“The Stevechievement.” Version Control, Art Direction, Console vs PC Development

This week’s roundtable episode features a (mostly) silent co-host: Ikaros the official Glitch HQ office doge! While not distracted by adorableness, Martha gives a primer on Git and version control best practices, Stephen leads a discussion on art direction, and Mark tries to understand PC gamers.

Discuss this week’s episode on reddit using this thread in r/gamedev!

Links

[0:03:58] Version Control

[0:33:38] Art Direction

[0:54:44] Console vs PC Development

“I trolled myself.” Business Stuff, Nintendo Switch, Competitive Play

This week’s roundtable provides practical knowledge on three of today’s most important life topics: Starting a business, being a good competitor, and playing Nintendo.

Fill out our feedback form, or Martha will defeat you!!

Links:

[0:01:51] Business Stuff
“Is game development your hobby or your business? – Gamasutra
“How LLC Members Are Taxed” – Nolo
Starting a Business – MN Department of Employment and Economic Development
IncFile
LegalZoom
“Do You Need a Physical Address For Your Business?” – LegalZoom

[0:23:49] Nintendo Switch
“Arms launches on June 16, new character Min Min revealed” – Nintendo Everything
“Nintendo Reveals A New ARMS Character, And It’s An Odd One” – NintendoLife
Zelda: Breath of the Wild: Hestu’s dance
Jackbox Party Pack 3
Human Resource Machine
“Nintendo Switch dev kits could run as low as $440” – Gamasutra
“With the Switch, Nintendo is getting right what the PlayStation Vita got wrong” – GamesRadar
“PlayStation Vita isn’t dead, just ask Nintendo Switch indie developers” – The Verge

[0:43:20] Competition
“‘Playing to Win’ and a Philosophy of Competition in Gaming” – Gamasutra
“Is Wavedashing necessary for competitive play?” – reddit
Clawbreaker Trailer
Metro Nexus Gameplay

“Mutual butt-kicking.” Getting Out of a Rut, Bots, Procedural Generation

This week’s roundtable episode has it all: Confusion, technobabble, randomness… and shoot, a whole lot more besides!

Glitch Connect digital games festival is coming up, May 5th-7th in Minneapolis. Get your tickets now!

We’re still looking for feedback from our listeners! Be nice and visit our feedback form. It will only take a minute and it will help make the show better!

[Links]
Nice Games Club feedback form
Glitch Connect

[0:02:54] Getting Out of a Rut
Tim Schafer on productivity
Stephen’s motivation week

[0:19:44] Bots! Bots! Bots!
Tech the Tech
Tracery
Tracery for Unity
Kate Compton
Mark Gritter on Twitter
“Play This Clever Adventure Game Entirely On Twitter” – Kotaku
Raisable
MN Bot Makers – Meetup
Quick, Draw!
Cheap Bots Done Quick

[0:35:40] Procedural Generation
“Procedural world generation: The simulation, functional and planning approaches” – Gamasutra
“Spelunky Generator Lessons” – Darius Kazemi
“No Man’s Sky – Procedural Content” – 3DGameDev Blog
“How Planets are Made in Elite: Dangerous Horizons” – WCCF Tech
“Fallout 4: Here’s All the Names That Codsworth Can Say” – Gamespot

“Pick up all the things!” Prototyping, Point and Clicks, User Interfaces

In this super-sized episode, your nice hosts get into the gritty details of game design with a trio of terrific topics. Martha lays out the concept for her next game, Stephen complains about Smash Bros. (!), and Mark takes a lot of notes. Plus, maybe the best topic transitions to ever come out of the clubhouse!

GlitchCon digital games festival is coming up, May 5th-7th in Minneapolis. Get your tickets now!

We’re still looking for feedback from our listeners! Be nice and visit our feedback form. It will only take a minute of your time and it will help us make the show better.

Links
GlitchConnect
GlitchCon Brewery tour
Nice Games Club feedback form

[0:05:18] Prototyping
GDC Game Design Workshop
Mark’s Sonic The Hedgehog solitaire card game
Holographic Mark Mk I

[0:26:28] Point and Clicks
Puzzle Dependency Graph Primer” – Gamasutra
The Day of The Tentacle: Dependency Graph Analysis” – The Website is Down
Double Fine Adventure
Humongous Entertainment
Cosmic Osmo
“25 years of HyperCard—the missing link to the Web” – Ars Technica

[0:42:26] User Interfaces
“User interface design in video games” – Gamasutra
“The User Interface Continuum: A Study Of Player Preference” – Gamasutra
Splinter Cell: Conviction Developer Diary” – IGN
“Mirror’s Edge – UX is not UI” – GUR-U
Hue’s color blind mode in action
Color Jumper’s color blind mode in action
The Division UI and Gameplay Walkthrough”
Breaking Conventions with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” – GDC 2017

“We are artists and we should be artists.” Demoing and Playtesting, Project Management, Messages and Meanings

A day late but worth the wait! In this high signal-to-noise roundtable episode, each member of the club picks a topic that they are particularly passionate about:

Stephen shares his wisdom and guidance about playtesting your work early and often, Martha helps you get your act together in a practical discussion about project management, and Mark tries to explain the obligation he feels as an artist, but picks a weird hill to die on as he wrongly insists that Portal 2 isn’t really about anything.

We’re trying to make the show even better and we need your input! Be nice and visit our feedback form to tell us what you think!

Intro
Ice Cold Games
@zacharyjohnson
Nice Games Club feedback form

[0:03:27] Demoing and Playtesting

[0:33:26] Project Management
Trello
JIRA
Agile development
Waterfall development
Kanban development
“The Blue Yarn” – 99% Invisible
“NUMMI 2015” – This American Life

David Megarry’s Three Questions all project managers should ask:
“Do you have all the resources you need?”
“Do you have any roadblocks or impediments?”
“Are you on schedule?”

“A project manager (PM) is more of a problem solver than anything else. If you don’t have the resources, the PM finds them. If there are roadblocks, the PM helps to find a way to get around them. If not on schedule, the PM alters it or adds more resources or changes scope. Above all, the PM communicates with management as to the state of the project so they can make proper decisions and not be blindsided or surprised.” -David Megarry

[0:52:56] Messages and Meanings
Summerland, a novel by Michael Chabon
“A Closer Look At How Three Assassin’s Creed Games Have Handled Slavery” – Kotaku
“For Honor’s accidental alt-right connection” – Polygon