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252 - Our Development Process

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:48 am
by matt
In this dev video, I talk about how we approach development and work as a team to make the best games we can.

Re: 252 - Our Development Process

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:18 pm
by evilkinggumby
holy giant bale of bubblewrap...

ok.. admit it.. you bought that not to wrap all your console boxes.. it's to roll around on and listen to it.

POP POPpopPIPpopopopopoPOP


I'm surprised you chose this as a topic, but it is good to see you talk about it openly. Or at least admit that you run a dictatorship, cracking the whip at the infidels that dont accept your demands with a smile.. hehehe

I joke but in a way this kind of setup, however efficient, makes me think " Ok Matt is the Publisher, and the team makes the game, and if they want to stay employed they have to meet his goals and demands when he says they must be met, no matter what". Kind of scary thinking like that actually. But at the same time it opens my eyes that there may be a lot of indie dev's doing it like this; they usurp a true publisher and so that 'hat' ends up worn by the project leads to make sure it doesn't spin in development hell forever.

Not a very rainbow sparkle kind of an idea, but very very pragmatic, I will say.

Re: 252 - Our Development Process

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 5:04 pm
by RightClickSaveAs
What's your writing process like? That seems like one of the scariest parts of a creative project, sitting down with a blank slate in front of you, and just trying to get something rolling.

I don't know if you watched the Double Fine documentary series (they started putting them all up on Youtube for everyone to see now), but apparently Tim Schafer does freewriting when he's starting up a new game, he just sits down for a period of time every day and fills notebooks. It's a pretty fascinating process, and one I didn't know much about until I saw that. Did you ever try anything similar?

Re: 252 - Our Development Process

Posted: Wed Mar 18, 2015 9:46 am
by matt
Well, most publishers don't take a very involved role in development - or if they do, they only decide every milestone (say every month or 3 months) to change the direction of your game, which sucks. I'm basically a director. I get approval on everything, but I value the opinions of the people I work with. They know how to work with me, and it's not like I'm going to fire them or there are threats looming over their heads. If I ask for changes, they have to give me changes, but that is true of the game industry everywhere. Sometimes people create beautiful and amazing art that is too bad for performance or doesn't work for gameplay, and they have to change it. If you aren't willing to do revision after revision on your work, the game industry is a bad place to be. A buddy of mine at a AAA studio was saying they completely re-implemented something 7 different ways, and then ended up going back to the 3rd way. It may seem like a crazy waste of time, but the game received a lot of accolades, so it was worth the effort.

I sort of work like that. I write things that basically amount to brainstorming notes in OneNote to put my thoughts together. Then at some point, I try and make something that sort of resembles a design doc in Word to collect my main ideas in one place. Then I pour over the doc, and revise, and revise, and revise. Then once I have a feel for the entire game, I usually go back to one note and write out specific things. I always go back and revise them repeatedly. I find a fresh perspective helps me look at my ideas more objectively.