Jump to content

Search the Community

Showing results for tags 'planning'.



More search options

  • Search By Tags

    Type tags separated by commas.
  • Search By Author

Content Type


Forums

  • Community
    • Community News
  • Web Game Design and Development
    • News & Updates
    • General Game Development
    • Creative Discussions
    • Coding and Programming
    • Tutorials and Guides
  • Marketplace
    • Looking To Hire
    • Looking For Work / Commissions
    • Marketplace Reviews
  • General Discussions
    • Off Topic
    • Community Feedback / Help
    • Jokes and Fun
    • Entertainment Talk
  • Novilar's Updates
  • Eliyo's Latest Updates
  • Animal Acres's Latest Updates
  • Eqcetera's Discussions

Product Groups

  • Adoptables
    • Eggs
    • Backdrops
    • Additional Customizations
  • Advertising

Adoptable Stages

  • Corgicock
    • Egg
    • Chicgi
    • Corgicock
  • Lizardly Dragon
    • Egg
    • Kimono Lizard
    • Spiketail Dragon
  • Spiky Cat
    • Egg
    • Kittykin
    • Pinat
  • Dwarf Unicorn
    • Egg
    • Filli
    • Unicorn
  • Melon Kangaket
    • Egg
    • Kangakit
    • Kangakoo
    • Kangaket
  • Fuzzy Yeti
    • Egg
    • Yetiling
    • Fuzzy Yeti
  • Pure White Mottled Hare
    • Egg
    • Pure Mottled Kit
    • White Mottled Hare
  • Mottled Hare
    • Egg
    • Mottled Kit
    • Mottled Hare
  • Fawsh
    • Egg
    • Fawsh Younghoof
    • Fawsh Wavestrider
  • Oasis Naga
    • Egg
    • Oasis Nagaling
    • Oasis Naga
  • Kitsu
    • Egg
    • Kitsee
    • Kitsu
  • Vine Sloth
    • Seed
    • Vineling
    • Vine Sloth
  • Worm Cat
    • Egg
    • Wormling
    • Worm Cat
  • Demikin
    • Egg
    • Demonite
    • Demikin
  • Wolbit
    • Egg
    • Wollitte
    • Wolbit

Find results in...

Find results that contain...


Date Created

  • Start

    End


Last Updated

  • Start

    End


Filter by number of...

Joined

  • Start

    End


Group


About Me


Website


Xbox Gamertag


PlayStation Network


Nintendo ID

Found 3 results

  1. (To be fair, this is an old guide I typed a while ago, though I went through it and fixed it up a bit.) I figured I'd post a 'How to Get Started in VP World' guide-esque. This will mainly contain my thoughts on what I feel are most needed to get started in making your own virtual petsite. You are welcome to reply with your own thoughts or ideas on how to get /started/. (Just the very early beginning stages). So, I see you are interested in starting your own petsite or game? Well, the first thing you should do is ask yourself some questions. Do you have the time to make a virtual petsite? A lot of people get all excited when they first decide they want to, but then end up not having the time to actually work on it, either due to school, work, or other reasons. Be sure that you have time that you can dedicate to a LONG TERM project. (These things don't just happen over night. Often times they can take at least a year of development before opening to the public.) Be sure to organize a schedule, and if you hire yourself a team, that they are aware of that schedule. Can you handle the responsibility and a leadership position? If you plan on being the owner of a petsite, you must understand that that lays a lot of responsibility on your shoulders as you will be the leader. If that's not something you think you can manage at the moment, you may want to wait until you can (though honestly you can get a lot more out of experience and researching tips/advice on leadership skills) or join a staff position on another site to get an idea of how all this tends to work. What type of work can you put into it yourself? Some people are lucky and have extra skills that saves them time and money when making a petsite, such as art, graphics, coding, writing, etc. Identify what you yourself can do first. Are you willing to learn? Making a petsite involves going outside of your box. You may not be skilled in the areas I listed above, but you should be willing to explore each of those areas. Especially coding. Coding is one of the foundations of the site. No programming, no site. (It is also helpful if you want to understand what any hired programmers are doing.) If you don't want or don't have time to learn, then I recommend not making a site. Owners should be willing to give those areas a try before deciding on hiring staff or not. (It really makes a difference to have /some/ understanding of the several different aspects of game development, especially for those less experienced in a professional working environment.) Do you have any funds? Yes, it is possible to make a petsite completely for free. There are websites that offer free domains and/or hosting that support programming like PHP. But usually, people don't take those sites as seriously. For a dedicated owner, one should have their own domain and hosting. That's just the beginning. You should prepare some savings for emergencies, you never know what will happen. You should also prepare money for possible staff members in the future. Art and programming (and other services) can add up pretty fast! I also suggest making a budget. How much money do you have, how much do you have coming in (that you can get or earn), and how much do you have or can you have go out. Etc. Are you prepared, mentally and/or possibly physically, for possible downward slopes? Things may slow down progress wise and you need to know that that WILL happen. You need to understand that it's not a bad thing and that you'll just have to work through it. You may even go through a phase of depression for things not getting done, but remember, these things take time and patience is a MUST. There is no rush to make a game. I also suggest taking breaks. You don't want to work yourself or others too hard. Remember there is a real life too. People need breaks. Lastly, why do you want to make a petsite? I think that about covers the questions. Be sure to answer all of these as detailed and honestly as possible. If you're not ready to make a petsite yet, don't worry! Try playing on other sites to get a better idea of would need to get done. Try joining a staff position on the site to learn responsibility, hard work, and dedication. Once you've done all of the above, now it's time for the ideas. Ideas are the building blocks of your site. No site, even non-VP sites, can live without an idea. Everything starts with an idea. What your job is is to plan and organize those ideas. First of all, is your petsite original? That's the most important thing for your petsite to be successful. People can join any petsite, why yours? What makes your site unique? PLOT Petsites don't necessarily need plot, but they do help players feel more immersed in your game. What things have happened, are happening, or will happen? Characters, creatures, a world, etc. Why are things a certain way? What made it that way? Do you have a backstory? Are there any heros or heroines? How do players get involved in the plot? What can they do? World Plan your world. What will it look like? What will it have? How many will your petsite have? Moons? Universe? Or just a town? What's the history of those places? What type of plants, animals, people, etc. inhabit this world? How does exploring work? Pets How do you want your pets to work? Just plain adopt? Buy? Find? Breed? Grow? What will they look like? Will they come in multiple colors? How can players get those different colors? NPCs Non-playable characters. Will your site have any? How involved in the plot are they? Do they serve a purpose or are they just fillers? Can players talk to them or communicate in some way? Rules/Terms/Privacy Policy Every site needs these and yes, they are each different. Players will need to know the rules of game-play, what they can or cannot do, how their information is protected if it is, etc. Don't just brush over these, these are just as important as everything else on your site! Make them thorough, detailed, and easy to understand. (Ideally you'd hire a lawyer for this part.) Features What type of features will your site have to offer? Games? Battling? Trading? Auctions? What makes them unique? A lot of petsites have a lot of similar features, if you want to join in and make your own, you'll need to find ways to make them feel new, inventive, and enjoyable. What keeps you playing a site? Look for sites that either you love, find interesting, or are popular. Find out what members of that community like or what keeps them coming back. It's helpful to look for ideas or inspiration, but do not directly steal ideas. Remember, your site is unique. It's important to be, not just one step, but tens to hundreds of steps ahead of your players/users. You need to know everything about your site. You HAVE to plan ahead! Things don't just stay static. Your site can't stay the same forever. Things have to happen in order for your users to stay interested and keep coming back. Buying a domain and hosting is a major and important step. It also helps shows others how serious you are and that you're willing to spend money. However, do not just use the first site you see. Research is VERY important, especially for hosting! Your site will be on their server for a long time and you NEED to know if they are reliable. Read as many reviews as possible, talk to people, or even call the companies themselves and ask questions. It's your money and you don't want to waste it! Development forums can be very important when building a VP site. It's very easy to make one, there are lots of free hosted forums just a Google search away. Set up the forum in an organized manner and make it easy to navigate. Make sure to have a place for registered users as well as official staff. Having a forum is a great way to keep in contact with everyone and keep everything in one place. (And build hype if you feel the need to.) -- Once you've got most if not all your planning done and organized, only then should you consider looking for staff. People don't often like to get involved with a site that has no idea of where it's going. They want a plan and they want to know what it is. You need to let them know that you are serious about the project and that you 100% want to go through with it. If you don't sound convincing, finding staff will be difficult. Now what should be said to potential staffies? Well, I'd start out first saying exactly what you need. Do you need art? What kind of art do you need? What style? What's your price range? (Or is it volunteer? Be wary though, finding high quality and reliable people willing to work for free is very rare!) Examples are the BEST thing you can do. If you don't have any art, find a site that has the style you want and post that (give credit). This is your site you want to build and you want it just right, right? Finding staff may end up being harder than you think. Not everyone jumps on new sites unless they present themselves in a way that shows them that you're serious. It also might be difficult to get into this business/hobby without any money. A lot of the more professional users out there want some bang for their work. It's not impossible to find volunteers, but the quality might not be what you had in mind. Contracts are your friend! Don't be afraid to have your staff sign a contract between the two of you. (Again, having a lawyer here would help!) It makes things easier down the line if trouble does arise. It's also important to keep documentation of any and all payments as well. Stay organized! Programmers are probably the most difficult to find. Not only do all the VP owners want them, but so does the rest of the world. Don't keep yourself constricted to finding programmers in the VP community. I highly suggest going outside the box and looking online. Do keep in mind that programming is expensive, and many won't work for free, or even cheap. (Be sure their codes are very secure!) Writing is not just words on a screen. Writing can be beautiful and moving. Writing can even make or break ones site. Having a good writer (or writers) is very important. Make sure they know more than just the basic grammar rules. Don't be afraid to ask a friend to read their examples and give you their opinion. You want your site to not only look good, but sound/read good. Don't get yourself cheated. Ask for references, people they've worked with in the past, and previous work examples. You want to make sure that the people you're hiring are a perfect fit for you and your site. Make a schedule and stick to it! Don't have long dragged out moments of no work. There should always be something to do. Your staff was hired/volunteered for a reason, to work, and that's what they want, so give them work. Give them a quota and hold them to it. Though be sure that you don't overload them, make sure you all have agreements in how much work should be done in how much time. Breaks are not a bad thing! If life is stressing one of you out, take a break. Your site will still be there and in the works when you/they return. Plan ahead and be prepared, for, well, anything! Anything can go wrong at anytime. I highly suggest you keep backups of all the work completed. Listen to your staff. You may be the owner, but they have opinions and ideas as well. They might even know something you don't. It's important to keep communication open. If you don't like them, don't keep them. If a staff member is giving you trouble, acting rude, etc., and after being told multiple times to stop, hasn't, well guess what, you can get fire them. I would suggest asking the opinions of other staff members first before doing so, just in case you don't know something they do. It's also important to change any and all passwords that they may know or have come across, just in case. Be sure you have some sort of cancelation agreement in your contract, so if issues like this do arise, they can be dealt with quickly and easily. DO. NOT. RUSH. I can't stress that enough. There is no need to rush. These types of sites take time and effort, and trust me, in the end, it will be worth it. --- There is so much more I could go on about, but I'll leave that to the replies. I just wanted to touch on the parts I feel are important and that should be addressed. So, I leave you with some final thoughts; Be intelligent. Be thoughtful. Be tasteful. Be honest. Be respectful. Be original. Pets sites are not made in a day, not even a year (most often). Through a lot of hard work, stress, drama, troubles, and issues, a lot of fun can be had while making one. Never be afraid to ask for help or advice. As scary as we users might be sometimes, we can be surprisingly helpful. Do your best not to give up. If you need to pause, pause, but then keep going. Your dream will come true one day, all it takes is a little time and effort.
