What's your drive when making a video game?

Discussion in 'Game Design, Development And Publishing' started by nicognito, Sep 9, 2017.

  1. nicognito

    nicognito Member

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    My question is simple, maybe already asked... I was wondering, when you're a solo developer, what is your "drive", the things that keep you motivated to work or complete your video game? (love of video game, game as art, financial revenue, delighting gamers, learning, being famous... ?). I feel like hearing your stories could keep me motivated.

    Some context:
    I'm new to Game Maker, got my GMS 2 license a few weeks ago, and somehow I already feel discouraged by the language and the development tool :oops: I'm a software engineer by day (I've been used to more robust languages and better IDEs, which explain partly why I feel a bit discouraged by GMS :p), but I love video games since I was a kid and I always dreamed about making my own game... I've seen completed/work-in-progress games on this forum, and I'm amazed by what people accomplished: even if by some standards, I would say some games looked not great or bad, I'm not even sure I would be able to achieve a third of what people did (this is the big part that discourages me).

    Almost 9 years ago when I was at work, I had a simple, crazy, stupid idea for a video game, yet somehow amazing, at least to me... I made a prototype in JavaScript+HTML5, and it was... just a prototype (I was learning JavaScript at the time at work). Six years later, about the time Apple released the Swift language for iOS, there were some big financial issues with my family, and somehow, I felt I had to work again on my game, rewriting it completely in Swift + SpriteKit, thinking I could help my family if the game was a hit (yes, it was silly, but when in a bad emotional state, you're not rational at all :()... In a month, I made my new prototype based on the same stupid idea, and it was a cool prototype this time, which impressed some of my friends at work and even my little brother who is also a gamer... And then I gave up again. Three years later (nowadays), I'm starting it again, but with Game Maker this time, hoping game development would be easier or more portable to other platforms. I chose it, because I loved Spelunky, Hotline Miami, and of course Hyper light drifter, and I knew they were developed with GMS. My game is not of that level at all, but I think the idea in it is crazy enough that if realized properly, people could really talk about it (in a good way or bad way). Anyway as a solo developer, I want to make my own game, one that people will like and which will delight them. But I don't know if I have the strength or motivation to finish it... (If I do, be sure that I will share the work-in-progress here :))

    Thanks for reading.
     
  2. chance

    chance predictably random Forum Staff Moderator

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    You left out the most important reason (for me, at least). Or maybe you felt it was self-evident. Anyway, the reason is because developing games is fun. To me, no matter what other motivations you might have, having fun with the process is foremost.
     
  3. blackstrawhat

    blackstrawhat Member

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    i love video games since i kid, and FUN that what i got when first time know gamemaker, ez to understanding, but tired to developing 1 man game... :D
    hard to develope HIts Game to get financial revenue, but Rancho already said: Pursue excellence and success will come chasing you. Pants down haha from 3idiot quotes, so i just develope game maybe 1 day my game will got HIT hahaha, sorry for my bad english
     
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  4. Smiechu

    Smiechu Member

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    I have just a creative soul... creating makes me happy... starting with Lego bricks when was a kid... learing and playing multiple instruments in school... starting to compose music when was a teenager... starting a recording studio on university... studying mechanical engineering... working as design engeneer... and now trying to make my first game... learning to make some simple graphics... combining my all creative forces in one point...
    My motivation is seeing as my creation grows and slowly takes final shape...

    The thing I don't understand in your story is that you are a software engeneer already... than what the hell you need GMS for anyway? GMS takes of your back the weight of developing the graphic, sound and some other engines... you can concentrate on the gameplay from the very beginning... But in my opinion as a software engeneer you should be able to handle this things without any problems in C+, Java or any other "mainstream" language...

    On the other hand when you need to sit 8+ hours in work and then go home and do the same thing... can be simply boring... and maybe that's the point...
     
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  5. RichHopefulComposer

    RichHopefulComposer Member

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    "I don't understand. You're a farmer. Don't you know how to use a hoe? Why would you use a tractor to till your fields?"

    That's basically the question you're asking right now. :p

    GM is an amazing tool for game development, no matter what your skill level is. You realize the majority of professional games are made using third party engines, right? ;p

    For the topic question: I'm motivated because I like to make things, and because my game is going to be amazing, and I want to see it finished. Money is probably an equal motivator, though I only want money for the freedom it grants. Not having to worry about food, rent, or medical expenses for me or my family would be a huge boon as an artist. Fame is a motivator too, but barely; I'm almost sure I won't care at all for it. Real acceptance comes from the inside.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2017
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  6. BattleRifle BR55

    BattleRifle BR55 Member

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    I started my FPS in August 2006, but I had started making a shooter in early 2004. Initially it was to make Halo 2 the way I thought it was going to be like, but I wasn't skilled enough to actually even start any programming, so it was mostly just environment work while I studied a few game programming books. Once I discovered Game Maker 6.1 in 2006, I started with a Half-Life 2 remake until I became proficient enough to start making a unique title, one that blossomed into something I never would have expected, taking ideas and visions for story elements, locations and environment styles that I've nurtured over the last couple decades.

