By Cooper Jacklich
The game, “PLuTO” was made in 48 hours. Everything in it was created by me, the characters, scripts, animations, sounds, etc. etc.
I wanted to post this, to give myself a bit more credibility when I say that this topic means a lot to me. It’s not just because I like videogames and think it’d be cool to do the project on them. It’s because I want to work in the games industry, and I don’t want to work in a stagnant cesspool for making copycat games just to make a living.
When I say this topic means a lot to me, it’s because it truly does.
I used a few friends as test subjects to see if I could find some interesting angles to watch someone use a computer from. Seeing as the project is about game development, and watching someone code isn’t that exciting, I need to use the camera and voiceover/music to make it more exciting.
If you’re at all interested in game development, I can’t recommend the GDC Vault enough. It’s filled with tons of presentations and talks all related to every aspect of game development from a host of different developers.
Just found this great resource. It’s a pretty basic site, along with the games on it, but the page I linked to has a template for a game design document. To really help fully flesh out an idea before production, a document like this will really help streamline development and keep people focused on what needs to get done.
Seeing as I can, I figured I might as well post the other random game things I’ve made.
Here’s the warmup game/mechanic testing thing I made before Ludum Dare 30.
Here’s a game I made last March, also over a weekend. It’s stylistically a clone of the Impossible game, but I think my gameplay is much harder. It’s on the Google Play store, so if you have an android device then you can download and play it for free.
Here’s DogeSpin. It has more downloads than the other games I’ve made combined. Plus a better rating. Maybe I should make a sequel to this…
My youtube channel, because all the cool kids have a gaming channel… Though I hope that I’ll soon be posting more videos of the games I’m working on.
And last but not least, my very own subreddit. Yes, that’s right folks. It’s all mine. I strictly keep that for posting about game dev stuff, and it gets updated far more often than my youtube channel does.
Global Game Jam is going on right now! It’s a huge event where game developers all meet up in the same place, and try to make a game in 48 hours.
I realized after my last post that not everyone knows what a game jam is, so here ya go…
Ludum Dare! (Pronounced, “Loo-dum Darr-ay”) This is the game jam I participated in last August. I stayed up for around 42 hours straight, sleeping for 4, and then waking up for the final two hours to submit this. PLuTO. Its an incredibly challenging task, but I can’t recall ever having learned so much in such little time.
I think watching game jams could really help people understand how much work goes into creating a game in such little time.
For anyone interested, the 6.0 earthquake that hit was actually during the 36th hour of the competition! I was streaming development over Twitch.tv the whole time up until I lost power, so I still have the recorded clip of the rumbling just before the blackout.
Also my game, if anyone wants to play that. Headphone users be warned, the music is quite loud.
Obviously I need to have a backup in case I can’t get a hold of Rob, or he’s busy and can’t make it.
I’ve made some friends and started some good relationships with other small indie developers. After participating in a few game jams and recording some gameplay for a few developers, I’ve made a few contacts who would probably love to help out with the project. I’m not sure where they live, and if it’d be within driving range to get a video interview, but I’m sure I could get ahold of a few of them over Skype.
At my high school, all seniors had to do a, “Senior Project.” It was a year long project starting junior year, that was required if you wanted to graduate. My Dad taught tennis to a woman whose husband worked at Pixar, and since I wanted to build a game for my senior project, but needed a mentor, he was our starting place. I talked to him on the phone one night, and he put me in touch with a guy he worked with named Rob Rowe. Rob just so happens to have 30 years of experience in game development, worked at Atari, Midway Games, Disney Interactive, and is currently working for Pixar as a Director, and head of Studio Relations. He’s worked on a slew of titles, and has a wealth of knowledge on game development.
You can find him pretty easily on sites like LinkedIn or IMDb.
He also happens to be incredibly cool.
The first paragraph of this article really shows the heart of the issue my film will try to address. Games are so widely involved in our everyday lives, and are a 21 Billion dollar industry. I find it not only interesting, but worrying that the people that supply a majority of that 21 billion have no idea how to make what they they paid for.
When you go to a restaurant and order steak made by a professional chef, you may not know exactly the amount of bbq sauce he used, or how long he cooked it for, but you have a basic understanding of how he cooked it.
It’s how you know you are being ripped off when you order a freshly cooked steak, and instead the chef just reheats some leftovers from the night before and plates them for you. You wouldn’t accept the meal, you’d ask for a new one, a refund, or maybe even walk out on your meal.
While it may be a silly example, it illustrates why so many avid gamers get frustrated when everyone buys into the latest Call of Duty or Assassin’s Creed game. People don’t realize, or don’t care that they’re just “reheating” last years game. Maybe putting some extra salt and fresh sauce on it, but underneath it’s the same microwaved rubbery meat that you’ve already played..