Over the last month, Sam and I have both started up new projects. The result of this is not only some seriously awesome looking half-way done games, but also a realisation on both our parts.
Game design isn’t something you do on your own.
I would divide the development time for each of us up into the following:
- 20% programming
- 30% testing
- 10% art (we get some help from some awesome friends)
But this only adds up to 60%, so whats the deal? This might not be true for everyone but about 40% of the time, which is the bulk of our development time, we spend discussing our games. Just talking about them, brainstorming, getting all of our ideas about each others games out – and it’s by far the most important step of the entire process.
Being able to bounce your ideas off someone else means you don’t get attached to them. The special someone can help your ideas grow and take directions you couldn’t dream of before. The collective conscious of two game designers is far more than the sum of the two thinking independently.
The lesson? Find someone to bounce your ideas off. Even if they don’t program, don’t do art, don’t test games or even if they don’t design games; they’ll help you out. While you might have awesome ideas, they can only ever be made better by sharing them.
For both our projects, we’ve helped each other think of some fantastic new ideas, helped put things in perspective and helped test each others work. Sure we’re not working on the same project, but we are still a valuable team.