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 Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)

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Josh
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PostSubject: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:52 pm

Want To Be A Games Developer?

Written by Mod Mark H

Greetings!

Many of you write up fantastic ideas for RuneScape which show a great deal of creativity.

As you all seem to have such a passion for coming up with suggestions and designing elements of the game, we thought that you might like to have a go at doing something that many Game Developers have to do.

Here is a professional guide to writing a "Games Design Document". This document is used by Game Developers to create games, updates, and/or minigames; it acts as a reference guide for all the people who would be involved.

What is a Game Design Document?

When a Game Developer is going to make a new game or minigame, they will need to communicate with many different teams. You need people to make the graphics, write the music, code the game and all sorts of other tasks. The Game Design Document (GDD) is a sort of guidebook for those people and helps them construct the game in the way you want it to be created. It is also a way for you to get all of your ideas down constructively and make sure that all the relevant information is thought about and recorded.

The Process

Okay, we're going to make the assumption that you have an idea for something. It might be:

● A new minigame for RuneScape
● Your own full-blown console game
● A FunOrb minigame
● Your own private minigame

Whatever it is, we're going to assume you have the basic idea. This is where the "Game Concept Document" comes into play...



The Game Concept Document


You first need to write a "Game Concept Document" as this is what your boss or financier needs to see before they decide to give you the money to make your game.

It will need to be about a couple of pages long. It will help you really think about your idea and if it will be any good.

So grab a pad of paper, or open your word processor, and let's get started! Very Happy

Game Concept Document - Template

Game Project Name: (Example title)
Document Creation Date: (Date of creation)

Story Line:

(Outline the story line or basic plot of the game/minigame.)

Game Play Overview:

(Give a brief overview of the nature of the gameplay. Specify the likely player perspective of the action, the objectives, the control mechanism, the overall game mechanics and anything else you feel is relevant to the game.)

Key Selling Points:

(Outline the reasons why you feel customers will pay to play this game.)

That is the basic template. Below we will explain each of the sections in detail, and then provide an example Game Concept Document! Very Happy

Story Line:

(Outline the story line or basic plot of the game/minigame.)

This one is pretty easy, simply write down the storyline of your game. Who is the hero? Who is the villain? What is the hero trying to do and why? What is the final outcome?

If you were doing this for the original Super Mario Brothers, you would write down about how Mario is a plumber who is trying to rescue Princess Daisy/Peach. Wink

Game Play Overview:

(Give a brief overview of the nature of the gameplay. Specify the likely player perspective of the action, the objectives, the control mechanism, the overall game mechanic and anything else you feel is relevant to the game.)

This is the hardest one, and requires some knowledge of games.

The player perspective is how the player views the game. Is it an isometric top down view like many RTS games? Is it a First Person perspective like Call of Duty 4? Is it a side scrolling platformer like Mario? What about a top down shooter like FunOrb's "Starcannon"?

The objectives of a game are the desired goals of the player. For example, the objectives of a Super Mario game is to reach the end of the level by defeating enemies, defeating any boss monsters and collecting coins. The objectives of Pest Control in RuneScape is to protect the Void Knight while dealing 50 points of damage and taking down all of the portals on the island.

The control mechanism is as it sounds. Do you use the keyboard to move? Or do you just need to click? What buttons do what on a control pad (if it uses one).

The overall game mechanic is the basic premise of how the game works. This is a basic explanation of how the player achieves the objectives and "plays the game".

Key Selling Points:

(Outline the reasons why you feel customers will pay to play this game.)

You need to think about what will make people play your game. If you are writing a members update for RuneScape you will need to think why a player will buy membership for your update. This is a very important step to your boss or financier so make sure you really sell your game.


Game Concept Document - Example

Game Project Name: Wooden Cog Gaseous
Document Creation Date: 10/02/2010

Story Line:

A legendary mercenary, Liquid Lizard, is asked by the British intelligence agency to infiltrate an abandoned army base in order to rescue a number of hostages.

Liquid Lizard attempts to rescue each hostage, who dies of various mysterious illness's. Lizard learns that the base holds a secret weapon called "Wooden Cog Rover" a giant, nuclear missile equipped walking submarine. Lizard must then fight the extraordinary members of the special forces team Wombathound.

Lizard is also betrayed by British Intelligence and discovers he is a clone of his old nemesis "Giant General".

