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Dev Log: Day 1 - The 3 or more.. main questions



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If you are like me, then you are constantly thinking about game ideas, but majority of the time, even though we are having a insane tool in our hands.

We get cluttered, and all the time we go back and forth and jump from one thing to another and never actually complete a game, in return we only end up with Hard Drives filled with Construct files that are tests for our ideas.

Which is great, because we learn how to create different things, and how we would bring those game ideas to life, but that is not the case since all they do is sit there as a filler for the Expensive SSD drive or The 1 Tb HDD that you bought so you can store more "doodoo".

The past couple of days, i was thinking on what my next game is, and how to motivate myself to actually complete it this time?

Well of course add more workload on myself by creating a development blog and tell people why i never publish games, and hopefully the feedback from the people or the views on the post will motivate myself to push forward with it.

While the above makes no sense what so ever from the productivity perspective, i had to come with the basics of what is needed to bring a game to life, and have content to write in the blog since i started it right?

And here they are, the three main questions that keep me up at night, for a developer to start and gradually bring his idea or ideas to life:

What the game should be about (gameplay theme)?

But before we answer the above question, we have to answer the next question which is:

While our imagination has an endless supply of creative fun ideas, we usually trow them away because we don't really think if it will have success or will be finding its own place in the today's saturated market.

So what i do to pass that issue is scouring the internet, for game categories and find what is out there and what is not yet done. While my philosophy is "you can make a game from anything in real life", and while that is true you will probably end up doing a clone without knowing, because you didn't knew what the competition is doing, and the competition today is "Almost everybody with a internet connection and a PC".

So after scouring the internet and with past knowledge of what the current market lacks i decided to create a tycoon game, there are plenty of games there but very little of them are actually successful and very little of them are not the what i call "Copy Cat Model", which is like 98% of the current market today.

Here comes a new release that gets some attention and everybody else just copies it, adds some random images for "originality" and fills it to the bottle neck with ads for the hopes of the 2 pennies/dollar from different ad-networks. And totally disregards the usability of the app, while their asking themselves "why isn't my game attracting people O.O?".

And yes i was somewhere there when i first went into game development, mainly cause i was in a bad spot and i was like i "don't care about fun i want moneeeyyyyy", but then evolution happens.

While you'd be thinking "aren't you doing the same thing now?", well sort of ....

And here is why is sort of: I mentioned im scouring the current ideas that are there, you have to know your competition if your going deep into this.

My goal is to publish a game that has a unique theme if possible, has a simplistic gameplay system that can be extended and bring usability and fun into peoples hands, and while doing that, gain some experience.

Now the idea that was fiddling in my head for the past couple of days is not that unique there are a few games on this theme around, but none of them are bringed to the actual tycoon gameplay, and those that are on the same gameplay are dated.

So i found a little room to bring some refreshment to the market.

Now i can't say the "Theme of the game is ...." because currently im joggling between is it a A: Dojo tycoon simulator where you open dojo's and bring people to train and gain cash monthly or per lessons teach'd? or a B: "Make more! type of game" where you just open businesses, and end up in space somehow (never made sense to me) by the max level upgrade?

Because they both are a tycoon endless upgrade type of game and their pretty similar, im still deciding for a few minutes, but i know the theme of the gameplay is something about "DOJO's" or "Karate Business Something"... who knows... maybe by the end of the blog will turn into "Bruce .E and the deadly hallows Tycoon". Just Kidding ....

So now i have my theme sort of... What is my next step? Next step are the mechanics of the game.

What will be the games mechanics?

And here we have to decide which mechanics do we use? as i said above, we have options A or B? and while B is easier to do, is not as fun as A and definitely is not as original looking after comparing it to the market, so my decision will be create a simple mechanics system for the A theme.

Now how do we do that? Well we know that tycoon games are based on a simple logic system: build/own a business, sell/rent and make profit (so you can fly in space by teaching the world to karate chop the air.....), and upon that rock we start building our game.

So mechanics to implement, have something to build and buy/upgrade as a service in the game so you can sell/rent and make profits to buy more upgrades and build more products or open more business to gain more money.

This will be the gameplay mechanics, now we have to discuss UI, of course the UI has to go with the theme, but we have to decide on the next thing now, will this game be a mobile game or a desktop game?

And since we are doing this game using Construct, and since Construct is letting us build one time and publish everywhere, i think the best decision here is to build a interface that would fit the mobile devices and also make sense on the desktop. While you'd say, well if it works on mobile works on desktop for sure, and that is true. Functionality will be there always, but... there is a but.. as a game player myself, when i see a mobile interface on a desktop game makes me very confused and i end up uninstalling the game, therefore we have to come to a compromise whether to use a compact interface that is beautiful on mobile but is a bit disturbing on desktop or we create a UI that is responsive and transforms when a desktop device will load and have a different look? And as an example here, the best UI mix i ever seen in games that are built both for mobile and desktop is our old tycoon game that ravished the market a few years back and started the tycoon game category as is today, and that is "Cookie Cliker v2" game. And that is what i will do for this game, its a simplistic side list menu with a top few stats and some little animations on the visual part of the gameplay, that works both for mobile (both landscape and portrait) and desktops.

Where do i start?

So now that i decided on my mechanics, i have to build it, using default Construct features, and for graphics im not worrying since im going to use for my alpha testings placeholders. Graphics in my experience is 99% of the game, but first you have to build a mechanical system that works and you have an idea what type of graphics you might use, without it is pointless to buy Graphics or create your own graphics that look pretty but end up not fitting your game.

Ending of Day 1

This would conclude Day 1. See you in the next blog entry with an alpha test and some more details on how i will go further.

Till then leavez a comentz and follow so you don't miss out the updates.


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