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Author Topic: Starting Your Project - READ THIS  (Read 3473 times)

Prometheus2012

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Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« on: Nov 04, 15, 07:36:55 AM »

Hey guys. Starting up any video game project can be a case of "where do i begin" It can be really daunting and sometimes scary. But all of the information is out there. You are not alone in your journey as many many others have been in the position where you are. This little helpful tips package will help to guide you in your first strides within the video game development scene.

1 - Planning:

Every good and solid game project starts with planning. You will need to write down basically EVERY idea and possible piece of detail for your game as humanly possible. This includes but is not limited to

>System Write ups
>Game Design Document (most important, basically your design bible)
>Mind maps

2 - Organisation and management:

Organising and managing your project is also extremely important. No matter how good an idea you think you have, if your team is not well organised you will fall apart at the first hurdle. You should have in place a file management system such as

>Dropbox
>Google Drive/Docs

Also you should have a very solid and tested means of organising your tasks, waypoints and milestones. Our team personally use a system called OnlyOffice. This website costs a little and there are cheaper, more expensive or free alternatives out there, but at the end of the day they should all do the same thing. Giving you the ability to marshal your team onto one task management system and assign any relevant tasks to whoever it may concern. - https://www.onlyoffice.com/

3 - Helpful Websites:

There is an extreme plethora of helpful websites. Finding them is pretty easy but ill post them here. These sites will help you as an indie to gather information, plan, design, build your teams and beyond.

The most important one ive found is - http://www.pixelprospector.com/

Then you have - http://www.tigsource.com/

And - http://www.indiedb.com/

4 - Social Media:

I can not stress how important this part is. You may be able to create the best looking and most enjoyable game to play, but if noone knows about your game, you will never get anyone to play it. Ive seen most HE groups simply leave this until the last minute and it is not healthy. You need to get eyes on your project as soon as possible, even if its just a concept image or two and some writeups about what your game is about.

>Website
>Facebook
>Youtube
>Twitter

Also, many magazine style video game websites have forums that you can put up a post about your game. Here is a small list of these that you should post on. Some are more active than others, but you should post on all of these. It will get you views and members joining your website when it is up.

http://forums.indiegamemag.com/forumdisplay.php/75-Tell-Us-About-Your-Indie-Game!#axzz3qWoZTNDE
http://www.indiedb.com/forum/board/pimpage-posing
http://forum.gamebreaker.tv/index.php?forums/off-topic-discussion.258/
http://forums.tigsource.com/index.php?board=27.0
http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?21-For-The-Promotion-Of-PC-Game-Making-Projects-And-Things-Like-That
http://www.mmobomb.com/forum/free-mmorpg/
http://gamejolt.com/community/forums/gaming/3
http://www.onrpg.com/boards/forums/6-Shameless-Promotion
http://www.video-game-forums.com/forum127/
http://www.neoseeker.com/forums/54/

5 - Publicity:

When you feel ready to give it the old college try and start your kickstarter campaign, depending on your project scale and how much funding you want to achieve, you will need to have at least the following up and running

>1000+ Facebook and other social media site followers
>1000+ Website signups with active forums
>Have your game on as many websites as possible
> Ideally having a couple of half decent youtube or twitter video game bloggers on your side

Also have a PR pack ready made that you can mass email to the editors of as many of these sites as possible. I have compiled a short list of these contacts below

