrknaqre qbg j qbg fzvgu ng bngu qbg pbz.
 
Old 09-18-2012, 11:58 AM   #9
resetreset
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Just sent you a mail, please read
 
Old 09-18-2012, 03:32 PM   #10
sundialsvcs
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Games are major programming undertakings. But a lot of them are very, very similar. Hence, the choice of a game framework should probably have been your first step.
 
Old 09-19-2012, 01:21 AM   #11
resetreset
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Hey man, no reply....? Did you get my mail?
 
Old 09-19-2012, 10:26 PM   #12
AWSmith
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Originally Posted by sundialsvcs View Post
Games are major programming undertakings. But a lot of them are very, very similar. Hence, the choice of a game framework should probably have been your first step.
Yea, I seriously have underestimated the cost (in my time) of converting a fun idea (for me) into code. My jaw is still on the floor in terms of how much work there is to do to get one of these off of the ground. And then there's the 'one snag' items that you burn hours trying to fix. 8)
 
Old 10-02-2018, 03:36 PM   #13
dugan
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AWSmith: I don't know if you're still here, but here's a recently and widely shared article on just how hard it is:

It's time we stopped encouraging indies
 
  


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