There has arguably never been a better or easier time to get into the game development arena. With the rise of mobile gaming and the increasing ease of self-publishing and marketing, you can now turn your idea for a game into something tangible, without needing to invest as much money and effort as you might initially imagine.
There are various ways in which you can take your idea for a video game and transform it into the real thing. Whether this entails you developing the game yourself or selling the idea to a studio, here are some of the ways you can make your dream video game a reality.
Considering Your Idea and How it Will Work
One of the first things you need to do is think about your idea and how it will work in the gaming world. Mobile gaming is one of the easiest ways to get your game out there, and it can all be done by you if you have the time and knowledge. The other alternative is trying to get your game out as a PC version so that it can be downloaded.
The sheer scale of mobile games means that the process of mobile gaming user acquisition can often be easier, as there are a lot of people you can reach who will be interested in playing on their devices. You can also attract a huge audience if your game is a “pick up and play” type that can be played when people have a few minutes on their phone.
If your idea isn’t fully fleshed out, this can be a good time to brainstorm with others such as friends. They can often give you a new angle on the idea and help you resolve gaps in your game.
Create Your Game Design Document
Your game design document or GDD is what will give you the foundation to work from. This document needs to spell out in detail all the key elements of your game including design, storyline, game mechanics, and more.
The GDD needs to answer all the questions that someone may ask you about the game, in addition to answering one especially important question: what sets this game apart from the others? Your answer to this question will be critical, because it will be the unique point that you can use to attract players and market your game.
Building Your Prototype
This is one of the areas where you may need help if you are not used to coding or know how to build your game.
Firstly, you need to decide what programming language you will use. Mobile games are easier as they won’t require as much tech, but depending on your budget, this can be resolved by the developer if you hire one. You can also use software such as Unreal Engine to do the heavy lifting for you.
Working through the prototype phase is what will help you to see if certain elements will work, plus, you can iron out many of the difficulties at this stage. You will want to concentrate on the design, the story, and the ways in which players will interact with your game and the environment.
Be sure to review and evaluate each area so that you have less to do in the next stage.
Testing and Bugs
Testing is one of the processes that ideally needs a quality assurance (QA) expert if you want to have a detailed plan. The QA expert will play your game repeatedly and write a detailed report showing you any bugs, glitches, and crashes that occur.
Regardless of the game and where it will be released, you will need to have a game that people will enjoy, and not something that will make them frustrated. This process can take some time, as you might want to repeat the QA process a couple of times to ensure your fixes have not caused other problems.
Try to remember that this is a necessary process and that it will ultimately make your game better for everyone.
Selling Your Idea
Once your game is ready, you need to think about how you are going to release it to the public. You can try to inquire with games studios first, but you should be aware that this can be a long process.
It is best to do your research first and to avoid simply “cold calling” or emailing games studios. They will likely ignore you as they get many such pitches. The best way is to go through the right contact at the studio and ask if they want to hear your game idea.
If you are sure about this way of selling your game, then you should be prepared for knock-backs and a long wait. However, it will almost certainly be worth it in the end.
Your other alternative is to self-publish on the game platforms. This is a quicker process, but you will need to market the game yourself, and there is no guarantee of success. Self-publishing has the advantage of giving you more control over the game development, as well as a better learning experience.
Regardless of which avenue you take, you should be sure to have a clear game idea and the patience to see it through to the end. If you follow the tips above carefully, you can be sure of putting yourself in the strongest possible position to make your dream video game a reality.