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Canine Blues Arooo
Jan 7, 2008

when you think about it...i'm the first girl you ever spent the night with



Grimey Drawer

ThePopeOfFun posted:

How much does a Temp Writer position for a game like Diablo IV pay? Not something I can hope to get right now, but I do write for a living and transitioning to games wouldn't be impossible. I'm evaluating different industries and trying to plan long-term. My impression is...probably not much? Is narrative lead the terminal position?

I'd guess somewhere in the $22 - $30 / hour range, and that might be erring on the side of optimistic. Writing is not particularly well comped in most studios and Blizzard specifically is not known to pay as much as some other studios.

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ThePopeOfFun
Feb 15, 2010



Ouch. I figured writing is not the pinnacle of anything in the games world. Would be fun to write that stuff though!

Janitor Ludwich IV
Jan 25, 2019


can i make a game and get rich or are asset flip indies dead now

leper khan
Dec 28, 2010
Honest to god thinks Half Life 2 is a bad game. But at least he likes Monster Hunter.


Janitor Ludwich IV posted:

can i make a game and get rich or are asset flip indies dead now

Sure, it's possible. But it's far more likely you'll not recover costs.

Zaphod42
Sep 13, 2012

If there's anything more important than my ego around, I want it caught and shot now.


Janitor Ludwich IV posted:

can i make a game and get rich or are asset flip indies dead now

I don't think there was ever a time where "asset flip indies" made enough money to qualify you as "rich" lol

OneEightHundred
Feb 28, 2008

Soon, we will be unstoppable!


leper khan posted:

Sure, it's possible. But it's far more likely you'll not recover costs.
The key is to automate it

leper khan
Dec 28, 2010
Honest to god thinks Half Life 2 is a bad game. But at least he likes Monster Hunter.



That's a great talk and my business side friends still talk about it.

Paranoid Dude
Jul 6, 2014


Janitor Ludwich IV posted:

can i make a game and get rich or are asset flip indies dead now

Indie darling of last year, Phasmophobia, was made by a team of one with no art team using solely asset flips. It's very possible to succeed with an asset flip indie game given it can be as incredibly marketable as Phasmophobia's unique premise/implementation.

Play
Apr 25, 2006

So I roll with a rolling thunder
And I howl with the howling wind
And I drift downstream for as long as it takes
To get up and around the bend

Also as time goes on it stands to figure that free / cheap assets will increase in quality and number and be easier to use and still look decent.

Still, out of all the small games released on steam every year most of the total failures are low effort asset flips and the majority of the successes have original art.

leper khan
Dec 28, 2010
Honest to god thinks Half Life 2 is a bad game. But at least he likes Monster Hunter.


Play posted:

Also as time goes on it stands to figure that free / cheap assets will increase in quality and number and be easier to use and still look decent.

Still, out of all the small games released on steam every year most of the total failures are low effort asset flips and the majority of the successes have original art.

Most of the successes have some sort of budget behind them. Bespoke art requires a budget, the same way bespoke code does.

chglcu
May 17, 2007

I'm so bored with the USA.

Play posted:

Also as time goes on it stands to figure that free / cheap assets will increase in quality and number and be easier to use and still look decent.

Still, out of all the small games released on steam every year most of the total failures are low effort asset flips and the majority of the successes have original art.

The major problem with purchased assets - in my opinion - is just that itís drat near impossible to create a full game with a unified visual theme using them, unless youíre specifically creating the game around a limited set of assets, which is inherently very constraining.

Zaphod42
Sep 13, 2012

If there's anything more important than my ego around, I want it caught and shot now.


chglcu posted:

The major problem with purchased assets - in my opinion - is just that itís drat near impossible to create a full game with a unified visual theme using them, unless youíre specifically creating the game around a limited set of assets, which is inherently very constraining.

Definitely. Although as an indie, even if you have an artist creating unique art for your game, you don't have an unlimited budget and so you're still effectively working off a limited set of assets.

Good game designs are all about coming up with something where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Also having those restrictions can help you be productive, like with a jam topic. Necessity is the mother of invention and all.

