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41

It is often said that game ideas are a dime a dozen, but that's not true -- they're probably cheaper than that. An idea alone is essentially worthless, what matters is that you have the skill or capability to flesh that idea out into a design, and then execute that design. Professional game developers do not trawl the internet looking for ideas to "steal" ...


27

Do not try to do it because you know you can do it. Gameplay should be first, all things (even graphics) are secondary. If the game is fun and enjoyable but has poor (or not so next gen) graphics, it will still be fun and enjoyable and people will play it, and also your metacritic will be good. Otherwise if the game has awesome graphics and features ...


26

A great name can help a solid game gain press and get gamers talking about it. Here's our checklist for naming our titles: A name should be visually interesting. For example, people remember Terry Cavanaugh's "VVVVVV" in part because of the shape of the name. It should be descriptive. When Cliffski named his latest title "Gratuitous Space Battles," people ...


22

Easy answer The cost of running an MMO? In United States Dollars? ITS OVER 9000 (dollars)!!!!! Useful Answer Scope of question So, dividing your question up into chunks, you seem to want to know about the costs of: Development (making the game) Marketing (making people aware of the game) Infrastructure (base cost of server hardware and supporting ...


18

Well, let's talk about intellectual property, since that's really where it seems like your focus is right now. Before I continue, though, I just want to briefly mention that you also want to make sure that you understand where you stand with other aspects of the law as well, things like taxes (Do you have to charge some kind of sales taxes? What sort of ...


16

As made painfully obvious by recent events, 'Europe' is not a unified place in terms of laws or taxation, so giving a definitive answer here would be tricky to say the least. Even EU law is only a guide as each member state implements it differently. Generally speaking, everything is legal until decided otherwise, so it's not so much "how do I earn money ...


15

Keeping in mind that a 12 month cycle doesn't mean that you stop coding at week 52 and shove it out the door, I side with the answers already given that game play must come first and to only add neat features if they help the game play. Ideally you'll have time to beta test with release candidates, so most work except emergency bug fixes and tuning stops at ...


13

If your programmers are that good, then use those skills to deliver on time and under-budget. And between now and the start of your next big project, think about how to better leverage those skills your team has, with the bigger budget that comes with a good track record. But if you must do things this way, then pick ONE cool thing. Not all, not even two -- ...


12

"we have some very good programmers, who have the ability to create never-seen-before features" Nothing personal, but I have to say I doubt it. Valve (to pick just one) has some of the best programmers in the industry, if not the world. Havoc also has some pretty smart people - there are dozens of other examples. They all have more coders than you, more ...


12

This is mostly an unanswerable question, but I'll go through some of the things you mention. You don't have any useful skills to bring to the table - sorry to be blunt - so you basically have to bankroll the enterprise if you want anybody to take you seriously. Your main cost is the people you need to employ. Unless you know what sort of game you're going ...


10

I recommend that first, you really evaluate your concept. What are the issues in funding it? Why do you need someone to fund it, are you capable of building it yourself (or with some friends) sans-funding? To put it the best, and nicest way, I can. No one, will fund a AAA quality game (if this is what your concept is in your head) if you don't have a track ...


10

(IANAL) Patents, for the most part, do not apply to ideas but rather to specific implementations of them. You may be able to get a patent for a specific process or methodology that your game uses, but this is a rather poorly-defined area with software. Also, patents require disclosing all of your information. Coca-cola's recipe is not patented because that ...


10

I recently quit a triple-A development house out of frustration; but, instead of going indie, I found a smaller developer that does a broader array of projects. So, instead of working on one FPS for three years, they do several facebook/social/casual games a year. While that sounds like "more of the same problem", it's actually turned out in my favor. I ...


7

Naming any business in the United States can be a drawn-out, expensive process. Oh, and IANAL. The very first thing, is that you are looking in the wrong place. You should be checking the trademark registry at the United States Patent and Trademark Office Website. There are a few things to consider is the class, multiple marks can exist with the same word ...