  2. what is this? So I see a lot of projects fail or go miserably wrong because not enough attention was paid during the planning stages to really nail down a plan of action surrounding the features and functionality of the project. This is a guide to help remedy those problems, and can really be applied anytime during the project however the sooner the better in most cases. This is not strictly a programming/development guide either, you can apply the concepts elsewhere but for the purpose of not being super vague I'm orienting this guide to feature development. Also forgive me if you are not familiar with Pokemon, I use a lot of Pokemon related examples to illustrate the concepts I cover. minimum viable product So it's really tempting when starting a project to sit and brainstorm and daydream for hours about all of the fantastic features your project will have and all the people who love it. I do it too, and while there's nothing wrong with that when you get down to seriously planning a project you intend to see through it's just impossible to start there. Write your ideas down, make a list of all the features of your dream and then toss that document aside for later. Pick one feature. Now when I say one, I don't mean the login/logout or anything that would more or less be considered the framework of your project. What you need to do is identify your minimum viable product. That means you need to figure out how to make your project the smallest it can be, and still be at it's core a fun game. It doesn't sound intuitive but it is important. So you should identify the base feature of your game. What is the ultimate goal? Why are people logging on to play? Is that feature fun or rewarding, without any other embellishments? Not everyone would but I consider Pokemon to essentially be a virtual-pet game, it's just on a different platform. If you think about all the features Pokemon offers in their games it can be mind boggling, but at it's core the main feature and main draw for the game is surprisingly simple and even in their slogan. gotta catch 'em all. Pokemon is a game based on collecting, all the other features are more or less secondary to this main feature. You want to complete your Pokedex, or at least catch your favorites and that's what they rely on to be the main thing that's fun in the game. That's what I mean when I say identify your main feature. It does not need to be unique, and it does not need to be revolutionary, it just needs to be a solid draw. Whether that feature is community based, collectable based, creation based(breeding or building sites), etc. it just needs to be identified what that feature is. If you think you can make a successful game or project revolving around that main feature then fantastic, hit the ground running and save the dreams for later down the road. Most people will not want to stop there however, and that's okay. Once you have that solid main feature you are going to want to select one or two other features that compliment that main feature very well. That does not mean battling and breeding should be those two features. If you're doing a collection based site maybe create multiple ways to collect pets(different types of pokeballs?) or make certain pets only collectable through certain methods(only obtainable if you trade with another player). If your site is heavily community based and your main feature is the forum, a live chat would be a good compliment. These other features should maintain the same goal as your main feature, and should seek to improve that main feature in some way. Be careful whenever you add a new feature that you are making that feature as small as it could be to start with. As you go through this process create a new list of your MVP feature list, and at the end compare it your original dream feature list. If even 50% of those dream features are on your MVP list then you are probably still being too ambitious. I can't stress enough how important it is to really cut out as much as you can and start small. Creating a game or website is a very large and daunting process and it is so much better to get something successfully out there in a few months than it is to spend 3 years on a gargantuan project and still not have a launch date. It's also a lot easier to learn from the mistakes you make the first time around when the project is smaller, and it's more rewarding because you're more likely to cross the finish line. understanding scope In the project brainstorming phase of projects I see a lot of people being extremely vague about features that they want but haven't really thought through. However it's crucial when you're brainstorming features to be very specific about what that feature is and is not. Think of a feature scope as a list of rules to make the feature work or not work as intended. Imagine explaining how to collect Pokemon to someone who knows nothing about the game, but being specific enough that they could recreate the game. A vague statement will produce a vague or incorrect result. Bad Statement: "You throw a pokeball at the pokemon to catch it." Bad Result: A game where every time the pokeball is thrown, the pokemon is caught. Better Statement: "You throw a pokeball at the pokemon to catch it. The higher the level of the pokemon, the lower the chance to catch it." Better Result: A game where the level of the pokemon determines whether or not throwing a pokeball results in a successful catch. The idea is to then become more and more specific, so if you were to explain this to someone they would understand that if they knock the pokemon out then they can't catch it, or different pokeball types work better or worse for different pokemon, or that status effects also effect the success rate of a pokeball. Define all the rules of your feature, and then try to imagine someone attempting to cheat. Pokeballs don't work when you throw them at a pokemon owned by another trainer. If you can define all the rules of your features, that will go a long way to help whoever will have to program the functionality, but also keep communication clear about how something is expected to work and whether or not a change fits within the current scope or not. If you are changing or adding to the scope during project development, that's something called scope creep. It is not good, not fun, and usually leads to both angry project managers and angry developers. Once development starts, you shouldn't mess with the scope except where development needs clarification. Additionally, if you have changes you want to make then run it by the developer first to make sure they are comfortable with changing the scope or to find out what kind of impact that change will have on cost and deadlines. Finally, make sure the feature scope with all the rules fleshed out still fits the goal of the feature. If the rules of pokeball throwing made it extremely difficult to catch any pokemon, maybe there's a rule that shouldn't be there because it shouldn't become difficult to play the game. Stating the goal of the features(be more specific than 'be fun') can also help a developer or even yourself 6 months from when you wrote the scope have a clear understanding of where you intend to go with it and what you were thinking when you developed the scope. feature value Did you know features have value? There are ways to calculate hard and monetary values for features, but that could be a guide all by itself so I'm not going to get into that. But when you are generating feature ideas to add to a project or to an already launched game you should always be considering the value that features bring to the site. If it's a small feature but it's going to take a lot of programming work and your users could more or less live without