Still, you're totally right. It sucks when you find a pack of art that looks good and you can buy but then there's one or two things missing you want, and finding those assets elsewhere means they don't really jive as far as visual style.

c355n4
Jan 3, 2007



Are there any good up to date VR dev tutorials? I'm coming from a professional background of C# development so looking at using Unity. I'd like to play around with some personal projects and not looking to go BIG or whatever. I've come across a few; but, I'm getting the distinct feeling that the development tools/libraries are in a large state of flux still. I guess I should just dive in; but, I I'd like to minimize missteps.

mutata
Mar 1, 2003

I eat shit! Yummy yummy shit. hmmmmm I love the taste of another persons feces in my mouth. Here's a pic of me, mutata, eating my 9th bowl of shit today (Spoiler: It's not actually a picture of someone eating shit, so it's not that big of a deal guys)

A good question, and someone here might know, but I'll also direct you to the Making Games thread as they might know as well: https://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3506853

c355n4
Jan 3, 2007



Ah cool, thanks!

Lemming
Apr 21, 2008


c355n4 posted:

Are there any good up to date VR dev tutorials? I'm coming from a professional background of C# development so looking at using Unity. I'd like to play around with some personal projects and not looking to go BIG or whatever. I've come across a few; but, I'm getting the distinct feeling that the development tools/libraries are in a large state of flux still. I guess I should just dive in; but, I I'd like to minimize missteps.

This guy has some good videos https://www.youtube.com/c/ValemVR/videos and if you look up a few like this one: https://www.youtube.com/c/ValemVR/videos it has step by step instructions on getting stuff set up. This was a bit over a year ago though, but my game I'm working on in Unity I'm still using those older settings (there are various reasons why newer versions can be a pain).

c355n4
Jan 3, 2007



Lemming posted:

This guy has some good videos https://www.youtube.com/c/ValemVR/videos and if you look up a few like this one: https://www.youtube.com/c/ValemVR/videos it has step by step instructions on getting stuff set up. This was a bit over a year ago though, but my game I'm working on in Unity I'm still using those older settings (there are various reasons why newer versions can be a pain).

I was actually watching his videos. Cool. Still trying to wrap my head around all the various version of Unity and their pros/cons.

Lemming
Apr 21, 2008


c355n4 posted:

I was actually watching his videos. Cool. Still trying to wrap my head around all the various version of Unity and their pros/cons.

I would check this page out https://skarredghost.com/2020/09/25/steamvr-unity-xr-interaction-toolkit-input/ since there are some issues with making builds that work with all the various platforms and headsets. I personally am using Unity 2019.3.15f (I think) and using the legacy settings, since I'm trying to build everything in UnityXR to keep things relatively platform agnostic

DrZepam
Mar 15, 2021


Lemming posted:

I would check this page out https://skarredghost.com/2020/09/25/steamvr-unity-xr-interaction-toolkit-input/ since there are some issues with making builds that work with all the various platforms and headsets. I personally am using Unity 2019.3.15f (I think) and using the legacy settings, since I'm trying to build everything in UnityXR to keep things relatively platform agnostic

I've used https://vrtoolkit.readme.io/ for a Oculus/SteamVR/PSVR game in 2017 and it helped me at that time, their latest version 3.x evolved to something quite rigid for big production projects but still amazing for prototyping, i still gave it a try for a small non-game interactive app and it delivered.

only downside is the initial dependencies setup and you're good to go. their website is documented and the provided code have a metric tons of examples and gym maps.

cubicle gangster
Jun 26, 2005

magda, make the tea


Crossposting with the CG thread...
Where's the best place to put an ad out to hire someone/a team proficient in UE - blueprints, frontend, interactivity?
From a games experience point of view, is this considered UI?
I took a look on Gamasutra, they have a contractor list 1700 strong but it's a bit of a random crapshoot to click through and try and figure out if they offer the services we want.

We'd like to find someone (or a team) that we can potentially rely on for more of this - someone excited about the possibilities and experienced enough to suggest new approaches and ideas that we might not have considered.
We'd supply scenes organized however required, and we'd be able to handle design elements of the UI if needed too - it's largely the programming and interactive component we need help with.

here's a quick reel of some of the past experience spaces that we've designed & built - we get healthy budgets to do it properly! https://vimeo.com/341597152

Zaphod42
Sep 13, 2012

If there's anything more important than my ego around, I want it caught and shot now.


c355n4 posted:

Are there any good up to date VR dev tutorials? I'm coming from a professional background of C# development so looking at using Unity. I'd like to play around with some personal projects and not looking to go BIG or whatever. I've come across a few; but, I'm getting the distinct feeling that the development tools/libraries are in a large state of flux still. I guess I should just dive in; but, I I'd like to minimize missteps.

