The night before last, I made another little animation for the Scared Donkey Mine Game using things I’m learning about animation and game development. Then, using Adobe Spark, I made a quick funny video of it for the Scared Donkey Mine Money Game GoFundMe campaign yesterday and posted it just about the time the Oscars were starting.
I also wrote out the scenes that will be needed for the game so I can start making some of them as examples and to use as backgrounds for animation sequences to show off the characters and game play. The quick video thing with Granny D and the donkey is found here –
Today, besides the products I made over on zazzle, and the post to my other blog about ending writers’ block and creative block, and doing social media stuff, I’m also working on making some more animated sequences with Granny D and No Help Hannah for me to get better at it. Obviously, I’m barely getting started with learning it and there is a lot to learn about it. Working from online tutorials and videos is great but it takes some getting used to.
By the way, the music I used in the video clip of Granny D is one I created on Soundtrap. I’ve been using my own music for these video animations and making other music over there. I love it – there are about 120 pieces I’ve created in music over there so far and this week, they were downloaded to my computer so we can put them into the game and other video projects we’re doing (and that I’m doing).
And, the campaign on GoFundMe to get the money to make The Scared Donkey Mine Money Game into a video game is found here –
I had put together a bunch of notes on post-its in my notebook about ideas to take a board game that I made, called The Scared Donkey Mine Money Game from a board game to a video game. It looked like it would make a great video or online game, so I made a GoFundMe page and campaign to raise money to do it, (link above will take you to it).
My second effort at making an animation – a gif – of Granny D for the game –
Granny D from the Scared Donkey Mine Money Game by CricketDiane 2018 – this is a second attempt, the first was in black and white without a background.
Then I made an adobe spark video using it to tell about the game – there is another one using a puppet for Granny D to promote the GoFundMe campaign that I made with Adobe Spark too. It is one the campaign page or the update page. I’ve been sharing it.
Here is the one I made last night to promote the game development fundraising efforts –
And, of course – there were lots of things about doing that which I obviously don’t know about game development and this blog post is a start of my sharing that journey showing the things I’ve been wandering through lately to understand it and learn about making online and video games.
One of the first places I went after making some google searches and honing in on the right questions, was this site which lists open source game development platforms. Then I opened each of them and took some time trying to understand the differences to figure out which ones I might be able to learn without a full range of abilities in coding.
Eight Top-of-the-Line Open Source Game Development Tools
Open source provides interoperability, high quality and good security in game development. Little wonder then that open source platforms are already being used for quite a few successful and complex games.
I could list all these game development platforms here in a quick itemized bullet list, but it would be better, if you are interested – to go over to this site and read about each one the way the author has presented them. It is perfect and makes it easy to see all of them before going over to the platforms and seeing their landing pages.
From various google searches I did, one of the important things I wanted to know is, where to find game developers talking back and forth within their community about the difficulties and aspects for game development.
And, I found this – which is a subreddit community involved with game development. Lots of great blogs and information is listed here and just about every problem that can be encountered with developing a video or online game plus some of it explains what they did to go around that, fix it, do it anyway, figure it out or find another way to do the same thing, etc. – very nifty. It is also a great place to learn about how game developers approach things in game design and the words they use among the community to talk about aspects of building the games, too.
This article had all kinds of amazing insight into the developing of a game for me to understand it so much better. I repeated from his list, the number 5 item because it is when I saw it, that I knew something that I didn’t know that I didn’t know.
There, that was it – anyone making anything, including me – suffers through the starting points of not knowing what all are the unknowns. And because of this article – I went and looked up GDD or in this case, not Goddanged Design Doofer, but Game Development Document. Then I did a google image search for GDD templates that yielded a number of them to use as a reference point and start writing the one for my game to be a video game.
What NOT to do when starting as an indie game developer
Do not forget to make a GDD or write your ideas down somehow.
So far, I have a multi-page notebook that covers about thirty pages of post-it notes on computer paper with ideas for making the Scared Donkey Mine Money Game into a video game along with about ten more written pages of the Game Development document (still hand-written but have downloaded a template to put it into). I’ve made the GoFundMe campaign to raise $90,000 of the about $3 million it would take to hire developers and coders then I would probably have to get some more to market the game once it is completed.
And, I’ve learned about game development a little, and here are some more of the resources I’ve gained in that –
While reporting for my recently released book about how games are made, I asked a ton of developers how they calculate their budgets. A few of the bigger companies wouldn’t get into specific numbers—like I said, notoriously secretive—but all of the studios that did answer offered the same magical number: $10,000. Specifically, $10,000 per person per month.
Be careful about the info found on the link above that appears after the list of costs, because it distributes numbers throughout the article from several different years including 2002, when the game development systems, complexities and costs generally were different with 2008 numbers and 2012 costs and today is 2018.
Which is an overview of the European patent system info for inventors, coders, innovators, etc. and noticed a part that is especially helpful about non-disclosure agreements, so the game can be shown to potential backers and publishers.
2D + 3D open source game development platform for indies
Brand New Graphic Renderer: The Cocos2d-x renderer is optimized for 2D graphics with OpenGL. It supports skeletal animation, sprite sheet animation, coordinate systems, effects, multi-resolution devices, textures, transitions, tile maps, and particles. It adopts a RenderQueue design.
Although city-building games typically use 2D images only, they feature thousands of characters, objects and scenes.
Every character should be animated – even if these animations will be limited to moving along 8 preset trajectories, clapping hands in a theatre and raising glasses in a bar. Multiply each character by 30 animations, 10 angles and 10 frames.
Also, you should breathe life into buildings and playing fields in order to illustrate construction, demolition and upgrade processes. Don’t forget about still imagery comprising icons and game admin UIs. Now you see where the overwhelming amount of graphic content comes from.
All in all, the creation of high-quality visuals takes up to 70% of the entire game dev time and costs about $ 250-300 thousand.
There is a lot of good information in this blog post and it has a great explanation to overview how the process of game development uses various things to help make the user experience better like optimization and the fact that currently, monthly revenue (as of 2017) for the SimCity game developed in 1989 is over $2 million dollars a month.
Aside from these resources, I’ve been looking at tutorials in game development specific to the Godot platform that I chose, although I’ve actually downloaded and intend to try out three of them, Godot, Panda3D and GDevelop.
Additionally, it’s relatively painless to distribute your app across a huge number of platforms. It’s exciting that in the past few years, developing games using HTML5, the technology behind the web, has become a reality.
The canvas element was introduced with HTML5 and provides an API for rendering on the web. The API is simple, but if you’ve never done graphics work before it might take some getting used to. It has great cross-browser support at this point, and it makes the web a viable platform for games.
by William Malone
This tutorial will describe how HTML5 sprite animations work. We will go step by step through the process of creating a sprite animation. At the end of the this article we will use the animation we created in a simple HTML5 game.