ForumsProgramming ForumWhat programs to use?

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_Spaz_
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_Spaz_
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Hello,

I am very interested in creating flash games and I figured the best place to ask this question is here! My question is: What programs do I use to start creating my first flash game? I am not going to be picky about what I want to create, I just want to learn and start somewhere.
If I am not asking the right questions, please lead me in the right direction!

Many Thanks,
Spaz

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Salvidian
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Start with Gamemaker. It utilizes a complete no-code interface so virtually anyone can make a game. It also comes with some cool tutorials that teach how games work. From then, I recommend using Stencyl.

Oh, GMLite, not the version that costs roughly $100 or whatever.

_Spaz_
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Ok, thank you!

_Spaz_
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_Spaz_
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If this helps any, I really want to create something like The stand: dead zone but more like Fallout: 1, 2, tactics etc.

Salvidian
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If this helps any, I really want to create something like The stand: dead zone but more like Fallout: 1, 2, tactics etc.


I haven't played Fallout, but this sounds pretty complex. If you're a complete novice, then you might have dedicate a year just to learn how to do the stuff needed to make the game. Then it would take another year just to make and program every little detail, not to mention designing sprites, textures, recording sounds and music, and getting the equipment you'd need, which would be pretty expensive.

Tell me exactly what the game would be like. Gameplay features and all.

Example:
Interactive NPCs
Chat system
Cover system
Vehicles
Level system
Groups/clans systems

^That was an extremely general example. I need specifics, like cover everywhere, ability to control an NPC team, etc.
_Spaz_
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This game came out in 1997, I am not expecting it to be very complex of a game but very entertaining.

This game is played in a "over-view" fashion I guess you could say.
The NPC's move but only in a patroling fashion or when they are chasing you.
It is not an MMO (that could be implemented) and when you speak to NPC's it comes up in a dialouge box.

No vehicles
No clan system
Leveling is gained by experience :P You can add points to attributes such as strength, charisma, perception etc. everytime you level.

Here is a link so you can have a better idea:

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://cdn.steampowered.com/v/gfx/apps/38420/ss_32caf6d7c6aefde20faf6ed4e31009e9740687b4.1920x1080.jpg%3Ft%3D1270602382&imgrefurl=http://store.steampowered.com/app/38420/&h=768&w=1024&sz=294&tbnid=AqJxWVVZERg2uM:&tbnh=101&tbnw=135&zoom=1&usg=__IArEPkNvmf256OJpLDPoKRSyF20=&docid=QC7cnuOTcNUO9M&sa=X&ei=qG1eUMi9DsnviQLKq4H4AQ&ved=0CDYQ9QEwBA&dur=6797

That is just a picture.

Hope that helps!

Salvidian
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Upon looking at the pictures, it looks like the graphics would be a pain to make. From my own experience sacrificing the 3D graphics for 2D saved literally weeks of time. Can you design your own textures, sprites, and all that other stuff? It's not hard to learn, but it'll at up a ton of time. You'll lose interest if you're not devoted to learning. You'll need to crate art for walking, running, dying, standing animations for every interact-able feature in your game. This will take a lot of time and patience, but it's easy to learn how to do. GMLite's tutorials let you skip this process, fortunately.

"Over-view" and "Side-scrollers" are pretty easy to make. I can easily see you making an overview-based game in a few days, except for sound and graphics stuff. Very easy to program. All you need to do is select a few spots for spawning, health/ammo/whatever packs, maybe some checkpoints, and anything else. If you want to get creative and even make a teleporter or something along those lines it would only take a few minutes to do the programming side.

Vehicles are a pain to create. I've only tried a couple of times and every time I got mad and gave up. They tend to get bugged easily and take forever because you have to adjust everything you made fr the vehicle to work. Vehicles = headaches.

Never, never, never, never, never make a game into an MMO unless it becomes extremely popular, like Colony. Too many extra steps are involved. I could go into detail, but since you don't want an MMO, I won't bore you.

NPC/player communication isn't too hard, but it might be a little advanced for someone of your expertise. It doesn't sound like it would be hard, but it's prone to bugs. Dialogue works like this:

>Player clicks NPC/walks up to NPC/shoots NPC/whatever
>Dialogue box created above NPC's head
>Text is created
>Dialogue box and text are eliminated either by player click or timer
>Dialogue box and text are created above player's head
>Repeat until conversation ends

To do each of these steps, you have to create the boxes, write the text, make timers, create cause-and-effects scripts, write "emergency" code to fix bugs, and do a few other minute things to perfect this. This process is achievable on GMLite, but in a program where you actually need to write programming it gets hard.

