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chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-14-2012, 09:04 PM)
chubigans's Avatar

In this thread you can share your game project, get tech help from others, support each others indie game releases, and so on. This is meant to be a topic for everyone involved with indie game making, whether you're first starting or a veteran of game makin'. Here's a few helpful tools to make game making that much easier!

NEW Join the IndieGAF IRC channel!

Originally Posted by ActionRemix

freenode.net #indieGAF

For those unfamiliar with IRC: Mibbit. Put #indieGAF in "Channels"







C4 Engine
http://www.terathon.com
Summary by naumov91 NEW!

The C4 Engine is a comprehensive suite of robustly implemented game programming tools for the Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, PS4, and PS3 platforms. Not only is it a powerhouse of a 3D graphics engine, but it also includes integrated support for physics, audio, networking, input devices, resource management, and much more. The C4 Engine is widely regarded as having the cleanest professional source code and one of the best architectures in the industry.

PROS:

+ You get full source code access
+ Source code is C++, professional, and very clean
+ Lifetime engine updates and no royalties for one price
+ Supportive forum community (engine creator is on forums to answer questions as well)
+ Very stable, fast and optimized
+ Horizon Mapping looks awesome
+ No royalties
+ OpenGL so it has Linux, Mac, and PC support, as well as PS3, PS4 support
+ Voxel-based terrain

CONS:

- Engine tools are not exactly artist friendly, but are getting better with time
- Programming and Object-Oriented knowledge is required
- Costs $750 for standard license
- Lagging a little behind some more modern graphics features
- No one knows about it
- No D3D support

"Mark Of The Old Ones" made with C4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wh1sWk6DVLM





Loom SDK
https://www.loomsdk.com/
Summary by Mushroomer25

Loom is a 2D mobile game engine allowing for cross-platform development deploying to iOS, Android, Windows, and Linux. The most notable feature is live reloading of assets and code across multiple devices simultaneously. Loom Turbo ($5/mo) provides access to command line tools, and prebuilt binaries for all supported platforms. The scripting language is based on ActionScript 3 with various improvements. Rendering uses a Starling-like, GPU-oriented API for high performance. Ideal for users with some games experience, this open source engine makes going from prototype to published game a rewarding endeavor.

PROS:

-Live development across multiple platforms. Make a change, and instantly see it on device.
-Open source.
-Familiar AS3/JS/C#-esque scripting language.
-Includes a port of Feathers, a GPU-accelerated skinnable UI library.
-~50 examples, API docs, etc.
-Active developer support.

CONS:

-Docs can be sparse.
-Some features require native code development.
-Only some 3rd party libraries pre-integrated.
-Limited track record (relatively new).





Stencyl
www.stencyl.com
Summary by Jobbs (Updated March 2014)

Pricing tiers

- Indie: $99/yr - Publishes to Web & Desktop
- Studio: $199/yr - Publishes to iOS, Android, Web & Desktop
- Starter: Free - Publishes to Web with splash screen watermark

Stencyl is a development tool for creating 2D games, using a visual programming language inspired by the MIT Scratch project, where logic is built by snapping blocks together. The system is intuitive and flexible, allowing developers to nest if/then/otherwise statements, assign variables, data arrays, and more. Stencyl also comes with a full fledged physics system, Box2D, that allows users to easily apply forces, make objects bounce and slide, set friction, weight, and various other physicsy stuff.

The software comes with built in support for tilesets and includes a visual level editor where tiles and objects can be placed, and behavior for the area can be assigned. The software also includes as part of its interface "Stencyl Forge", where users can share prebuilt behaviors (sections of visual code that can be attached to objects or levels), art, sounds, or entire projects. In practice, building games relying upon prebuilt behaviors from the forge is more of a casual diversion than anything else, and those with real aspirations for serious development will need to learn how to develop their own behaviors from scratch.

Stencyl 3.0 is now in live release, and uses Haxe and Open FL. In previous beta versions, 3.0 used the NME framework. A transition to Open FL has resulted in increased performance and stability. Stand alone Windows .exe exports, in particular, have enjoyed an increase in performance and stability and the program has entered into the realm of viability as a stand alone game development tool. Features are now regularly being added and improved with frequent updates.

PROS:

- Very intuitive, easy to use and flexible, arguably more intuitive and approachable than Gamemaker or Construct 2
- Much can truly be accomplished by those without programming skills, and even more by those who do have them
- Active, helpful and friendly community
- Built in support for tilesets
- Built in level editor is simple and intuitive
- Users can write their own extensions to the engine
- Free version available that exports to Flash and has no drawbacks other than Stencyl branding on the splash screen

CONS:

- Although game exports now (as compared to pre-3.0) run quite well with higher resolution settings by using the stand alone .exe, the app itself can be a bit finicky when managing these assets.
- Tile system is simple and easy, but somewhat inflexible
- Currently not quite as feature rich as Game Maker or C2, but is getting there





GameMaker Studio (Studio Family Options) (Updated March 2014)
Runs on Windows, Mac version in the works.
Comes in a wide variety of pricing, free for PlayStation developers. Exports to PC, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, Tizen, and HTML5. PS3, PS4 and PS Vita exports are rolling out starting late April thru July.
Also available on Steam with Steam Achievements (!)*

GameMaker Studio is the big next step from YoYo Games and Game Maker 8.1, as it allows for easy development across any platform you want to develop for. And while you can still use drag and drop resources to create a "no programming language required" game, at this point you'll need to have a basic understanding of code, as it'll make platform porting much easier. With the newest announcement of Export to Consoles functionality (available for PS4, PS3 and Vita) and the large array of supported platforms, Game Maker Studio is easily one of the most powerful and fully featured 2D creators out there. I can't recommend it enough.

