Disclaimer: None of this story is accurate to real life or even close. It is inspired from the fun I had whilst playing Kairosoft's "Game Dev Story". Only the world, event names, console names and certain environments described are borrowed from the game. All characters and major plot points are mine.
Game Proposal Day
Mack stood at the front and everyone was silent as he set up his proposal. He was soon done and everyone seemed to lean in to listen better. Including me.
"As it is our very first game ever, that we will be able to finish to the end. Thanks to the arrival of Chris," Mack started. His voice was cracky, problably from the lack of use, "I underwent research to see what would be the best game we would be able to make, whilst saving the most money in today's market."
"All right, well done. What did you find?" Jared asked.
"According to my research," he pointed to a chart of statistics, "at our current age, it seems that the most popular type of game will be a simple reversi game. The market is not looking for a complex multi-layered story in a game, but for some family-friendly fun, with a familiar game that will be quick to teach: Reversi."
Mack proceeded to hand out stapled sheets of paper. At the front, there was:
By: Mack Laylard"
We then proceeded to read the proposal in silence. I finished reading the proposal quickly and decided to look over it just to check if I had missed anything.
'REVERSI MANIA' had a very simple story, as Mack had originally planned. The main character is very likable and the proposed style of art is very easy and dare-I-say, cute. Mack was right, this would be very popular for the whole family.
"Am I right to assume that everyone agrees this is a great game proposal?" Jared asked, flipping through the pages of his copy of the proposal.
We all agreed in unison, we were all excited to start making the game.
"A great proposal Mack, I agree with the others. You get the 'go' to start making this game." Jared smiled.
Everyone of us jumped out of our chairs and cheered. Jared stood as well, "Remember, this proposal is only the skeleton of the game. Put as much effort as you can to make this game the best you can."
We nodded and hurried back to our computers and started our work, I was a bit confused to what we're supposed to do since it is my first time at creating a game. Callie noticed my hesitation.
"Do you know what to do?" Callie asked.
"No, this will be my first time." I humbly admitted.
"No problem. Now, right now, 'REVERSI MANIA' is on its alpha stage. In the alpha stage we work on most of the game scenario, the preliminary overall design of the game and the graphics. Then we move on to the beta stage where we refine the game scenario and work on the sound aspect of the game. That includes any sound effects, tracks and voice-overs of characters if we need any. Then after we finish the beta stage, we go on to refine everything that we have done." Callie explained quickly.
"Then we finish the game?" I asked.
"No, no. Along the way we will find bugs in the coding of the game. We will first de-bug the game before we release it to the public." Callie answered.
"That seems like a lot of work." I mumbled innocently.
"Yes, it is. But when you're doing the thing that you love. You don't care about the amount of work. You just do it. Then you get the joy of seeing your hardwork being enjoyed all around the world." John chipped in.
"So you know what to do now?" Callie asked.
"I guess so. I'll try my best." I said.
John patted me on the back, "good lad. We're counting on you on the graphics."
"What?" I exclaimed.
"Well, Callie's the sound engineer, I'm the coder, Mack's the writer, that leaves you to be the visual designer." John explained.
"Oh," I simply mumbled.
Callie smiled, "Let's hope you're arty."
"Yeah," I said quietly, "Let's hope I am."
20 Weeks Later
"How are we going with 'REVERSI MANIA'?" Jared asked as he approached each individual computer, inspecting it.
"It's doing fine, we're nearly finished." John said, "Just de-bugging the last few bugs and then we're done."
"How is it? Are you proud of your work?" Jared asked, looking over my shoulder.
"Considering it's our first game and we've managed to finish it, hell yes!" John answered again. I nodded.
"How is it Mack? Is it as you visioned it?" Jared asked, looking over Mack's shoulder now. Mack nodded.
"YES! DONE!" exclaimed John. "That's the last bug gone!"
"To the warehouses!" Callie yelled.
Everyone turned their computers off and hurried to leave.
Jared patted me on my back, "Come on now, that's it for today. The warehouses will create and distribute the game till the demand is gone. But first, the guys at Game Guy will want to get a copy to review it, and if it gets a high score, that'll help with the sales a lot."
"Let's hope it does then." I said as I stood and put my jacket on.
Jared laughed and opened the door for me. "Let's hope so. Good night."
"Good night sir." I said before leaving.
2 Weeks Later
"Alright everyone, gather around. 'REVERSI MANIA' has finally been released to the stores and Game Guy has done a review on it." Jared called us to the big conference table. I was the last to sit down.
Jared held up a CD case which had a big, colourful 'REVERSI MANIA' at the top and a reversi board underneath it. Everybody murmured with approval.
"That doesn't look too bad." John commented. Everyone agreed.
"No, it doesn't really. Now, the way it works is, the warehouse will continue to create copies as long as the shops are still ordering, to minimise wastes. That's good news for us, considering we're a new company and if it doesn't sell well, we won't waste our money on recovering the left-over copies." Jared explained. He motioned to Jessica Dunt, the secretary, to turn the lights down and showed the Game Guy magazine on the projector.
We all read carefully:
REVERSI MANIA – Epik Gaming
For a quick look:
James McNally – 3/10 – It went right to the trash
Mark Antoine – 3/10 –They need more practice
Annette Bland – 5/10 – Good, but limited appeal
Brendan Jaquez – 5/10 – Good overall
You all know that all of us on Game Guy (especially the four of us who review the games), support new game developing companies. So we're always excited when a new game dev. company release their very first game. And for this issue, it's Epik Gaming's turn.