    While I get pure enjoyment seeing anything come to life, even if they're little things like how a menu element behaves, it's the environment design that gets me the most. I'm trying to get my levels to feel like sections in a grand world rather than pathways littered with natural borders, looking into the distance and feeling like those places are real areas to traverse to, which in most cases, you do. It's an awe-inspiring feeling to approach these grand structures in the distance and then be able to look back and see just how far you've come. The environment design is the biggest reason why it's been over a decade and I'm still not done. The locations don't just have to look great, they have to feel great.

    My FPS, Let Live, is something that I feel is a little unique in the way the story and levels play out (more so in the latter half than the former) and I can't wait to see how people will react to it.

    Oh, and this
    [​IMG]
     
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  7. Guest User

    Guest User Guest

    i don't have a drive, and i prefer not to use motivation as a factor in whether or not i do something. for me, game development is a time-waster. it keeps me busy in lieu of playing clicker games, watching TV, playing vidya games, or other unproductive nonsense.

    over time, i've ended up with something that looks and feels like a game. it looked and ran like complete **** when i started, now it does not (niche genre and choice of graphics style aside).

    this isn't ideal if you want to be a real gamedev, ofc, but either way i wouldn't burden yourself with the doom and gloom of "not getting anywhere", "not making anything worthwhile", and/or other worrywart concerns. you have more important things to be doing, like making your game.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 9, 2017
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  8. Smiechu

    Smiechu Member

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    ...and you realize that majority of break-through games base on new custom made engines?
     
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  9. RichHopefulComposer

    RichHopefulComposer Member

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    Correlation does not equal causation, my friend. The studios that have half billion dollar budgets for their games are also more likely to roll their own engines, yeah. That doesn't mean that's an ideal route for indie devs (it's usually not). When you get a few years of programming experience under your belt, you'll learn that for yourself, though. ;)
     
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  10. nicognito

    nicognito Member

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    Thanks, everyone :) What you're all saying is very encouraging.

    @chance: nope, I forgot the fun factor! This may be why I keep getting unmotivated, because I keep forgetting it, when the challenge is too high or difficult :oops: In some few moments of my game development, I truly had fun, and was happy to overcome difficulties: thinking about it, those overweight all the hard moments I had.

    @Smiechu: software engineers, or engineers in general are supposed to be people who can "build" solutions to problems. I could learn how to paint all the walls by reading docs online, watching youtube videos, then I buy all the brushes, paints and tools I need to do the work. But in no way I'll be able to paint the Mona Lisa or like Van Gogh :p

    I started my game based on a funny idea, which actually kind of hard to implement and optimize: that was a fun challenge. I started the coding in JavaScript because I was learning the language for my job at the time. Then 3 years ago I ported and improved the code on iOS Swift, because I'm Apply fanboy I guess :p (good modern language, but I feel it's very inspired by the Scala language, which is a 100x more complete). Then I gave up again. Now I want to be more serious, have fun developing my game, and I chose to use GMS. When you're a software engineer, you need to evaluate different solutions/tools and GMS seemed to be what I need (despite a few issue, like the language which is a bit archaic), and you want to be "lazy" in a good way (i.e. don't reinvent the wheel). The problems I had when choosing a tool: (1) I wanted to target mobile phones and not only Android (as a developer, it's better if I can write my code once and target multiple platforms, so the development is faster, but the application may run slower because it's not written/optimized in the native language; e.g. my Swift prototype is still 4x faster than my GMS prototype, in the initialization part... it's an acceptable compromise); (2) I knew GMS because some indie games I loved were developed with it; (3) I wanted to make a 2D game and I needed a tool that simplify game development (e.g. I don't feel like writing a game loop, organize my project with sprite/tiles, etc... although I could); (4) I wanted a strong (and cool!!) community around the tool I would use, including a way to get or buy assets/libraries/etc from there...; (4) I wanted something not too expensive too, something I could pay once and be done with it :D

    @BattleRifle BR55: now can't wait to see your game :) (and Ferrari!)
     
