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Post Reply Any game devs here?
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35 / M / New York City
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Posted 7/25/15
Howdy!

I'm Bernardo. A couple of years ago I stared a game review website with my girlfriend. Nardio.net
After playing and reviewing a lot of games I wanted to interview the folks behind them. After a few interviews and newly formed friendships I started to want to make games myself. During this time my GF took on some part time work as a writer for a few start up indie devs and eventually became lead designer for one of them. She eventually took over that company and pushed out a game already as a lead designer. That was inspiring and tough to watch. The ups and downs of watching the woman you love try to make something with nothing while leading a team was interesting and hard.

During that time I dabbled in GameSalad and a little unity and just never found quite the right fit for me. GameSalad seemed under powered and totally unintuitive, while unity overwhelmed me. I eventually found and started using GameMaker. Since then I have been hard at work making my first big game. A 2d platformer with manga styled comics for telling a story. It's getting close to being finished, but it still needs work.

I've taken a break from my website, but I am still friends with a bunch of indie devs. I also attend a lot of indie dev events in NYC. We have a pretty good size dev scene with NYU game school being so popular. During this time I've beta tested games and tried to promote some stuff that would'nt really get covered in most of the big sites. It's been crazy, but it's also awesome and kinda sad.

A lot of talented work just gets buried in the appstores and some other trash gets featured. Watching your friends work be ignored is tough, but most of them arent there for the money. A good example of this is my friend Jordan. Our firendship is entirely digital. We met over twitter and he uses GameMaker. He did is part of the two man team who made the Callys Caves games. Last week he released Callys Caves 3 on the iOS app store and its been insane for him and really interesting for me to watch and be a part of.

He sort of knew he might get featured by apple, but when I sent him a pic of his game on the front page of the American app store he told me he started crying in happiness. Since then I send him screen shots of the games rank and he tells me about the numbers. It's really fascinating to learn that a game can get a couple of thousand downloads and only make 25 bucks in ad money. It's also weird and interesting to test for bugs and have your friend freak out if something got through. He just seems happy that apple featured him and he has glowing reviews. It's just about having people enjoy his game for him.

With all of this happening I am spending my Saturday here in NYC not enjoying the Amazing weather, but working on my game and trying to make my game as polished as some of the games that inspired me to make my own.

Some of my iOS faves are Mikey Shorts, Battleheart, Callys Caves 2 & 3, and Burrito Bison. After talking to the devs behind those games I just had to make my own.
My game wont be iOS though, it's going to be a PC/Mac/Amazon Fire game. It just feels better with a controller in hand so I'm going to avoid mobile.

What about all of you? Any devs out there? Anyone wanting to get into game dev or studying it now? Any games that inspire you?
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20 / Cold and High
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Posted 7/25/15
Not dev, but Unity or what?
but if some castlevania mechanics and Parallax Scrolling Background.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4C0xI41RtaU 1:45
if you want such a game.

more about story, puzzles or what?
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27 / M
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Posted 7/25/15
Cool stuff. Dabbled in MMF2 and tried to teach myself Objective C but failed. The experience gave me a whole new appreciation for what game studios do for a living. It's like magic.
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35 / M / New York City
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Posted 7/25/15 , edited 7/25/15
For me it was all about Shaun Spaldings youtube vids.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCn7FE3Tx391g1tWPv-1tv7Q

They were so easy to follow and basic GameMaker was free so It felt like no commitment at all. Eventually I bought GM professional and then assets from the marketplace and just kept going. Now my issue is getting more assets on the cheap.

What is helping me stay committed is having my GF do so well with her game team and going to game dev events. So much energy, so many good games and crap games and people who just want to have fun. It's inspiring.

I also keep thinking about some of the interviews I did with game devs and am twitter friends with some of them like this Rohan guy.
http://nardio.net/2015/02/13/rohan-narang-interview/

It's great to be able to get beta's from these people who are eager for input and send my game's alpha to people who know their stuff. The feedback is great. The guy behind Callys Caves has been a great beta tester all the while he is trying to get his own game out. I mean thats awesome to me. Dude has just been featured by apple and he is taking time still to look over my work and give me tips and ideas.

Any of you have friends who try and make games? Or have games that straight up inspire you?


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20 / Cold and High
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Posted 7/25/15
I feel its wrong just starting like that I tried didn't know where to begin.
Better if you go down to the core and learn makes it a whole lot easier but alot more to take in.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lNXk5CpjXc some of few good tutorials for unity if you want to go there.
Posted 7/25/15 , edited 7/26/15
I've made a few games with C and SDL but they are mostly for my own amusement. I guess my programmer art has improved a bit to.
Used http://lazyfoo.net to learn the library.
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35 / M / New York City
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Posted 7/26/15
I kind of feel like with most new hobbies it's just best to start.

Sure you might not grasp the basics, but started project is still way further along and harder to put off than something you keep reading and studying up on.

I found myself doing the same thing, I kept reading and watching vids on how to do things trying to understand them first before starting. No luck there. In the end I started following Shaun's videos and kinda grasping things as I went along, but I was making something. At the very least I looked at things like legos. These blocks of code make the walls. These make the platforms, and these make the enemies. From there I was able to start simple word building and bam first few levels and game.

Sure I dont "understand" everything, but I'm working near 100 levels done. Little by little I'm getting all of it, but I realize I dont need to worry about that. I just need to worry about making my game as fun as possible. Thats the hard part for me.

