You already know what is game development so now it’s time to answer the next important question: how to start?
First thing you need is…
AN IDEA FOR A SIMPLE GAME
Yes – simple. You have to start small. Don’t even think about creating the next Witcher, Fortnite, LOL or something like that. Think about something small, like Pong. It’s highly possible that you’ll struggle to make even its clone. Don’t get us wrong – it’s okay to attempt something more ambitious but if you’ve got no experience you can get disappointed sooner or later if you won’t see the effects of your hard work fast.
My first game ever was about a jumping triangle – player had to jump as high as possible, avoiding obstacles and collecting powerups. That’s all.
Got an idea written down? Cool! Now clear your list and choose only the most important features. Remove the rest. Now split these core features into itsy-bitsy steps. You know, steps like: show a ball on the screen, move a ball around, make it collide with a wall, change button color on click, etc. Really small but meaningful parts. This should help you to not get stuck in the next step.
Got it? So let’s start developing!
INSTALL UNITY (or whatever engine you want)
It doesn’t really matter if you’ll create your game in Unity, Unreal Engine, Game Maker, Godot or any other engine. What matters is doing. Only by doing you’ll see results.
We won’t (and even can’t) recommend anything else than Unity because this is the only engine that we use from the beginning. It has everything you need to get going for any type of project, big or small. Plus there’re lots of tutorials, a huge knowledge base in Unity Docs and great communities all over the Internet.
LET’S MAKE A GAME!
If you’re still here it’s time to start making a game! Finally, right?
Ok… But… Where to start? What should be done first? Remember this list of small features you made earlier? Great! Get the first thing you think is the most important and implement it. It could be as simple as displaying a red ball on the screen.
Not sure how to do that? Open a browser and type something like: “how to make a red ball in unity”. Press enter and search for information you need. Use that and make it work.
Got that red ball on the screen? Perfect! Cross it out from the list and get the next feature. Make it bounce or sing, or explode or anything you have on that list you prepared. Repeat those simple steps until you finish your game. The end. Finito. Congratulations, you’ve just made your first game! 🥳😊
Wait, what?! Is that it?!
Yes, there is no magic bullet to make it work other than get the work done.
WHERE TO SEEK HELP?
If you are still confused and not sure what to do, maybe the best option for you would be some structured way of learning, like short tutorials or full-blown courses. There are plenty of these materials all over the internet. We recommend checking out Youtube for free content or platforms like Udemy or Coursera if you’re willing to spend some money. It’ll definitely help you to get started if you are paralyzed.
OH, NO. I’M STUCK!
What if you get stuck? Don’t be afraid to ask for help and look for the answer on the Internet. Maybe you’ll find another way around the problem after a break? Just don’t give up and survive hard times. It usually takes some time to become proficient, you just need to gain some experience and it definitely won’t come in 5 minutes. 🙂
We’ll remind you once more: take small steps and use the Internet.
After 5+ years I’m still learning. There’s always something new to learn or to improve. When I’m looking at code from my first games I’m thinking “who wrote that?! It couldn’t be me!!”. Even looking at the code from the previous game I really often think ”I can improve that, now I know how to do it better!”. What if I don’t know how to do something? I’m searching for answers on the Internet! Simple as that. 🙂
Making games isn’t easy. There will be times when you won’t know what to do next, how to tackle the problems. There’ll be times when you’ll want to give up and throw your computer through the window. There’ll be times when you won’t want to open your project. It’s normal. Just don’t give up. The best part is when you see how much fun your game will give to those who will play it. Stick with it until the end. Good luck! 🙂
All graphics designed by stories / Freepik