Game Play Overview:

The game is played in a 3rd person perspective, similar to the Tomb Raider series of games. The objectives of the game are to complete various missions throughout the storyline, whilst avoiding enemy detection through stealth tactics. The player will also need to collect weapons and items to help them defeat various "boss" enemies at different points in the story.

The game uses a controller and works with an analog stick for movement, while four buttons provide different actions such as attacking, crawling, using items, and interacting with the environment.

The player can use the environment to avoid the enemies, by hugging walls, choke holding enemies from behind, crawling through tight spaces and utilising items like cardboard boxes.

Each section of the base provides new enemies, new tactics and a new boss for the player to defeat. If the player is injured they lose hitpoints from a health bar. When the health bar reaches 0 the character dies and the player will need to reload the game or continue (at a penalty to their score).

Key Selling Points:

The game sells itself on being an interactive cinematic experience. The game features full voice acting, and the game provides a tense and action fuelled atmosphere.

Many games of the 3rd person genre do not offer a stealth based option, as well as simulating a high budget hollywood action movie.

The Game Design Document


Let's say that our boss/financier gave the go ahead for us to make our game.

They have read our Concept Document and liked it. Now we need to start getting some flesh and muscle on our idea skeleton.

Fleshing it out!

The main purpose of the GDD (Game Design Document) is to add detail to every aspect of the game you want to make. It's all about the detail as your GDD will be read by a whole team of other people who will need to know your vision through this single document.

It also helps you get all the details down you may not have thought of. For instance, what that particular power-up will look like, or how many frames of animation your main character needs to throw a punch.

Tips

● Don't be afraid to take on criticism from other gamers, often our own projects are labours of love and we don't see the flaws.

● Don't forget to have fun! Feel free to draw concept art to go with the document, get friends together to brainstorm ideas and try and enjoy writing the document as much as possible! Smile

Finally...

Don't feel you have to make each section work for you! If your game doesn't have multiplayer, don't write a section saying "It doesn't have multiplayer". Think about this, if a section doesn't work for your game, but another section would be more fitting, swap them around!


Below is the Game Design Document template itself.

This is a mammoth task and it will not be easy. We recommend taking a few days to write even the simplest of these.

If you are writing one for your own portfolio, or just for fun, it helps to include concept art; so get your sketch pads or drawing tablets out! Very Happy

Finally, we should point out the following:

Following the format suggested for the Game Concept Document/Game Design Document will not make it more likely to be added to RuneScape.

So, if you are ready for the mammoth task ahead, get reading! Very Happy
Game Design Document


Index Page; you should add page numbers for each of these sections.

Section 1 - Concept Overview

1.1 - Game Name
1.2 - Storyline
1.3 Game Play Mechanic
1.4 Key Selling Features

Section 2 - Detailed Concept

2.1 - Game World Descriptions
2.1.1 - Location
2.1.2 - Time Period
2.1.3 - Terrain
2.1.4 - Scenery
2.1.5 - Surroundings/Backdrop
2.1.6 - Musical Score

2.2 - Playable Character(s)
2.2.1 - Description
2.2.2 - Definition
2.2.3 - Aims/Motivations
2.2.4 - Abilities
2.2.5 - Animations Required
2.2.6 - Special Effects Required
2.2.7 - Sound Effects Required

2.3 - Non-Player Game Items
2.3.1 - Description
2.3.2 - Location
2.3.3 - Aims/Motivations/Reactions
2.3.4 - Abilities
2.3.5 - Animations
2.3.6 - Sound Effects

2.4 - Collectables/Objectives
2.4.1 - Description
2.4.2 - Location
2.4.3 - Qualities
2.4.4 - Game Effects
2.4.5 - Graphics
2.4.6 - Sound Effects

Section 3 - Game Section

3.1 - Game Text Description

3.2 - Intro Sequence
3.2.1 - Intro Text
3.2.2 - Intro Graphics
3.2.3 - Intro Sound

3.3 - Main Menu

3.4 - Tutorial

3.5 - Starting a Game

3.6 - Game Status Elements
3.6.1 - Graphic Qualities

3.7 - Playing a Game
3.7.1 - Game Play Mechanic
3.7.2 - Players Viewpoint
3.7.3 - Controls

3.8 - Members Benefits

3.9 - Failing to Complete
3.9.1 - A Level or Stage
3.9.2 - The Game

3.10 - Completing
3.10.1 - A Level or Stage
3.10.2 - The Game

3.11 - Achievements

3.12 - Multiplayer
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:53 pm

Game Design Document - Explanation


Section 1 - Concept Overview

The details in this section largely replicate those from the Game Concept Document, although they should be expanded upon where possible to present a fuller picture of the final game.

