Game Creation Station – An Introduction
Today I decided to create a game. This has been something I’ve wanted to do for years but never actually accomplished. I’ve fiddled around with engines going as far back as the original Unreal engine, but I have yet to sit down and complete a game.
I want that to end this year.
Since I’m not a programmer, I decided to look for a tool that could let me design my fledgling game without much scripting or programming knowledge. There are so many options out on the market right now that it almost seems overwhelming. Yet, the choice for me was pretty easy. About a year go, there was this awesome Humble Bundle that sold all available (at the time) versions of RPG Maker with finished games, DLC, and a great sprite creation tool called Game Character Hub. Since my plan has been to create an RPG, I jumped on this deal and grabbed all the RPG making goodness.
I then proceeded to sit on it for a year while my life changed dramatically.
Game Creation Station
Now I’m back to creating things and have been inspired by friends to start making my game. In fact, I haven’t just been inspired to create a game but inspired to create a whole ‘building games at home’ initiative. It is called Game Creation Station and will eventually encompass how to articles, podcasts, videos and (hopefully) more. For now? Game Creation Station will start out with a series of articles talking about various at home projects. This will be a weekly series in which Jessica Brown and I switch back and forth between my project and the project she is creating.
Making an RPG:
My series of articles will track my progress as a very amateur game designer (Or game making hobbyist, whatever term you prefer) from start to finish. I plan on documenting every step of the process, from learning how to use the tools at hand to actually implementing the game design and beyond. Eventually, I’ll have the finished product available on my website for all to download and critique. This series will have all the articles, links, tutorials and game assets that I use while going through this process. It won’t be an easy process and I’m sure it will take time to complete.
The creation tools I will be using:
Because of that Humble Bundle purchase last year, I have both RPG Maker XP and RPG Maker VX Ace available to use. Doing a Google search asking for which program is better brings up a whole bunch of different points of view on the various pros and cons of each program. The pros and cons kind of wash over me since I’m not overly familiar with product. The fact is my choice on which to use first isn’t really that hard. I have some experience with RPG Maker XP and the computer I’m using right now has very limited resources. This makes RPG Maker XP an easy choice for the main tool on my first project. Game Character Hub is a great sprite creation tool that helps a person easily make sprites and items for both XP and VX Ace. I have limited experience with it but I am looking forward to working with the program.
If I have to go outside of Game Character Hub, I have GIMP 2.0 available to me. Due to the limited nature of my current PC, this is a powerful photo manipulation tool for older systems. I do have a legal copy of Photoshop CS 5 available but this computer doesn’t have a chance of running it. Again, I am not overly familiar with GIMP, so this whole project will be a learning curve.
In two weeks I will get into the nitty gritty of the inspiration for my game, the story I am following and start building this project. Next week Jessica Brown will be here to talk about her current project using the Zelda Classic game creation tool.