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Top 10 tips for first game

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Making your first video game? Keep these tips in mind!

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Top 10 tips for first game

  1. 1. Cloudy Heaven Games’ Top 10 Tips for Making your First Game 1. For your first game, choose a tool you’re familiarwith. Don’t addextravariablestoyour projectbytryingto learna brandnew platform. If youhaven’tdone anydevelopmentbefore, try a tool like Game Maker Studio,Construct2, or Game Salad. 2. Set a reasonable scope for your game. Don’tset outto do huge game projectson yourfirsttry, especiallyif youhave limitedtime andresources. A lone developerworkingafull-time joband jugglingfamilyresponsibilitieswillprobablynotbe able tocreate the next World of Warcraft withinthe space of a year. It’sok to be ambitious,butrealize thatthe longerandmore difficult the game developmentprocess,the higherriskyourunof burningout andnot finishing. 3. Do play-testingas soon as possible. You can demoyourgame to friends,orattendgame dev eventsthatletyoudisplayyourgame to attendees(lookforconferencesandeventsinyour area). It’s goodto watch people playthe game,soyoucan see how easilytheylearnthe game, and howtheyreact to it. You can alsopostdemosandsolicitfeedback online. IndieDB.comisa great place topost demosandnewsaboutyour game. 4. Write a game designdocument (GDD)! A game designdocumentwillhelpyoutofleshoutyour ideaandforcesyou to thinkthroughyourdesigndecisions. If you’re workingona team, the documentwill helpmake sure everyone knowsthe endgoal. The documentdoesn’thave tobe hundredsof pages. Youcan make itas long or shortas you needitto be! 5. Prioritize and track your tasks. If you have a GDD, you can use it to mapyour game featuresto actual tasks. Decide howimportanteachfeature is,sothat youknow whattasks are most critical. Then,if youfindyou’re runningoutresourcesora facinga tightdeadline,youcancut the leastcritical tasksand features. Keeptrackof yourtasks ina spreadsheetorothertracking tool. You can findmore informationandasample trackingsheetat http://bit.ly/1Nj8BJQ. 6. Keeptrack of lessonslearnedas you developyourgame. Each time youfix a bugor solve a problem,make note of whatyoudid. Thenif the issue popsupagain,you’ll know how tofix it, but hopefullyyouwon’tevenmake the same mistake again! 7. Promote your game before the release. Share developmentprogressandnews,online andin progress. Before the release,youcanuse the publicitytogarnerfeedbackandimprove your game basedon suggestions. Once the game isavailable,you’ll have abuilt-inaudience readyto play!
  2. 2. 8. Be flexible. Plansandideaswillchange,andmost software developmentprojectsdon’tgoas originallyplanned. Some featuresmightnotworkas well asplanned,oryoumightrunshort on time andneedto scrap a fewitems. 9. Release a free versionof the game,if it’sfor mobile. Androidusersinparticularare lesslikely to pay forgamesupfront,unlessthe game isfroma well-knownpublisher. iPhone users supposedlyare more willingtopay,however. ConsiderusingAmazon’sUnderground service, whichallowsuserstoplaygamesforfree,andpays developersforeachminute played. 10. Avoid burnout. Game devis a toughprocess;don’tletit wearyoudown! Take breaks wheneveryouneedto,andstepaway fromproblemsfora little while. Askforhelpwhenyou needit. Most software toolsandlanguages have atleastsome documentationandcommunity support. Anddon’tbe tooself-critical! It’sstressfulanddemotivating. Burnoutisa topreason whymany developersneverfinishtheirfirstgame. Contact and More Information We hope these tipshave been helpful! If youwantmore information,we have amore in-depth presentationavailable at http://bit.ly/ReleaseAGame. You can alsovisitour website atcloudyheavengames.com, andfollowusonTwitter @CloudyHeavenGms. If you have any questionsorfeedback,pleaseemailusat contact@cloudyheavengames.com Play Our Games!! To findoutmore aboutour games,getupdates,andplaydemos,visitourIndie DBpage at http://www.indiedb.com/company/cloudy-heaven-games.

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