What makes a platformer fun?
How can you make a simple platformer engaging enough for people to want to finish?
How do you make a game easy enough for the younger generation of gamers who can't handle old school difficulty, but make it hard enough to make old schoolers smile?
What makes a level fun?

Those are the questions that drive me nuts.
When I am not working on my game or watching anime I might read up a bit to try and understand things some more, but thats not that important to me.

I'm also using and absolutely loving ComiPo for the comics I am making for the game. Such an amazing program! I just wish they released more assets!

Have any of you used ComiPo for fun or work?
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20 / Cold and High
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Posted 7/26/15

bernardoespanol wrote: 1. What makes a platformer fun?
2. How can you make a simple platformer engaging enough for people to want to finish?
3. How do you make a game easy enough for the younger generation of gamers who can't handle old school difficulty, but make it hard enough to make old schoolers smile?
4. What makes a level fun?


1. challange or something wanting you to try to redo like meatboy etc (or have different options that have different resualt like in Rouge Legacy cind of)
2. Not being an ** to the player or have too much instant death traps etc.
More "replayability" for the players, something they wish tot try agian (so objectives or that 1 dude they find very hard so something that is hard but they know by just a little more they can do it!)
3. either level diffuclty that either enables more checkpoints or more health and more, if you want all in one then make everything "fair" so maybe different routes for different stuff?
4. When you have "puzzles" either in combat, player vs env vs enemy, that does not go agianst you like a guy waiting infront of the door making you not able to get inside.
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35 / M / New York City
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Posted 7/27/15
HA!

That sounds easy.

Now rinse and repeating this over dozens of levels while making sure the game doesn't feel repetitive, then all of a sudden it becomes a problem.

Talking about the answers to this are way way easier than putting them in during level design.
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Posted 7/27/15 , edited 7/27/15
Well then you can take a look on what others have done that does these things, and repetitive shouldn't be bad but if the art and design can follow up then the repetitive can be negative its like the difference on a good vs bad brawler.

Making levels does not need to be hard, and if you took a look what angry video game nerd said and showed with the lines that if you use "simple" objects with some scripts that will create either a flying dead zone the wobbly lines/drawings [insert object] and do these patterns but it really depends on how you want it to be though.

Could you maybe post a picture showing a little how you want things to be?
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35 / M / New York City
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Posted 7/27/15
I play a lot of platformers and even more so recently for inspiration. But as the levels go on I find myself wanting to make sure things keep feeling fresh. That really is harder in practice than it is to just say. I know when I play platformers, I immediately find myself noticing when things tend to repeat.

Since I am still pretty new to GM I don't have much knowledge on enemy AI. I have been adding more as I learn it, but not enough to constantly innovate. Again this is a simple platformer and my first big game.

Sorry for being so vague about my personal project, my goal with the original post was to find a bunch of game devs or game dev hopefuls and let the chat go from there. As far as my game it's a simple platformer. No check points, no achievements, no character progression at all for most of it. I'm seriously considering having none at all. Just larger and more challenging levels as you progress through the game. Every level is open through a world map system, so if a player gets stuck or wants to come back to or skip something they can at their own choosing.

The hero doesn't even use weapons, just jumping on enemy heads, riding others and just trying to make it to the end. It's a simple game mechanics wise that I'm trying to make interesting and appealing via level design and story. With these self imposed restraints of the abilities of the main hero, keeping it to a 1 hit death sorta game, level design gets interesting.

Im also not using scripts for making levels. Everything is planned out. It's time consuming and at times frustrating, but after I finish a level and it feels right, I am a happy dev.
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Posted 7/27/15
well sounds like you want a mario cind of game, with a bit more 1 way to solve through a way but having an exploit or another way to make it easier or something?
yeah the instant death does not count when its only that or made about it but then agian somethings can easly become unfair or just annoying but if they can choose any different level then I guess its "fine".
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28 / F / Canada
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Posted 7/27/15 , edited 7/27/15
Dev here! Started as a QA tester, ended up in production, nice to meet you
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35 / M / New York City
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Posted 7/27/15
"fine"?

A lot of the levels are linear, but I mix a few in with multiple paths, and I started tweaking a few others to have hidden passages. The open level idea came from a bunch of articles I read about most players not beating most of their games.

Either time commitments, juggling multiple games, or level difficulty. This way players are able to skip whatever is "too much" and move on to the next room. I have all the story told in separate rooms that are also accessible this way. This way some can hate the game, and just read all the story if they so wish, or if they like the story, just go back to those parts.



SunnyWindy pleasure to meet you...sorta. But digi hi! What sorts of games do you work on?

Do any of you participate in game dev communities and or meet ups?

New York City has a lot of groups that meetup and show off games. This Wednesday I'm going to be at the Microsoft office with my GF as she shows off the newest build of the game her team is working on. It's always a fun to check out what the community has been up to. Besides that we might be going to Boston FIG if she gets in with her game. We went last year and had a good time. Well until our way back. Some guy got on with us who stunk up the packed bus horribly the whole ride back to NYC. It was horrible.
Hopefully if we go again it will go better. We are def going to take a train both ways in case we need to change seats. Times like these I wish I had a licence.

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28 / F / Canada
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Posted 7/28/15
I worked on a lot of different games, going from Monster Jam to Call of Duty and Skylanders. From small titles to AAAs ^^

We do have meet ups in town here too yes, but I rarely have/take time to go though. I don't really enjoy noisy meet ups and they are often in pubs so...
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