Gamedev Communities

10
Gorogorosama #170 29 65

Hello fellow Undergrounders,

I wanted to fill a thread by discussing gamedev communites in general, and perhaps how we can improve the GDU. But to tackle that we need to find out, or at least explore, the telos.

What are we looking for in gamedev communities? Not necessarily the Underground, could also be Gamastura, Gamedev.net, reddit.com/r/gamedev/, etc. Here's my own list, in no specific order, but what's yours?


* Encouragement - Like-minded people to encourage me not to give up the dream and to keep fighting, even when I have to downgrade from pizza to Ramen. Get that game done!

* Refinement - People who will take a look at my game or design and suggest how I can make it better.

* Socializing - Just cool people to joke around with. Some placeholder for "friends".

* Team forming - Programmers looking for artists, or vice versa.

* Help with Marketing - As this article mentions, fellow developers are your first wave of fans that can help spread the word about your game.

* Education - If I'm stuck on a coding problem or whatnot, maybe someone can help me out or suggest a better way to go about things. Or maybe someone has a cool list of tools that will help me be a more efficient dev.

What do you look for in a gamedev community, and what role does the GDU aim to fill?

Additionall, the Underground specifically has one advantage over all other communities: exclusivity. So how does that help the Gamedev Underground help make us better Gamdevs?

I have my own ideas, but what are yours?

17
Tim Ruswick #1 89 1452

I think our greatest strength is also our greatest weakness.
Exclusivity is awesome, it makes us a cool tight-knit community, but it also keeps the numbers low, which sometimes means the forums are a ghost town for a day or 2.
You know believe it or not, GDU didnt start as a community, but rather a marketing tool for games, and then it just kind of evolved that way. But you bring up a great point, I'd love to know why people are here, or why they go to any other community so we can improve the tech behind the community and make it better suit the people who actually use it.
Personally I like it being extremely general, so its not "hey I need help with C# scripting in unity for this one character" but more like "Hey how do I improve my gameplay mechanics overall?" I like the generality of it, because it promotes making and marketing games as a whole. Its that what versus the how.

Thanks for the post man! Would love to hear your personal take on it!

10
Gorogorosama #170 29 65

Well, I definitely think we should focus on a few things, and then do them well.

As you said, this is not the place for very specific programming advice, and I don't think it should be.

We have the marketing platform, but right now that's rather disconnected from the "community", which is fine. However, that platform is kind of the first-step for a developer who is serious about getting their game out there. Of course there are plenty of articles on gamasutra about what the next steps are.

We are definitely facing the downside of exclusivity right now (small community). But it would be good to look at what the upside could be. Exclusivity could theoreitcally give us:


  • Safe Haven. For discussing our games / designs without fear of... being laughed at? having our ideas stolen?

  • Seal of Quality. like, this game was made by someone in the underground, so you know it's good.

  • Virality. I guess this is how it worked for Facebook. It was cool to be in the exlclusive club, of course then once everyone was in it was no longer exclusive. But the idea of it at least help it spread, if that's what we're looking for.


Perhaps there's more. It will be interesting to explore where this community wants to go with it...

17
Tim Ruswick #1 89 1452

I like the exclusivity.

Being a marketer, I have the ability to get a huge influx of people in here. All it takes is ad money and some elbow grease...but I've specifially chosen not to because I dont want to build just any old game dev forum. I want a cool community and I want like minded, success-minded people to help eachother grow.

Once we figure that out, I have partnerships and stuff ready to go to get more people, its just a matter of finding the right ones.

So idk, there are pros and cons. I want everyones input because I want to do whats best for everyone not just what I want, as I think the underground belongs to everyone.

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