Hello everyone, For years I've wanted to be a game developer. I was even on a course in college studying the basics of different parts of the development process such as modelling, art design, sound etc. Sadly I wasn't able to finish the course as, being 26 years old, I just couldn't realistically juggle the responsibilities of college and work. In the end I was forced to go against my own judgement and had to leave the course in favor of work. But the burn to create games has just gotten stronger. A friend of mine, and his partner brought the idea up to start a small indie dev team. Together the three of us have the necessary skill sets to cover most if not all aspects of creating a game. It's still early days at the moment but I'd like to get some solid info before going ahead with the project, largely in regards to the 'tools' to use. First off, we're looking to create a 3D game. Obviously for this we need a modelling and animation suite. As much as I would love to go for Autodesk's Maya or 3DS Max, which I have experiance of using, we can't afford the hefty licensing fees. I've been interested by Unity3D too but again, I'm not sure we could cover the fee. So does anybody have any suggestions for software that's a good starting point? I've seen a few programs such as Wings3D and Hero Engine but I'd like to find out from people who know what they're like in comparison to the higher end software. Do they share the same basic functionality, am I missing out on any frequently used settings or tools if I go for the cheaper or free software? What kind of end results can I expect in comparison to the higher end products? How easy are programs such as Wings3D to use? The more information you can give me the better. Next, I suppose I'd like the same information for programs and hardware to record, edit and import audio. I've dabbled with programs such as Audacity and another by Adobe which I forget the name of. Are there any free or cheaper software which offer a robust offering of tools? Obviously I don't expect them to have the same functionality of the high end software but I'm after software that will allow us to get some good sound quality into our games. What hardware are we looking at needing? Microphones and the like. I would also like suggestions on other software and hardware that we could use for other parts of development such as the audio, level design etc. If my colleagues were with me I would be able to ask many more specific questions about their specialised areas. Unfortunately they're not and I've mainly dealt with the 3D side of things. I'm really appreciative of any and all information you guys can give and thank you in advance. TL;DR What stuff will we need to make a game on a poor man's budget?