Powerful desktop computers and smartphone devices have ensured that video games are as popular as they have ever been. Indeed, with unprecedented numbers of gamers of all ages enjoying the hobby, there is no better time to enter into the world of video game development. Unfortunately, there are plenty of bumps in the road, and prospective developers need to be mindful of exactly what it takes to get from concept to execution before starting on the road to development.
Modern game development
Very basic game development is a relatively simple affair, as there are many free programmes that are simple to use even for complete beginners. Many modern video games are a very different animal however, with intense graphics that challenge even the most powerful graphics card, as well as impressive scores and dramatic voice acting. Designers should eschew any idea of creating the most modern and intensive games and start small. Many programmes exist for amateur game developers to use as well. Known as "freeware", these software tools are simple to use and self-explanatory.
Choose a genre
There are now plenty of different genres from which to choose when it comes to making video games, but rather than simply choosing a favourite genre, a prospective designer should also consider games that are simple to make for first time developers. Text based games such as RPGs are addictive and popular, as are simple platform games and puzzle games, and none require huge amounts of coding. Shooters and first-person RPGs are more difficult to programme — this a task suitable for prospective designers with some experience in the field.
Tools popular with new creators include Twine, a free programme that allows the user to crate text based adventures with little to no formal training. Other popular software choices include GameMaker, a popular software package with a host of tutorials that allow new users to navigate the package with some degree of skill, and Stencyl, a graphical interface with a simple and uncomplicated approach to teaching basic coding. Consumers with some skill already may wish to opt for a more complex platform such as Unity, a powerful 3D graphics tool, but be aware that a more powerful PC is required for rendering and processing anything other than the most basic graphics.
Buy the tools
A craftsman is only as good as the tools they wield, and any Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop enthusiast knows only too well about the processing power required by modern software when dealing with even simple tasks. Processing video, doctoring still imagery, and even simply uploading files to YouTube require a measure of processing power that is beyond many older machines. Prospective designers should ensure they have the right tools for the job, a powerful computer with ample RAM, a multi-core processor, and a capable graphics card.
Make a prototype
Ultimately a game requires neither great graphics nor a stunning score to be a success, with many of the most addictive and popular games of the last decade having neither. Playability is the single most important factor that goes in to making a game a success, and a prototype is the best and most efficient way to test how a game plays. A simple square or stick figure is often enough to check that the game functions properly, and this must be explored before wasting time on niceties like graphics or sound.
Perhaps the easiest part of the process because everybody enjoys playing games, asking friends and family to play the prototype and ensure it is both fun, and functioning correctly before worrying about how the game looks and sounds. Testing for bugs is labourious and often designers may miss something that a third party is quick to spot. Only after a working prototype has enjoyed many hours of working playtime should the designer move to the final, and perhaps easiest phase, ensuring everything looks and sounds the part.
How to buy game development tools on eBay
Whether you are a seasoned design professional looking for a machine capable of handling the most complex graphics imaginable, or simply a passionate amateur, you are sure to find a large range of quality development tools on eBay. Using the search box located on every page, simply type the name of a product that you need, such as "Pentium processor" "graphics card" or "computer desktop", and a wide range from which to choose quickly appears. Using the filters you can easily find the right product for you, and get back to finishing your game in no time.