October update – How to proceed as a first timer in the field.

So, they say that I should keep this indie dev’s journal thingy going in order to getter attention from the masses. Which is a valid opinion, but not some kind of law. That’s why I’m updating this blog only when I have something I consider worth saying, I will, however, try to make this a monthly thing.

A screen-shot of Wind Magnet because it’s our blog so it’s only fair 🙂

Crafting a game all by yourself, or in a small team/aided by a few outsourced professionals, is not an easy task. Not the kind of stuff you learn at college or by following a tutorial. That’s because each game (considering you are not creating some kind of clone anyway) is unique and has its own needs.
A small todo list composed of five or six systems to be implemented in-game, something that a triple A team would do in a week, may take you months. So be realistic, because:

“You may get to a point where you’ll be tempted to let some of your best ideas go, due to lack of time, money etc. Sometimes it is the right thing to do, but sometimes you leave the one selling point of your game behind.
That’s why you can only trust your own judgment about how to proceed. People may get extremely tendentious based on their own experiences, but game development is of the most diverse activities out there.” – me

That’s right, I’m quoting myself. Talk about ego!

Here’s the small list of what I’ve learned so far:

·Don’t listen to what your friends say all the time (even if they are experienced players)
If you plan to create something unique, it takes a finished product for people to be able to fully understand your idea.

·Listen to what your friends say sometimes (even more if their opinion is also supported by random not-your-friend testers)
Because, let’s face it, we don’t always have incredible ideas or even the talent we think we do.

·Don’t justify crappy artwork just because “I’m a low budget indie dev, dude”
It takes time to polish art and programming skills. Start small and, as said above, be realistic. Each low quality “indie” title makes like more difficult for lone developers.

·Value the work of any professional teaming up with you.
That goes without further explanation because reason.

·Show your work to the public from the beginning…
… is something that I’ll agree only in a few specific cases. Devote your time to polish your game; it’s better to finish it before anything else. A good game is a good game no matter how early or late you may have advertised it.

·Trust your guts, but keep challenging yourself to be your best
Keep a healthy lifestyle because you’ll have to push yourself to your limits if you with to create a meaningful gaming experience.

·Everything other indie devs have to say may not be valid at all to your specific case. This affirmation includes me, naturally!
I’ve known successful devs who say that only procedural games are worth creating, that a project should never take more than two months, while we all know that John Carmack used to say that a game will be done when it’s done… Opinions, as well as life experiences, change from person to person.

What about Wind Magnet?

The game has been polished a lot, including all its core systems, character’s animations, avatars and, finally, the quests are being implemented!

Wait… Just a single line up updates? No, actually two months of hard work, but I think that the player doesn’t want to know every little detail. The player wants to plays, so, instead of listing programming and art stuff, we’ll keep working hard to achieve the best results as soon as possible!

That’s it for now. Back to coding. Till next time, fellows!

Here’s looking at new beginnings, kid

As a software developer, I’ve always worked at home, in my home-office. Well, a few months ago things changed a little.

Since this is the beginning of a dev. journal, I’ll keep the non-gaming stuff as short as possible, so… Some god damn neighbor set my house on fire after I reported his illegal environmental activities to the police. With no house, I also was stuck with no office, since they were the same building.

Ok, short and painless, turning the page now!

To the rescue came my family, providing shelter and work environment for the time being. Here’s my “new” desktop:

Back on track I can now dedicate more time to my project, Wind Magnet, and share the remaining development time with you (whoever ends up reading this anyway).

Grateful for life, this is my toast to the future :).