When it comes to newbies and game development, several myths need to be debunked and several realities that needs to be highlighted. Most of the time game development is less about complex coding and more about a fundamental understanding of the development process and having a knack for understanding the rules of the game.
There are people like Giannis Marinakis from Greece, an expert of Java and Unity game development who regularly livestreams his MOBA game development process. The more you learn from experts like him, who have gone through the process, the faster you can become a quality developer.
Now the learning curve for game development is different for everybody, but always, some things need to be taken care of in a systematic manner. If newbies don’t keep these things in mind, their process might hit early snags.
It may seem like universal knowledge to you, but you would be surprised how many people tend to forget or ignore these things despite their long hours of working in the field.
So without further ado, here are the best tips in game development for newbies:
Think Big, Start Small
When it comes to game development, newbies just can’t wait to start working on games similar to Quake and Starcraft. But with all due respect to your future ambitions, it is always better to start small and then progress further based on your experience.
Start your development work with a simple game like Tetris, as it is best for newbies especially if you have started using a new tool. The classical game has all the ingredients for a successful game (is it any wonder it is so successful?); a game loop which only ends with the user quitting; the ability to make it more attractive using visual features and animations; and difficulty levels that are straightforward, yet teach a lot to the developer. So, always try and start with a game like Tetris, it is doable and offers a thorough learning experience.
Extensively play your own games
Games have to be interesting in order to succeed, more so than high-end graphics and storylines. If you can’t even develop an interest in your own games, chances are, no one ever will.
So, play them extensively, even the simpler ones like Tetris and Breakout, and try to find ways to make them more exciting and addictive. Once you are satisfied with their development, convince other people, from children to grandparents, to play your games and watch their reactions.
If they seem to be interested in your games, great. If they seem less interested and are complaining, you will know the games need improvement. Find out from them which areas frustrate them, and make the necessary adjustments.
Follow other game developers
Extensive game development has resulted in a world bursting with game developers. As a result, the market is quite tough to make a mark on. Now that is not exactly a bad thing, as you can communicate with a large number of professionals and peers who can help you become a successful game developer.
You can follow some of the best livestreams of famous developers who showcase their development work on Livecoding.tv. There you will also find plenty of saved videos of these livestreams that can help you in your quest.
Follow the News
As in any industry, the focus of game development depends on current trends. A particular type of game may be well-liked in the market during a current timeframe, but not so much later on. Now you don’t need to religiously follow the trends if you think your idea is different and worth pursuing, but you need to be mindful of them.
A number of platforms exist that will help you keep up with the trends and news on game development. They include Gamasutra and Board Game Geek. If you like it in a magazine format, Edge magazine could be best for you. Also, you can follow popular developers on livecoding.tv and get their updates as well.
Play similar games and critically review them
Now games like Subway Surfers and Candy Crush weren’t exactly new concepts. It took a serious amount of cool development work that transformed these universal game concepts into multi-million-dollar revenue games. This includes cute sound, visuals, easy-on-the-eye interface, and funky characters.
So even the simplest of games like Tetris can become similarly famous, which it is, if you design it in a perfect manner, and for that you need to look at similarly styled famous games.
Try to critically see what makes them so great and try to incorporate that into your own game. It will make things interesting.
Play, test, and code side-by-side
When you are able to real-time multitask on your game, you will begin to know what it is like to be a pro game developer.
If you have an inspiration for a particular aspect of your game, you should implement it immediately and test it afterwards. The slower this part gets, the more difficult it will be for you to be dynamic in your approach.
Try to innovate as much as possible
Game development is nothing without raw innovation skills. So never be afraid to experiment with your crazy ideas and incorporate them into your games. Don’t always try and follow the book here as the laws of physics and even human cognition itself doesn’t matter in a gaming environment, as long as it is interesting for the players.
Never stop learning
In game development, you can never become an all-conquering expert without adopting a forever learning attitude. We have seen how platforms and even gaming languages go out of fashion in a matter of years.
Developers just cannot take the risk of slowing down in their learning curve. So after following the news, try and implement the new trends in your game. It will give an up-to-date outlook to your game.
Make it a regular thing
Game development can never really take off without diligent work, week in and week out. It should be second nature to you to play and work on your games with every chance you get.
If it isn’t getting interesting, make it worthwhile by injecting enthusiasm and out-of-the-box approach. If you can’t be self-motivated to work on your own game regularly, you probably will never have a single hit your entire life.
Make a timeline for release on the App Store
If you have a really good idea for a game, make a timeline of its development and release on the store. Make sure to keep it realistically possible and then get to work accordingly.
If you follow the milestones, you will understand the role quality-planning plays in game development. It will also give you a sense of direction and motivate you to finish on time. For all we know, if you don’t release it ontime, somebody else will come up with the idea and release it.
Game development is a competitive skill and newbies need to learn it comprehensively and step by step to become good developers. Now we have listed some of our favorite game development tips; we hope they really help you in your quest to become a really good developer. You can always skip these steps and start with basic Unity development tools, but you will be limited in your endeavor. Game development can be a powerful tool, and why not learn to use it fully and unleash your innovative side?
So, my young gaming acolytes, try and follow these tips, and may the odds forever be in your favor! Comment your game development experience below and keep following our livestreams!