Author Topic: Call for New Developers  (Read 5806 times)

Darren Grey

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Call for New Developers
« on: December 02, 2012, 06:23:48 AM »
Branching out from Hydra Slayer's thread...

We need new blood!  Developers who are interested in improving their games, join in!  The Incubator is an area for developers to help each other with feedback and constructive criticism on recent releases.  The focus is on less established games which wish to improve themselves whilst also helping others.  Anyone is welcome to give feedback and contribute at any time.  What you need:

 - A roguelike in development, any stage of development, but the more playable the better
 - A commitment to follow up on advice (in whatever direction you choose, but don't just ignore feedback)
 - A commitment to try and play other people's works too.  Not everyone's and not all the time, but try to help out.  Quid pro quo, et al.  The more you help out the more others will be willing to help you.

The advantages:
 - Good quality feedback from fellow devs who tend to have excellent insight in both design and coding
 - A place to put low key releases (this is all public, but anything posted here is much less formal than officially announcing a release, with much lower expectations)
 - Sense of community
 - You might find new games you enjoy or get great inspiration from

The Incubator and the Roguelike Bundle are no longer formally linked.  There are no restrictions on platform, open source etc on Incubator games, nor will there be the same push for extreme polish and accessibility.  We want roguelikes of all shapes and sizes in here.  The more the merrier.

If you wish to join just post a thread in this forum with some details of you, your game, your goals and a download link to the latest build.  Keep this thread updated with further releases and plans.

To those already in the Incubator I would encourage you to ensure your thread is up to date.

If you're unsure of anything please ask!

Z

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2012, 08:21:20 AM »
I would like to strongly encourage this.

It was a great time for me when the Incubator was active. Getting lots of feedback about my own game, and enjoying other great games.

Krice

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2012, 08:32:13 AM »
- A commitment to follow up on advice (in whatever direction you choose, but don't just ignore feedback)
 - A commitment to try and play other people's works too.  Not everyone's and not all the time, but try to help out.

Fails here. Commitments? With roguelike developers? Anyway, what's wrong with regular forum? Just post your crappy game here and people are free to comment it.

Quote
Quid pro quo, et al.  The more you help out the more others will be willing to help you.

Funny. This is a doctrine of satanism.

Darren Grey

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2012, 08:40:38 AM »
On the forum people post their game and few people ever comment back.  If you're a developer that wants good feedback then you have to accept that you need to give others feedback too.  Relying on good will just isn't reliable.

Satanism is a reflection of how humans work in just the same way as any other religion.  The chicken sacrificing is optional ;)

Krice

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2012, 08:46:28 AM »
On the forum people post their game and few people ever comment back.

There may be couple of reasons:
-your game sucks
-it's too simple to be a roguelike
-you don't have a nice web page with short explanation about the game and screenshots, you only have a crappy download link

kraflab

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2012, 09:31:10 AM »
Krice, I somewhat agree with you (eep, that's a scary thought), but I think the idea is that the announcement page is absolutely cluttered with games.  If I see a name I recognize I check it out, but otherwise it's difficult to sift through it all (or I just don't have the time).  A developer joining the incubator somewhat places himself above the sea of games and says "Hey, I'm serious about this and this is a serious effort, not just something I'm experimenting with as I learn to program."

I think it's the difference between something you might call a "project" (in early development feedback) versus something that really has "game" status.  There is just a different system in place in this subforum.

Krice

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2012, 09:49:34 AM »
Krice, I somewhat agree with you (eep, that's a scary thought), but I think the idea is that the announcement page is absolutely cluttered with games.

It's mainly because that rascal getter77 is announcing all versions of all games. It should be limited to only the developer could announce his game. That way he could limit announcements to major versions.

What we could need is a web page that has clear lists of roguelikes by category and how ready the game is. Something better than that awful wiki-roguebasin. That might increase the possibility for people to find games they are looking for.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2012, 09:53:33 AM by Krice »

getter77

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2012, 12:54:56 PM »
I only try to mention things that devs themselves don't mention and keep topped off,  which does amount to lots, but I do try to keep projects contained within a rolling topic as per Game_Hunter's thinking.  It'd be great if more devs posted, but many aren't even here, or even on the Roguebasin often enough, versus in their own little enclaves or just occasional bubbles from the ether like Solstice.

