*First and foremost we are seeking someone capable of web design.*
Anyone desiring a position, you can reach myself through by the following routes:
AIM: HolmstN1337 (don't make fun of it, I was young alright! )
PM: Epic Forums
Elements of Game Development
...o Game Play
...o Creative (Audio, Visual design)
...o Concept Art / Texture Art
...o Sound Effects
...o Visual Effects
...o Level Design and Engineering
We are currently looking for developers in all areas. However, we are especially looking to anyone capable of assisting in the creation of concept art and teasers. A web designer would also be a very welcome addition. We need to make our outside look pretty so we can get the support on the inside.
Who We AreHolmes: Lead Designer, Co-Founder, Story Lead, other areas...
Currently a College Student studying Physics, Forensic Science, Psychology, and Chemistry, Holmes has always been an ambitious fellow. Settling for "no can do" is not something he often does, though reason prevails when necessary. He has endeavored in almost every aspect of game development. From 3DSMax to Photoshop to Visual Studio and now the UDK; although none of these skills are necessarily noteworthy, he has a thorough understanding of all the processes involved. This puts him in a perfect position for design and storytelling. Additionally, his art of organization and writing allows him to act as a successful "CEO" of the organization, maintaining a standard without sacrificing population.
Community, the Essential ElementAnyone who’s anyone has been a part of a community before. Whether it be a fan club for your favorite baseball team, fellowship with like-minded church-goers, or simply avid followers of an exciting game in development, people have experienced what it means to be a part of a group. It feels good. We were made that way, to want community, to long for relationships.
What’s up with game companies nowadays, then? Most are shut off, claiming they “listen to all advice” yet falling short of the mark time after time. Sure, players buy the mediocre games out there (not that there’s much in the way of options), but is that what they really want?
We believe heartily, “No.” Community is, in fact, the most important element of game development. An interaction with your players both in and out of the game is a necessity that cannot be ignored. Epic’s release of the UDK is a profound example of community. So many people can now come together to live out a dream, whether as a hobbyist or a dedicated game developer. No expensive prices to pay, no loopholes to jump through. It’s all right there at the fingertips of the gamers.
However, this has evoked a painful realization: with so few with experience, where can we find developers? No one accepts untrained artists, but unless you’re self-taught, you likely have nothing to show. And let’s face it, not everyone learns best through self-teaching. I know from experience I certainly don’t (you should see some of the lines of code I’ve written. Your face would contort in ways that are humanly implausible). So we’re left with loads of untapped talent who are just waiting for an opportunity to come. Most never have had that chance.
That’s what we intend to fix. We’re not a professional game development company; the main developers (at the moment myself and a proficient coder) have never endeavored into game development on this level before (that’s why I took the easy path and went with design). Our coder has a mod to back up his work; I’ve got nothing but this elegant little essay (come on, who doesn’t love an essay?). But, we do have something that so many companies lack: initiative. That’s why we’re here, that’s why you’re here. To show initiative, to go where people have gone before and camped along the way. We don’t camp.
“Alright, get on with it already,” you say. Well, so be it! I would like to announce that, not only with the birth of a new hobbyist gaming organization that is yet to be named (us), we will be creating a program called the “Dev Academy,” or DA for short.
Devs In Training
What’s so special about this program? Real developers will be helping aspiring artists and engineers to expose their potential, and then optimize it. These DIT’s will experience what its like to work in a group, to join with other likeminded (or not so likeminded) individuals on a single project. Rather than have access to a profound amount of freedom and data, which would overwhelm these inexperienced geniuses, the DA will provide small chunks of opportunity in the form of minor asset creation.
Additionally, we will provide one-on-one and group training sessions on occasion. Eventually we hope them to be regular events, though we cannot begin at that level. As a final test, these DITs will be given a major development task to complete for incorporation into our game. From that point, we will graduate them appropriately, and they can choose to either join this very organization or move away to pursue other interests. No money, no tricks. Developers teaching developers, gamers teaching gamers. Make no mistake, it’s no excuse to skip college, but we hope it will provide a stepping stone of opportunity for those whose desire truly is in the field of game development (did I say development enough in these past paragraphs?).