That's a huge subject. Generally VR dev in Unity is about the same as normal Unity, but there's just a lot of best-practice in the VR world that you'll need to learn. Hard to cover it all in a post though :)

Happy to help with any questions you have.

c355n4 posted:

I was actually watching his videos. Cool. Still trying to wrap my head around all the various version of Unity and their pros/cons.

Base - allows you to use normal shaders
Universal - allows you to use shader graph (very handy), but writing shaders from code are more complicated
HDRP - looks amazing, but possibly unfit for VR as its heavy duty detail shaders which can chug in VR (although doable, as HL Alyx proved-- not that its unity, but that it used advanced shaders and post-procesing)

I'm building in Universal. Lots of assets are designed for base unity or universal unity and don't work out of the box with the other one, so be aware of that. (Although many also include a way to quickly convert to the other, so that's nice where available)

Also, VR in Unity is... complicated.

Are you thinking about targeting Quest or PCVR? There's at least 3 VR APIs available for Unity and they have some different approaches.

Lemming posted:

I would check this page out https://skarredghost.com/2020/09/25/steamvr-unity-xr-interaction-toolkit-input/ since there are some issues with making builds that work with all the various platforms and headsets. I personally am using Unity 2019.3.15f (I think) and using the legacy settings, since I'm trying to build everything in UnityXR to keep things relatively platform agnostic

OpenXR is the future but AFAIK Unity doesn't support it for most headsets yet? (unlike Unreal, which is further along)

As a result I think right now you're better off building against either the bespoke Oculus SDK or the OpenVR SDK (which is Valve's SteamVR) and each doesn't work with the other, so you'll have to fork and build against both if you want to target both. OpenXR is the plan forward to make that less of a pain, but its not yet fully implemented.

You know as much about this topic as I do though, if not more. :)

Note that there's lots of interaction libraries out there, and using them can save you TONS of time in developing VR controls and interactions. However that means embracing that library API and working within its limitations. I ended up rolling my own interactions from scratch, which is probably stupid.

There's an example scene in the Steam OpenVR SDK that shows lots of interactions you can test out and then use to build your own features.

c355n4 feel free to PM me if you have any questions and I'll answer them if able.

Zaphod42 fucked around with this message at 19:46 on Jul 20, 2021

c355n4
Jan 3, 2007



Zaphod42, thanks!

PokeJoe
Aug 24, 2004

hail cgatan




what's a good engine to make a 2d game? Still unity? I haven't messed around in game dev for a number of years and I've been getting a little itch again

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009



PokeJoe posted:

what's a good engine to make a 2d game? Still unity? I haven't messed around in game dev for a number of years and I've been getting a little itch again

Yep unity is great for that still.

Coffee Jones
Jul 4, 2004

16 bit? Back when we was kids we only got a single bit on Christmas, as a treat
And we had to share it!


The Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster is a Unity-based release where Square Enix has remade the first six games of the series for modern PCs and consoles. It features a brand new resolution-independent engine, but still plays 95% identically to the original titles.
Hardly a tile is out of place and every enemy placement and AI script is almost exactly the same despite this being like the millionth time the various Final Fantasies has been remade, from PS1 to Wonderswan to iOS, sometimes with entirely new graphic sets.

I'm guessing that they've had to come up with their own RPG Maker that lets a designer click and drag together designs from scratch. Or maybe they wrote an importer utility that'll migrate maps and scripts from a recent port of the game into their new Unity engine.
Of course, this being a Japanese studio, we'll never hear the whole story.

https://twitter.com/necrosofty/status/1409985567098511360
lol, so much redundant effort....

Speaking of beginner friendly developer tooling, I forgot https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLMcr1s5MjsiTky6KB4ML-q_QoBE_ZYJk5 existed since I last poked around in it in the 2000's.

Didn't know that they've created a version that'll do "Export to Web" uses HTML canvas and Javascript.
https://itch.io/games/platform-web/tag-rpgmaker

I tried recreating a few of Final Fantasy 6's famous cutscenes and it felt like I was trying to carve Michelangelo's David with a potato. So much friction going back and forth between editor and running game. Every little change meant a rebuild of the entire game. If you wanted to test specific areas you had to change your start position in the editor and then rebuild and relaunch the game. And there's no internal console so you can interactively modify assets or switch levels.
All in all, it feels so close to actual developer tooling but it feels like anyone who had to spend forty hours a week in it would be punching holes in the wall.

