No announcement yet.

Let's Make Our Own Game

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Let's Make Our Own Game

    Spawned from the Topic: Live in the Past or Live in the Past?

    You know, I think Pingu has a great idea about using the "bucky ball" concept for a Civ Type game. There are some really great minds on this forum. It's a real shame that neither Firaxis nor Activision nor Hasbro nor any other team really have the collective ideas that this Apolyton Forum has. They take a whole bunch of our fantastic ideas, lump them together in a list, and dump it out on a computer print out ... and maybe, if we are real lucky the programmer might take a look at those wonderful ideas and if we bow down to them enough... they just MIGHT put one of your great ideas to work (if they think THEY might profit from it). And if you are real lucky... they might write you an email that says, "...Thank you for your idea ... we used it in our game... you should feel honored..."

    Back to the Bucky Ball world (and or worlds). Bucky balls are the best representation of a sphere (in two dimensions) that we have. No such thing as the polar regions having ridiculously exagerated Mercator projections, and no ludicrous "donut" worlds, (yeah... that's realistic!), just to make the wrapping work in the program. Pingu mentioned that the pentagon of the bucky ball would have less area than the hexagons, and also less adjacent regions (5) compared to the hexagons (6). I think this could be handled in the programming without too much trouble. Your movement ability and capacities would have to be scaled differently for the two types of regions. It would be a lot more tricky than programming "squares" but it would be way more realistic.

    Alright... this is a real stretch, but I'm going to put it out here anyway and let it get shot down.


    I know, I know... it takes thousands of hours of programming to create a real game for the market. And then you will probably lose your shirt on the investment. But look at the games that we like... they are all using exactly the same engine. CIV 1,2,3 CTP 1,2 SMAC/X are all the same game with different story lines and units. Interfaces are a little different. But they are really the same game, with "square tiles" and the unrealistic population growth patterns in all of them, (which, as you all know, is the key to winning in ALL the civ type games.)

    We could create a game development corporation (without a building). The internet is getting to the point where we could all be legal partners around the globe without leaving our homes. We could all work on pieces of the game (or games) ourselves and be subsidised when the game releases and starts to generate a profit (depending upon the ratio of the hours spent by each of us on the game released). I think we could work out some legal monetary arrangement so that one person who worked 200 hours on the game would get his fair share and so would another person who only worked 5 hours on the game. I don't think the money part of it would be as big a deal as the satisfaction of creating something of our own.

    We can do it. I'm sure there are many of you out there with plenty of skills -- artists, writers, project managers, programmers, graphics artists, editors, mathemeticians, historians, soldiers, doctors, politicians, accountants, lawyers, city planners, ... and on and on. We just need to come up with a fair and organized way to put our skills to work together to make a great game. Someone could work one hour a week on it, and another could work 80 hours a week on it (I doubt it, but it is possible).

    Comments and constructive (or destructive) criticisms welcome.

    [This message has been edited by quinns (edited March 03, 2001).]

  • #2
    Three points:

    1) I think you underestimate the difficulty of making such a game.

    2) Freeciv is exactly the kind of project you describe - done by the online commmunity, so there is little need for another. Check out their forum.

    3) Manifest Destiny will also have a spherical map. Check them out too.
    Rome rules


    • #3
      Hi quinns,

      I ... um ... honestly cannot tell if you are being serious or just overly sarcastic.


      • #4
        Thanks Roman. I'll check it out.

        And Hello Chronus! Actually, I am serious. I've been in the computer programming business as a Director and Programmer for 20 years and I am painfully aware of how difficult this would be.

        Anybody else? Hopefully with something positive to say? (Though something is better than nothing.)


        • #5

          Originally posted by Roman on 02-28-2001 08:18 PM
          Three points:

          1) I think you underestimate the difficulty of making such a game.

          Probably true. I'm an experienced programmer, and I know I did when starting our project. Badly But don't let that stop you! Take each task one step at a time, and don't let it overwhelm you.


          2) Freeciv is exactly the kind of project you describe - done by the online commmunity, so there is little need for another. Check out their forum.

          Although there are now several games in the Alt-Civ section, there is always room for more. Check out the games there, but if none of them are quite what you are looking for, start your own! Every game brings its own set of ideas and concepts, and the more the better. If one does match what you want to do, perhaps you can join the team. Most of them are actively looking for programmers and such. And most of the teams help each other out with advice and/or programming tips. It's a pretty good community, and you'd be welcome to join it as either a new team member or a new project.