PROS:
Develop for multiple platforms with little programming language required. Support is great and little optimization is needed between platforms. You can make a fully featured game in about a fourth of the time it would take with a programming language.

CONS: Early Release updates (optional opt-in) can be very buggy at times, so the Stable channel is recommended. However even the Stable channel can have "safe" updates that may break a certain feature for a time until it's fixed, usually fairly quickly. It's recommended not to update to the next build until it seems safe to do so (usually by watching the Game Maker Forums and seeing if anyone has freaked out over the latest update). Not practical for 3D development.





Construct 2
Summary by flkk
Construct 2 is a game making tool with a primary focus on making html5 web games with no programming required. However a couple options for export to iOS/Android, Chrome Store, Windows EXE & Windows 8 are also included.

Most of your time will probably be spent arranging things on screen in the layout view, and modifying event sheets to change how things behave. C2 includes a lot of great features such as a physics system, particles, facebook & kongregate connectivity, object families, and a whole lot of standard move/create/modify object behaviors that you would expect to find. However there are also some major ommisions, such as functions, tilemaps, pathfinding, etc. A lot of this is probably due to C2 being relatively new - it has only been 1.5 years since the first version was released and the developers have been regularly adding features ever since.

Almost anything you may need that is missing from the main release, you can find a plugin for on the forums. The active development community is a big plus. Plugins are written in JavaScript, and every object in C2 is written with the same tools available to plugin developers. For those with javascript experience this is a major benefit because for example you can just open up the source to the particles or sprite object and learn from it. (edit by Lyphen: all mobile exports are completely dependant on third party platform tools (cocoonjs and AppMobi).)

Not everything about C2 is perfect however. The main problem I've run into is bugs, bugs and more bugs... just look at their bugs forum, it's filled with issue after issue. The developer seems more focused on adding sexy new features that can be showed off than stability or rounding out existing functionality. Beta releases are frequent, you can expect 1 or more each month, and it's expected for them to have bugs. However it's not uncommon for even the less frequent so called "stable" releases to be followed up by multiple emergency bug fixes. Also features such as the iOS AppMobi export still had at least 3 critical black-screen causing issues when the beta tags were removed. Another example is when a working feature was reclassified as a bug and then 'fixed' breaking backwards compatability and several people's projects. Only for it to get 'refixed' and re-breaking projects again in the next release.

If you want a bug fixed, also don't expect the developers to act unless you take the time to isolate the issue and create a minimal test-case project for them to look at. This can be very frustrating when you have a 3000 event project and something suddenly stops working in the latest release and you have to track down the exact cause. Basically QA is being outsourced to the customer here. On a personal note, I have found this highly frustrating, having spent in total several full time days debugging and now after having finally worked around some issues in the iOS export, I'm back to getting a black screen again with a more recent release. A lot of this is probably due to the fact that the software is so young, and being written solely by 1 of a 2 man company.

I think I could recommend C2 mainly to hobbyists. If you view it as 1 man's achievement, it really is remarkable what Scirra has been able to achieve with C2. But as a professional $400 product, the buggyness is shameful.

You can download a highly restricted version for free, but you will probably run into the 100 event limit in a couple hours, which is nowhere near enough to make anything more than the most basic of basic games. $120 gets you a full personal license, $400 for a commerical license.

PROS:

- Includes a large set of features.
- Frequent releases and updates.
- Neat, fast, responsive application.
- Large set of export options.
- Lots of plugins and an active development community.

CONS:

- Lots of bugs.
- Still evolving, releases may break backwards compatability.
- Free edition is basically just a demo, to make a real game you will have to pay.





Corona SDK (link)
Summary by Crazymoogle
License: $199/yr for Android or iOS, $299/yr for both, $??? for Enterprise
Demo: Runs indefinitely, license required for store and latest SDK builds
Android Version also supports Kindle Fire/Nook
Runs in OSX or Windows (A single license grants two installs)


Corona is a mobile app framework from a team of ex-Adobe engineers. It's a code SDK - there's no GUI here except for the simulator - but you write using Lua, a much easier to understand and maintain language than C. Just code using your favorite text editor, and then all you need to do is load up the main file into the Corona simulator to see it in action. The SDK is inherently cross-platform; a dropdown box in the simulator lets you switch between iPhone, iPad, and Android devices on the fly.

In focusing on making an SDK that was very user-friendly despite still being code-based, Corona's biggest strength is the default modules that come with it. You can display most objects and images using a single line of Lua. Some modules are more difficult than others but there is a wide range of support and most of the time it is a lot easier to grasp than just grabbing any Lua module you find with a google search. To make the ramp even shallower, Corona provides a pretty solid amount of online documentation, forums, and weekly tutorial blogs to help you figure out what's going on.

PROS:
- Unlimited trial
- Much easier to learn than C/C++/C#
- Great default libraries - you can build something simple *really* fast
- Responsive development team and community
- Solid 3rd party app support

CONS:
- Without a paid license you are limited to public builds (usually 4x a year)
- Enterprise license required to run native C code, if that's the way you roll
- A paid license is required to sell your app
- Business app support is still a work-in-progress. YMMV

Good for: Anyone who wants to actually learn how to code and make games, but isn't quite ready to take the C# plunge.






RPG Maker Series (link)
Summary by udivision
$89.99 (RM VX Ace)
$59.99 (RM VX)
$29.99 (RM XP)
Windows Only

RPG Maker is a long running series of game engines created for designing RPGs. RPG Maker has been notable for it's What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get editor and providing creators with a universal set of 2D graphics and sounds (the RTP). Users can also import their own custom graphics to supplement or replace the SNES-inspired resources. Because of its relatively simple eventing system, RPG Maker is easy to learn and easy to use. Since RPG Maker XP, the engine now supports the Ruby Language, allowing players to script features beyond what the WYSIWYG editor can provide.

RPG Maker has a large community of people willing to help new users. In addition to providing scripts and systems that can be plug 'n played into others' projects, the community also provides art assets readily available in RPG Maker formats.

PROS:
-Starting a new game project is fast and easy
-No license issues to deal with, just buy the software and you're set to use it commercially (including the RTP)
-Easy to use editor
-Can be taken advantage of further by those who know Ruby
-Widely available public scripts to add functions

CONS:
-Engine imposes arbitrary limits
-May not be too useful for those who can code
-Ruby is typically slower at graphics processing (?)

Good for: Beginners, programmers who aren't artists, and those who want to make games as a hobby





Flash/AIR and The Starling Framework (Flash) (Starling)
Summary by COOLIO
$600 for Flash CS6 IDE
$50 for Flash Builder 4.6
$0 for Flash Develop
$0 for Starling


Overview:

It seems that quite a few people think that flash on mobile is dead. The reality is that flash mobile web is dead but flash for native mobile apps is alive and thriving. In fact, adobe seems to have placed a greater effort on expanding flash's capability as a game development platform. Using adobe AIR you can deploy directly to iOS, and Android devices (great for non-mac users!) and for Desktop apps as well. The runtime can be embedded so that users won't have to download flash player to run these apps either.

Flash IDE Standalone:

AIR performance has improved tremendously and it is in fact possible to achieve 60fps performance on a wide range of devices with simple vector graphics. If you have a graphically simply game idea that you want to deploy on all major platforms with little hassle then this is the most ideal option that I've come across. Vector graphics will also scale to all those various Android resolutions. I believe Binding of Issac was done with vector graphics and despite poor performance at times on lower end computers it at least benefits from very crisp 2D art. The Isaac team is redeploying on another platform though because they maxed out their .swf (exported flash) size and had to switch platforms as a result.

Basically, for small 2D games on mobile and desktop platforms Flash CS6 is a fantastic choice.

PROS:
-Very easy development
-Legacy of useful 2D development tutorials and frameworks

CONS:
-ActionScript 3 isn't the most useful language to learn
-Expensive to develop with the Flash CS6 IDE (though full flash games can be made with just flash develop, flash builder, but without the timeline)
-Vector graphics are very demanding

Good for: First Timers, people that have a simple idea they want to execute, prototyping, easy cross platform development

Starling:

The Starling Framework is only about a year old and is still growing but it has made Flash an option for serious developers seeking competitive 2D graphical performance. It uses Stage 3D in flash to render graphics directly via the GPU. The downside is that you lose the easiness of flash's signature timeline coding and you'll have to author your animated vector graphics into sprite sheets (this feature is built into CS6), but you'll be able to get 60fps games that will have much more impressive 2D visuals. Even big players like Rovio used Starling to make their web version of Angry Birds.

Basically, if you're making a modest independent 2D effort then Starling is a great framework to use for cross platform mobile and desktop development.

PROS:
-Competitive performance

CONS:
-More difficult than using timeline coding and vector art in the Flash IDE. (Note: with the Flash IDE you can integrate both vector graphics and rasterized (pngs, jpgs etc) graphics together, for example you could have a static vector HUD but keep the action rasterized for performance)

Good for: Developers looking to make cross platform, graphically intensive 2D games

Tutorial:

http://www.hsharma.com/tutorials/






Flixel
Summary by flkk

Flixel is a 2D Actionscript 3 game engine most famous for being used in Canabalt and a whole lot of other games. It originated as a way to rapidly prototype retro inspired games, and to this day that's still what it's best at - although it is fairly flexible. A bunch of convenient features such as tilemaps, pathfinding, particles etc are included. It uses blitting to render, which is faster than the native display list on desktops but not mobile. While it's not entirely impossible to use flash movieclips, they are not integrated into the engine; you're expected to convert them to spritesheets.

Basically, if you want to quickly make a pixel art platformer it has everything you need to get up and running in no time. The further you deviate from this, the more you're going to have to make yourself.

PROS:
- Easy to use / learn.
- Fairly active community with lots of existing code / tutorials to draw from.
- Good peformance on desktops.
- Flixel Power Tools provide a powerful set of extensions.

CONS:
- Poor performance on mobile because blitting does not make use of the GPU.
- Need to convert images to spritesheets.
- Has not been updated in a while with no update expected soon.

Best for: programmers with a little Actionscript 3 experience.






GameMaker 8.1 for Windows (YoYo Games Page)
Free "Lite" version with limited features, full commercial version $40
Runs on Windows
Also available for Mac (details below)

There are two versions of GameMaker available: the Windows 8.1 version and the Studio version. GM 8.1 is a solidly built engine that runs great on just about every Windows platform, and requires zero knowledge of programming. You can easily build just about anything you want, as long as it's 2D. There are a few 3D features within GM, but they're so limited that it's not recommended to use GM for anything outside of 2D.

Once you've gotten a feel for GM, you can move on and use GML, a GameMaker language that's very forgiving and easy to learn and master. If you're just starting to learn game design and programming, I cannot recommend this program enough. Heck, a lot of higher end studios developing major console and handheld games still use GM to prototype with, as you can get your ideas running in just a few hours time.

You can also port your games from GM 8.1 to Game Maker Studio, as Studio allows you to build games for iOS, Mac, Android and more, though YoYo Games (devs of GM) don't recommend you do so as there are quite a few obsolete functions that don't carry over. But it's still very possible to do.

There is also a Mac version of Game Maker available, but be warned: it is an older build (7.x, which has less features than GM 8.1 for Windows). And because GM for Mac is no longer officially supported, recent Mac OS changes have rendered the engine unsuitable to submit for the Mac App Store. If you want to make a Mac game to sell, you'll need Studio.

PROS: Very easy to learn, no programming language required, the sky's the limit as far as what you can do, cheap, fast, and the engine itself is solid with little to no bugs. Lots of tutorials and good community support. Very reasonably priced.

CONS: Sound engine is not very robust, with no OGG support (you'll need to rely on extensions and DLLs for that). GM Engine doesn't do well/gets buggy when wrapped with DRM, nor does it work well with other overlays such as Steam. The engine can slow down when trying to program for larger, more particle/gravity intensive games (Studio runs a much faster engine than 8.1). No longer updated/supported by YoYo Games, who have moved on to GM Studio. Little to no online multiplayer support.
Last edited by chubigans; 06-09-2014 at 05:58 AM.
chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-14-2012, 09:05 PM)
chubigans's Avatar

Summary by fin
http://unity3d.com/unity/engine/
FAQ

License Comparison/Features:
http://unity3d.com/unity/licenses

Pricing:
https://store.unity3d.com/

Asset Store:
Too lazy or dumb to make something yourself? Good news, someone else has and is selling or giving it away on the Asset store.
http://unity3d.com/unity/asset-store/

Learning:
Free examples and game projects:
http://unity3d.com/support/resources/
http://unity3d.com/support/

Unity Developer Network:
http://udn.unity3d.com/

UnityWiki full of free good stuff:
http://wiki.unity3d.com/index.php/Main_Page

Unite Video Archive:
http://unity3d.com/unite/archive/2011

Union:
Publishing system to help get your game out there:
http://unity3d.com/union/
Games released by Union:
http://unity3d.com/union/showcase

PROS:
-Free sku, free projects to learn from, no barrier to entry.
-Can use the free version to release a game, if your company makes less than $100k you're good to keep using Unity Free.
-Engine is a one-time fee for licensing, no royalties, just the up-front price.
-Multiplatform development, build for Android, IOS, Linux(coming soon), Windows, MAC and Adobe Flash.
-Multiple coding languages, Boo, Unityscript (similar to javascript) and C#.
-Create anything from simple apps to complex AAA games.
-Great community, so many online tutorials, you can figure anything out with a google search.
-Can create custom forms and tools.
- Unity 4 (in beta) supports DX11.
-Asset store that with sound effects, models, animations, character controllers, GUI systems, shaders, and more all made by the community or the Unity team. Free and paid content.
-TONS of free content and examples. You seriously have no excuses anymore! Make your game!

CONS:
- Pricing structural is confusing, if you want to build for IOS and Android it'll be $400 each.
- No AAA high production games yet using the engine.
- The GUI system, although there are free alternatives out there. The official new GUI will be in a future 4.x release.
- You'll probably end up spending money in the Asset Store. Which is good cause it saves you time, but can also be viewed as a hidden cost.
- Upgrades between major releases are not free. For example if you want to go from version 3.x to 4.x it's an upgrade fee.





UDK
Summary by flkk
"UDK is Unreal Engine 3 – a complete professional framework. This is the free edition of Unreal Engine 3 that provides tools for creating high-quality games and apps, movies and advanced 3D visualizations and simulations." (quote taken from UDK.com)

The appeal of UDK lies in getting access to a very comprehensive and proven set of tools that is in many ways the same as professionals use when working on Unreal Engine 3 titles. For non-commerical use it is free, but if you sell something created with the UDK you will need to pay $99 + 25% of any earnings over $50,000. The licensing FAQ has a lot more detail, including example scenarios that should answer any licensing questions.

The features included in UDK is a long list... Here's just a couple of the highlights: you get a level editor, Cascade (particle editor), Kismet (visual scripting system), Matinee (cinematic editor), Physics, Scaleform (make your UI in flash) and more. The main limitation when compared to the commercial UE3 is that you do not get access to the C++ source code of the engine and editor (although it is possible to bind homemade DLLs through UnrealScript). However this restriction probably won't limit you in practice... the visual scripting language and UnrealScript give you a lot of flexibility to create almost anything you need.

The easiest type of game to make in UDK is an FPS that looks and plays like Unreal Tournament 3; a demo of it is included in the UDK download. There exists a bit of a stigma that it is the only thing you can make with UDK, but it is provably false. Just look through the long list of UDK titles and you will see lots of projects that are very different. It is simply going to take some hard work and effort: the less you want your game to play and look like UT3, the more work you're going to have to do.

You can publish your UDK games on PC or Mobile (although a couple features are restricted for it to run smoothly on mobile), and some indie games have even found their way onto Steam (examples 1, 2, 3).

PROS:
- Comprehensive and professional set of tools.
- Free for non-commercial use, low entry fee for commercial use.
- Big active community.
- Several released and commercially successful titles.
- Same tools as a lot of studios using UE3, so any skills you learn are directly transferable is you find a UE3 job.

CONS:
- No access to the C++ engine & editor source code.
- Requires some getting used to the proprietary UnrealScript language to make the most of it.
- Unity and Cryengine are excellent alternatives and it can be hard to tell which one is best for your specific case.





Want to contribute a summary of a game engine you're familiar with? Post it here or PM me and I'll add it to the OP!

(Another good resource is over at Pixel Prospector. Thanks Lyphen for the link!)
Last edited by chubigans; 03-03-2013 at 10:11 PM.
chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-14-2012, 09:06 PM)
chubigans's Avatar




There are several great tools in helping you get the word out for your game, most of which are absolutely free.

The first tool is presskit(), an aid in helping you write a good press release for your game to submit to websites. It was built with the input of indie devs and game journalists alike, giving you an easy framework to use to your advantage. Best of all, it's completely free!

The second tool is integrated with presskit(), called Promoter, another powerful tool that keeps track of your press coverage and promotional codes. It even gives you a list of over 600 major websites to contact about your game, filtered by game platform, and a ton of other fantastic tools. There is a limited free version and a more expanded "premium" version that comes in a monthly/yearly fee.

One tool that I think could be a real asset to game devs is the newly launched Steam Greenlight, which gives your game exposure to thousands of active Steam Greenlight users who will give you the harsh criticism of whether or not your game is heading in the right direction...or possibly not. While getting on Steam is a longshot, the exposure/feedback makes the process worth it. Unfortunately it's now $100 for access to upload an unlimited amount of your games, so use this once you feel more comfortable with your game making skills.

But something that doesn't cost anything at all is #screenshotsaturday, a weekly hashtag used on Twitter every, erm, Saturday, that devs use to post any screenshot of their game they want on their Twitter account, followed by #screenshotsaturday. Lots of Twitter folks search for this tag and there's even a great website that condenses it all on one page, so use this to your advantage!

Something I've tried recently with the launch of my latest indie game was GameBizWire. First off, a disclaimer: someone who works there contacted me on GAF asking if I would post this website in this OP. I declined, saying I needed to use it myself and get my own impressions of the service before recommending it to anyone else. So I paid the fee and signed up just like anyone else. These are my unbiased impressions. (UPDATE 5/28/13: Sadly GBW has gone out of business. However the following could very well apply to other game PR agencies.)

So anyways, I never really did a press release before, aside from sending a dozen websites my game info and hoping that they would pick it up. For $120 you can have your press release checked by them, corrected for errors or suggestions, then it will be posted on their site and submitted to hundreds of emails with gaming websites. Now, you have to be fairly good at writing your own press release, but they were very helpful in pointing out things that I didn't catch (I referred to myself as a "one man company" and they suggested I change it, as I won't be a "one man company" forever but this press release is forever.)

The first week seemed slow, as I got a few bites from some websites here and there wanting a press copy. But I noticed that nearly all of the major websites input my game into their game database, so that I would have my own page on Gamespot and such. Very nifty. But the biggest megaton of all: Giantbomb got my press release and wanted a copy of my game, which ended up being Quick Look'd. This was literally the big break I've been dreaming of, and there's no way I could have done it on my own.

While there are many PR companies that do this sort of thing, this is my experience with GBW, and they were all very helpful and come highly recommended. I'm definitely doing a press release with them for all my games going forward.







Once you're ready to sell, you have a variety of options at your disposal! Obviously your mobile game will be sold on the Android/iOS App stores, but for PC/Mac distribution you have a few extra options. If you plan on selling it on your own via your website, I definitely recommend BMT Micro. They have a large variety of cart options (Google/Amazon Payment, as well as all the standard credit cards) and they can pay out with a minimum as small as $50 a month. Their menu system is a bit wonky and direct deposit requries a fee/larger minimum (mailed checks at the first of every month are free) but their customer service is top notch.

If you want to expand to a larger audience then there's two major distribution sites that don't really filter out submissions. The first being Desura, which your game is automatically added to once you're on the Indie Royale. Their audience is a bit small and the minimum before payment is a bit high ($500), which is why I recommend Gamers Gate first for their smaller minimum ($100). Gamers Gate requries an international bank account (basically any major bank in the US with a SWIFT code) for direct deposit.







Yes, the sad reality is that it's more and more likely you'll make a majority of your money with indie game bundles. Here's a list of some of the most major bundles available at random intervals for a short period of time:





The bundle that started it all. The HiB group easily banks over a million on each bundle, but can be notoriously difficult to get in/work with. You must have a Windows/Mac and Linux build of your game, though HiB can help you with a Linux port if your game is qualified to participate. You must also have not been a part of any other major bundle.

This is also one of the few bundles that don't have a locked rate for indie devs- you must negotiate your terms with HiB and the other developers in your bundle. It is very tough, but the results could land you with a six figure sum. Good luck getting into this bundle...you'll need it.





Indie Royale is a unique bundle that offers users a chance to buy a pack of games with an increasing minimum rate, unless they contribute more money to knock the price down for everyone. This is the second biggest bundle available, routinely selling around 11-16k bundles every two-three weeks. Indie Royale is part of the Gamasutra, Desura and Indie Games websites, and can give your game a large amount of exposure in a small window of time.





The third biggest routine bundle, Indie Gala falls a bit short with it's somewhat apparent copy of HiB's style and layout of their website, as well as their confusing structure. However they usually sell upwards of 8k-15k per bundle. I personally don't know any devs who have been involved with this bundle so I don't have too much information about them, but they're certainly worth looking into if Indie Royale doesn't bite.






The Greenlight Bundle kicked off not too long ago, grouping several games rejected by Steam that are now up on the Steam Greenlight page. The goal is to sell bundles and garner votes for all the games in the bundle, and giving free Steam keys for the games if they make it onto Steam.






Indie Game Stand is a website with an intriguing idea: one game, 96 hours, pay what you want, including charity splits, but pay more than $10 and you'll get the previous and future game deal too. So far the sales have been from ~$1,200 to ~$8,000, so this is a site that's definitely worth looking into.


If you'd like to add a recurring bundle to the OP, just post here or PM me!




(The following was put together by SanaeAkatsuki)

Competitions are a great way to get your foot in the door with many distributors if your game stands out from the rest. Below are just a few of the many indie game competitions out there!

Independent Games Festival
Indiecade
Indie Game Challenge
Dream Build Play
Fantastic Arcade Fest
Tokyo Game Show- Sense of Wonder (Note that Sense of Wonder does not have a dedicated site, check the home page for each Tokyo Game Show under "business info.")





Thanks to the OP contributors: Crazymoogle, udivision, COOLIO, flkk, JasoNsider and fin. Also thanks to Stumpokapow for all of his contributions to the indie scene, as well as Mario and all the other helpful people in the last thread. And thanks to embalm for the thread title!

Previous Indie thread: http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=445986
Last edited by chubigans; 05-28-2013 at 04:50 PM.
chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-14-2012, 09:10 PM)
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Also a good comment on finding artists for your game:

Originally Posted by friken

We just went through that process recently. We posted our 'wanted' ad on:

Deviant art
unity3d dev forum
tig
gamedev

We were almost flooded w responses. I would guess aobut 30-40 portfolios via email came in, about 1/2 were really good too for the style we were looking for. We were looking specifically for speedpaint style concept artists doing sci-fi but a wide range of artists replied.

Last edited by chubigans; 11-08-2014 at 12:21 AM.
Acrylic7
Member
(09-14-2012, 09:12 PM)
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Thank you!
I mean it.
Keropon
Junior Member
(09-14-2012, 09:15 PM)
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Same here, thank you!
Pretty great job, OP. I hope that I can help in any way or another in this thread.
RazorbackDB
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(09-14-2012, 09:17 PM)
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i like the new op, very useful information
Wyndstryker
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(09-14-2012, 09:18 PM)
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This is a thread that is relevant to my needs.

Subscribed
Nibel
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(09-14-2012, 09:19 PM)
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Subscribed

Fucking ace! Good job!
qq more
Member
(09-14-2012, 09:20 PM)
Awesome OP. I'm thinking of contributing about Multimedia Fusion 2 to the OP. I have a lot to say about that program!
Bomber Bob
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(09-14-2012, 09:23 PM)
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Originally Posted by chubigans

- Feeling of being in a giant walled garden - can only publish to Microsoft supported systems.

Is monogame ( http://monogame.codeplex.com/ ) any good?
chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-14-2012, 09:23 PM)
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Originally Posted by qq more

Awesome OP. I'm thinking of contributing about Multimedia Fusion 2 to the OP. I have a lot to say about that program!

I've got plenty of room, so that'd be awesome!

Thanks again to all the contributors, yall are great.

Haven't heard of monogame before but I'm sure someone can give you an answer.
bumpkin
Member
(09-14-2012, 09:24 PM)
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Sweet! Nice work on the OP, kind fellow. Hopefully someday I'll be able to make enough progress on my own little project (been working on it since March) to share something worthwhile in the thread. In the previous iteration of the thread, all I did mainly was cry and whine about whatever problem I was having trouble figuring out at the time.

Though I am very, very grateful for all the input, advice and suggestions provided by many of the thread's participants over the past few months. :)
embalm
Junior Member
(09-14-2012, 09:30 PM)
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Great job on the OT! My title got picked, which is awesome. Thanks to everyone who submitted all that information on the engines.

Work on Cairn, our Steampunk/Alchemy punk Real Time Strategy continues:
Our facebook page is up, tons of info on our wiki, more updates our youtube channel, and our news blog gets updated almost every week with concept art, design discussion, and thoughts on other games.

Here is some concept art for units from all 4 of our factions in the RTS.

Last edited by embalm; 09-15-2012 at 11:15 PM. Reason: Added Images
razu
Member
(09-14-2012, 09:48 PM)
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Okay, I'm making a game, called Chopper Mike. It's an arcade helicopter time trial game, with shades B)

It's made in Unity and will be out on iOS, Android, PC, Mac and Browser soon. Check VAMflax.com, (there's an early browser version of the game on the site), and follow @jamielowesdev on Twitter for details...!!

Here's a gameplay video I captured today:
Before this all kicked off I worked at Codemasters, Sega and Sony. I've worked on Colin McRae Rally 1, 2 & 3, and worked on the driving model of Sega Rally Revo, and also worked on Motorstorm AE. I'm thinking of doing a rally game like Neo Drift Out next...
keit4
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(09-14-2012, 10:00 PM)
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Great topic. Subscribed.
PapaJustify
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(09-14-2012, 10:26 PM)
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AAAA Thread. Subscribed.
Popstar
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(09-14-2012, 10:53 PM)
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Originally Posted by Bomber Bob

Is monogame ( http://monogame.codeplex.com/ ) any good?

If your game is 2D it should be good to go. If it's 3D you'll be bleeding edge and may have some problems.
chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-14-2012, 11:21 PM)
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Originally Posted by razu

Okay, I'm making a game, called Chopper Mike. It's an arcade helicopter time trial game, with shades B)

It's made in Unity and will be out on iOS, Android, PC, Mac and Browser soon. Check VAMflax.com, (there's an early browser version of the game on the site), and follow @jamielowesdev on Twitter for details...!!

Here's a gameplay video I captured today:

Before this all kicked off I worked at Codemasters, Sega and Sony. I've worked on Colin McRae Rally 1, 2 & 3, and worked on the driving model of Sega Rally Revo, and also worked on Motorstorm AE. I'm thinking of doing a rally game like Neo Drift Out next...

That is an awesome resume man. I love rally racers. And Motorstorm AE was the best game released last year, hands down. I'll definitely pick it up!
Hinomura
Member
(09-15-2012, 12:16 AM)
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Again, thanks for your efforts chubigans :-)

If someone would like to check my project (expect a betatest in a couple of months), you'll find it here: http://hinomura74.tumblr.com/

Latest dilemma: doing music myself (last tracked music I did was about 20 years ago), or asking for it...
-COOLIO-
The Everyman
(09-15-2012, 12:16 AM)
-COOLIO-'s Avatar
This thread is niiiice
kennah
(09-15-2012, 12:17 AM)
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Thanks for all of this guys. Here's hoping I can actually manage to start and finish a project ever.
PixyJunket
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(09-15-2012, 12:18 AM)
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Cool thread, I'll subscribe.

I was an indie game developer at the wrong time in gaming's history (hmm, maybe 1991 to 1998 or so?).

I actually just decided to try it again, given that development is quite different from working on a Commodore 64 and a 386/486.

I decided to go with XNA since I like the idea of having my game up on the Xbox 360 marketplace. And yeah, I know. But I still like the idea and I'm doing it for fun, not money. I just got a book in the mail to help me dust off the cobwebs and I plan to dive in real soon. I suspect once I get into the "swing," I'll be firing off pretty quickly, considering the environments I used to develop in.

I'm aiming to make an 8-bit RPG with some REALLY clever ideas that I think will grab people's attention that love old 8-bit/16-bit RPGs for their gameplay above all else. I won't detail much publicly until I see that I'm making some progress though. I do not want to come off and spouting off a lot of hot air (and since the idea hasn't really been toyed around with in this genre, it might be good to keep it close, haha).

Of course, it might be beneficial to make a "practice" game first, in which case I have an idea involving Game Boy music and hamburgers.
Visualante2
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(09-15-2012, 12:19 AM)
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Cool thread, I liked to lurk the other indie GAF'er thread. Subbed.

Still looking for something to contribute to if anyone needs a technical 3D person (scripting/programming + Maya 3D type stuff). Hopefully something that is going places as last lead never went anywhere. Aiming to have something I can use on my reel at least even if it doesn't make it to release.
Last edited by Visualante2; 09-15-2012 at 12:22 AM.
Feep
Second-hand Citizen
(09-15-2012, 12:20 AM)
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That title is totally inaccurate.

^^
clashfan
you are not alone
(09-15-2012, 12:20 AM)

Originally Posted by chubigans





Good for: Hobbyist developers, prototypers, and those who want to dip their feet into real game programming without having to wade into dark waters of potentially low-level C++.

You are really selling xna short. Not just for hobbyist. It's not a toy. Plenty of great games done using XNA like Dust: An Elysian Tail, Fez, Bastion...

If you want to go mulitplatform then port using monogames.
Linkified
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(09-15-2012, 12:21 AM)
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I love the OP. Would it be out of the question to mention tools used to create assets with?
Wyndstryker
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(09-15-2012, 12:21 AM)
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I've been juggling between using Stencyl, Unity, RPGMaker, Ren'Py for so many different projects that I really have no clue what I'm doing anymore lol.

Hopefully I can find something that lets me settle on something so I can finish a project lol.
Ventron
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(09-15-2012, 12:23 AM)
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Originally Posted by Feep

That title is totally inaccurate.

^^

In what way?
Feep
Second-hand Citizen
(09-15-2012, 12:25 AM)
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Originally Posted by Ventron

In what way?

Mwa ha ha ha ha
Ventron
Member
(09-15-2012, 12:27 AM)
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Originally Posted by Feep

Mwa ha ha ha ha

Have you made a lot of money out of this? I thought voice actors were poor as.
Warm Machine
Member
(09-15-2012, 12:28 AM)
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Originally Posted by Feep

That title is totally inaccurate.

^^

Your happiness and satisfaction, I can feel it rubbing in. :)

I will be back with Orbitron, and Arcadecraft media. There may be an interesting bit of brand new info interesting to developers as well!
Last edited by Warm Machine; 09-15-2012 at 09:51 PM.
PhiLonius
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(09-15-2012, 12:30 AM)
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Great thread/OP. Subbed.
Blizzard
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(09-15-2012, 12:31 AM)
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Originally Posted by Ventron

Have you made a lot of money out of this? I thought voice actors were poor as.

Feep made Sequence, which is on Steam. Presumably Steam made him a bunch of money and now he's being mean to us. =(
Ventron
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(09-15-2012, 12:31 AM)
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Originally Posted by Blizzard

Feep made Sequence, which is on Steam. Presumably Steam made him a bunch of money and now he's being mean to us. =(

I know that, I didn't know it made him that much money though :(
Lactose_Intolerant
Member
(09-15-2012, 12:32 AM)
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He probably was really poor so the amount he made seems like a lot.

Wasn't he on Wipeout or was that someone else?
-COOLIO-
The Everyman
(09-15-2012, 12:37 AM)
-COOLIO-'s Avatar

Originally Posted by Feep

Mwa ha ha ha ha

You lucky/hard working bastard
JoeInky
Member
(09-15-2012, 12:42 AM)
Nice thread, subscribed.

I've been messing around on a little co-op platformer game after playing a lot of Kirby's Adventure and Mega Man.

It's not much to look at but I've never been that bothered about spending loads of time on graphics.
likeGdid
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(09-15-2012, 12:42 AM)
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Excellent |OT| and subscribed. If I could I would like to recommend Scirra Construct as well
Zeenbor
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(09-15-2012, 12:47 AM)
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Football Heroes




Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICQez4TeJEg
Platforms: iOS, Android
Genres: Football, RPG, Beat 'em Up
Kickstarter Web site: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...ootball-heroes
Kickstarter Goal: $12,000

This is the game I've been working on since Pandemic closed back in 2009. The team has worked on The Saboteur, Star Wars: Battlefront II, and Chrono Resurrection.

Screenshots:







With Football Heroes' Kickstarter, Run Games is doing something no other game developer has EVER done before. You'll get to see how games are really made, unfiltered and uncut!

Developers will have their workstation's screen streamed to the Internet in real-time! This means in addition to seeing what the developer is working on at any given time, you'll also get to listen to whatever they're jamming, and you'll be able to interact with them with live video and text chat.

A little preview of what it looks like here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LL7-tO3zyFQ
PixyJunket
Member
(09-15-2012, 12:56 AM)
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Here's some tile work I've been doing as I prepare to try to figure out C# and XNA.

There's still a lot of work to do (and I'm going to fail with anything character related), but I probably won't be able to bring anybody on board to do great pixel work until I've done something first and shown that I'm serious.

Nemo
Will Eat Your Children
(09-15-2012, 01:04 AM)
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Monogame is definitely good stuff even from what little I played with, deserves to be mentioned with XNA :)

Originally Posted by JoeInky

Nice thread, subscribed.

I've been messing around on a little co-op platformer game after playing a lot of Kirby's Adventure and Mega Man.



It's not much to look at but I've never been that bothered about spending loads of time on graphics.

Love this
Last edited by Nemo; 09-15-2012 at 01:06 AM.
MikeHaggar
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(09-15-2012, 01:06 AM)
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Originally Posted by clashfan

You are really selling xna short. Not just for hobbyist. It's not a toy. Plenty of great games done using XNA like Dust: An Elysian Tail, Fez, Bastion...

If you want to go mulitplatform then port using monogames.

have any links to good tutorials for monogame? i'd be interested in porting from xna to ios. thanks in advance!
Nemo
Will Eat Your Children
(09-15-2012, 01:17 AM)
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Originally Posted by MikeHaggar

have any links to good tutorials for monogame? i'd be interested in porting from xna to ios. thanks in advance!

This might help:

http://supergiantgames.com/?p=1611

They ported to iPad as well and seem to be good peoples with other devs so maybe you can ask them directly too :)
strx
Member
(09-15-2012, 01:18 AM)
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Does everyone hate Multimedia Fusion 2 that much? I never see it included in tools lists.
Anuxinamoon
Shaper Divine
(09-15-2012, 01:22 AM)
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Epic thread. Time to subscribe.

Currently working on an RPGmaker game. No idea how to code, so this is a great engine for us to flesh out RPG elements without the extra stress of having to figure out coding things.
qq more
Member
(09-15-2012, 01:24 AM)

Originally Posted by strx

Does everyone hate Multimedia Fusion 2 that much? I never see it included in tools lists.

I guess it's because it became so niche. Which is unfortunate because it is such an awesome program when you know a lot about it. Are you a MMF2 user too? :D
chubigans
y'all should be ashamed
(09-15-2012, 01:28 AM)
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Originally Posted by Linkified

I love the OP. Would it be out of the question to mention tools used to create assets with?

Not at all! I don't really know much about those tools so anyone wanting to write something up, I'll add it to the OP.

Originally Posted by Feep

Mwa ha ha ha ha

You son of a...
9thwonder
Member
(09-15-2012, 01:30 AM)
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Oh my God I was waiting for a thread like this.
joetachi
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(09-15-2012, 01:36 AM)
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I love to see games be developed. If anybody sucks in the art aspect of a game you can pm me i can work in 2d and 3d.

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