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April 27, 2011 at 12:25 pm #8076
For the past while I have been working on the concept of a strategy based pc game. I have no education in game development so everything I have is on pen and paper.
What ways do I go about with getting my idea onto the monitor? Who would I go to? I have many questions as I am someone with absolutely no education in this department but many ideas and concepts. Any help is appreciated, thanks.
April 28, 2011 at 11:55 pm #46988
are you talking about actual gameplay/mechanics of a game? art style? scripting?
April 29, 2011 at 9:12 pm #46994
Well, first thing would be, build a design document, which is basically the first draft of the bible for your whole game. I came across a good example that could be used as a template before, think it was on gamasutra, but I can’t locate it right now, someone else will probably be able to link you to one to follow.
Second would be something like GIMP, which is a free, open source image editor very similar to photoshop to make very basic illustrations to give people a clearer idea of your game, I’m talking arrows and squares for characters and very basic maps, and arrows, etc. Google it, its a free download because its open source :) Also download Open Office, another open source suite, which is basically microsoft word, which you can write your game doc in :)
April 30, 2011 at 9:18 am #46996
April 30, 2011 at 6:05 pm #46997
May 4, 2011 at 1:27 pm #47007
Contradicting advice is no use but ….. :) I wouldnt bother with a games design document.
If pen and paper is what you know then stick to it. Find the best method to convey your idea, (maybe a boardgame or a cardgame or a walk-though of some hand drawn screen shots) and then think about how best to talk to someone about your game and any abstract concepts it contains.
If you have no experience with computers, (art or programming) and feel like this is outta your league then spend your energies in the right place.
If you can persuade a few folk in a forum to come to your cause you’re on the right track.
of course if you want to learn how to program or use a game making tool like the suggestions above or unity or something like that, then fire away. Nothing wrong with that either. If just means you have to divide your focus. Imo.
May 7, 2011 at 7:07 am #47018
This is actually a really great question but I’d like to take it a bit further.
I would actually like to ask a couple questions of anyone who may be in the industry, especially if you are actually in a role that would have you entertaining submissions for game concepts or ideas.
First, are most companies even OPEN to the idea of outside game concepts, and if so, WHO in their company should I be looking to contact?
Secondly, what format would YOU prefer it to be it. Forget about what makes it easy on me, what is going to impress you the most, and really give you the impression that it’s an idea you want to be a part of? Should it be a super technically written game outline, showing an enormous amount to small detail? Or would a professionally created video presentation(not a powerpoint) outlying the main aspects of the game along with some visual examples of game features, be the better route to take?
Finally, when I contact game companies with ideas or concepts, what should I be looking to get out of it, realistically? Are they going to want to buy the concept? Are they going to be willing to let me be a part of the project(i.e. give me a job)? Are they just going to say "Hey, that IS a good idea!" and then hang up the phone?(Like they actually answer it)
Just some questions that have come to me, as I’ve pounded the keyboard pavement, contacted so many software companies, filled out so many "message staff member" forms. Any insights or tips are more than appreciated. Thanks guys!
May 8, 2011 at 6:39 pm #47020
AFAIK most don’t want outside ideas..
It’s an IP nightmare.
Most seem to actively discourage reading any ideas on the off chance a game they are making is similar and ownership is contested etc.
That is AFAIK ..
May 8, 2011 at 9:17 pm #47021
This article pretty much nails it:
Basically, ideas are cheap and good execution is very difficult & expensive.
May 9, 2011 at 12:38 am #47022
@Barry: Thanks for the confirmation on what I have had experience with. Some companies openly state that they won’t even OPEN or acknowledge game ideas. But this isn’t a rule across the entire industry, and as I don’t live in Ireland, I was hoping to get some kind of feel for the game industry in this regard, for THAT country. Truthfully, I am really hoping for a reply from someone CURRENTLY at a game company, in a role somewhat related to this, especially about my second question.
@Chrisbo: Actually I am not quite sure this article does help me, at all. I’m sure you are trying to help, but I think that article answers the question "Is my game idea worth trying to pitch?", and I didn’t even really ask that one at all. A lot of the things mentioned in the article, are reasons WHY I posted these questions, specifically HERE on these forums.
As the article stated, modern day games are not going to be "squeaked through" by small development teams based off a design document. It just isn’t going to happen. Also as the article states, ALL game designers have their own pet projects and dream games that given the opportunity, they would want to pursue themselves. These two reasons alone, along with several more that the article and I both hold to be true, basically mean that your game idea isn’t going to get made by YOU, from some document that you create, that people then pour money into. That’s not how the industry has operated, for many years.
However, these are not reasons to abandon your game design, especially if it is built to be PROFITABLE, not just "LuLz, this is the l33test game evar!". And also especially, if you are more interested in the game CONCEPT succeeding, than your own personal involvement, participation, or even original vision of that concept. I’m not new to this particular "game", so my questions were asked more out of extensive experience, than the lack thereof.
So, if a design is thought to be feasible, profitable, and enticing enough to actually be pitched to a design company, which person in which position should be contacted? What format would most impressively convey to OTHER DEVELOPERS the potential and worth of a game concept idea, and get them excited about using THEIR talents and abilities to elevate the project even further? And if a design were actually accepted by a studio, realistically, what would the potential rewards be?
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