bgillisp

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@kneel_before_ME : Books are no better though. I released a book in 2017 and I've made about $3000 so far from it in 2 years. Plus I think the low cost most devs ask is hurting them too as some see the low cost and think it is a cheap mobile game and don't even look further. One dev actually dared to ask $29.99 for an RPGMaker game, and they got a few of how come it is this much, but overall they seem to have done reasonably well from what I can tell.

But...if we are honest about the numbers and how games go, even game studios in the 80's/90's didn't always made it big. One of them was interviewed years after they closed up shop and they said on average, 1 out of 10 games they made was a hit. 2 more went on to be moderate successes, and sold at least enough to cover development costs, but usually 7 out of 10 of their games didn't even make enough to cover the cost to make them, or were never finished for various reasons.

So basically the takeaway is you need to make a LOT of games if you want to be successful. Each one builds up your audience too, and makes it more likely that future games will do better. But, the odds that your first game is a break-away hit that even covers costs...let's just say you'd probably have better odds putting all of that money on RED on a roulette wheel in a casino multiple times and hoping you win every time.
 

HexMozart88

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Well, this got depressing REALLY quickly. A lot of arts related jobs are unstable, and there's never a guarantee that it's going to pay your bills. However, if everyone just gives up because you probably won't sell many copies, we're going to run out of games really quickly. I understand people want a stable job, but it kind of irritates me whenever people think they need to do something they don't like in order to be successful. The game dev industry, it looks like, requires a lot of creativity, not just with the game itself. If you can't make your own, freelance and get paid commission money. I think if you're fresh out of college, then it may be beneficial as a side job, but once you get going, I don't see a need to push it to the side.
 

Indinera

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@Indinera You have a games publishing site?

Correct.

One dev actually dared to ask $29.99 for an RPGMaker game, and they got a few of how come it is this much, but overall they seem to have done reasonably well from what I can tell.

I did that in 2010. The game sold very well. B):rock-right:
 

bgillisp

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@Indinera : That reminds me, I think when I bought Aveyond 1 in 2009 it was $29.99, and I think that was one of your best sellers too if I heard correctly.

@HexMozart88 : Creativity is the key honestly. What I've done is all $$$ I sunk into my game I used money that it doesn't matter if I never see it back. Some of it came from my budget for buying games (use $49.99 to get a faceset vs a new game), and some of it I got by working extra hours at a job and banking that money for the game. But as an indie we probably shouldn't use $$$ that we need to pay our bills or to buy food to make our game.

My point though is don't be disappointed if your first game isn't a hit. In fact, I figure I'm going to go treat myself to a nice steak dinner IF my game sells over 1000 copies.
 

Aesica

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@Indinera : That reminds me, I think when I bought Aveyond 1 in 2009 it was $29.99, and I think that was one of your best sellers too if I heard correctly.
It wouldn't surprise me, since around that time, RM wasn't as widespread as it seems to be today. While I've never played those games, they were probably the only RM games I was aware of in the commercial sector. Thinking back, I wasn't even aware of what engine they were using, just that they were "classic style RPGs." Now RM games show up on web game portals, steam, and everywhere else in between.

Aaah, the joys of saturation.
 

Indinera

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@bgillisp
Aveyond in 2009 was 19.99 usd which was actually a pretty common price at the time.
 

Xina

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Those food items are actually exactly what I was looking for. May I use them in my game? Also, I think the character you posted is beautiful.
 

Tai_MT

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I'm going to be a completely fantastic jerk for a minute.

Your graphics don't matter what-so-ever except to that weird group of people who are just graphics snobs anyway. The people who like graphics this year, but when better ones come out next year, the last year's versions of those graphics are just "bad". Those people. Trust me, you don't want to ever appeal to those people.

What matters is aesthetics.

That is to say, how your art assets mesh together and whether or not they "clash". I love to use Final Fantasy 7 as it's the best example of this terrible thing and it's art direction and graphics suffer horribly as a result.

Animations: 8 frames usually. No more than htat.
Backgrounds: Beautiful matte paintings you can't interact with.
Models of everything interactable: Very low res polygons.
Colors: Matte paintings are shaded and have shadows. Characters are single color affairs usually bright neon.

It's just... it's bad. It hurts to look at.
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Let's also get into why the overall quality of graphics doesn't matter.

