Thoughts on Releasing First Project?

shadefoundry

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So I've been working on my first project for a few weeks now. It's nothing particularly original and since I'm a pretty god awful writer, the characters have very little personality and the story is more of an excuse to send the characters from point a to point b than a full story with a goal or point, or anything like that. Simply put this is no Chrono Trigger. I'm personally having fun with what I've created and I've decided to build this thing in a way that I can tell many small stories with the same characters as I expand my design and writing skills.


So my question is should I really think about releasing my little pet project? Or should I keep it to myself and use it as a learning tool? I feel that the best way to learn is to put your work out there for criticism, but I'm also aware that with me being a novice game designer my work is going to be pretty generic. Any thoughts?
 
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Sanct

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Well, if you can handle criticism and can learn from it accordingly then you should totally post the project.


It would be an even better learning tool if people could tell you what you could do better or about features the engine has that you didn't previously know about. For your first project it's pretty important that you get familiar with the engine's basic features and in the late development possibly the more advanced features (I'm speaking from experience). Now again, it's really important that you're able to take criticism well, if you can't then well uh, you should work on that first before submitting your project for people to play (I'm not trying to be rude, sorry if it comes of as rude).


Also most importantly: Is it entertaining?


If the answer is yes, you should be fine.


If not then try working on it.



I am in no way a professional, but I do have a couple of years of experience in starting something, quitting and repeating constantly (which didn't lead me anywhere).


Last piece of advice I'll give you is to make sure to finish what you start.


I know this advice isn't really related to your question, but I just wanted to put it out there because I keep getting frustrated at myself for losing motivation with projects constantly
 

Crabs

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I think it depends on the size and complexity of your pet project.


If your project is a 30 min ~ 2 h game and the core concept is simple to implement, you could do as a first project. But if not, you should do it later.
 

Basileus

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As long as you don't charge money for it I think you'll be okay.


Just upload it here or somewhere else and ask people to play it when they can and give you feedback. Given that we are a community of game devs, I'm pretty sure most of us can give you some good critiques on what needs work without being overly aggressive.
 

Vox Novus

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I say go for it, assuming you are talking about a free project. It will hopefully be a learning experience; both in getting feedback and the process of setting up a game page on the forums here and what's expected of it. Worst case you'll be able to say you released a computer game for the public to play and that's always a cool thing in my book.
 

Webby

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It depends on you if you want to be barraged by critics, but that's okay because it makes you learn from your mistakes


and make you a better person. Characters too shallow? Then, make them a backstory, an arc to make the player


engaged with the character. Story not too convincing? Read some novels, they might spark your imagination to write


a better story...


I'm getting a bit off-topic here. You've got nothing to lose (except for the time spent making the game and various things like


food, water, electricity, etc.) so, go for it, it's not bad if you send bad stuff just make sure you try to improve overtime.


If you did keep it, that's fine I guess, you can use that as your steppingstone or revise it so that it will be better...
 

Jhale M.

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I recommend you don't listen to almost any of the advice here except for making the game freely available to a community. It is better to follow your heart and increase the passion you have for your work. Reflect on yourself, your likes and your dislikes rather than reading a novel. Don't finish a project if it stops being interesting. As long as you are getting engaged with a community, you can wait until your best ideas come out and make that into the project you finish. You should combine everything you love into every project you make. What you are doing right now is very, very good. You are focusing on showing what is in your heart instead of having every area be perfect. When you push your efforts to the limit, you will naturally find what you need to use in your creations because they will be tools rather than recommendations. Showing your game to a community will allow you to understand what you really want to do when you get tired or unsure of what you are doing.


One thing you might want to think about (but it will be a hard choice to make) - you should try becoming as social as possible with the people who interact with your project. When you upload the project, you should try to speak in personal messages with those who respond to your project. A lot of people are too busy to pay attention to anyone, so don't be discouraged if you don't always get an answer (it would be good to send messages multiple times throughout the day if you really want to talk and you should ask for the person's schedule if they respond). But when you have someone to actively talk about a project with, your progress will go much faster. I recommend communicating through Discord if you want to be social with someone because real-time text chat will allow you to feel actively involved with that person and you will be able to show off progress without too much extra effort or time due to the website's format and distraction-free environment (but joining big servers is very distracting). Unfortunately, I don't know of any good Discord communities for RPG Maker right now, but I will be using this website's search option today to see what I can dig up.
 

Kes

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When you upload the project, you should try to speak in personal messages with those who respond to your project.



I strongly recommend real caution about this as it can lead to complaints from members to mods, especially if this other suggestions is followed.

(it would be good to send messages multiple times throughout the day if you really want to talk and you should ask for the person's schedule if they respond)



There are some lively conversations in project threads between individuals without sending pm's.  This also allows for the huge variation in time zones.  Remember this is a fully international community so the difference can often be 12 hours.  So the person who responded might be asleep or at work when you are having some free time.
 

Engr. Adiktuzmiko

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I agree with ksjp, especially if it's more of tests for feedback on the game's system itself in general or basically an open beta period, it's better to keep the discussion in a thread so that everyone can converse.


The only time I'd suggest using PM's is if you are having a closed-beta test and thus people who won't be part of the beta cannot relate anyway so there's no point having a general thread for it.
 
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Crabs

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Yea... PM is kinda bad unless you want to send an off-topic message or to say something you don't want others to read.


Supposing you uploaded a project, you want to keep the topic where you introduced your work alive. One of the best way to keep it alive is by encouraging discussions. If you start interacting with people who had interest on your project by PM, the traffic on your topic will lose momentum and it will die much faster and you will have to bump it by yourself, which is a bad situation because you'll have to wait 72 hours to do a double post (refer forum rules).


If you want to answer someone, you can also use "@", like twitter, on your post.
 
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Jhale M.

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Really? I did not think private messages was such a big deal. I still don't think it is a bad idea to send private messages to everyone who is interested, but I see why it would subtract from the use of the site's capabilities.
 
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