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Professionalism [game Design Article]


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#1 Glen

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 03:26 AM

If this is the first article you've seen me write, I'll say this. I've started to write articles to help developers in designing their games. They usually go over common topics and go more in-depth into the topics just to point out things that people tend to forget. If the article is too long for your liking, don't read it.

On to the topic: Professionalism.

You want respect from others the next time you submit one of your games to a website? The only way you'll get it is if you present yourself well. In time you're presentations will build up a good reputation for yourself and the feedback will come pouring in. Professionalism. What is it? It can be defined as a behaving professionally or as a professional would be expected to behave and deal with situations.

A professional should be a good role model and have an optimistic attitude. Talking to people who respond to your game in a negative way will not give you a good reputation. You want to have good communication skills and be clear about what you're presenting to everyone. When talking to others you should be knowledgeable about the topic and know what you're talking about. This is what draws the line between a pro and a person trying to look good.

You should have good organization. Make your work look neat and clean. This goes for advertising your game, helping others with your game, and even designing your game. When you submit your game to a website or a competition, you want to make sure you provide several things. Make sure you give the name of your game, a description about it, what genre does it fall into, what operating systems does it run on, how big is the file size, what are the controls, give several screenshots of in-game play, and provide several download links to your game. The several download links means you should host your game on a few sites just in case a link is broken and stops working. That way your game is always available. Having those done, you're one step further to getting more people to respect you and your work.

When you present your game on a website you want to be very descriptive and give lots of information about it. Get people hooked and show that your game is the real deal. Sloppy ads don't cut it. Use effective wording, stay away from eye-raping colors, and use images. Imagery is very effective. Make your game look nice and you make yourself look nice.

Your game should look professionally done. This means it should have many things commonly found in successful games. This includes but is not limited to an attractive main menu that is eye pleasing and is very organized and easy to navigate through, a pause menu that allows people to leave the game or change settings, such as audio volume and screen quality, and all in all your graphics should match well. Using artwork done by various artists usually clashes and makes your game look unprofessional. Stick to a style and make sure everything blends well.

Successful game developers are good with time management. Making deadlines and updating frequently keeps people interested. Although some developers get too excited and spam forums with small updates that are made everyday. This is something you should avoid. Make your updates worthy and don't space them out too much, nor spam people with too many updates.

Critics are going to be harsh to developers. The good attitude that I mentioned earlier is key. You have to be able to take the advice you don't want to hear and thank them for their input. Then base your decision on what changes should be made afterwards. Never scold a critic just because you disagree. It makes you look hostile and may ruin your reputation.

All in all, a person that shows good professionalism is bound to be successful. You'll recieve good feedback and have a sense of self satisfaction. Do yourself a favor and avoid making yourself look like an amateur. Do things the right way.
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#2 Mr. RPG

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 04:36 AM

I read your article thoroughly. It was nice and short, but most of the things you mentioned most people already knew about when it comes to being professional. You should have probably gone into more depth.

I'm not sure if you take requests but if you could, could you make a article about releasing a game and advertising?
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#3 Glen

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 05:01 AM

I read your article thoroughly. It was nice and short, but most of the things you mentioned most people already knew about when it comes to being professional. You should have probably gone into more depth.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

I'm not sure if you take requests but if you could, could you make a article about releasing a game and advertising?


I've already prepared such an article, but I'm waiting a little while before I post it. I don't want to spam the forum.

Edited by Glen, 01 February 2010 - 05:01 AM.

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Savage Defence| Text FX | Ragdoll Axe Engine | Professionalism | Online Games | Game Progression | 3D Game Development | Online Anti-Hack Strategies

#4 sub

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 05:12 AM

hmm.. yes.. well.. after careful consideration and pulling my beard for 12 seconds.. you both make good points blah blah..

i'd like to see articles such as 'how to design a...<genre type>' with advice on 'setting up an engine' for said genre type. i make different types of games yet some genres still elude me and i haven't yet found the inclination to 'get up and learn about them' [detailed platformers for example]

what i mean is.. it is obvious to even people who glance at the manual, to make a control object and assign duties to that. but what about extending that use with timelines..? [i only recently stumbled on this and marvel at the potential and why i overlooked it, and wonder what else i'm not aware of]

where are links to this kind of thing? structuring a game, etc..

