1st project, need help with pre-design phase

Discussion in 'Indie Basics' started by joe52, Jun 19, 2006.

  1. joe52

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    I'm trying to develop my first project and am having trouble locating information to do a market analysis to develop a game design document from. A university business course stressed to do the analysis first, to determine who buys and what they would buy.

    I am leaning towards adventure genre, PC platform, 1st or 3rd person perspective, and point-and-click interface; leaving theme and graphic style.

    Any ideas for market analysis (including point out 3-5 successful games with similar theme, style of art, etc; provide a starting point to work from, etc.), cannot find anything substantive regarding the work done before the game document
     
  2. mahlzeit

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    If you've never made a game before, then forget about market research and just make a simple game. You're already in way over your head, so get some experience with the development process first. (This depends on the role you're going to play, obviously. You can always hire experience.)

    If this was easy/possible to figure out, then everyone would have hit games. People here either: 1) focus on the mainstream casual market, or 2) try to carve out a niche market. In my opinion, you should just make the game you really want to make, and worry about the rest later.

    (There are a lot of threads that touch on this topic already, so make sure to search the forum too.)
     
  3. kay.altos

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    Disagree! Match-3 is simple gerne for programming and it can (it definitely is) be successful business. You can always gain an expirience however :) .

    You sould concentrate on gameplay features and graphics.
     
  4. Kite65

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    You don't mention what your skill set is, so it's hard to help but here's my 2cents

    Just keep it simple to begin with as suggested
    a Simple Match 3 game might be a good start.

    I think there was an article by Thomas Warfield about his early days.
    http://www.goodsol.com/ (somewhere in his blog, i think)
    He built and sold for years, a copy of the windows solitaire card game.
    If I remember correctly, his version had unlimited undo and a few other features that the original one lacked, but much the same card game.
    Still it sold.

    So play some games and figure out what bugs you about them
    Figure how to make it better in your version.
    Change the game play, rewards, shop system, whatever.
    Watch out for stepping on someone else's IP (the lawyers are watching)
    eg Tetris is a bad one for the lawyers letters at the moment for some reason.
    How can you twist your game to be memorable and unique?
    Programming can be hard, Game Concept design is harder.

    The experience alone is certainly valuable.
    It takes a very long journey to design, build and market a good game.
    Still trying complete my first game (pretty close, though)

    As other people have mentioned in other threads,
    Pick something that really excites you cos there's a lot of work to do


    >market analysis
    Look at www.download.com and see what has been downloaded most
    Other download sites have stats as well
     
  5. vjvj

    Indie Author

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  6. KNau

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    Be wary of trying to apply conventional "business logic" to indie game development. I went though that crap taking advice from my local small business center and it ended up being a thousand shades of wrong. Hell, even Pavlina dismisses a lot of the startup advice he offered in the Dexterity days.

    By the time you finish the big technical business plan - all your info will be obsolete. Spend $8 bucks on registering a domain and buy a cheap host for $10 bucks a month. START NOW!

    Start with something you're passionate about. Forget the match-3's. They aren't the goldmine they're being portrayed as. An Adventure Game Studio project is fine.

    Build the business you want sell from, not the business you think someone else wants to buy from.
     
  7. Mike D Smith

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    The Indie Developer's Guide to Selling Games

    I'm going to plug VGSmart's book here. It helped me a ton! Not only as far as the marketing and business side, but also in game design! As far as motivation for the player to play and eventually purchase the game.

    Great book. Well worth the money.

    http://www.indiegameguide.com/
     

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