The Dev AcademyClasses: A session in which a developer from this organization’s development team will teach aspiring developers in his or her area of expertise. Level designers will explain the art and intricacies of a successful level, concept artists will enlighten their students in the ways of game art, and programmers will demonstrate the ins and outs of a powerful code base.
One-On-One: An aspiring developer has the opportunity to be paired with a current developer in their area of expertise. This selection must be done from the top-down: a developer does not have to choose to mentor anyone, though it is recommended. The DIT may opt out of a selection, but may not choose his/her own mentor, they must be handpicked by a developer. In this way, we will not force any developer who is uncomfortable teaching to teach, nor will these mentors be constantly pestered to be a teacher. Likewise, however, DITs will have the opportunity to find that perfect person who will teach them beautifully.
In reality, this isn’t a complex system. Most development communities may have something similar, but we intend to explore all avenues in order to allow all inexperienced developers a chance to shine. Everybody wins in the end.
The OrganizationFirst things first: If you’re looking for money, this is the wrong place to be. I’m not saying that if things take off miraculously we won’t consider a license, but don’t expect that. This is a group whose soul will be in the heart and minds of ladder-stepping developers and hobbyists with a talent. Developers will come and go, joining endeavors perhaps where they can truly earn a living. We expect as much, and we want to help developers get that chance while making an enjoyable game in the process.
Following will be the core, the backbone of our organization. Every developer will be expected to understand these core values, as well as the specifics pertaining to their field (DITs included). We hope by illustrating these points, we can usher in a new generation of developers whose role isn’t of rigid stonewall game development, but of generosity through healthy competition. The last thing we need are a bunch of developers out there suing each other into the ground (especially in this economy).
I. Core Values
...c. Community Spirit
II. Elemental Values
This should speak for itself. Trust is the dealer of life and death in a community. To kill trust is to shatter the bonds linking one to another (and anyone who has taken Chemistry knows the energy of such an event). Every developer, and every community member in reality, is expected to live a level of integrity unmatched. We understand there will be disagreements, and that they can enliven to a level of rivalry. This is healthy to an extent, but it is important to remain truthful at all times. Take responsibility for your actions; if you make a mistake, admit it. If you’ve been hurt by a mistake and are being asked to forgive, by gonnit forgive! Don’t hold down a community by a petty argument, forgive and forget, move on and make something awesome!
Games can live without ambition. Take a look at the numerous shooters out there that are similar in almost every aspect. They are not ambitious. They settle for what they know will sell, and meet that mark. With a bar so low, how can one fail? Well, here the bar will not be set low. Not on an individual level, mind you; we will accept people of any skill set at any range of expertise, though their position will reflect that. Instead, as a community we will seek to create something phenomenal- something that shatters the bounds of game development. As a community we will aspire to create an integral relationship, the likes of which have never been seen before. And as ourselves, we will aspire to reach further and take one more step than we ever have before.
Without a community, what’s the point of a game? No, we will not meet the needs of a disastrously self-centered community. Instead, we will work with the community. We will be a PART of the community, as we rightfully should be. That doesn’t mean we will expose every secret of our game, nor does it mean that every idea will be accepted. However, it does mean that every developer will share a certain connection with the people, so that everyone can feel comfortable. We’re making a game for the community, so let’s rock their socks off!
This is the least important of the core aspects, but mind you it is still important. You don’t get your drivers license the first time you get behind the wheel of a car. We believe in giving everyone a chance, but there are certain ways to do this. The very existence of the Dev Academy speaks to this. Without experience, no one can hope to accomplish anything. Each developer should not only have experience, but offer their experience to others to ensure all get the chance to shine. No selfishness here.
The following apply specifically to the group for which they are named. It is recommended you read all of them, but it is necessary you only read your specific value set.