          3) Manifest Destiny will also have a spherical map. Check them out too.

          Indeed we do. If you do decide to go with your own project, and want to talk about the trials and tribulations of creating a spherical world, give me a buzz!

          Good luck, whatever you decide.

          Manifest Destiny - The Race For World Domination
          -Playable Alpha now available!


          • #6
            Although I would love to be involved in such projects, I often find that they are impossible to control.

            Before you even consider writing a character of code .. the game has to be planned, and completely endorsed by all involved .. else, as I often discover, everybody has their own idea of what is needed, and gets upset when its not included.

            If you are really serious about doing this, I recommend you draw up a list of people interested, talents, and some sort of organised structure, so that Joe Bloggs knows Fred Bloggs has the final say etc ... otherwise it would be chaotic making decisions. ... or maybe each decision is put to a vote ?? truelly, these matters are as important as the game, otherwise its doomed to fail .. as I often say, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail ...

            In my opinion, you can never have enough CIV games on the go ... and any help we can give to any of the other projects is fine..

            I think this forum probably isn't the place to arrange these things though.

            "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon
            "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon


            • #7
              Hi quinns!

              I support your idea wholehartedly! In fact, I support it so much I joined it exactly a year ago (that is where my title comes from). This is, as far as I know, second initiative to make own civ game that this particular forum sparked. The first one I joined

              Dont be discouraged by critics.
              I search for other civ projects via google every once in a while, and well, the number of fan-made and small-company-made civ clones is very small given the enormous popularity of the genre and the number of quality programmers who play the civ games. If you compare that with the number of 3D shooter projects that emerge every day, you have to be puzzled. Why are so many civers reluctant to join a next generation civ project?

              I see one big reason - market saturation with civ games. Personaly I too think civ1 and 2 are classics, pure, beutiful games. Also, there is a number of relatively high budget (professional) games that will be released in next year or two. We will see a genre revival: almost at same time with civIII will come also mooIII, Galactic civilizations, and at least two more very promising space conquest games whose names I can not remember now.

              Many people think all has been said. But the amount of people and ideas on this forum, and the size of the list of suggestions proves that there is alot of those who do see room for improvements other then better AI.

              You should definitely check Alternative Civs section here on apolyton, as Ron said, we are happy to see other enthusiasts
              You can see projects at different phases, from MD alpha version to GGS prototyping.
              If you think about getting some return on the game, Clash will allow you to invest your valuable time and get a share in the shareware release, which is fair enough.

              GGS on the other hand is as off topic and chaotic as they get, but still, determined
              We are celebrating our first year these days(we were supposed to be done in a month, but it kind of prolonged). If you want to ask us some questions or just see how does creative process of an internet project look like, join #ggs channel on undernet at 19:30 GMT thursdays.

              And to disperse some Control and Discipline myths...

              Yes, planning is necessary, I agree. But hierarchy is not - team can function pretty good even if there is nobody with a final say. Ofcourse, that demands that participants are able to talk without flame wars. Some backstabbing is involved, as is sending viruses to each other, spamming email and practicing voodoo. Harmony

              And this is the perfect forum to discuss these kind of things and start these kind of initiatives.


              • #8
                Trust the Viceroy to approve of hierachy

                Actually, the method of decision making is not important .. the fact that decision are made is absolutly vital .. I can't agree that planning is not so important .. for small apps .. maybe, for a group of 2-5 highly focused individuals on a small sized project, maybe not totally vital ... but we are talking about a entire game, with a multitude of people comming in, dropping out ... as we all have various commitments outside .. Planning is key. Its no use if we get 20 map generators, 5 title screens and a few well drawn utils, if nobody is prepared to spend the time to do the blood and guts, and to know exactly what is required in the first place.

                I say, plan this out, get all the interested people involved, .. get everybody singing from the same hymn sheet .. and off you go.

                "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon
                "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon


                • #9
                  Oops.. double post .. sorry
                  [This message has been edited by The Viceroy (edited March 01, 2001).]
                  "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon


                  • #10
                    I don't think I can do much but laugh. In what way would this group "without walls" not be a company if they are working to produce a game commercially? Wouldn't you guys still feel rushed to get a product out to make some money, just like a "real" company? I find your optimism amusing and I wish you luck because your gunna need lots of it...


                    • #11
                      Well those were some VERY positive posts. I thank you all for sharing your obvious previous experience in this adventure.

