For game designers to excel in their field, they should see things from the perspective of a gamer. Because eventually, it is the gamer who decides whether the game is worth anything or not. So, playing games is important for game designers; whether you play klondike on online-solitaire.com or Call of Duty on your PlayStation, it counts. Play with the purpose to experience and take notes about what works. Here are some other useful tips if you plan to be a game developer.
1. Model and Improve Method
The Model and Improve method is a very simple process but it requires strenuous research. If you have an idea in mind about what kind of game you want to create, then find a game that is similar to it and research every aspect of that game. Note down which elements of the game are working, which are lagging, and what can be made better. Then, find ways to improve the game until it becomes a new game. Add or remove aspects of the existing game, change the location where the game is set, and make the characters more unique and you have an entirely new game.
2. Idea Journal
Along with the Model and Improve method, there are so many ways new ideas can be generated. Some of these methods include; theme-exploration, mind mapping, use of constraints, etc. you can go about an idea a hundred different ways, but one thing stays constant. Write down your ideas! Keep a journal! You can use a digital journal or a paper-based one, but it is with you at all times. Write down all ideas that circulate in your head, even when your brain dismisses them.
3. The Familiarity Factor
The most popular games are unique, yet familiar in a way, the games that are original and feel familiar to the gamers have high chances of success in the market. Many people are afraid of going out on a limb and trying something that feels estranged and incomprehensible. A game that requires minimal instructions works best. So, while designing a game, use similar mechanics and functionality as most popular games. Use your creativity in story, action, and graphics.
4. The Right Tools
Developing a game that looks professional and intriguing enough to attract gamers can only be made by selecting the right tools. But, everyone works differently. A tool that works for your colleague might not work for you. So, as a developer, you have to discover the tools that help you put your imagination into reality. One tip is to choose the tools based on your skill level. Do proper research before spending money. Do not dive headfirst into the expensive stuff if you are new.
5. Game Size Does Matter!
It is a common myth that the bigger the game is, the better. The too-big game size will slow down the performance of the game and reduce the overall gamer experience. Whenever you are in doubt, make things small but elaborate. A cool hack is to compare the sizes of your characters and sceneries to popular games to get an idea about your perfect size.