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When you first got started with game development, how did you think of games to create?


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Hi @EpicKingdom_

I go to a bookshop or library and look at a bunch of stuff :) It just sparks a top of ideas!

Personally, I really dislike straight clones. I think that you can take something that's been done before and put a twist on it.

In my opinion, the best thing to do when starting out, is to pick something really basic (but interesting) and learn as your go.

Because it is a small project, you are much more likely to finish it, and you will learn a hole bunch of stuff in the process.

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I started with a bunch of clones, but quickly got bored of cloning stuff and never really finished anything, although it was a good learning experience i.e. focus on the coding side of things whilst paying a bit of attention to what made these clones popular in the first place (i.e. learning the designing aspects as a by-product).

I had much more success with stuff that was more 'original', i.e. put twists on games I liked to play, but, crucially, these usually crept in scope—being able to restrict scope, or, perhaps more accurately, to think in an agile way i.e. what incremental change can I make that heads towards this big end goal but is actually a small and manageable increment, is a crucial skill for anyone who builds stuff.

This then evolved more in to fully fledged ideas, or seeds, that could become interesting games. I still have terrible trouble restricting scope and as a hobbyist my time is extremely limited to try and realise some of these dreams so you have to take in to account what is actually possible to get done, depending on whether you're a hobbyist, semi-pro or full-pro doing it. Each have different pros/cons to what you will be able to make (not counting whether you actually have the skills to complete your vision).

I think @b10b has hit the nail on the head (and I've heard it from several other game/application design professionals), 'build what you want to play'.

This gets a little tougher if you want to make a crust from game development, but, you'll have a far far better product if you really love what you're building, even if that is fairly niche.

I think most, if not all, of the "best" and most successful games were made by a passionate group of people (or even individual) who really wanted to make that game.

As a solo indie developer you'd need one weary eye on how to make it financial (take Concord for example, absolutely fantastic technical achievement but hard/impossible to make profitable so ultimately failed) but your overarching drive should be your passion.

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When you're getting into game development, make games you want to play, but when you are good enough and want to share your creativity you have two options:

1. make games that players want to play.

2. make games that players did not know they always wanted and would play.

second option is more risky but may pay with your game remembered for years as something that other game devs will based on with option 1.

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