Nothing will ever get done if you don't take the time to plan out your game and focus on one thing at a time. If you're in a situation where you want to make a game, then ask yourself what kind of game you want and start simple. I prefer drawing pictures to get me going. That way I can picture what the game should look like when it's done. And from there I tend to make outlines of features added to the game. Before you know it, I have a story of what the game will be about and some sketches on what kind of graphics it will have. With that in mind, I believe it's safe to say everyone an get that far with a project. But once you get started on the coding, people get side tracked. One thing I would like to throw out there is be careful reviewing other games in different genres of the one you're making. The imagery of me planning my game was a simple task that anyone can do, but something that will kill your game production is doing all that planning and maybe some of the coding, and then looking at another game and wanting to make a different game... And so you say, I'll put this game aside and work on this new game for a little while. That is the first step to killing a project. You'll end up going back to it and give up again every time a new idea pops into your head. Stick to your original plan. Focus on a game and don't let anything side track you until it is done.
Get involved in your game. Talk to people, show them what your game is going to be like. If you have friends at home or in school, discuss some ideas and share your little notes about the plans you've made. Get motivated! If you put a lot of time and effort into a game, you're going to feel good about it and want to complete it. And if you take your time with the project, you're going to get greater results. If your game is taking forever to make, don't give up. No one ever said you could make a good game in a week, or a month. Sometimes, time is what a game needs. Just think about how your game will look after all the time you put into it. It's definitely rewarding to take your time and make sure you do things right. Just because other game developers on this forum making dozens of updates a week and have hundreds or even thousands of views on their project topic, does not mean that you should give up because you're not getting the same results. If you look at those topics, you'll notice that they were created several months or years ago. Time is rewarding. Don't let impatience ruin your game.
I mentioned earlier that I advise not playing so many games outside your current game project, for they give you ideas that couldn't/shouldn't be implemented into your game which would lead you to starting a different project. But, I do advise you playing games similar to the ideal game you're looking to make. Use them as motivational goals in which they have features that you are looking forward to implementing into your game, or maybe they have a style in their graphics that you wish to pick up on. It's good to look at what has been done and from there you learn and go beyond what has been done through sheer inspiration.
Procrastination is something you want to avoid. If you don't know the word, become familiar with it because I guarantee that you experience it quite frequently. To procrastinate is to lay things off and think to yourself "oh, I'll do it later." With an attitude like that you'll never get anything done. You may experience this when you know that you have something that's difficult to do or just very time consuming and you just don't feel like doing it at that moment but convince yourself that you'll get around to it another day. That's a big mistake. If you like to take things small and do the easy things, that's ok. But, when it comes to the long and complex stuff, don't let it bother you. Just break it down into smaller pieces and take a stab at it one piece at a time. You'll thank yourself in the end because all those small pieces add up to something you thought you could never complete. Don't let a difficult task bring you down. Break the task down, and overcome the hardest parts of your projects with ease.
To get a boost on your next project, maybe you should consider making a routine. A routine is something that I don't see often when it comes to game developing. An idea that I've been thinking about is have a particular part of your game worked on a certain day of the week. Mondays- Storyline/Scenes/Effects, Tuesdays- player, Wednesdays- AI, Thursdays- Environment/scenery, Fridays- GUI, etc... If you switched things up you would not get bored so easily while making your game. I hate trying to code the ai for a week or draw sprites for a week at a time. I'd rather spread it out and do a little bit of everything. That way your game as a whole progresses rather than just one area. A game who suffers in graphics is a game that doesn't give enough attention to images where as a game that lacks a decent computer AI system neglects their AI code. Progress your project as a whole. Don't fail to work on everything. Your game will suffer.
All in all, good games don't just happen. If you're not getting things done, you need to think about what's making you side tracked. If it's the random new ideas springing into your head that's bringing your games to a halt then try to implement them into your game if they fit the genre. Innovation is nice but if it doesn't fit the game, don't make a new game. Just forget about the idea. If organization is your problem, then try writing things down and talk to people around you. Bored much? Play a game similar to what your game is destined to be like. Get some inspiration. And lastly, I suggest you follow a routine so your game progresses as a whole leaving no room for discouragement. That's all I have to say. Stick to your plans and follow them through if you want any success. That's just the way of life.
Edited by Glen, 23 April 2009 - 07:47 PM.