if this type of info was available more readily and people willing to share their discoveries, our progress would improve.
as it is, there are tutorials in the appropriate forums here and people post links to other sites with tutorials, etc.. but i would have thought by now there would be sticky: topics like "how to make a platform game" , "how to make a diablo type game" , "how to make an overhead RTS" [etc]
..especially with GM being a commercial venture, heh.. why hasn't the company made their product more user friendly in that regard? i don't know about GM 7/8 [i use a registered 6.1 version] but it seems like everything one ultimately needs or desires to know is squirreled away somewhere 6 months down the track and is facilitated by other users.

btw is there an addon GM code editer [rather than the ingame one.. there is an option for it in settings?] i'd really like to press a key and have the 'suggested' function appear in my editer, i also tend to waste time on making my code indented, commented, neat looking etc.. an editer that does this for you would be nice [eg: when i press { it knows i am opening a bracket and makes the corresponding } at the necessary position, neatly directly 1 line under the current cursor position? ..at that time, allowing me to say, tap enter 3 times because i know i'm about to add 2-3 lines of code in that bracket?] ..i do everything in code and would like to know of ways to optimize my speed. can type fast enough but i digress :medieval:

sorry for the rant..
as said, there are tuts everywhere, but the Q&A forum is always busy.. and people asking the same questions over and over.. those topics, updating their 1st post with links like "how to make your character" , "how to make walls" , "weapons/shooting/ammo development", "HOW TO MAKE A HEALTHBAR!" :) [etc] would really help. anyway OP if you were to open and maintain a game design article, that's what i'd like to see in it.
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#5 Glen

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 05:23 AM

hmm.. yes.. well.. after careful consideration and pulling my beard for 12 seconds.. you both make good points blah blah..

i'd like to see articles such as 'how to design a...<genre type>' with advice on 'setting up an engine' for said genre type. i make different types of games yet some genres still elude me and i haven't yet found the inclination to 'get up and learn about them' [detailed platformers for example]

what i mean is.. it is obvious to even people who glance at the manual, to make a control object and assign duties to that. but what about extending that use with timelines..? [i only recently stumbled on this and marvel at the potential and why i overlooked it, and wonder what else i'm not aware of]

where are links to this kind of thing? structuring a game, etc..

if this type of info was available more readily and people willing to share their discoveries, our progress would improve.
as it is, there are tutorials in the appropriate forums here and people post links to other sites with tutorials, etc.. but i would have thought by now there would be sticky: topics like "how to make a platform game" , "how to make a diablo type game" , "how to make an overhead RTS" [etc]
..especially with GM being a commercial venture, heh.. why hasn't the company made their product more user friendly in that regard? i don't know about GM 7/8 [i use a registered 6.1 version] but it seems like everything one ultimately needs or desires to know is squirreled away somewhere 6 months down the track and is facilitated by other users.

btw is there an addon GM code editer [rather than the ingame one.. there is an option for it in settings?] i'd really like to press a key and have the 'suggested' function appear in my editer, i also tend to waste time on making my code indented, commented, neat looking etc.. an editer that does this for you would be nice [eg: when i press { it knows i am opening a bracket and makes the corresponding } at the necessary position, neatly directly 1 line under the current cursor position? ..at that time, allowing me to say, tap enter 3 times because i know i'm about to add 2-3 lines of code in that bracket?] ..i do everything in code and would like to know of ways to optimize my speed. can type fast enough but i digress :medieval:

sorry for the rant..
as said, there are tuts everywhere, but the Q&A forum is always busy.. and people asking the same questions over and over.. those topics, updating their 1st post with links like "how to make your character" , "how to make walls" , "weapons/shooting/ammo development", "HOW TO MAKE A HEALTHBAR!" :) [etc] would really help. anyway OP if you were to open and maintain a game design article, that's what i'd like to see in it.


I'm in the process of making articles that go over things like that, but understand though, this particular topic is not about that. This is just one of my articles which goes over the attitude and behavior that a person should have when trying to present themselves in a professional manner, hoping that their hard efforts will in return give them a better reputation and receive a higher level of satisfaction from people who test their games.

