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What do you wish you knew?

08-31-2011, 12:08 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 2
What do you wish you knew?

I think the title says it all. I have a background in making games in a large studio setting and have begun the process of making one on my own. There is a huge amount of information here I am going through and taking tons of notes on. It occurred to me to maybe supplement some of what I find with the direct question to the community.

Now that you have made your product what do you wish you knew?

Thanks for your time
08-31-2011, 12:21 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 463
Whether it'd be a mega hit before you even start working on it LOL.

Maybe in the unicorn world?

Twitter: @PeterBabiy
Site: www.strappedtoameteor.com
Games: Go Go Giraffe | DEO | Mr. Dreamer

08-31-2011, 01:45 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 17
I wish I had started focusing on a marketing strategy before we released our first game. Currently I'm playing catch up trying to become active in forum groups, re-learning twitter, and posting videos and emailing review sites.

However, at the same time, I was very busy making art and levels for the game. Finding a balance would have been nice.
09-01-2011, 12:23 PM
Joined: Jul 2010
Location: London, UK
Posts: 16
I too have come from large studio background and the thing I underestimated was scoping the game. Our first game ran wild and the scope grew to large and our latest efforts ran over time by 30% (it's nearly done, honest!).

It's easy to underestimate what all the other people in your old office did all day!
09-02-2011, 04:49 PM
Whats your background? art? programming? design?

very few people are good enough at all 3 to make a great game. You'll probably need some help. dealing with contract work needs to be handled with care and dealing with partners requires even more attention. My 2 cents.
09-06-2011, 02:44 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 2
ImStrapped - Heh, fair enough

Corvidology - Great points. I am reading a lot about all of that now and it is an area I have a lot to learn about.

executionunit - Yeah I am sure I have no clue how much actual work something like this will really take.

Kraspy - My day job is art for games. I also have a fairly technical background with scripting for 3d tools and what not. I have no design experience at all and no real programming. I have access to a lot of people here at work that I can talk to. I have not started down any contracting road yet but it is something that will eventually have to happen for the sound at the very least.

Thanks for the replies so far and any more insight would be great. I just got the final parts for my new home system I am going to be developing on. Very excited right now. I wonder how long it will last.
09-06-2011, 05:44 PM
Like exec I'd say I wish I would have been more careful with the scope. The game is almost the size of a DS game right now, and instead of 3 months we spent 9 months on it.
On the other hand it's coming great and I'm very proud... we'll see if it's successful at release.

Something I'm grateful that I had, coming from a big publisher as well, is a big network. All my team is very experienced and they are people I met during my days with a big publisher. Without the network, I wouldn't have the game.

Something I still wish I'd know is wether it's better to go freemium or priced. Imagine you have a game with a design that can stand both, but the game is seriously high quality. Are you ready to make it free? Can it really be more profitable? And it's not about getting rich, it's about surviving as a company.

Something else I'd wish to anticipate is the assets resolution and prod pipeline. If we had done all our assets in HD (not iPhone HD, but TV HD like 1080p), and also made the game with a base in C++ and not objective C, the ports would be much easier. But again, would we be there if we had started with a C++ game? Having one platform for the preprod makes everything simpler, so I guess we have better quality thanks to that.

Also, something I wish I had known earlier: we started with a game without a solo mode (only local multiplayer). That was stupid on iPhone. I can't even remember how come I started with that. Again, the good side is that with a multiplayer mode, you focus on the controls and that's what matters. And you have your AI design just by looking at other players.
09-06-2011, 10:35 PM
Joined: Mar 2011
Posts: 230
I want to know Apple's secrets!
09-07-2011, 01:23 PM
I wish I knew that the many BS talking idiots, who "worked" for me until now, will only make big promises and deliver nothing before they disappear.

This is the worst thing as an employer. Finding the right people to work with.

What I learned in the almost 3 years of developing iPhone games is, that I will now only pay for a finished work for somebody, who could deliver in a previously fixed timeframe.

No more hourly payment, just project based. X ammount of money for X ammount of work in X ammount of time. Period.

Last edited by Therealtrebitsch; 09-07-2011 at 01:26 PM.
09-08-2011, 12:27 AM
I wish I knew that if you're making a paid app, you get your banking info as well as contract info and tax info ready to roll before your app is released. : ) Cause your app is not going to be released even if it's approved before all those ducks are in line.

Live and learn. It's ok, I learned. : ) It wasn't Apple's fault that I didn't know, it was mine because I didn't take the time to read everything --too happy just to have gotten through the submission process---and I love them.

Last edited by Catacomber; 09-08-2011 at 12:32 AM.