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I am a big game development fan but I haven't done any commercial work in the past. I have been asked by a non-profit to look at developing a game similar to the award-winning www.playspent.org

They want the following features:

  • support 5 scenarios
  • mobile isn't important but compatibility with older browsers would be a big bonus
  • they want it to be visual and audible
  • bonus is to have it easily modifiable
  • support 4 languages

I don't have much knowledge of Flash and would rather avoid using it as a solution. I started breaking down the problem into segments that I will need to examine, they are as follows:

  • ability to read the game flow from a file that they can produce (xml, etc.)
  • db design to store decision tree
  • language challenge
  • browser compatibility

I am leaning towards an Google app engine/GWT solution but I am not sure what technology is best for this.

I am really hoping to get your opinion/recommendation on my approach and on what technology is best. A special thanks (and beer if you live in Toronto) will be awarded to anyone who can help give me a ballpark estimate on how much such a game should go for. I know it's tough to estimate but any rough figure will help (how much would you charge for building something like playspent.org?)

Thanks in advance

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"What technology to use?" questions are not good questions to ask here as defined in the FAQ - see this discussion for why. "Which technology is better?" is also not constructive. You could bring this up in chat, however. –  Jonathan Hobbs Jun 18 '12 at 1:51
    
Thanks, my apologies. I realize now how I could've started a long discussion that wouldn't go anywhere. –  Rami Alhamad Jun 18 '12 at 3:23
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1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Decision trees have (IMO) very little (if nothing) to do with the platform - it's completely separate from presentation.

Instead, it's a programming thing.

You setup a data structure that represents the tree, and write code to modify the state of game entities. Then (and only then) does other code decide how to display the state of those entities.

Consider that decision trees are present in games from text-only telnet/ssh interactions, all the way up to complex MMO environments.

In fact that is one way to imagine how to develop such a thing. Imagine your game only had text to display, and you wanted to implement decision trees. Imagine how you would write that, and then consider how it would be used with a game using visual graphics.

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Thanks! I see what you mean and I will try to tackle the issue along those lines. –  Rami Alhamad Jun 18 '12 at 3:27
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