Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Now you rule #2 - inspirations

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This is a new series for me a new way to create a game, sharing my thoughts, ideas as frequent and far I can, so I can get feedback fast!

Now you rule #2 - inspirations

Create everything require some kind of inspiration. In many ways we are on the shoulder of giants, people that came before us and give us ideas and new thoughts.
For my new game, main source of inspiration is the painting "Allegoria del buon e cattivo governo", but of course is not the only one.

I love also tabletop games "classics" like Risk, Monopoly and so on, but also "recent" games like Settlers of Catan or Carcassone.

Thanks, Wikimedia: Settlers of Catan in action

From these last two games I love the randomness of the game board and how every run could be different in so many ways!

I know also that build a decent AI for this kind of games, after some try on it, could be a difficult task, so I need to focus my energy build a game that is more based on player-interaction.

Labirynt: war on terror

I have recently found an interesting single/two player tabletop game, Labirynth: war on terror, a tabletop game that can be played in single player, acting the US side in the war against terrorist. Rules are a little bit complicated, but could be a starting point to create a game where your opponent or opponents, are bots. Basing on events and a flow chart, bots can "simulate" an opponent and give to the player some challenge to fight against!

Thanks for your time, see on the next update!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Now you rule #1 - concept

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Hi everyone!

This is a new series for me a new way to create a game, sharing my thoughts, ideas as frequent and far I can, so I can get feedback fast!

Now you rule #1 - concept

By Ambrogio Lorenzetti - Web Gallery of Art:   Image  Info about artwork, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15462817

Imagine to fight to conquer, to kill your enemies, one by one.
Battles! Sieges! Glory!
A lot of killing, blood, suffering and in the end, you are the king... and now you rule!

I believe this concept could be powerful! Many games today focus on the road to the power, but what about stay on the top ?

In many ways the concept is following a "classic" pattern: balance your forces and decide when to act. As a new king after a long war, your kingdom is divided, dukes are not conspiring against you.. yet. But as soon famine, corruption, bandits will erode your power base, are you able to keep your kingdom together ?

The concept could be also related to a famous allegory I was lucky to see in Siena: "Allegoria del buon e cattivo governo".
I really love history and because of that ( and I'm also lucky to live in Italy too! ) I can appreciate how much influential could be experience of government in a city state like Siena in the fourteen century.

By Ambogio Lorenzetti - Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons by Off2riorob using CommonsHelper., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6827804

If you are, as a ruler, able to to follow a "good government", people are happy ( dancing too! ) and live and prosper.. but what if, for any reason, you will be come a tyrant ?

By Ambrogio Lorenzetti - The Yorck Project: 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei. DVD-ROM, 2002. ISBN 3936122202. Distributed by DIRECTMEDIA Publishing GmbH., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=154024

People can be really.. really bad. And a ruler with evil ( demoniac ) aim can be a catastrophe for the kingdom. War, famine, deaths.. for what ?

As you can image, this concept is also not only related to the middle age, but also to our time!

What do you think about this concept, do you like it ?

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Genetic algorithms for videogames?

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Hi everyone!

Today I'd like to share with you and old, but really interesting article about genetic algorithms:


The subject is not so easy, but I hope could be interesting to move these concept on videogame programming ?

This concept is already tried at least on Starcraft 2 AI to create a build order that is not "natural" for human players, but works!

I suspect that in few years this concept will become really interesting even for small developer like me!

What do you think about these tecniques ? Could be useful in your projects too ?

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Indie games marketing tips

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I'm only an hobbist in indie game developing, but I've learned some things that works and not works on game marketing, so I'm here to share with you my toughts.

1. No one care about your game

Nice, no ? This is the reality. Many blogs, website, game companies, people around the world are building game better than you. So please, stop follow them. Make a game you like to play and care about it, because no one will care about you game, other than you and if you are lucky, some of your friend.

2. Twitter, Facebook.. forums!

Best feedback in all these years came from forums. Any really feedback/tip/idea came out from a twitter or facebook discussion, because these plaftorms are yoo much flooded about games, news, and all the univers. You have to work and find a niche. A forum where you want to share and partecipate in helping others. My choice so fare is Java gaming forum, Tigsource and Roguetemple.

3. Distribution plaforms

Make it easy for players to download your game! I've used google drive, dropbox, github, gamejolt and Itch.io and I really don't care about the plaform where I can distribuite my games.. it's more important to reach more players as possible.. or do you think anyone can find your blog and your game? Double luck ? Too much I suppose..

4. Free and opensource

I believe that as hobby, game developing must break barriers for users: money is the first one! Believe to sell your indie/side project on steam greenlight or other plaforms is .. not right. I believe more in creating connections with players and not get their money! It's more fair to develop a proper game, not a demo or a alpha/beta version, playtest it with many players and AFTER ask money.

And what about opensource ? Some of my games are opensource on github:

Some are experiment, some are games I've worked quite a bit on, but all can be downloaded, compiled and run. Why? Because when I started in developing games, find some sources to study and learn from was really difficult!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Procedural pirate map

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A treasure ? Where ?

I've found inspiring the Procedural pirate map monthly challenge on reddit, because as usual, folks surprise me with multiple way to solve a problem and use procedural generation in a unusual way.

Some highlight from this quality collection:

  • Scallywag: source and demo , I like so much the colors ( see image on the top) and shapes, a great work!
  • Lost heaven pirate map: blog post, a nice explanation about tecnique behind the project, well done!
  • Polygonal map generation: blog post and demo, not pirate-related, but IMHO, the best explanation on how it's possible to generate a great island using Delaunay triangulation ( I've used this tecnique to build a galaxy in Galaxy Artifacts)

Thanks guys! So much inspiration for future works! Amazing!