then it may not be worth it to bring that feature in. A mantra of mine with browser based games is that your features for the most part need to be harder to consume than create. That means if it takes you 10 hours to create a quest line that will occupy users for 10 minutes, that would be a bad consume to create ratio. You want to flip that ratio as much as you can so that your users remain entertained by your content and features, giving you time to develop new ones without people getting bored or frustrated. Many people turn to random generation to get the ratio in their favor and if you're clever enough that can be a fantastic way to generate fresh content but there are other ways as well. If you can make small changes to a feature to make it last longer without becoming frustrating for the users, you'll find yourself with a lot more room to develop and come up with ideas. For example if the questline you created required users wait until nighttime to do a certain task, or require that they do some investigation to figure out the answer to a lore riddle then you can expand that questline time from 10 minutes to potentially 12 hours without overburdening your users with meaningless and boring tasks. If a feature you create can do any of the following, it's bringing in value. Monetization Bring in new users Keep users occupied for longer than it took to create Generates excitement or community organization If a feature does any of the following, you're actually losing value. Drives away current users Conflicts with the general mission Causes other features to become useless or undesirable On rare occasions it's okay to create a feature that hits a point on that second list as long as it's being made up for in a clear way on the first list. Also, do not feel bad about removing or heavily modifying a feature you realize is having a negative impact on your site or does not fit your goals. conclusion If you can make your project small, focussed and have a fantastic understanding of your features you'll be a lot better off when you hit the development level and more likely to avoid some common pitfalls. Especially if you're working on your first browser game site I highly recommend making it as small as possible so you'll see more progress, be less likely to give up and you'll learn a lot along the way to make your next project even better. If anyone has any recommendations, comments or feedback please share. I'd love to expand and update where necessary so it's truly helpful to people.
  3. This is a guide to help new game designers work out how to plan and execute a level design that works. Often I found that simply trying to hop into a new level and build it based off a loose idea in my mind leads me to almost immediate failure almost every single time. It is frustrating. So I have over time developed a clear process that helps me successfully work out how to do level design that works for me by breaking it down into steps. The Idea Obviously every level starts as an idea. This idea will be spontaneous or deliberate. Either is perfectly okay! This is where you dig out a notebook and keep these written down, or even better drawn down in rough form. Don't worry we will refine them later. These game level ideas should be organized into their own notebook or sketchbook so you can find them later. If you cannot come up with ideas, the best ideas are to look around your environment. If you live in a city, maybe that city corner you drive or walk by is a good environment for a game, or if you live somewhere more rural - that old barn in that field? The point is to make yourself more observant of what resources are around you to generate new ideas. Remember, ideas right now are rough concepts, not full blown levels. Setting, Location, and Theme The next step after you have an idea to come up with the setting, location, and theme to frame your idea in. This further takes the idea and gives it greater bounds, allowing it to grow in your mind into it's own environment. The three points here are: Physical location of your level. Is it a city? Rural town? Indoor or Outdoor? Past, Present, or Future? Actual location of your level, the more specific location of your environment within your physical location defined above. The theme of the environment, this is abstract and defines stuff such as time of day, weather, atmosphere, mood, and other elements that bring your location into focus and what makes it feel the way it does. Purpose Quite simply put, why are you set on doing this level? What drives you? Features What features does this level have for the player? Questions to ask will be: How does this level stand out visually or technically? What game elements are the focus of this game level that make this environment unique? What will the player experience in this environment? Make a list Research and Reference Studies Take some time looking around and studying architecture and environments that meet your above needs. Collect, study, and constantly refine your ideas based on research. Remember, now is the time to refine and improve your concept. What you are looking to collect are references of the following things: Anything that matches your location Anything that matches your environment Anything that matches your style design Props that match your style design Now is also the time to start to start sketching out unique design ideas and putting these on paper for later reference. These studies allow you to ask questions about props or designs now rather than later. The Story Now that you have your environment, what is it's story? How is the player entering the environment and what story leads them there? What story shaped the environment before the player got there? These are important questions to jot down in your notes. The Goals Goals come in three real forms: Objectives Obstacles Set Pieces What objectives will the user have to complete? What obstacles will be the players way? What events will happen (set pieces) along the way? Focal Points Focal points are used in any environment to orient your player. What focal points can you use to keep your player feeling directed and not lost while in your environment? Mapping (on Paper) Take some paper, and draw simply a top down view of your environment, make sure to note all objectives, obstacles, set pieces, as well as focal points. Also note any unique sections. This is your visual guide when building your level out. Mapping (a List) Now take your map you drew, and make a list of all the elements on it. This list is your working list of things to do. Now are you are armed with an organized blueprint of a level design! Now you can finally sit down and execute that wonderful level design! Let me know what you thought of this rather succinct guide on level design
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines, Terms of Use, and Privacy Policy.