Studio
Jan 15, 2008





Coffee Jones posted:

All in all, it feels so close to actual developer tooling but it feels like anyone who had to spend forty hours a week in it would be punching holes in the wall.

This just means it's Extremely Accurate developer tooling. Though most places go for 50+ in my experience.

a slime
Apr 11, 2005



leper khan posted:

Most of the successes have some sort of budget behind them. Bespoke art requires a budget, the same way bespoke code does.

What kind of budget? Weíre a couple of engineers looking to either hire out or partner with an artist / studio to develop some 3D assets but we have no idea what to expect In terms of costs or timelines. We are decently funded but looking for a rule of thumb before we start looking for quotes.

I understand this will vary enormously based on what youíre asking for, just looking for rough guidelines.

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

a slime posted:

What kind of budget? Weíre a couple of engineers looking to either hire out or partner with an artist / studio to develop some 3D assets but we have no idea what to expect In terms of costs or timelines. We are decently funded but looking for a rule of thumb before we start looking for quotes.

I understand this will vary enormously based on what youíre asking for, just looking for rough guidelines.

To give you some sense of perspective, even 20 years ago, the number of artists involved in making a game typically outnumbered the number of programmers/engineers. Creating art is skilled and time-intensive work.

Now, it's true that a lot of artists are willing to work for poverty wages. It's up to you whether you're willing to take advantage of that. But an artist that is working full time for you had damned well better be getting a decent wage out of it.

In short: there's very good reasons why many indie games have such limited/lo-fi art styles.

EDIT: you might also ask in the 3DCG thread; they should have a decent handle on where the 3D artists can be found and how much is a fair price to pay. You should have a better answer for what kind of work you're looking for, though:

- Low-poly or high?
- Textured or not? (and how detailed are the textures?)
- Rigged for animation?
- With animations created?

And have some example models that you'd like to try to match.

a slime
Apr 11, 2005



Thank you, this is very helpful. Great advice about reaching out directly in the 3DCG thread, Iíll put together some details and give that a shot.

cubicle gangster
Jun 26, 2005

magda, make the tea


'asset flips' might often look rough, but one person can whip up a AAA quality (small to medium) environment with megascans assets in a few weeks if you're in UE4/5. That doesn't include any planning / massing time though. You'll likley need a lot of custom art on top of that so working with someone who understands the need to cut corners and can tell you how they plan to do it is a good thing to check for.

Hiring one person in house who can lead the look and also manage any outsourcing will get you the best and most consistent work, if you're open to the idea of adding someone in that role. It'll cost you equity but long term could pay off.

cubicle gangster fucked around with this message at 01:21 on Aug 14, 2021

a slime
Apr 11, 2005



cubicle gangster posted:

'asset flips' might often look rough, but one person can whip up a AAA quality (small to medium) environment with megascans assets in a few weeks if you're in UE4/5. That doesn't include any planning / massing time though. You'll likley need a lot of custom art on top of that so working with someone who understands the need to cut corners and can tell you how they plan to do it is a good thing to check for.

Hiring one person in house who can lead the look and also manage any outsourcing will get you the best and most consistent work, if you're open to the idea of adding someone in that role. It'll cost you equity but long term could pay off.

Yes, love this. Right now we're doing exactly that, slapping together megascans in UE4 and buying any and all asset packs that look halfway like what we're after. We set aside an equity allocation specifically in the hopes that we end up finding somebody we really jive with to come on as a sort of creative director. But I'm finding it really challenging to sift through the world of indie-oriented gamedevs for hire -- lots of complete beginners, where we're looking for someone to really take a lead role. Mostly been looking on various subreddits and a couple of indie game discords. I saw the Gamasutra board suggested somewhere, any other leads welcome!

cubicle gangster
Jun 26, 2005

magda, make the tea


Definitely head to the CG thread - it sounds like you're in a good place though!
The thread has been around for over a decade and there's a good number of creative directors / leads who swing by, hopefully they'll be able to point you in a fruitful direction.
It'll probably take you a while, but you are looking for someone who will become a key member for a long time. Don't stop looking, but don't get impatient either.

literally this big
Jan 10, 2007



Here comes
the Squirtle Squad!