                      I looked at the "FreeCiv" site (mentioned earlier) and this is not at all similar to what I was talking about creating. Freeciv appears to be a site where they pirated, (I guess it is not really pirating unless they SELL it), the game of "Civilization II" and allowed free downloads of the game, some customized network connection software to work with multiplayer, along with some add-ons to the game of CIV II itself.

                      I'm talking about producing a unique game (or series of games) that can rival any of the so-called professional turn-based games out there. And one of the goals of this "company-without-walls" would be to actually make money from the production of the games, (i.e. not just a hobby group that makes "cool" this or that).

                      The optimism shown here leads me to continue this pursuit. I will check out all the above mentioned sites and games and see if there is already something moving in the direction I'm thinking.

                      Regarding planning... I fully agree with you Viceroy! It would be foolish to start a venture without one.


                      • #12
                        RyanR ..

                        Personally, I would write a game cos I enjoy it .. not for profit. However, its certainly true that if you want to go into the commercial world, you need money .. but in my opinion, if the games good enough, im sure somebody would see it, snap it up, and do the sales stuff themselves .. unless one of us apolytoners has more money than they let on

                        If Quinns feels he can organise this .. which he seems to understand the nature of, then why couldn't he do it ? We certainly have the skills, we have more opinions than most gaming companies would ever get .. All we need is dedication, and if he can get a team of people who deliver .. it will happen.

                        Quinns .. let us know what you want to do.

                        "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon
                        "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon


                        • #13
                          Hi Quinns (plus The Viceroy, and others who are interested in this idea):

                          I'd like to echo one of the points raised by the other Alt Civs people who have checked into this thread. Please check out what's at Alt Civs before you consider starting yet another project. But one thing that most of our projects need is more Mass in terms of people contributing. For that reason I personally won't encourage you to start yet another project for a game that goes well beyond Civilization. Ten projects each with five people working on them part-time, will in all likelihood produce Zero games. Whereas one project working with 20-50 people on it is much more likely to actually go somewhere.

                          I started the whole-history game Clash of Civilizations project something like four years ago. The reason I started it, rather than joining another group doing a similar thing, was that I was completely ignorant that any such groups existed . By the time I, and the other project members at that point, became aware of others making games that weren't simply civ clones, we'd gone too far to chuck it all and fuse with another group to start from scratch. (BTW I'm not trying to denigrate FreeCiv for being largely a civ clone, it's just that if I'm going to put all that work into a game, I want to fix a lot of the other things I didn't like in Civ.)

                          Anyway, other than the buckyball world idea at the top of your post, the Clash Project is an already-existing example of what you're trying to create. Including eventually planning to make money on the final game if it turns out as great as we think it will! So I encourage you strongly, if any of the current Alt Civs projects matches reasonably well your desires for a game and talents, to join it rather than starting something new. Something new certainly would have a chance of evolving into something great, but it is far more likely IMO just to divide the efforts of the relatively few people who are actually willing to work hard to achieve such a thing.

                          Good Luck, whichever path you, and others like The Viceroy, choose to take!,


                          P.S. Our demo 5 will be out in a few weeks, please consider checking it out

                          [Edit 3/4/01 added bold]
                          [This message has been edited by Mark_Everson (edited March 04, 2001).]
                          Project Lead for The Clash of Civilizations
                          A Unique civ-like game that will feature low micromanagement, great AI, and a Detailed Government model including internal power struggles. Demo 8 available Now! (go to D8 thread at top of forum).
                          Check it out at the Clash Web Site and Forum right here at Apolyton!


                          • #14
                            Good luck Mark, Ive been following what you have been doing for some time, and think we even swapped idea's once on Map generators ... (way back in 99 I think) .. (I did a VB app to show you, which uses Random Smoothing technique to produce high/low)

                            I certainly take your point regards to 10 groups of 5 .. but you could turn it on its head and say thats 10 differing projects to fire our imaginations .. many of which, probably wouldn't be so compatable in a single game.

                            Can't speak for other people, but I would always help a fellow apolytoner, in need of idea's/code/solutions .. if im able.

                            "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon
                            "Wherever wood floats, you will find the British" . Napoleon


                            • #15
                              Thank you quinns, I'm flattered you like the idea so much.... I'd love to get involved, but I'd be totally daunted by the prospect of doing something like this, as I've only really started this programming lark.

                              I shall definately have a look at FreeCiv and have a go at playing it... Perhaps that can be done on a bucky-ball? I don't know, but it sounds out of my league in terms of programming. Have fun with it if anyone tries to implement this....