The field of game design is unique. You must have experience in many area of game development in order to develop and deliver gaming excellence. Because of this, members of the design field are required to read the other elemental values as well (tricky tricky, ain’t I?). Design artists must display creativity and must maintain high standards of interactivity between all areas of development. They must also display a strong set of communication skills to allow their ideas proper exposure. Finally, game designers should be willing to spend a significant amount of time thinking of as many possible consequences as possible from their ideas, and to deliver reports of their thoughts in a formatted, clear manner.
Designers in the artistic field must display… well artistic skills. They must show creativity but also remain within the realm of reality. They have to stay within the box but expand the box as much as possible. They should be willing to draw, redraw, and draw some more their own ideas as well as interpret and design the ideas of others. They should maintain a core style amongst eachother and with others in order to successfully transpose the game into a flowing piece of artwork. Additionally, it is important that artists understand how their artwork will work into the rest of the development community. Because of this, they must read all other fields of development (ooh, I’m a mean liar, eh?).
Tech developers must display high proficiency in the meticulous details. Undoubtedly they should display clarity in their content that intertwines with the other elements of game development perfectly. Because of this, they are expected to read the other elements of game development (never going to trust me again, are ye?). Creativity is of utmost importance, but still delivering a clear and concise message without breaking any bounds. They must excel at the precise; rather than think outside the box, they should think infinitely inward.
Developers whose expertise falls in this area should understand well the workings of the other elements, and so needs to read through all the other elements (come on, you had to be expecting this if you’re called ‘Hybrid’). Because of the importance of relationship amongst other elements to hybrid developers, they should attempt to communicate vividly and often with developers with whom they are working. They should be creative but precise, be willing to adopt both the ideals of technical and artistic minds and combine them into an ideal middleground.
So now you’re asking, “What about the actual game!?” am I right? Be prepared because this will be a little less formal.
Well we don’t want to reveal too much before we have something to show (especially a website). We’re starting from the ground up, so this is a very ambitious effort in and of itself. What I can do is give a brief rundown of what to expect, so any potential developers can decide if they want to join or not. Additionally, if any developer or dev team wants to sign up simply as members of the Dev Academy (as teachers or students), simply let me know and we’ll start setting it up. What I hope to do is set up a sort of curriculum in order to orchestrate an organized effort for students, but that will depend entirely on the kind of response we get to this idea.
Now, for the game itself. We have the general idea for story and gameplay down. The story will be science-fiction and based in a Universe set sometime in the future. It will be a unique IP created all our own. It will carry a similarity to Fallout 3 and Mass Effect in its Shooter-RPG style. Without giving away any information, I can tell you I’m really excited about the conversation system we have written down, and I just really hope we can get it working in-game. We’ll be moving away from the traditional “health” system of both RPGs and FPS’s.
What I can give you a little more detail about is how we plan on implementing the choice of class system. Interestingly enough, I played Fallout 3 AFTER I came up with these ideas and found out that it was quite similar. Essentially we’re going to implement the class system into the story. While you’re playing through the “Intro” stage, you’ll be given several different choices all incorporated right into the action. Depending on where you go and how you play this stage, you’ll find your attributes and skill sets differ. Not all players are created equal, but we don’t want to force a complete randomization either. This method is basically “randomization by choice.” Paradox, no?
I understand this is hardly a complete look at the game we’re going to be developing. I’m asking a lot in you; jump aboard based on faith, not evidence. I’ll be the first to admit that it will be hard to get this ship off the ground, but everyone has to start somewhere. Once this ship is in the air, though, I believe it will be a sight to behold.
Oh, and of course the first group of developers to join will be able to help decide the name. It’s not fair for two people to decide such an important element, is it not? So feel free, public, to offer ideas. Once we get a good first wave of developers hopefully we can establish a name that will be written in the rocks of game development!
Name: Shin Reddington
Initial appointment to movers. Failure to adhere to protocol. Detained. Removed from service, execution approved.
Execution halted on order. Placed in lower mines. Security unit lodged, guards on call.