It is always a good idea to have an aggregate list topped off and somewhat organized though, perhaps once the ASCII Dreams Roguelike Poll gets squared away this time around that would be a good one to draw from.
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Quendus

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2012, 06:38:22 PM »
I might make a thread for Encircled when I'm less busy with work. It's a complete game with an objective that's at least believably attainable (even if no-one succeeded so far). Unfortunately the single unusual mechanic in the game (attacks being dependent on player and enemy position and surrounding landscape, compared to the pattern on their weapons) tends to put people off.

So far the best feedback I've had was Game_Hunter's LP, where it turned out that the tutorial doesn't hold the player's hand hard enough, and introduces concepts too quickly. Mosenzov provided some good feedback on the early unfun versions then stopped. Without regular feedback it'll be difficult to work out what a good pace will be for the tutorial. It's not a complicated game, as some have said (I deliberately included as few mechanics and as few commands as I could while still maintaining replay value) - it's just a difficult one to explain.

Anyway, reasons I didn't join the incubator before:
1. Encircled didn't exist when the incubator started - just Mutant Aliens, KleinRL, and my long-term project (a strategy RL which is nowhere near completion, especially after moving to continuous space a couple of weeks ago).
2. Didn't want to participate in roguelike bundle.
3. The way the incubator was discussed sounded elitist. Yep. Essentially what I was hearing was "other roguelikes being posted on this forum are not worth playing, play ours". Using the word "cabal" didn't help.
4. Since I have a job with a time commitment that varies by week, I didn't fancy the extra time commitment of the incubator. Prefer to develop my roguelike at my own pace.

I have some ideas where to start making it more accessible:

  • Split the tutorial into several trivial levels that introduce a concept and some more challenging levels that check the player understands how to play.
  • Make a libtcod or SDL version, because the colour display is unreadable on gnome terminal except at huge font sizes (I've been playing with windows console colours).
  • Use the extra space to display the weapon on the floor, the available commands, and the colour key for the overlay.


Getter - not that I'm complaining about the quantity of roguelikes being developed these days, but would it be possible to tag announcement threads for kickstarters and commercial projects as such? ;)

kraflab

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #9 on: December 03, 2012, 12:42:50 AM »
Oh man, I forgot about your big strategy project.  I want to see more progress on that.

I'll check out encircled though if you make a thread here :)

And it kind of is elitist, but not in a bad way because anyone can particiate :P It is the elite of the "willing to make a thread in this subforum" group.

Darren Grey

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #10 on: December 03, 2012, 01:04:33 PM »
I think the previous set-up was too exclusitory (word invention, woo!), in part because of the whole idea behind the bundle.  Which is why I say now that it was a mistake.  It was putting unfair restrictions and expectations on Incubator projects.

And obviously yes, the Incubator is just a subset of overall development activity, but the whole idea is to help increase feedback to projects involved.  It's a way of putting your hand up and saying "I want more feedback!" instead of the usual "Come play my game!"  It says criticism is not just allowed, but wholly welcomed, and the game is still very much in a development state.  You can do the same elsewhere, of course, but doing it here is more likely to get attention because you are also committing to give the same sort of feedback to others.

getter77

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #11 on: December 03, 2012, 04:26:21 PM »

Getter - not that I'm complaining about the quantity of roguelikes being developed these days, but would it be possible to tag announcement threads for kickstarters and commercial projects as such? ;)

I'll try to bear this in mind, though feel free to remind me as things happen
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Paul Jeffries

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2012, 12:17:57 AM »
I'm interested in taking advantage of this once my current project is in a more playable state.  However; my game does commit the vile heresies of being real-time and having 3D graphics.  Would such deviations from The One True Form be allowed within the Incubator?

Re: How the Incubator coexists with the Announcements sub-forum: In the Blender Artists' forums (which I also frequent) they have two feedback forums; 'Works In Progress', which is where people post stuff for other people to take a look at and comment on in a fairly informal and genial way, and 'Focused Critique', which as the name suggests is far more about tearing things apart (in a constructive way) and has far higher expectations on posters.  This is a system that works really really well, mainly because everybody who starts a thread knows exactly what to expect, and I think that a similar relationship between the Incubator and Announcements forums could work just as well here.

kraflab

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #13 on: December 04, 2012, 03:18:25 AM »
Now what someone needs to do is write a meta-roguelike connected to the incubator forum where the enemies you encounter are games to play, feedback deals damage, and leveling up causes your game to be more likely to appear in other people's dungeons.

Krice

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Re: Call for New Developers
« Reply #14 on: December 04, 2012, 07:12:08 AM »
It's a way of putting your hand up and saying "I want more feedback!"

In most cases there is nothing to feed back. The game is too simple and it possibly sucks.