This article will be talking about how to make a game, the most basic formula of that;
The Four Elements:
The four elements of a game are:
Graphics : What will player see?
Sound : What will player hear?
Control : How players control the objects in the game?
Logic : The glue for the above elements to make the game running
Graphics are the visuals displaying to the players and what will be shown in players’ screens;
These are some most common tasks involved in the Graphics works:
Graphics is the surface of your game; Sometimes, some games has very similar gameplay with others, but when the graphics look different, the whole feeling towards the game become different.
One great example is Space Invader, it is a simple 2D shooting; However, the design of the aliens is very good, so the game is still be memorable to many players now;
This is about what the player will hear during the game;
There are three main parts about Sound:
Background music : The music playing while you are play the game.
Sound Effect : The bullet fire sound, explosion, … etc.
Voice : The characters’ speech.
Sounds may be not necessary to some games like Chess; However sounds are important to enrich the emotions deliver to the players; If you think your game is good without Sounds, It will be great after adding sounds;
Beside, Sound can be involved in your gameplay too, for example: Guitar Hero, BeatMania, …
Here is an example from League of Legends:
Control is about how player controls or be involved in the game. Without control, a game is not Game, it is just an animation;
One simple idea about control is that: How players feed inputs (decision) to your game;
A simple example is the “find difference” mobile game.
A player touch somewhere in the screen, the mobile OS tell your programs the X,Y of the touch in the screen, and then your program (game) digest that information to see whether the touched area is correct or not;
User Control is one of the thing you can innovate and make your game different from others;
One of the hottest control right now is VR (Virtual Reality) headset, like Oculus Rift, it use the your head movement to the system where a player to see inside the Virtual World;
Another great example is Fruit Ninja, the game turn gesture to the ninja sword;
Logic is the hidden magic of a game. The elements mentioned above can be interact with the players, Graphics to players’ eyes, Sound to players’ ears and Control to players’s body;
But Logic is not doing somethings deal with the players, it deal with the mechanics of the game elements;
Here are some tasks which are related to Logic parts:
Decide when and who Win or Lose, Dead or Alive
Score or Rating to be given to players
How many damage dealt to players or monster when being hit
Law of the Game World:
When to spawn game objects
Speed, Gravity and Bounds (e.g in Platformer games)
Collision between objects
Game Object Behaviour:
Movement of the player characters
Action and Dialog of the characters (both player or NPC)
AI (Artificial Intelligence):
How the game objects will do while the game is running (e.g the Simulation Game)
How the enemies respond to player’s moves
Advices for beginners
After you have the concepts of the above elements, you can start making a game;
Before that, please continue to read the following hints:
Try to start make a simple and well know game so that you get familiar about game development and the four elements in this article;
Try to start with a game engine instead of just a language like C++, Game Engines already give you great supports on Graphics, Sound and Control Handling;
You must learn coding, We could find Free Graphics and Sound from the internet, but no one can help to code your games, which is the Logic of your games;