Harsh criticism immediately after release is the fate of many modern video games. Whether it's small but exciting online apps or global projects that run over a million dollars, they all frustrate one category or another. But most of the criticism today, unfortunately, is not objective. People who are far from the basics of creating computer games criticize what, even theoretically, cannot be presented otherwise than the developers did. We will try to correct this injustice today. So, let's begin.
Let's form the concept
The first step in creating any game is to define its concept. What will the project be about? What genre and topic will it relate to? What audience should you target? By answering these questions, you can set the direction of development for your creation, understand what goals you want and can (with due diligence) achieve. So, the focus on battles or competition guarantees an increased interest among gamers, for training or logic - the absence of serious competitors. The choice in favor of the world of fantasy or post-apocalypse will contribute to the comfort and quick adaptation of the players (since these universes are familiar to them), comics or anime - a narrower (but also more loyal) audience that will not run away when a similar project is released.
Let's define the possibilities
The next step in creating a gaming masterpiece is realizing your own capabilities. As a rule, at this stage, the developers determine with the maximum allowable project budget, choose the engine on which the development will be carried out, or select the most suitable programming language, and also evaluate the available resources (both technical and human). It is necessary to decide on all these nuances in advance. Otherwise, you may face a situation where, after developing, for example, a spectacular super-hit with an original eyeliner from a whole chain of quests, it turns out that there is no possibility to implement this brilliant idea within the framework of this project.
Variety of engines and platforms - there is something to think about
Calculate the mechanics
In-game mechanics are one of the most important parts of any project. While the graphic component is designed to attract the attention of players, to interest them in a new project, the task of the gameplay is to leave a mark in their hearts forever. Stardew Valley is a prime example of this - a farm simulator with pixel graphics, which from the first days of release topped the top sales on Steam. It is necessary to understand that attention should be paid to even the smallest details. For example, if the game has a class division, an obvious bias in favor of one or more factions is unacceptable, and the more opportunities the project provides the player (quests, pumping, puzzles, etc.), the longer he will not want to leave the game world. Moreover, not only the character himself needs to be worked out, but also all the objects surrounding him, such as: NPCs and enemies (artificial intelligence), decorations and objects (physics engine), levels and everything else.
Let's create a plot
If earlier the development of online and offline projects was approximately similar, now at this stage the first fundamental difference appears. Thinking over the plot of the game, it is necessary to be clearly aware of its time frame. While single player projects rarely take more than 1-2 months to complete, online multiplayer games tend to have no end. Therefore, the plot here should not have a logical conclusion, but should be presented with an open ending, which can be delayed weekly / monthly by adding new quests, items, skills. In single-player games, the ending is being worked out almost from the first days of work on the plot. At the same time, he should not leave open questions (unless, of course, you plan to release a sequel to the game) and some omissions, although it may be alternative (as in Silent Hill 2).
Let's create the appearance
Having thought over all the nuances of the project framework, you can proceed to its graphic component (interface, soundtrack, backgrounds, arts, special effects, animations, etc.). Particular attention should be paid here to the direction of the game. If it is assumed that updates for it will be released quite often (for example, once a week), it makes no sense to create art with detailed elaboration and animation, numbering several tens (or even hundreds) of movements. The simpler the characters are designed, the fewer jambs you will get when implementing them and the less effort you will spend on regular releases. In the case of rarely updated or offline projects, as a rule, the opposite is true. The more elaborate the virtual world and the effective movements / skills of the player, the more chances the game has to attract the attention of a wide audience.
Let's understand that work is just beginning
Do not think that the work on the game ends after its pre-release. On the contrary, from this point on, the developer acquires additional responsibilities. He must test his product, find and eradicate bugs in it, adequately advertise his creation and create a certain image in the minds of the players, start developing possible add-ons, DLC and localizations, think over a system of sales and player support.
As you can see, the job of making a game takes a lot of effort. Therefore, before you scold another release, think about whether it is really that bad, or whether you yourself endowed it with unrealizable features.