Same thing goes for leveling. To be honest, I don't know a lot about how levels work, but I think you have to use scripts similar to the scripts that store scripts on your computer. You also need to make a counter to keep rack of he player's progress, and make cause-and-effect scripts to make the player level up. After you do this, merely allowing the player add his/her xp to certain skills to make them higher is pretty easy. Making the player stronger would be unbelievably difficult for someone like you. I'm sure you don't know how to make your characters stronger after they level up. That takes about a thousand more steps. Omitting the level system entirely would easily cut production time in half.

Sound is probably the easiest step. Record the sound on your computer and insert the sound into the game. For example, if the player presses the spacebar to shoot, then pressing the spacebar would create the laserbam, make it move in the direction you're standing, and will make it move at a certain speed. It will also play your recorded sound.

_Spaz_
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WOW! Thank you for your insight! I am thinking about getting friends together who share the same interests and create a small team to make the work go by faster and efficiently. Things I want in my game:

-Leveling system
-NPC with dialogue
-Movement and all basics to a RPG
Pretty much everything you mentioned. Besides vehicles.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE HELP

IF by any chance I have any questions could I post on your profile?

Salvidian
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No problem. I took an internship teaching gaming basics and general programming stuff, so I should be able to answer questions you might have. Feel free to ask.

_Spaz_
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If I wanted to do something like that where would I start?

Salvidian
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If I wanted to do something like that where would I start?


I suppose that depends on your skill. If you don't know anything, then download GMLite and try the tutorials. YouTube videos also help out quite a bit if you're stuck.

Oh, and remember that AG only accepts games made in the FLV format, or flash. When you're ready to start, buy Adobe Flash or download Stencyl. They produce games in FLV, but they're hard to use if you're a beginner.

Get a team. Buy a microphone, game making program, and make a schedule.

When making your game, write the story your character is going to go through. Sketch some art of what you want them to look like. Also figure out what weapons, features, and all that other stuff you want. Then proceed to designing levels. Figure out if you want bosses, locked doors, upgrades and put them where you want them to be.

One you have the "blueprints" on paper, have one guy make the graphics, one guy record and edit sounds, and one guy do programming stuff. When you start this stuff you're probably 2 weeks into your project.

Once you think you're done, play it over and over and over again. Make sure you move you character into every nook and cranny to test for glitches. Die at the ends of every enemy. Talk to every NPC. Test everything. Once you like it, send to AG and wait for that seal of approval. A team of 3-4 people could probably get this done in a month and will spend anywhere between $20 to $200, depending on your tastes.

Oh, and try to do this with friends. Friends are cheap, if not free, and will be more willing to accommodate to your schedule, and it's plain fun to do it with people you know well.
_Spaz_
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I am taking a senior cartooning class, I worked on story boarding and designs for characters. I believe this will help me in the process of making a game. I can already think of one person (friend) that would want to do this.

Salvidian
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Salvidian
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I am taking a senior cartooning class, I worked on story boarding and designs for characters. I believe this will help me in the process of making a game. I can already think of one person (friend) that would want to do this.


That's actually really good. I find the story is the hardest part for me. I'd get some people to help out with your game before you get any farther though. People might not want to work on a game if they don't have any say in how it's going to play out.
_Spaz_
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I have so many ideas that I want to put on paper, I can't draw that well but I can write it down well. I think if I can work together with my team and compromise on a story and have a person who specifies in drawing well put my words into drawing, then I think we can work together very well. I am very open to ideas and are willing to compromise.

Salvidian
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Salvidian
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I have so many ideas that I want to put on paper, I can't draw that well but I can write it down well. I think if I can work together with my team and compromise on a story and have a person who specifies in drawing well put my words into drawing, then I think we can work together very well. I am very open to ideas and are willing to compromise.


Well, considering that most people judge a game on how it looks, you'll need a kick-*** graphic designer. I also helps to do a little marketing work. Who would like your game? Probably teenage males and young adults, right? Maybe stick with dark, dramatic colors. The color scheme on Decision was incredible. You might want to look into how that game looked. It was beautiful. Armor Mayhem also had a delightfully charming look that worked fantastically. Zombotron worked in the same way.
_Spaz_
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Yes it did Drew in my attention! I am defiantly taking this all into consideration. WHERE IS MY NOTEPAD!!!!!?????

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