http://www.eurogamer.net/ - contact@eurogamer.net
http://www.rpgamer.com/ - indiesubs@rpgamer.com
http://www.thunderboltgames.com/ - webmaster@thunderboltgames.com
http://www.honestgamers.com/ - http://www.honestgamers.com/contact.html
http://www.gamerevolution.com/ - pr@gamerevolution.com
http://gamesareevil.com/ - pete@gamesareevil.com            
http://www.snackbar-games.com/ - editors@snackbar-games.com            
http://www.nowgamer.com/ - enquiries@imagine-publishing.co.uk
http://www.hookedgamers.com/   http://www.hookedgamers.com/contact/            
http://www.dailyjoypad.co.uk/ - http://www.dailyjoypad.co.uk/?page_id=23869            
http://www.nextgenplayer.com/ - inquiries@nextgenplayer.com            
http://gameplasma.com/ - http://gameplasma.com/contact/            
http://www.hardwareheaven.com/ - info@heavenmedia.com            
http://www.atomicgamer.com/ - heroes@atomicgamer.com            
http://www.gamefreaks365.com/ - kyle.bell@gamefreaks365.com            
http://www.gamesnation.it/ - comunicati@gamesnation.it            
http://worthplaying.com/news/ - news@worthplaying.com            
http://www.gamingexcellence.com/ - ssnider@gamingexcellence.com            
http://www.ztgd.com/ - press@ztgamedomain.com            
http://www.gamesxtreme.com - contact@gamesxtreme.com            
http://www.gamesabyss.com - editors@gamesabyss.com            
http://gamerlimit.com - robert.hunter@gamerlimit.com            
www.games4all.it - redazione@games4all.it            
http://www.pcgamer.com/ - letters@pcgamer.com            
http://www.gameplayer.it - valeriofusco@gameplayer.it            
http://www.gamesource.it - info@gamesource.it            
http://uk.gamespot.com - pr@gamespot.co.uk            
http://www.videogamer.com - news@videogamer.com            
http://www.totalvideogames.com - chrisl@totalvideogames.com            
http://www.destructoid.com - tips@destructoid.com            
http://www.extremegamer.ca - info@extremegamer.ca            
http://www.pcgames.de - redaktion@pcgames.de            
http://gameplayer.se - info@gameplayer.se            
http://www.gamecell.co.uk/ - pr@gamecell.co.uk            
http://www.hardcoregamer.com - CONTACT@HARDCOREGAMER.COM         
         
« Last Edit: Nov 04, 15, 10:05:57 AM by Prometheus2012 »
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Thazager

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #1 on: Nov 04, 15, 12:06:50 PM »

A few things to add.

An idea is but a few pages long, generally 10-20 pages.
A design doc is a little bigger with much more details, about 50 pages.

A full game design doc shows all the details, all the art (ideas), all the layouts for GUIs, all the functions of what should happen when the player interacts with it, and all possible things that can go in the game, plus the game world, the break up of sections of the world, the details of rooms within the world, things the player can interact with, all the NPC, all the mobs, all the moving objects, all the sounds, the music, everything that would go into Your World.

It is generally about 500+ pages. I have worked with 1 of these when we made a game for Electronic Arts (their design specs). And this was a simple single player game.
« Last Edit: Nov 04, 15, 12:14:19 PM by Thazager »
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Prometheus2012

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #2 on: Nov 04, 15, 12:38:07 PM »

The size of the GDD really depends on a game, but it really should detail as much as possible in tiny detail. As Thazager said, they range from 25-500 pages.

nocake

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #3 on: Nov 04, 15, 01:01:13 PM »

My tidbit for anyone starting a project or considering this engine.

Quote
If you want a one stop shop for an online collaborative gaming platform that can support MMO like environments (as well as any other online multiplayer environment) then this is your solution.

I don't have to worry about setting up and hosting a server, they do it for you.

I don't have to worry about "builds" or making sure everyone is synced, they handle that for you.

I don't have to worry about "compiling", scripts are tested on the fly before committing, returned with clear errors.

This really is a turn key solution to setting up an online multiplayer game that can scale from extremely instanced worlds to massive seamless worlds.

While the seating plan is a little weird it still beats having to host your own server.


My one note to IF (owners of HeroEngine)
Quote
Restructure your payment plan. The basic plan should offer at least 5 slots.

Putting a price point between being able to see the collaborative abilities is insanity.

Might also want to note that the price per month is cheaper than basic shared web hosting plans ha.

AWW_boss

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #4 on: Nov 04, 15, 01:27:48 PM »

From my experience the only thing you need is:

1. start coding ;)
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Prometheus2012

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #5 on: Nov 05, 15, 05:22:23 AM »

From my experience the only thing you need is:

1. start coding ;)

Oh god....

Thazager

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #6 on: Nov 21, 15, 12:01:11 PM »

From my experience the only thing you need is:

1. start coding ;)
This is how you play around with things, seeing what they can do. See if the engine is able to do some of the things your were wanting in your game. Though for a complete game, designs are needed.
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ronbon

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 19, 05:44:23 PM »