After coming out as a company, Epik Gaming has spent their time looking for creative contracts to build their account balances, and we were seriously wondering if Epik Gaming was a game dev. company at all. And then, 'REVERSI MANIA' was released and they made sure that the game lived up to that title. The 'REVERSI' part anyway. It wasn't so much 'MANIA' but more 'CHAOS'.
'REVERSI MANIA' allows players to go against the AI in games, and that is literally it! There are no optional game modes, no storyline whatsoever and with only mediocre sound effects and shocking graphics, this is hardly entertaining at all. We give it a 16 out of 40.
James McNally – I don't understand how Epik Gaming would be happy to release this game. Very disappointed. It went straight to the trash.
Mark Antoine – It's obvious from 'REVERSI MANIA', that Epik Gaming is enthusiastic about developing games, they just don't have the skills to make a worthwhile one, they just need more practice.
Annette Bland – Look, for a new game developing company, this is definitely not the worst we've seen. It's got a few of the correct elements to make a fabulous game, but there is very limited appeal in it to make gamers want to continue playing it.
Brendan Jaquez – Compared to other newbie games, it was good. But to make it in this industry, a game can't only be 'good'.
All the murmurs stopped as we just sat there in silence. I couldn't believe it. All the reviewers were not happy with our games. Even though we poured all that we have into that game. We sat there in silence as Jared tried to cheer us up.
"Look, yes, they weren't great scores, but maybe the gamers wouldn't mind. It can still sell..." Jared attempted. "Look, why don't we just focus on doing a couple more contracts to build our finances.
And that's how we picked ourselves up, we did the 'couple more' contracts. But we didn't really have any motivation to do so until I was looking at Epik Gaming's website and saw a link to our Chirper account. Some one had mentioned us in their Chirp. I opened it and saw that a couple of people had made their own reviews.
"I was walking one day and saw that a ew game was out called 'REVERSI MANIA'. I found out that this was the first official game of Epik Gaming, and even though the AI was alright, this game is really just a skeleton that could have been a casual gaming hit."
While another said:
"New game came out today, and even though it wasn't really great, when I heard that it was from Epik Gaming, I was surprised because their office is, like, half an hour from my house. But I heard that this game was coming out everywhere. I like to support my local community organizations so I'm going to support them also."
That really made me rethink about my attitude when it comes to what we're doing here. It cost us $243.5K to make the games, but we managed to make a profit of $215.4K with 'REVERSI MANIA', so it wasn't a complete bomb. 'REVERSI MANIA' also managed to make it to rank 23 of sales in its first week in the shops. So, the fact that we made it to the top 30 is a big deal when we're such a new company.
I was suddenly filled with inspiration and decided I would secretly make a game proposal while we're still working on the contracts.
3 Weeks Later
"I think it's about time for us to make our second game guys, do we have any game proposals around?" Jared said.
"I think Chris has been working on one for a while, haven't you Chris?" Callie called out, causing me to blush a bit.
"Oh really Newbie!" John exclaimed, "well, why don't you show us what it is?"
"I don't know, it's not really finished yet." I murmured.
"I've got another one." Mack spoke quietly.
"Excellent, well Chris, we'd love to give you feedback on your game proposal. We might be able to create it at a later date." Jared explained.
I nodded and stood slowly to present my (future) game proposal:
By: Chris Zanford"
By the end of my game proposal, everyone was silent. I took it the wrong way at first. "It's terrible, isn't it?"
"No, no, no! It was actually brilliant!" Jared exclaimed. Everyone else agreed, even Mack, even though I was actually taking over his job.
"The hero was very...great! If we made this, gamers will be roped in by the characters, the story and you even thought of a great gameplay idea." Jared continued.
"Yeah, I guess, but I don't think we're ready and I haven't exactly finished it to the point that I am absolutely happy with it." I commented.
"No, of course, speaking of being ready, I have actually organized extensive training for all of you because the most important thing that I saw from 'REVERSI MANIA's review is that we weren't ready in our technological skills yet. Your training will start tomorrow. And when we are much better, we will be able to make games that impress the Game Guy reviewers!"
Mack stood up as I sat down to give his own game proposal. A game proposed under the title of 'Blackbarrow'. It was obvious that the 'REVERSI MANIA' reviews hit him hard, especially when they claimed that there was no storyline. 'Blackbarrow' was more story-based and it wasn't too bad.
In the end, we decided to work on 'Blackbarrow' as some fans were complaining that we weren't releasing enough games.
So began our second attempt at making a game. Hopefully this time, it will impress the reviewers more. And now in hindsight, that was the good old days, where nothing was wrong. We might have not been famous, at least we were enjoying ourselves. Oblivious to all the trouble that was to come.
A.N: Ok, sorry for the long wait for the next chapter, I am trying to update this as soon as I can, but I've got uni and the assignments that come along with it and I've got to make sure that I continuously work on my Doctor Who: Forgotten Memories series. Hopefully, chapter 3 won't take as long as chapter 2 did. Hope you enjoyed it, review and share this and/or my other stories to everyone you know that might enjoy.