7

To have a legal agreement with anyone using business name you need legal ground to use that name. Short answer is yes you need to register your business. There are of course the thing that if you will get paid you need a business to pay taxes for that profit but you can become self-employed which will be easier at the start than starting a LLC (Limited ...


6

Professionals making games with relatively deep pockets have said things like this, 3:55 into this talk Luke Muscat says he took his inspiriation for Jetpack Joyride from that helicopter game everybody's seen. Obviously JJ is way beyond that helicopter game in terms of execution, delivery and the things they built around it (just listen to the part near ...


6

The short answer is "it depends" but let me explain. First off I am not a Lawyer (nor would I want to be) so this is information I found. Company Registration OK Assuming you wish to set up as a sole-trader (which is the comparably lowest start-up cost). You have to consider that the area in which you do your "work" could be charged business rates (kinda ...


5

While I doubt you will find anything that lists games that are in production stages. (The Industry usually remains a bit more tight-lipped about such things than the film industry does) The rest of what you are looking for is handled relatively nicely by MobyGames EDIT: Almost forgot, GiantBomb Also has the same sort of Data.


5

Without specific details about your game development background, your game, etc, it is difficult to answer your question. Could you please edit your question with details about the following: What is your game development background? Have you ever made a game before? Is your current game idea similar (or smaller) in scope to previous games you've ...


5

Well there are certainly copyright trolls around this topic. If you ever try to use the word "Edge" in your game title, prepare to be sued by Tim Langdell Bytes: Tim Langdell & the IGDA


5

Others are saying to start with a lawyer or a publisher. While I agree that a lawyer will be important to the process (a publisher is not critical, and should be thought about with skepticism for indie games), the most important person to answer your question would actually be an accountant. In the U.S. (and I am sure Europe) business accountants have a ...


5

Yes, you do require permission. Logos of corporations are usually trademarked, which means that they must not be used without explicit permission. Copyrights on the design of the logos also apply. You might wonder "Why would they sue me - I am making free advertising for them". Unfortunately advertising works two-sided. When you endorse another company by ...


4

If I had to come up with a system, it would be similar to this: Ask "Would working on the idea break any legal agreements/contracts I signed?" Cross out all the projects that you answer "yes" to. Highlight any "maybe" or "idk" projects For each of the projects that are not crossed out, assign an estimated "time to complete" value Ask "How much time do I ...


4

This one is obvious but wasn't mentioned before, so here it goes: Name should be really unique! Unfortunately I can't think of any examples right now, but there were cases when I heard a name of a game which seemed interesting and was unable to find it because it was too generic! So first step should be to go to try out potential names on Google. Nobody ...


4

This is one of those questions where one has to response with another question: That depends on what you want to do. An MMO can be a mega-multi-million dollar production effort that requires vast server farms to run, or it can be a lean clean web based game that runs on a single Amazon S3 instance or uses Google Application Engine. Whatever your approach, ...


4

If you're seriously considering this I'd speak to Sony directly. Sales numbers are usually considered commercially sensitive, not only between competing game developers/publishers but between different platform holders. As a developer Sony would probably be prepared to provide you with generalisations on some of the numbers for what you could reasonably ...


4

You could try and contact some of the antivirus makers. This could be caused because of a false positive in their database. If it is they will probably remove it. Since almost all antivirus makers share the same database the change can propagate through. If you let them know now and you do eventually publish the game this problem might have gone away by ...


3

Likely the cheapest pass you can find that gets you in. Also, purchase early (before Feb 2). Looks like the Expo pass would suit you since you're not sure what to expect: $195. Expo Pass This pass is good for people interested in an introductory look at all the GDC has to offer. Or if you're more interested in the Independent games summit: $325 ...


3

The better answer I can give you is to do this preliminary steps: 1. Evaluate the offort required to build a prototype. Your prototype should be playable, limited in space (levels or map size or whatever space-related), in features (non customizable colors or static version of dynamic features). A pro if such a prototype may be evolved into a demo version ...



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