1.1 - Game Name

Indicate the proposed name of the game and the reasons, if any, for this choice. The game name is important as it is one of the key elements by which the player will be enticed to play the game.

1.2 - Storyline

A description of the game’s plot if relevant.

1.3 - Game Play Mechanic

An overview of the essential game mechanic, the way the game is displayed to the customer and the basic control mechanism.

1.4 - Key Selling Features

The reasons why the customer is going to want to pay money to play this game.

Section 2 - Detailed Concept

2.1 - Game World Description

An overview of the game environment. Describe as required the locations which the game takes place. List the likely number of levels and stages should the game be level based. Describe the overall feel of the world, e.g. cutsy, post apocalyptic, manga etc.

2.1.1 - Location

Where is the game stage in question? What view of the game world will the player have (e.g. top-down, side scrolling etc.). For multiple world locations, each must be described.

2.1.2 - Time Period

An overview of the rough time period for when the game is set. This is obviously a parallel to the real world and, as such, may not apply to all games.

2.1.3 - Terrain

Describe in detail the nature of the terrain over which the game is played.

E.g. If the game is played as an arboreal platform game, the terrain may well be the limbs and trunks of large trees through which the player character is leaping.

Graphical Details

Describe the general look of the graphics you require for the terrain areas in the game. Go into details as required by the game concept concerning the number of terrain tiles required, the size of these tiles and the total size of the game worlds.

2.1.4 - Scenery

Describe in detail the nature of the scenery that exists within the game. These will be the items that exist.

2.1.5 - Surroundings/Backdrop

Describe in detail the number of background layers that the game world will possess and the look and feel of each background layer.

2.1.6 - Musical score

Where relevant list the different musical score by world.

2.2 - Playable character(s)

Each playable character in the game must be described in full.

2.2.1 - Description

Describe the character in broad concept terms. For example: In a puzzle game the character may well not be relevant but some description of the mechanic used to complete the game can be included here.

2.2.2 - Definition

Define the size of the character, their expected colouration and any other specifics relevant.

2.2.3 - Aims/Motivations

Describe what the character is attempting to do within the game.

2.2.4 - Abilities

List all abilities that the character possess. For example:

Move Left
Mover Right
Jump Up
Climb Down
Move and jump
Cast Spell
Etc.

2.2.5 - Animations Required

List all the expected animations that the character will require.

2.2.6 - Special Effects Required

List any special effects that the character will require, e.g. Spells, energy shields, etc.

2.2.7 - Sound Effects Required

List all the expected sound effects that the character will require.

2.3 Non Player Game Items

This relates to any in-game item that is not either the player character or an objective or collectable item for the player character, with which the player character can interact. It includes enemies, static obstacles etc.

2.3.1 - Description 1

Describe the item in question.

2.3.2 - Location

Where can the item be found? Does it only appear at specific locations/levels etc.

2.3.3 - Aims/Motivation/Reactions

Describe the items aims. Will it move in a preset pattern? Will it move in a random pattern? Does it wait for the player character to interact with it.

2.3.4 - Abilities

Describe it's abilities: Does it move? Can it attack? Will it run away?

2.3.5 - Animations

Describe in detail the animations required to make this item perform in the manner required.

2.3.6 - Sound Effects

Describe in detail the sound effects that this item will require.

2.4 Collectables/Objectives

Each item that the player can either pick up, use, or in some other way interact with in a positive manner needs to be identified here. These can be power ups, way points, time gates etc.

2.4.1 - Description 1

Describe the item, including the physical properties of the item.

2.4.2 - Location
Describe where this item is likely to be found.

2.4.3 - Qualities
What does this item do in terms of it's own physical properties? Does it move? Does it pulsate?

2.4.4 - Game Effects
What effect does this item have on the Player character.

2.4.5 - Graphics

Sprite:

What graphics does the item need in its own right?

Character Effect:

Does the item have any graphical effect once the player character has interacted with it?