A group of toxic players got together to review-bomb our game on Steam. We're a small multiplayer-only MMO RTS, so something like this can really effect us. Together they took our rating down from Positive down to Mixed.

poo poo like:

(Note the player has 300+ hours on record, including 80+ hours in the last two weeks, and almost 40 hours added since the time of review just a few days ago)

And another one that was so abusive that Steam took it down.

So these players, who continue to play, are doing this, coordinated, purely out of spite, to detract from our game, a 100% free game, that they continue to play.

Someone please commiserate with me.

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

I'm sorry, that's awful. People are terrible. :smith:

Superrodan
Nov 27, 2007


literally this big posted:

A group of toxic players got together to review-bomb our game on Steam. We're a small multiplayer-only MMO RTS, so something like this can really effect us. Together they took our rating down from Positive down to Mixed.

poo poo like:

(Note the player has 300+ hours on record, including 80+ hours in the last two weeks, and almost 40 hours added since the time of review just a few days ago)

And another one that was so abusive that Steam took it down.

So these players, who continue to play, are doing this, coordinated, purely out of spite, to detract from our game, a 100% free game, that they continue to play.

Someone please commiserate with me.

Was this in response to something like a new patch they didn't like? Or maybe you came out in support of something that got the incels/chuds up in arms? I want to be clear I'm not victim blaming, I'm just curious what their explanation for this bullshit is.

I know you can't do this for a whole myriad of reasons but I think it would be fantastic schadenfreude to just ban those folks' accounts with the explanation "they clearly don't like the game anymore so I'm gonna help em out by allowing them to stop playing and move on with their life"

Sorry to hear about this, it truly sucks.

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

If it is chuds being chuds, then you may be able to get some mileage out of appealing to the rest of your playerbase to leave more reviews. You need to have 4 positives for every 1 negative to maintain a Positive score on Steam; hopefully that's achievable for you.

VelociBacon
Dec 8, 2009



literally this big posted:

A group of toxic players got together to review-bomb our game on Steam. We're a small multiplayer-only MMO RTS, so something like this can really effect us. Together they took our rating down from Positive down to Mixed.

poo poo like:

(Note the player has 300+ hours on record, including 80+ hours in the last two weeks, and almost 40 hours added since the time of review just a few days ago)

And another one that was so abusive that Steam took it down.

So these players, who continue to play, are doing this, coordinated, purely out of spite, to detract from our game, a 100% free game, that they continue to play.

Someone please commiserate with me.

Let us know what game it is and you won't need commiseration.

literally this big
Jan 10, 2007



Here comes
the Squirtle Squad!


So what happened is that one player had a misunderstanding with another player and got upset (refused to accept an apology, started drama, etc). This happened outside of our game and outside of Steam, between two players. I don't know how or why, but somehow that led five players to get together and coordinate a review bomb on us. 2-3 of the reviews bemoan an "insular community" or something of the sort. I was also wrong earlier: the abusive, profanity-laced review is still up, unfortunately.

I appreciate the advice and support everyone. I found all this out on my birthday (the 11th), so that was certainly very blech.

Steam has a place on it's creator dashboard where you can message a service rep, and some dashboard manual said to message them if you get review bombed like this, so I'll try that.

VelociBacon posted:

Let us know what game it is and you won't need commiseration.
Our game is Europe In Ruins. It's existed in some form since 2007, but we launched on Steam last year.

Wamdoodle
May 15, 2007

Yes, it is what it looks like!



Hey goondevs, I just came across a Twitter thread and wanted to present it and ask if anyone has come across a contract like this fellow has:

https://twitter.com/jakefriend_dev/status/1426227560057298952?s=19

Stacked odds completely against the dev. No names called out though but not under an NDA.

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TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

literally this big posted:

I was also wrong earlier: the abusive, profanity-laced review is still up, unfortunately.

You should be able to report abusive reviews if you're an owner or moderator of the game. Find the review on the list, click on the "Not Recommended", and you'll be taken to a page for that specific review. On the right there should be an orange-outlined box with the moderator controls. Flag the review as "abusive".

It's still up to Steam whether or not they take any action, but it's worth a shot. I was able to get 1 review for my game hidden (and it doesn't count against my score percentage, based on my own math), by reporting it as off-topic. The review text was just "way too political".

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