Indie Games Are dead?

Indie Games Are dead? Of course not that is a stupid question. But a questions that a few crazy people seem to be being up the past few days. Clearly indie games are not dead, there is still a huge audience activly looking, funding and buying indie games. You just have to look at the stats and sales on IndieDB, Desura, and Steam to see this is crazy talk.

  1. http://www.desura.com/
  2. http://www.indiedb.com/
  3. http://steamcommunity.com/greenlight
  4. http://www.kickstarter.com/

Hell Steam, one of the biggest digital distributors in the industry just Launched its Greenlight service to help Indie Devs get their games out there, why? Because they see it as a viable business opportunity to invest it.

Any Indie Dev that goes in just for the money is going to fail. I could easily make 10x as much money in half the time using my programming skills to write boring business applications. But I don’t, because I am in it for the games, to make something unique and interesting.

Indie Dev is hard work if you are not in it for the games, you will not make it to the end. Ask any serious IndieDev they will tell you two things. One, i wish i could sleep more, and two how they take their daily caffine hits (Coca Cola, Tea, Coffee, UndeadFred Zombie Cookie Cutters, Mana Energy Potion) that wasnt a joke they are real:

A small collection of Indie Games do become successfull and most do fail. Becuases teams go in with huge ambitions of making lots of money in a couple of months and making a AAA game. When in fact that is completely the wrong approuch. Trying to compete with a AAA studio is crazy, they have more time, money, marketing budgets, and people. The area Indie Games really shine in is trying unique and interesting core game play mechanics. The kind of mechanics that a AAA studio would not risk the cost of a full team of developers on, because they are not “Market Proven”.

Like any buissness venture you need to know your market. Indies Gamers are not looking for AAA games or another Call of Duty clone. They are looking for something different, something unique, something fun, something that is not just another AAA clone with new models and textures.

I am hoping someone will back me up here, I am starting to second guess my own decisions (I need sleep), these kinds of people make me want to give up.
Am i wrong here guys and gals?

GamerKnight
Days of Valor: http://www.indiedb.com/games/dov
Blog: https://gamerknight.wordpress.com/
Twiter: https://twitter.com/gamerknightx

Unreal Engine 4 “Infiltrator” Real-Time Demo

unreal_4_infiltrator_screenshot

At GDC 2013, Epic Games released the Unreal Engine 4 “Infiltrator” demo, running 100% in-engine in real time, showing off UE4’s high-end rendering features as well as the latest too.

GamerKnight
Days of Valor: http://www.indiedb.com/games/dov
Blog: https://gamerknight.wordpress.com/
Twiter: https://twitter.com/gamerknightx

Steam Early Access

earlyaccessbanner What is Steam Early Access?

“Get immediate access to games that are being developed with the community’s involvement. These are games that evolve as you play them, as you give feedback, and as the developers update and add content.

We like to think of games and game development as services that grow and evolve with the involvement of customers and the community. There have been a number of prominent titles that have embraced this model of development recently and found a lot of value in the process. We like to support and encourage developers who want to ship early, involve customers, and build lasting relationships that help everyone make better games.” – Steam

This is great news for Indie Developers and something i hope to be using in the not to distant future. I think it is very important for games to development around their community. People want great games, games designer want to make great games, and steam is trying to bridge the gap.

GamerKnight
Days of Valor: http://www.indiedb.com/games/dov
Twiter: https://twitter.com/gamerknightx

Un-Ruining the MMO (by MrBtongue):

A good friend of mine Dante sent me a message on Skype today, with a link to a video by a chap called MrBtongue. He makes some very good points about the issues with MMO these days and WoW clones. Dont get me wrong WoW is a good game, just the same as CoD is. What they do, they do very well, and their is clearly a need for them in the market. But that doesn’t mean every MMO or FPS should clone their core mechanics, swap out the models and textures and call it a new game.

The video starts of with a sports analogy, i know not my cup of tea either. But it only lasts 2.45 minutes and its serves a purpose so stick with it.

Un-Ruining the MMO (by MrBtongue):


GamerKnight
Days of Valor: http://www.indiedb.com/games/dov

How hard is Games Design?

A few years a go when I first started to get serious about programming my own game I thought this would be easy. I thought to myself I play games all the time. I would totally make the best game in the world. I will write up a games design document this week and release a game in a few months.

Obviously to any one that has been doing it for a serious length of time knows this is not true. Its so dam hard to get GOOD game concept written down. Sure your ideas sound great in your head, but trying to define the core mechanics of a game, into sound coherent written form is a nightmare. Its both fun, frustrating and just down right time consuming. No wonder so many people never make it to release.

Then you get the people that think that a games core elements don’t even need to be defined, you can just make the game up as you go along. I am a firm believer that this is not true, sure the game changes over time, it evolves and the original idea is just a distant memory. But the core mechanics, the core elements stay the same throughout the life cycle of the project, and ultimately define what the game is about and what challenges the player faces.

In my eyes a game is a set of core mechanics and challenges, both of which are intertwined. The core mechanics define how the player interacts with the world and how the world offers feedback to the players input. Challenges come in many forums but follow a simple principle. A player is faced with a task, if he succeeds he is reworded, if he fails he is punished. An example of which could be anything from moment in a platformer, all the way up to collecting and moving items around to solve a puzzle, hell even a head shot.

What is my point here, to be honest I am not so sure any more. What I am really looking for here is to know what you guys and gals think about games design and the importance of writing a solid games design document. Or how do you go about creating games and getting your ideas out there. I can not be the only one faced with these issues.


GamerKnight
Days of Valor: http://www.indiedb.com/games/dov