2.4.6 - Sound Effects

What sound effects does this item require.

Section 3 - Game Section

3.1 Game Text Description

In this section you should describe the physical properties of the games text. Does the game require its own font, what colour should the text be, do you require the text to be capitalised throughout the game.

3.2 - Intro Sequence

Describe the games intro sequence as you envisage it to take place.

3.2.1 - Intro Text

Write your proposal for the games passage of introductory text.

3.2.2 - Intro Graphics

Describe any graphics required by your intro. Any graphical effects, static images or animations.

3.2.3 - Intro Sound

Describe any sound or music that the intro requires.

3.3 - Main Menu

Indicate the games main menu elements.

All games should include the following menu items.:
• Start Game
• Instructions
Others are optional depending on the game play:
• Multiplayer.
• View Highscores.
• Options
Etc.

3.4 - Tutorial

Does the game require a tutorial? If so indicate how the tutorial will work and what will be demonstrated.

3.5 - Starting a Game

What happens when the player starts the game?

3.6 - Game Status Elements

What elements are displayed to the player during the course of the game? Where are the elements displayed?
E.g. Number of lives, time remaining, time elapsed, etc.

3.6.1 - Graphic Qualities.

Describe the proposed graphics you wish for the game status elements.

3.7 - Playing a Game

3.7.1 - Game Play Mechanic

Go into the detail of the games basic play mechanic.

3.7.2 - Players Viewpoint

Describe what the player sees in there view of the game.
• The Players point of view
• The size of the viewable area in game terms and where possible the pixel size of the viewable area.

3.7.3 - Controls

Describe the controls of the game, listing all controls the player will need to be able to use. Also indicate if you plan to allow the player to determine their own controls.

3.8 - Members Benefits

In general terms describe the elements of the game which will be locked as member only items. It is highly likely that this will change as the game progresses but you should indicate the rough outline of the Free/Members only split at an early stage where possible.

3.9 - Failing to Complete

3.9.1 - Level or Stage

Describe under what circumstances a player would fail to complete a level or stage in the game and further elaborate on what occurs when a level/stage is failed.

3.9.2 - The Game

Describe under what circumstances a player would fail to complete the game in its entirety and further elaborate on what occurs when the game is failed.

3.10 Completing

3.10.1 - Level or Stage

Describe under what circumstances a player would complete a level or stage in the game and further elaborate on what occurs when a level/stage is failed.

3.10.2 - The Game

Describe under what circumstances a player would complete the game in its entirety and further elaborate on what occurs when the game is completed.

3.11 - Achievements

List in order the achievements that will be present within the game. Note that this section can be completed when a better understanding of the games structure is available.
Achievement 1
• Award criteria
• Award Icon description
Achievement 2
• Award criteria
• Award Icon description

And so on.

3.12 - Multiplayer

Does the game have any form of multiplayer functionality? If so describe the nature of the multiplayer game and highlight any differences from the single player version.
• Type of multiplayer, networked, hotseat, etc.
• Type of game play, Player vs Player, Team Vs Team, etc.
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Josh
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:57 pm

First question,
Will it be F2P or P2P?
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Fri Jul 10, 2009 11:13 pm

What the hell, Josh?
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Fri Jul 10, 2009 11:27 pm

..............i read the entire thing and now i got a head ache but im with ya i think its a good idea
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Fri Jul 10, 2009 11:44 pm

shadow wrote:
..............i read the entire thing and now i got a head ache but im with ya i think its a good idea
Gratz Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sat Jul 11, 2009 2:31 pm

Dude, thats even longer then my epic tales. I read half then stopped
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sat Jul 11, 2009 3:27 pm

Jesus Christ... Why did you make me read that?!?!
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sun Jul 12, 2009 1:37 pm

You didn't HAVE to. O.o
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sun Jul 12, 2009 4:18 pm

*reads second half* Brain overload!!!!! *head explodes*
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sun Jul 12, 2009 5:45 pm

I'm so evil. >=]
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sun Jul 12, 2009 11:04 pm

But see, I DID read it all. I guess we're going to try and make a mini-game?
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Sun Jul 12, 2009 11:44 pm

Josh, you need to learn how to write memos.
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PostSubject: Re: Let's try to make a RS minigame. :)   Mon Jul 13, 2009 2:20 pm

Yes, please.
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