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  11. Rivo

    Rivo 7014

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    I want it as a career because it's a good way to feed my creative hunger. And because i'm good at designing games and am now a lot better at programming. Once I release my current game I'll make a good amount of money with it once it's released. Then I'll use that money to make more and then I'll buy my mega yacht and live happily ever after in my English estate in the countryside. Then i'll jet off to my holiday home abroad every winter :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

    Lamborghini******************************* (I know because i've pre-booked one for when I'm rich ;) )
     
  12. BattleRifle BR55

    BattleRifle BR55 Member

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    [​IMG]
     
  13. RangerX

    RangerX Member

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    My motivation is that I want to make a videogame. Sounds crazy right? Completing my project is the main thing. Because I think I can make a good game.
    And along the way, if ONE, only one person like what I am doing, this honestly refunds all the hours I did put in the project and more. It really make my day.
     
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  14. Yal

    Yal GMC Memer GMC Elder

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    My drive for making a game is that it lets me make my fantasies and dreams come alive and exist outside my head. Creating worlds that are fun to explore with characters that are fun to meet, that kind of stuff. When I design levels, I usually only have very detail-less plans and make up most of it as I go along, because I'm basically exploring the concepts as I make them.
     
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  15. Matt Hawkins

    Matt Hawkins Member

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    When I make a game my main motivation is my desire to crush my enemies, to see them driven before me, and to hear the lamentations of their women...
     
  16. RangerX

    RangerX Member

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    [​IMG]

    I hope am not your ennemy! lol
     
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  17. Matt Hawkins

    Matt Hawkins Member

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    Any friend of Game Maker is a friend of mine :)
     
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  18. BiTrunade

    BiTrunade Member

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    I got rejected many times that I really forgot how developing games is fun, thanks for reminding me !

    Anyway, for the sake of this topic, what keeps me motivated is the success of others like True Valhalla, seeing people make games for living is inspiring, what blocks me from making games is the graphics and how unprofessional my art is, that what lead me to web development --which requires less art-- but @chance reminded me how fun it is, now I am gonna head to GM:S and start a fun project, thanks !
     
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  19. LoadingDevelopment

    LoadingDevelopment Member

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    My drive it's my hate for society and how people are behaving with each other.

    :mad:
     
  20. sitebender

    sitebender Member

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    Making games is fun to me. Making games is my game now. Its my entertainment even if most would consider it work. It has to be for the fun due to the money I'll never get back.

    Some people have so much fun making a game they never finish it and it goes on with feature creep. Once the game is done, they don't know what to do... well other than keep adding to the game.

    There are complete games and then there's taking games to market, which is a whole other bag of worms. When it stops being fun, its time to move on. Meanwhile, taking games to market... once people stop getting excited for a game its time to finish it and or move on to something people can get excited about.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
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  21. Andy

    Andy Member

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    I like taking ideas and bringing them to life. I enjoy the challenge, and learning new things. :)
     
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  22. Tulloch

    Tulloch Member

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    I enjoy creating a world melded from my own thoughts and ideas. It's a creative outlet to some. I dream of the day I watch someone play my game and they break it all down and destroy it out of their own passion.
     
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  23. J_C

    J_C Member

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    A Classic forever. I just hear you saying it in Arnold's voice.
     
  24. WarpDogsVG

    WarpDogsVG Member

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    One of my favorite games ever is Dwarf Fortress, and a big reason why is its developer, Tarn Adams. He's done interviews where he explains how he and his brother only work on games that they themselves would actually play.

    It's so obvious, but this was a real wakeup call for me. Prior to reading things like that I had always assumed professional game development must be brutal - you work thousands of combined hours on a game that you might not even like in the first place. How could you feel anything other than disdain for it by release?

    Tarn's attitude spoke to me. It made me realize that it was possible to only work on games that you yourself would play at the end. It's been my absolute biggest driver ever since. My current game, Village Monsters, is a life sim game that uses a lot of simulated systems in sort of a 'sandbox' style, and when it's done I feel confident in being able to still enjoy it. The next game I have on the horizon is a game that uses procedural generated histories - same deal there.

    It's also why I'll never work on more linear game
     
  25. Ladi_Pix3l

    Ladi_Pix3l Member

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    I just wanna be accepted....that's my drive I guess
     
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  26. Guest User

    Guest User Guest

    hey! Dwarf Fortress is great, and the only reason i'm here is because Tarn and my love for DF inspired me to make a game i'd like to play as well.

    pretty cool.
     