Ever play Minecraft or Dwarf Fortress? Yep, their graphics are pretty much either non-existent or on par with maybe the PlayStation 1. Yet... tons of game players. Tons of people who don't care what the graphics are, because the game itself is fun.

Game design, by and large, is simply about making the most of what little you have. Working within limitations. Making what you have give it's own sense of love and charm. Doing a lot with very little.

But... art assets?

Honestly... unless your game is already done... you're probably doing it backwards. You can have place-holder everything up until the game is complete and then spend the last 3 months of "game development" time in order to replace everything with your own custom art assets. So many games simply fail because too many players get hung up on how it looks and spend a thousand hours creating all kinds of art assets and then have very little game to show for it.

Create your game first. Get it ready to launch. Then, replace all the graphics with custom stuff. That's typically how the AAA industry works as it's expensive to keep artists on hand for the entire development cycle, and all they really need to do is just make what already exists in the game look good.

It's a lot easier to make a game if you aren't designing it backwards. Start with your planning and mechanics and systems and use placeholder for everything possible. Replace it all when you're done. That way, you haven't wasted a ton of time creating assets for a game you're never going to release, or a lot of money on assets for a game you're never going to finish making.

If you're just one of those people in love with making artwork and assets as the game experience... no need to even make games. Just make assets for people on the forums and charge 'em for it. People will buy that stuff.
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If you want to make a fun game... just make a fun game. Who cares what it looks like? You can fix that later and far easier than you could ever fix a game that isn't fun.
 

RachelTheSeeker

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First off. I love your character's pixel art sprites. Second off? I ask myself this all the time, and I can't be the only one. Honest to goodness, I ask myself why I can't just write prose, or stop worrying about making a game. I don't always stay focused, and chipping away at my longer current project will take time. Despite this I am frustrated when I don't do enough consistently.

But this isn't my thread, is it? The fear of being inadequate about this is real. It's real for every artist. It doesn't matter if the art happens to be a drawing, or a song, or prose, or even an indie game made with do-it-yourself software for a specific game genre. If you're like me, you'll wonder if your art should be something that can make your life worth it to others. And looking later in this thread, it seems so.

Don't let it be like that. Please, don't make the same mistakes I make about this sort of thing.

I don't intend to make any game I'd sell for money. Part of it is because I'm not at that skill level yet. But most of it is because there's no shame in doing this as a hobby. And that means doing the game in any way you can. You're not only allowed to use others' assets with permission, you *should* use their assets. It not only spreads the works of others, but also makes it so you don't have to do it alone.

You don't even need to commission art for it, unless you want something super-specific. Even then, DO NOT fall into the newbie trap of buying a boatload of assets! I've done that with VX Ace over Steam, and I have nothing to show for it. Just a bunch of stuff I'll never use, and can't even resell to cut my losses. In the end, the most money I've spent on assets I'm using now are from someone I trust on RMN, and only because I can't find 8-bit battlers elsewhere. Most of the other bits I'm using for my game were made for free, or with optional donations. Places like OpenGameArt are wonderful for that.

Above all? You must have a reason to make the game. Something that drives you. This is a double-edged sword for me. I love my characters and setting and lore so much, and it's something I've developed over my adult years. However, because my passion is so strong, I feel terrible when I don't get enough done. I want my ideas to be shared with others.

What any creator needs isn't "motivation", for such is a fickle beast and a cruel mistress. What they need is patience and making their efforts a habit. Chip away at it, and don't be afraid to learn. My first finished game sucked, but I started to put more and more effort in over time once I knew it sucked. A crappy project got a sequel like two years later, one that no one asked for. It did dece, but I also got lazy with the dungeon design. I made another game later that year, and the dialogue was melodramatic during the climax. Yet I'm pressing on.

Even if it doesn't feel worth it? Make it worth it. Keep going. Your pixel art is good; find assets that could match your style, or learn ways to create or edit basic assets that fit your style.
 

HazukiWolfe

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@Tai_MT it took me a while to honestly realize this. Me and my husband have been working on this game for a about 3 years and just this year we figured out that we were going at this all wrong.
We were focusing on the art and music and other things and kinda ignoring the story we had which we pretty much pulled put of our butts. We lost track of our original idea cause I was worried what others thought and you are right. It doesn't take good game art to make an amazing game and I realize that now. So we fully trashed the story we had and started new. We are now working on a story board before anything else.

@RachelTheSeeker I almost spent a lot of money on other people's assets but then I decided that I rather make my own to get what I want in the game
 

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