Game creativity: Do gamers make better game engineers?

I know this guy who likes to do a lot of *ahem gaming research for his job.

It of course several hours of Warhammer to see how the lighting works just right etc…

I am sure I will - er I mean he will be able to use it in his games.

Seriously do you find that gaming helps or hinders the creativity process or does it just generate the cloning process. As I use linux primarily the majority of linux games I see are clones, some of these guys really have pumped money and time into their games. But why clones? In linux you can’t blame the publishing market from blocking new games as they do in the commercial world.

Seriously, is imitation a viable creativity process or just a wannabe syndrome? Is it appropriate to encourage a young creator to borrow methods from Baldur’s Gate and Spore or whatever game they like?

JB Skaggs

In my opinion gaming is a important source of knowledge to game development, but it’s important to play lot of games, not to play a game until you know it in detail. Next to gaming there are a lot of books on game development around, on all topics (engine, leveldesign, sounddesign etc.). And finally there are schools that teach game development.

You may be right that most games on linux are clones, but if you watch the windows market you will see the same. Allmost everyone wants to make theyr favorite game better, rarely anyone succeeds.

Taking good concepts from mutiple games is a usual way to deveop new games, it’s impossible to reinvent the wheel for every game you do. But sometimes idea’s get patented, so you may have to check that.

definitely - take great artists like Mozart or Picasso - if you study closely their artworks and lives, you’ll find heavy influences of great artists born way before them. And without to go so far, try for fun to find influences in well renown VGs not only in other VGs but also in movies and in other arts and you’ll be surprised.

I would say yes, imitation is a viable and also well oiled creativity process but only if taken as a starting point. Then you got to go with your legs and try different paths - but keeping in mind that if you dream to make money with VGs your freedom to create will be slowed very much by that target, because nobody would risk the big money and time required to make a VG into an unsure success.

I would think gaming would be pretty much a requirement for game design. As said above though, it should be lots of different games. Good, bad, original, etc. Gives you a better idea of what works and what doesn’t, as well as ideas to incorporate. It’s also a good idea to read game reviews to get other people’s take on various aspects.

Totally agree.

We see too few new concepts in gaming…

Best examples are Unreal Tournament and wow.

First is a quake clone, second is a daoc clone, and the list is long.

I would be a game maker, first thing I’ll do, is create a community and make a “submit gameplay idea” forum where non programmers could actually give new ideas…

I played too much counter strike, and I always had ideas I would love to play…

“submit gameplay idea”
that’s actually not a bad idea.
my problem with this is that i think, most people nowadays don’t have an idea how much money and work is spent on modern games and therefor they expect much.
EDIT: just see here mygameideas.com/ or google yourself. you’ll find tons of game ideas one bigger than the other.

small games are not more than a time-killer for small breaks. just see all the flash games, of which many have great graphics and brilliant gameplay.

on the other hand, i think we have more ideas ourselves than time to realize them all. there are some threads here which ask people to join projects which already have everything is needed - except the actual code. take the classics-recreations as example. and many people here are only using panda3d as a tool to realize their vision of a game.

as for the industry, i guess, the expectations of the broad audience/customers are more important than innovative games. and don’t tell me that the players want innovative games, because statistics show the opposite - traditional gameplay games sell better than experimental concepts.

so many cons, but still, if we keep the gameplay concepts small and doable, i bet we could encourage some of the experienced coders here to make some funny, small games over a free week :slight_smile: