Motivational tale for indie game developers

My story begins, as in "Alice in Wonderland" - from a dream. I had a dream in which I play a new mobile game - unusual, with unstressed mechanics. The dream was bright and pleasant. When I woke up, I immediately rushed for a pencil and paper, and still not really recovering, being impressed by what I saw, I began to draw.

“- And what are these sounds over there?” - asked Alice, nodding at a very secluded thicket of some pretty vegetation at the edge of the garden.
“And these are miracles,” the Cheshire Cat indifferently explained.
“And ... And what are they doing there?” Asked the girl, inevitably blushing.
“As expected,” the cat yawned. “It happens ...”

Yes, don’t grin! This is not a red word - so it was! A witness to this is my daughter Katya, to whom I immediately told my dream. She liked the idea, and I immediately started to work. Of course, had breakfast first.

Well, well, for the harsh programmers and game designers who do not believe in fairy tales, I’ll tell you a little background so that it is more understandable and believable. In fact, there was a long way to my dream.

“Either the well was really very deep, or Alice flew very slowly.”

My name is Vitaliy. I am a programmer, artist, game designer. Together with his friend, he released his first game, as a student, back in 1998 under the ZX-Spectrum - the text adventyury “Mirror”. But then all the creativity was on order: endless flash sites, flash games, application programs. Of course, it’s interesting, and he put his soul, but not his own.

Moral one: If you are not building your dream, someone will definitely hire you to build your own (hackneyed demotivator, isn't it).

In the past, 2014, the year I decided to leave "for free bread." He quit his permanent job, made a demo of the game, and in the spring brought it to DevGamm Moscow'2014. Inspired, spent the whole summer delving into the study of Unity, making a working demo version. All this for personal savings.

The result is a technical demo of the game "Warriors". Genre: Wall to Wall. The closest analogue in mechanics is CastleStorm. By the way, mysticism could not be avoided either: I thought up the peculiarities of my game in the autumn of 2013, and literally a month later I released CastleStorm, in which at least half of my ideas were implemented. Since then, I unconditionally believe in the theory of a single information field.

Autumn has come, and with it the time for disappointment. How many I did not try to find a sponsor for the game - all to no avail. I analyzed a lot, read useful articles (including on Habré). I came to the conclusion that it is necessary to simplify the project: do not take on very complex mechanics, soberly assess your capabilities and do what can be realized with small forces. The summer project was shelved and started a new, simpler one. But the money ran out - I had to look for a permanent job again.

Moral two: Never! Again, never give up on the road to your dream!

I will not go into the details of further ordeals. I can only say that in the winter obstacles again arose in the path of achieving the goals set, and again I changed the project to an even simpler one. But on the other hand, I enlisted the support of two faithful comrades: one wrote music, the other was engaged in website and copywriting. Together we already had the idea of ​​a future game.

Spring passed, and on June 1, on the eve of my birthday, I woke up and immediately rushed for a pencil and paper.

That's how it happened, yes.

In fact, I am a very skeptical person, and I do not believe in any mysticism, including dreams, but this situation seemed really funny to me, and I decided to bring it to the end. Moreover, the dreaming idea was just ridiculously simple. And once again I postponed the current project and took up a new one.

“- Where to start, Your Majesty? - he asked.
“Start from the beginning,” the King answered importantly, “continue until you reach the end.” When you get there, stop it! ”

Here is what I wrote when I woke up: “Finish the drawing in closed cells, based on the already open parts according to the principle of symmetry (axial, radial).”

The first thing I did was make sure that the idea was original. Yes, of course, the mechanics of the game are pictures of child development tests. How they got into my dream - I can’t imagine! Our consciousness sometimes gives us surprises: I had never thought of anything like this before. I did not find a single game with similar mechanics. Moreover, I really did not even find scans of such pictures - just a few pieces. Well, if original, then you have to do it!

Here it is appropriate to make a digression. I am writing this article in order to support people who do not see themselves without a game maiden, but who are currently in a creative crisis or doubt. I do not approve of the idea of ​​producing games just for the money. There are many other activities for money. I believe that games are, first of all, a manifestation of creativity, moreover, creativity of many-sided and complex. Therefore, I consider the question of the originality of the idea to be very important.

Unity was chosen as the development platform, because the last two years I wrote on it. Yes, and with cross-platform questions were dropped. For one month (June), he wrote and debugged the game engine, came up with an interface design, sorting through several options. The engine of the game provides for playing cards from 2x2 cells to 5x5 cells. I started making levels of different sizes, but it soon became clear that playing cards with a lot of cells on phones was simply impossible - my hands get tired. Therefore, for starters, I stopped only at small ones - 2x2 cells.

The entire second month (July) spent on the production of four hundred and ninety levels. To automate the process, a level editor was written in AIR. The drawings were invented by the whole team: both the musician and daughter were involved in the process. It turns out that it’s not such a simple matter - to come up with so many tasks!

The first two weeks of August are the latest edits of the game and publication in the playmarket. As usual, before the very last step there were a million reasons why it was "necessary" to postpone the publication of the project: either the site is unfinished, then the video is not there, then another 999,998 reasons. But I said to myself: “Enough! It’s time to put an end to it! ”, And with a firm hand pressed“ Submit for publication ”. Everything else - after collecting feedback and with updates.


Total - 2.5 months of development. In my free time from my main job. During this period there were many false paths, avoiding which, it would be possible to reduce the production time to probably one month. But, apparently, these paths had to be passed. Among them: doubts about the correctness of the chosen development platform, an attempt to switch from Unity to AS3 (ended up losing the AS3 tests and returning to Unity); the creation of large levels (3x3, 4x4), which were not effective on phones; a huge number of "super" ideas, implementing which we would get the perfect game, and so on.

Moral three: Do not be inactive, do not dream for nothing, do not be distracted by trifles. Work, work and work again to achieve your goal.

That, in principle, is all that I wanted to tell you.

“Why are some so fond of seeking morality everywhere?”

In my opus, I formulated three common truths. But it was they who helped me finish the project that I had been going to for so long. At one time, in order to maintain morale, when faith in my strength and hope of graduation faded away, I read many motivating articles and started working again. And now I decided to contribute to help those who are still on the way.

It is still too early to talk about any success of the game - publication in the playmarket is only 2 days. But there is already pride in the finished product - and this is not enough. And also the pride of friends, and most importantly - the daughter. That will be popular when he goes to school!

Such is the way of the game: from trial and error, through sleep to a clear statement of the goal and implementation.

Also popular now: