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Does anyone feel like their lack of artistic ability discourages them from making games?

Discussion in 'Game Design, Development And Publishing' started by zrk03, Aug 11, 2019.

  1. zrk03

    zrk03 Member

    Jun 20, 2016
    I was a big active member in the game maker community (the old forum) about 4 to 5 years ago. I had a huge passion for programming and making games. Since then, I've sort of fallen out of that loop but have slowly found myself gaining interest again. I always felt the biggest thing holding me back was my artistic ability. I could always figure out the programming part but the art part always left me feeling hopeless which slowly made me lose interest. I feel so limited in what I can do without some decent artwork.

    My other big struggle that I've always had was coming up with ideas for games. Everything seems so out of reach that I'm never really sure what to do. Like I have a craving right now to program and make something really cool, I just have no idea what to make :/
  2. BaBiA Game Studio

    BaBiA Game Studio Member

    Jun 20, 2016
    Multiple times. Sometimes I just don't get the satisfaction/motivation using placeholder graphics and that then makes me less inclined to actually work on anything. I then consider buying some graphic assets but then I don't feel the justification in doing that if the game I start on turns out to not be particularly enjoyable anyway, or doesn't hold my interest long enough to finish it.

    I really should look at getting past my issue with placeholders and actually building the game mechanics as prototypes to determine if I should continue working on the game idea.
  3. Desert Dog

    Desert Dog Member

    Jul 30, 2019
    Art or ideas are generic issue that you can obviously identify. But I'd suggest it's probably mostly project planning/management. I find that's the bottleneck for most hobby projects. You're pretty experienced, so (programming wise) I bet you're confident you code the game you want to.

    So maybe just plan a project you can managed. Sit down, and breakdown the project into tasks, and assign length of time to each task: Either a weekend project (2 days) or a 1 week project, if you're feeling ambitious. Come up with an idea you can develop in that time: A breakout clone, space invaders, whatever. Map out each workpoint (coding=5 hours, art=10 hours, etc). Build the project, track your progress, then when you've finished, take a look. Evaluate what's gone right/wrong on the project.

    You might find out a few things you didn't know before. E.g. Even on a breakout game, I'll suspect you spend about 3-5 hours in total programming it(which you'll probably enjoy), then about 20 hours on art, and then maybe 10 hours on level building/basic design.

    Now: if you look at those numbers, and you *know* that objectively: You don't enjoy doing art, where as you do enjoy programming/building the game, then for your next project you have to accept you'll have to 'grind'.. force your way through building up that art. And you can plan for that. Otherwise, you're going to be doing art, and be really demotivated.
    Toque likes this.
  4. sitebender

    sitebender Member

    Sep 13, 2016
    Lack of artistic ability won't help you promote your game, but sink time into art and you will get better or just partner up or hire an artist. There are plenty of free art packs you can use.

    It's less about quality of art and more about the style of art and the color.
    Toque and IndianaBones like this.
  5. Toque

    Toque Member

    May 25, 2017
    You can’t be great at everything. You could always work in your art side for some time.

    Stop and ask yourself what do you love about game making?

    Do that.

    If you hate art And are crappy at it. Spending a year practicing it will fail.

    But if you like the art go for it.

    You could work with an artist.

    Get good art made early.

    Game ideas ...... a lot come from my kids. They are imaginative. “That would make a neat game”.

    But a game idea has to be something your excited about.

    I bet if you voiced your lack game idea and posted you could get 50 from users.

    Make a smaller game you can finish.

    Do a game jam. (One is coming up ). If game idea for it is your only problem for doing it pm me.

    Or any game idea you can message me.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2019
    pixeltroid and Khao like this.
  6. pixeltroid

    pixeltroid Member

    Jul 23, 2016
    Not knowing art or coding discourages anyone from making games. If you cant do art, and you dont have the patience to learn from scratch, what you could do is hire a competent artist to help you out.

    But first have a clear vision of what you want your game to look like. Then create an image bank of visual references for the art style you want and share it with the artist you're going to work with.
    Toque likes this.
  7. Niels

    Niels Member

    Jun 22, 2016
    With me it's usually the other way around haha
    Rayek likes this.
  8. Rayek

    Rayek Member

    Jun 27, 2017
    Yep, me too. Art isn't the issue generally. Getting down to some coding? Now, that often sucks my energy dry. I don't mind it, but it just isn't that motivating to me.
    Niels likes this.
  9. The-any-Key

    The-any-Key Member

    Feb 2, 2017
    Agree on both.
    I am horrible at graphics so I started to buy 3D models and software to create characters and sprites for games (it works for 2D games too).
    I also often got an idea what mechanics my next game should have. But I can't come up with the details. But spending $250 on Fiverr will give you a 12 000 word main story with characters background info. With that on hand, you can most of the time come up with all you need to make the game.
  10. curato

    curato Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    Yes, it is hard to have the patience to do everything yourself even if you can do it all yourself. If you just make a game for fun sites like opengameart.org are pretty good. If you are going to professional you almost need to pay to get it done in a timely manner unless you can attract people to a rev share deal, but that is hard to do these days.

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