  27. Elodman

    Elodman Member

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    If not having better plans & chance from life , then just recite that sports Co's motto, coz obeying that

    • will develop / train brain in some way (taste, arts, logic, organizing)
    • is a form of expression, accomplishment, creativity (instead of writing books, playing instruments)
    • can grant a tolerable career (either as a self- or hortator-employed)
    • old fart coders could contemplate, how languages & tools have been evolving. Not a bad thing to taste, & find new ways among old barriers (now within few hours).
    ... oh those experimental times...birth of platformers, 2.5D, pseudo 3D, 48k Mike Singleton opuses, C-64 composers, ...
     
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  28. JackTurbo

    JackTurbo Member

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    A number of things drive me to work on my project.

    • The desire to build the game I've always wanted to play
    • I've always created fantasy worlds since I was a kid, these would usually be confined to series of drawings when I was younger. Now though I really want the chance to realise one of these worlds in a more substantial way.
    • After years working as a graphic/digital designer, I no longer want to be making things for other people
    • I really love games, I love playing them and I enjoy making them.
    • while im self taught and still very much a beginner, I really enjoy the challenge of programming. Breaking down big problems into smaller tackle-able tasks just clicks with my brain.
    • I have a clear vision, and with each work session I can see it getting closer, which is probably the most motivating thing I've ever experienced.
     
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  29. J_C

    J_C Member

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    My drive is pretty simple:
    [​IMG]

    Just kidding (or am I).

    Seriously, the more experienced I get in using gamemaker, the more I enjoying the fact that I'm creating a game all by myself. I'm coding this stuff, and it works, and you can play it. Also I'm waiting for the day when somebody tells me that "man, your game is so much fun! Good job!".
     
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  30. Niels

    Niels Member

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    It's mostly a creative outlet for me, and it's fun to work with other people that have the same mindset.
     
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  31. RefresherTowel

    RefresherTowel Member

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    For myself, I have similar motivations to the others in this thread. I enjoy creating (been a musician, amateur actor and wrote stories all at various times in my life) and games are a great outlet for that creative drive. I also -really- enjoy overcoming coding problems. I know if I hit a brick wall enough times, I'll eventually break that goddamn wall and when I do it is a euphoric moment, especially as I have no formal training in coding, so I don't expect much of myself in regards to accomplishing difficult things in code. I also like having the ability to improve on the mistakes I see in other games (and perhaps learn why that specific 'mistake' exists), rather than just complaining about it online like most gamers.
     
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  32. Niels

    Niels Member

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    This describes exactly why I make games :)
     
  33. jutohamo

    jutohamo Member

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    Well, a bit like when I used to do photography and make videos. I simply want to make games that I myself would want to play. If I'm bored while making it, then there's 0 passion, and that's no recipe for a good game. Just make the game you want to make, and hope that others do too.
     
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  34. sebbl

    sebbl Member

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    'To the Chopper!' :p


    I'm like Frankenstein, I want to bring something to live, something that is there, when I'm long gone. But I decided to program a game instead of creating a monster. Because that game (hopefully) will not kill me.
    And yeah, it's fun to see ideas come into shape.
    It's a good feeling to see this two lines of code finally work after hours and hours of coding :D
     
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  35. Snake Nox

    Snake Nox Member

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    I want to make something I can look at and think: "Gosh, I created this". Something people would be proud of me for. But also something that pushes the industry forward.
     
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  36. altan0

    altan0 Guest

    My motivation for game dev stems from my passion for programming. This passion of mine is driven by the challenges I face in programming that every problem has not one but many solutions. I see programming as something wonderful, its difficult to explain because its like being in a different world that you can do so much with and yet our human minds are limited to what we can create. I am always pushing my limits in this world and it has always been a never ending fun experience for me.

    I have been programming since high school (10+ years) and I have been making games with various tools and dev environments. I first experience game programming when I had a copy of Gamemaker 3 (the MS- Dos version) but I merely played the example games and didn't really develop anything with it (I was a dumb kid that time). Later on in life, I rediscovered Game Maker 8 (can't remember how I got a copy of it) and I started tinkering with it. I made several games with it based off some online tutorials but never did publish any or put it up anywhere online because I was introvert and wasn't confident with my game designing skills at that time. Now I am back on GMS 2 and finally fulfilling my passion for programming by making games not only for the money but wanting to see how far games can become with enough time, effort, and passion.

    Everyone here has their own reasons and agenda for their games but nevertheless its wonderful to see that indie game dev is a culture like no other cultures I have experience.
     
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  37. Rukiri

    Rukiri Member

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    Money, Sex, and Power!
    Better learn unreal then...

    For fun really!
     
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