Edited by Glen, 01 February 2010 - 05:27 AM.

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Avic Pro (Work in Progress):
Portable media manager. Just pop in your usb drive and use Avic Pro to organize and present all of your media content in categories. On top of that, it makes handling portable games, software, and other utilities a breeze. It allows you to launch just about any of your media content quickly and efficiently from your system tray. No more long paths to finding content.
Savage Defence| Text FX | Ragdoll Axe Engine | Professionalism | Online Games | Game Progression | 3D Game Development | Online Anti-Hack Strategies

#6 Zevti

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 06:33 AM

Good article. This, like the game annoyence list, should be a topic that gets pinned to serve as a quick reference to anyone that may want to pull from it if they'd like to because its general, helpful, and reinforces the fact that everyone should exercise common sense. Though the TL;DR crowd may bennefit from bullets if that ever happens.
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#7 Yal

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 08:37 AM

Sub, if you need to ask about game design, you can always ask me. Especially "detailed platformers" (if I interpret those words the same way as you do).

I've got this plan to write a PDF book about how to design games properly. Most people seem more busy with learning more advanced code, forgetting to learn about putting together a nice designed game.

-=-=-=-=-=-

Back on topic~

There should be a general design tutorial with some subjects:
1) Don't use flashy colors,
2) Don't abuse the Rectangle, Roundrect and Line tools,
3) Don't take random ripped graphics, and if you do, use 2) on them if you have to edit them.
4) Don't outline things unless you need to,
5) Never design the first stage first (since you will either make it too hard or complex out of excitement, or not have those cool things ready to place in it that will hook the player)


But Zevti is right, good professional design is mostly made out of common sense.
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#8 Mr. RPG

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 09:27 AM

I read your article thoroughly. It was nice and short, but most of the things you mentioned most people already knew about when it comes to being professional. You should have probably gone into more depth.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

I'm not sure if you take requests but if you could, could you make a article about releasing a game and advertising?


I've already prepared such an article, but I'm waiting a little while before I post it. I don't want to spam the forum.


Well, you could go into a little more in depth what it means to be professional and tips on how you know your not being professional.

I like the way you presented. The only con that I would have concerning your article would be the length.

I cannot wait to read that one--Advertising/Marketing.
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#9 Saijee

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 05:57 PM

To make a game look professional: Learn how to make eye-appealing, or charming, graphics. Doesn't need to be PS3 quality, just has to be pretty.

Make music that enhances the experience of playing the game, music can have amazing effects on a game, from strengthening the replay value, to ruining the game play. Music should be catchy, and fun to listen and or hum to if your want something exciting, or if your going for something more about atmosphere or exploration, it should be deep and engaging.

A common thing many people say is "Gameplay > Graphics" and so some of the people who actually intend to make a game seem professional, but don't really know how, will sometimes spend years learning how to make powerful codes, however its great if you know how to do it, but it doesn't matter if you don't know how to use it in an artistic, creative, or fun way. I think a better way to see things is "Outside > Inside" (for games, not people, its the other way around for people), it doesn't matter if you make a gajillion line code game in C++ **Cough Cough Pelloni** if somebody else made a better game, in less time, with Game Maker. In the end it doesnt matter what you put in the game, what matters is what comes out, and when it comes to art, there are always many ways to get what you want, but you want to find out if what you want is the best solution, ask yourself, what is your goal, what do you want players to experience.

Edited by Saijee, 01 February 2010 - 05:59 PM.

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#10 Frostblade

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 08:05 PM

Your article doesn't seem to have a clear intended audience or (despite the title) a clear central topic. There's a lot of good enough advice in there, but it isn't tied together by anything stronger than "this will make you a better game developer"- and every article you could possibly write will have that as its purpose.

Some more suitable topics might have been, say, "how to get the most out of forum playtesting" or "mistakes made by every beginner". Both of those ideas were covered in your article, but not really thoroughly or thoughtfully enough to be useful; you touched on them, dropped a couple of discrete pieces of advice for each, then moved on.

a article about releasing a game and advertising

This'll belong in Distributing Games. Just a heads up so that I don't have to move it, and since you might want to rethink the delay if you're posting to two different forums.
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