Efficient Flash Game Development


Written By MrSun at 1:06 pm - Saturday, July 26th, 2008
Categories: Flash, Game Development

If you’re a flash game developer you should know that in order to make a good game, you have to spend a considerable amount of time developing it. Usually, the time you spend making your game is analogous to the quality of game that you make. But, sometimes, the time you spend developing the game might not be worth the money you earn. Of course, if you make games as a hobby and don’t care about the profit, then this isn’t as important to you. But, for those who want the most for their time need to manage it efficiently. I shall show you a few steps that will help you in doing so.

Step 1: Brainstorm Your Game Concept

Before you start programming even a bit of code, you first have to figure out what your game is. Brainstorming is probably the greatest time saver in game development. You should try to figure out as many specific features as you can. Nothing wastes more time than having to recode your entier game just so that you can add a tiny feature (If it is not an essential tiny feature, then don’t even bother adding it). You should either write all of your brainstorming down or type it for future reference. There would be no point in this step if you don’t. Don’t spend too much time brainstorming, it can only save so much time.

You should also make an idea of how much money this game is going to make, and how much time you are going to spend making it. I know that it is almost impossible to predict these kinds of things, but doing so will give you guidelines. Try to keep your predictions reasonable and above minimum wage.

Step 2: Program Your Game

You should always program all of the code needed to play the game before designing your levels. Of course, you would have to create a feature-testing stage, but that is all that you should do. Why should you do this? If you follow this tip, then level creationg would be much more efficient because you would have an aresenal of all your games’ features.

When programming your game, don’t spend too much time trying to solve a problem with your code. It takes a lot of time finding what’s wrong, and once you do, you have to make a solution. You might not even know how to comprehend a solution, so you would have to spend many hours finding one. I’ve heard this kind of story from all kinds of programmers. Do not be afraid to ask the experts how to solve your bug. There are plenty of forums that are filled with helpful programmers. I’m not saying to be totally dependant on these people, but if you find yourself in a fix, consult the forums. Not only will this make your game development go smoother, but you will learn something as well, knowledge that can be used in future projects.

Another tip to keep in mind while developing your flash game is to never add too many useless features to your game. Although you may think it would be cool to have a squirrel dancing to the beat of the music in the background, something like that would take quite a while to program. Also, it wouldn’t really add anything to the gaming experience. The growth of the value of your game would not be worth the time taken making this useless feature. If the feature you want to add is easy to implement or would greatly improve your game, then go right ahead. Just make sure it is worth the time.

Step 3: Monetize!

Once you’re finished with your game, you can now search for somebody to pay for your hard work. One option for you is sponsorship. My earlier post can help you with that. This is really the form of monetization that I recommend. But, it takes time to find somebody who is willing to pay for your game. Luckily, during this time, you can relax. The waiting time doesn’t count for the time spent developing your game. Or even better, you can start developing another flash game, if you’re up for it.

More Tips

  • Make a log of the time you spend developing your game. This way, you can accurately calculate your hourly revenue after sponsorship
  • If your hourly revenue is less than minimum wage, the it isn’t worth it
  • Turn your brainstorming into a checklist, and check off features that you program as you go. The mere action of checking something off motivates you to continue developing the next step
  • When looking for a sponsor, ask the larger/more popular game portals first. They have the most money

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