I'm an amateur game programmer who likes to make games in the evenings. For the past 2 years I've been building games over at GI as part of the student game challenges. I love competitions but the problem is that all my games come up 'short' in terms of quality, fun, and engaging game play. Competitions at GI are about 4 to 8 weeks in length.
So, I decided to take a sabbatical from GI competitions and spend my hot summer in South Carolina working on a new game. I hope to double the amount of time on the project. Hopefully this will translate to better quality. I'll be updating this thread frequently as I move the project through its various phases.
You may download and play my games from here. If you have a critical eye you can see their short comings.
Project Time Frame: 6.1.09 - 9.2.09
Genre: TBD (casual game?)
Target Audience: TBD
Platform: PC - Windows
Language/Compiler: C++ using Visual Studio 2005 (I just upgraded from 2003)
Other: I do use VB6 for creating quick tools such as editors. I do employ Excel/VBA at times to create and manipulate data.
Engine: My personal framework of code
Sound: FMOD EX
Graphics: DirectX 9 2D (I won't be working 3D on this one)
This is somewhat basic. I hope to...
1) Develop a game idea that sounds fun to you and my family/friends.
2) Write a game program specification (game play and technical details).
3) Design the game framework (or update current framework of code).
4) Develop the game, test as I go, and make necessary adjustments.
a) Create art assets. I like Paint.net.
b ) Create sound assets. I use Audacity.
c) Create music assets.
d) Write the code (game states, game logic, glue, etc.)
5) Beta test the game. Implement necessary bug fixes and feature requests.
6) Write a post-mortem and describe what went well and what didn't.
How you can help?
1) Offer encouragement. Non-coders do not appreciate the amount of work that goes into such projects. (See Skyhawk's thread on Motivation.)
2) Offer criticism and suggestions. Programmers get lost in their 'masterpiece' programs and they cannot or do not see how bad it really is. I am myopic in this respect.
3) Contribute to the project: sound effects, art assets, music loops, game code....just let me know if you want to help. I'll put your name in scrolling credits.
This is the most important and yet most difficult part of the process for me. We need a game idea. Here are the constraints:
1) 15 weeks x 20 hours/week = 300 hours. Project must be doable in that amount of time.
2) Assets such as art, music, and sound must not be excessive due to time restraint.
3) 2D - top down, front view, isometric (never done that one before), or side view.
4) Controlled by keyboard and/or mouse.
If you have any ideas please let me know. I'll be checking out casual type games on the web for inspiration.
This post has been edited by chuckb: 02 June 2009 - 06:31 PM