So I have been doing some research to see if HeroEngine has made any improvements since I first used it, many years ago when it was free, with a 30% take of your business. Then they wanted to charge 100 a year, plus the 30%. Which is in no way a good deal, so I left. I now use Unity and wrote my own server/client. But I wanted to come back and see if you guys made improvements, think about using you again, but not at the rate you ask, that is a rip off and all who know business, knows I am correct. But doesn't matter cause it looks to me as though this is in a stand still. What improvements have been made? Is there a better UI system? from what I see it is still the same annoying UI system as it was years ago. Does it have better support for importing models? Nope, looks to be the same there as well. Dose it have a better system for doing your own scripts? Nope, that looks to be the same as well. Are there any new tutorials? Nope, all tutorials are 7-8 years old, even on youtube. So what have you guys been doing? What REAL improvements have been made? Are there complete new tutorials, features that you guys have not mentioned? These are things that need answered before Sefron Games even thinks about Hero again. So far it looks as if it is still the rip off it use to be. Can anyone answer these questions and point me to the direction of the info to show me there is worth while improvements made?
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HE-SARRENE

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 19, 10:41:08 AM »

Hello Ronbon,
    Thanks for your interest again and taking a look at the front side of HeroEngine. I will let users report what they see, and those on current live can report some of the changes and improvements we have made, as well as what they see coming ahead.

    When i talk to those interested in HeroEngine i try to make sure what type of project they want to make or learn. If it is a single player or simple multi player game or project, I tend to refer them to another engine, if it is a persistent world for a large scale multi player or an MMO, I will explain more about HeroEngine and what it has to offer then let them ask questions and make the choice they wish.

I believe in the right tool for the right job. :)

Regarding Pricing:
    For the pricing, you had mentioned you use Unity in several of your projects. Do note that $99 a year for two seats/developers (or any subscription package) includes the following:
  • Full hosting and sever costs
  • Unlimited storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Real time collaboration (not in any other engine)
  • Customized Repository (Clint side customized FTP) with no setup on users end
  • Built in art-pipeline (which you can customize)
  • SpeedTree tools for all seats
  • Granny3d
  • Granny Animation
  • and much more

For the revenue once your game starts making money covers the following:
  • Pesonalized assistance and support for your games servers*
  • Full Hosting costs on Elastic game servers (**up to your 30% revenue costs)
  • Unlimited storage
  • Worry Free bandwidth and traffic costs
  • Custom built Client tools including Client builds (game exe)
  • Custom support for when going into Alpha, Beta and Live
  • Option to move to Binary or Source (at lower or no royalty costs)
  • Option to buy out royalties
* Once you move to Beta, your game will be exported to a personalized server. Where you will have your Dev server, Test/Staging server and Live server(s).
**We do have a 90 day grace period to help you and us bring down costs - most of the time this turns out to be fairly simple to fix. So we do offer that full support for any games that are entering into beta throughout their post launch process as well.


Comparisons:
I am not sure if you can pay for just servers or even a single Speedtree subscription at this cost. I have looked at and do watch the subscription prices for Unity, and when you go beyond the Personal with many limitations, including users and revenue limitations, the first starts at $25 a month ($300 a year) per seat/developer.

I am not sure if they offer any of the above yet or not. I know you can opt in for team tools at a cost including storage and limited git/p4/svn integration at a cost.

We also provide support and assistance on top of the above from live support in Discord to personalized support.

Always Open to Ideas:
I am always welcome in ways we can improve our services and how we can best fit the communities needs. This is a discussion we actually do have often from both Hero clients and non Hero clients in discord. I have gotten a lot of good ideas from the community for the up coming HE3.

So i ask you;
 What can we do to make the pricing better in your mind?

Best regards,
Sarrene'
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morfiction

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Re: Starting Your Project - READ THIS
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 19, 03:52:23 PM »

Sarr makes a good point. The engine had a free promotional aspect many years ago. And one could argue why pay for something later on when you just expect it to be free forever?

But how are the makers of Hero Engine making money off of 100 per two seats for a year? How even? It's not for the uninitiated. It isn't a game. It is a tool for making games.

To play an MMO you pay out $15 a month and at 12 months for a year you're talking $180. This is assuming there's just one vanilla client everyone uses at once. But if we considered the price for TWO people to use the game? That's an additional $180. 

This concept is great. A monthly sub for the engine wouldn't make sense because it takes a person a lot longer than just a month to learn the many aspects of the engine.

Not pointing fingers, but in a business stance, Idea Fabrik must be losing cash on the deal. So it makes sense they have a relationship with Autodesk for their licensing deal for the softwares of "3DS Max" and "Maya." IF every user of HE also subscribed to Autodesk, then both companies have a fine symbiotic relationship.