View Full Version : Attention Game developers. I need some info..

05-05-2004, 10:37 PM
Hello all you people out there developing cool games for people like me to play.

I am looking for information and thoughts about what new students need in the curriculum for game design. I am not looking for personal information for me. Instead, I am looking for some general thoughts about what a person should know for game design. As a quasi-freelance-modeler/animator, I often meet people that are interested in game design and I would like to be able to give them some good advice.

Any thoughts on what a person should be learning for game design? While Lightwave info would be appreciated, I know that 3dsmax is used more in games - so those that use Max as well are welcome to give me any info.

Please, legitimate information and thoughts on the subject only. No smart-as% remarks please. And no flame wars over which is better to use - I just want some discussion here for what is needed to be a game designer these days - programming languages, tools, etc...



05-06-2004, 12:39 AM
There is more than one way to create games. You need to think about textures, what makes a game entertaining, how the game reacts or the responsivness, Lighting, What objects should be designed, What audience you want to aim the game towards ex. Adult vs children, What platform do you want to play the game on, How expandable should it be ex. unreal or doom style engine.
For programs check into 3dmax, maya, lightwave, truespace, bodypaint, deeppaint3d, zbrush, Corel Painter, Adobe Photoshop, Macromedia's Flash and Director, as well as learning different programming languages I beleive c+ should be at the top of the list. I am sure others would argue that point. However once you can get your models into the X format then it is a matter of importing them into your engine using c+ code. Other languages that would help are Darkbasic, Lscript, Python, Visual Basic. I am sure there are several other flavors available as well.

05-06-2004, 06:17 AM
Aclobo. You seem to have the idea that design & creation of content are one & the same. In most real world cases, a designer will create a game design, or if less experienced might do level design, object placement, and things such as scripting.

An artist will tend to be given a design to work from, but (if all is working smoothly) will have little designing to do him/herself, other than the general feedback required to make things work, that might not have been planned for in the original design docs.

I think it unlikely that these days you would be designing & making, texturing & animating, all together unless you are a very small developer with not enough staff.

That said, a designer might find their work a bit easier if they do understand art principles, and how things work in the 3d world.

Books, Books, Books. There are a number of useful books specialising in games design available these days, just do a search on Amazon. Even games & 3d magazines seem to be talking about the mechanics of games design these days. Buy em all.

As for the apps. You would probably find it useful to stick to the key apps such as Max, Maya & to a lesser extent Lightwave & XSI. Oh & don't forget Photoshop, and as a designer, the use of Microsoft Office.... In fact, forget the rest, just learn to produce sparkly docs in Word - cos that'll be the biggest part of the job as a designer.

The key things with creating content, is to know the platform, its limitations, and the sort of texture & poly budgets available, plus what sort of engine will the game use.... in fact whether or not it is even 3d. Don't forget things like hand held consoles, mobile phones & digital TV & web based games.

As Silkrooster says, it is a huge subject....
The answer is 42, but do you know the question?;)

Roger Eberhart
05-06-2004, 08:23 AM
Get really good at painting textures. Since you're generally working in low poly, your texture will have to fake quite a bit of detail. Developing a nice, hand-painted look will stand out over the boring photo-manipulated look. At my job I spend two to three times as long on texturing compared to modeling.