The bulk of people who work in the video game industry tells you that it’s never as easy as one-two-three.
Game designers must keep their fingers on the pulse of an industry that is always changing. Cloud gaming, for example, is on the rise, according to GlobalWebIndex; virtual reality is growing, with PlayStation introducing the technology to mainstream gamers, and Valve recently released a AAA PC VR-exclusive project, sparking huge interest in the platform.
What happens behind the scenes of a well-made game, though? Developers face numerous problems, including tight timelines, production bottlenecks and dependencies, stakeholder pressure, and continually changing design and requirements.
Many people are ignorant of this irregular cycle and its numerous steps, so let’s look at how games are developed.
Game development, like any other project, starts with an idea. Turning this notion into a shippable product is the most difficult part, and this is something we put a lot of effort into.
It’s the first step toward making a game out of an idea. The scope of a game and what is required to bring it to a release date are determined during the discovery stage.
Depending on the nature of the project, the resources required, and the funds available, the discovery stage usually lasts a month or two. At this time, the Core Team comprises only a few people, and the Core Team usually includes a Solution Architect, Game Designer, and Art Director.
- PRODUCTION: IN LABOR, THIS IS THE MOST EXPENSIVE STAGE OF THE GAME DEVELOPMENT PROCESS.
At this moment, genuine development begins. The team members refine the story, define the game mechanics, and ensure that the game is balanced, paced, and fun to play. They also create all assets (characters, creatures, objects, and locations), set game rules, build levels and scenes, and program the game.
Every part of the game must be carefully studied, from the fun and gameplay to the characters, environment, items, level of difficulty, scenery, etc. Game testing and improvement continue long after the game is released because early concepts rarely translate effectively in practice.
Let’s look at some of the fundamentals of game production and some of the most significant video game development positions, keeping in mind that small teams often take on multiple roles. In contrast, a larger studio will have more team members that specialize in a specific aspect of production.
Every feature and mechanic in the game must be checked for quality assurance. A game that hasn’t been extensively tested isn’t ready to be released as an Alpha.
Playtesters are available in a variety of sizes and shapes. Some put themselves through stress tests by repeatedly wrecking the game and colliding with walls. Other play-testers evaluate the game’s “fun factor” to see if it’s too difficult or too easy and comfortable.
Depending on how developed the in-game aspects are, the game should be ready for Alpha or Beta release after multiple testing iterations. At this point, the players have their first hands-on experience with the game.
There is a ray of optimism at the end of the tunnel as the release date approaches. Typically, the months leading up to a deadline are spent debugging flaws uncovered during the testing phase.
Apart from bug patches, developers devote as much time to the game before it goes live. Perhaps that particular rock has a greater depth. Maybe the character’s clothing will have more substance, or those trees will finally swing in the breeze. These minor tweaks can significantly impact a video game’s immersion.
After the game is bug-free, it’s time to publish and distribute it.
- AFTER-RELEASE SERVICES
Some team members continue to work on the game after it has been released, resolving bugs, providing updates, bonuses, in-game events, or brand-new downloadable content (DLC).
Video games are renowned for having a variety of minor flaws when they first come out. Teams detect and eliminate bugs. Players are also encouraged to report bugs or point out problems in online forums used by game makers. This is all part of the after-release maintenance procedure.
INNOVECS IN GAME DEVELOPMENT
If you want to make video games, you must first understand the game production process. Understanding the purpose and structure of each department, regardless of where you fall into the pipeline, will help you operate more efficiently and avoid costly problems down the road.
New content is common in today’s gaming industry because it increases a game’s replay value, retention, and appeal. If you’re interested in creating a video game or upgrading an existing one from the ground up, feel free to contact the Innovecs experts. The Innovecs team has years of game development experience, allowing them to provide high-quality, error-free products on time and budget.