Hi Richard,

Oh, definitely. I have put a lot of thought into this and I came to
the same general conclusions as you. AGM's problem was that it
couldn't create a racing game, side-scroller, first-person game, etc
because all of the functionality was too generic for that. However, if
there was an editor for side-scrollers, one for first-person shooters,
another for racing, etc it would go a long way to solving that basic
problem.

I know from my own personal experience that writing a side-scroller is
totally different from writing a first-person game. I have two
completely different sets of functions in the game engine for
side-scrollers and first-person. In the first-person catagory I have
PlayerRunForward(), PlayerStepFoward(), PlayerStepBackward(),
PlayerStepLeft(), PlayerStepRight(), PlayerTurnLeft(),
PlayerTurnRight(), etc. For side-scrollers I have PlayerRunLeft(),
PlayerRunRight(), PlayerWalkLeft(), and PlayerWalkRight().This
difference in functionality pretty much demands some sort of custom
tool for each type of game.

On 2/1/11, Richard @ AudioGames <rich...@audiogames.net> wrote:

> Hi Thomas (and all),
>
> You're absolutely right about the problems with the AGM-project you
> describe. I applaud your persuit for the development of a new
> audio game creation tool. I'd really like to see more tools because I want
> to have more audio games (I follow all threads about
> tools on this list silently but with great interest :-)
> I learned many things from the AGM project (such as dealing with time
> restrictions, burned-down offices, ambitious interns, etc. :-)
> but what is probably most useful to share is more about the design of
> generic game design tools:
>
> I've always thought that if I were to do the AGM-project again, that I would
> *first* constrain myself to a game design tool for one
> specific game genre. So for instance a tool for an audio race game, or a
> tool for an audio platform game, etc. Initially we had
> considered this option, but we abandoned it because we thought of the idea
> too much as mere level editors (with which one could not
> design a innovative/original game with) and because we thought there would
> be so much overlap between the level editors (score
> systems, enemies, etc.) that we could pull off a generic game design tool
> with a little bit more effort.
> In the end we found that the generic approach made it a whole lot harder to
> even make a very simple racing game, or a simple shooter
> game. With a lot more time (let's say 1,5 years) we could have probably
> managed to make a decent working generic version, with a
> better user interface (even though this one was supposed to be as simple as
> possible, it is still quite complex when you start). But
> I think that we probably would have added templates for certain game genres
> anyway - just to make the design more simple.
>
> I think that if you start with an audio game design tool for one specific
> genre (let's say a shooter or a racer or a board game),
> that that in itsself is already a big enough challenge. Most likely
> something like an Audio Race Game Maker will feature an
> incredible amount of variables and functionalities. This not only means that
> an Audio Race Game Maker is a big thing to develop, but
> when you achieve it, you have probably learned a great deal about how to
> create a more generic game development tool as well.
> I think that you might find that even with a single-genre tool many people
> will create a whole range of fun racing games and will
> very soon try to use it for stuff other than racing games. Then gradually
> you can add a new feature (open terrain instead of a fixed
> track, or damage variable, so that vehicles can get damaged), and another
> one (pickups, or a weapon to shoot another car) and quite
> soon people will exchange the car engine sound for footsteps and you have
> the initials of a basic FPS. And you can have it grow from
> there on.
>
> On a side note: this is actually how our project Extant
> (http://creativehero.es/Extant) is now slowly changing from a first-person
> shooter environment into an environment (in Unity) which allows us to create
> multiple types of games because we got all types of
> building blocks that work together: moving around a 3D space (x,y,z),
> different avatars (person, vehicle, etc.), enemies, shooting,
> pickups, buildings, etc.
>
> So my point is: start small, try not to create a generic tool for all game
> genres, but start with a tool for a single genre and
> build it out from there. Maybe first build three single genre tools and then
> make a generic version out of the three of them.
>
> Best regards,
>
> Richard
>
> http://audiogames.net

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