Game Inspiration

I have heard about writer’s blocks, but so far, not of game developer’s blocks. I seem to be having one of the latter. I used to enjoy creating games, and I still do, yet I can’t seem to find the inspiration to start anything new. Maybe it’s the burden of work and upcoming exams, or it may be the fear of never finishing the actual game. Yet the problem I currently have is to think of a game which wouldn’t be too complex to create and a game I would actually love making. I would make use of help and tips which might help me choose what to create. To all game developers out there, what makes you create games? What gives you ideas about games you want to create? And what keeps you going to finish the game you are working on?

Thanks in advance.

1 Like
@memonick said:
To all game developers out there, what makes you create games? What gives you ideas about games you want to create? And what keeps you going to finish the game you are working on?

Playing other games.

I guess we're all here because we enjoyed playing games when we were kids, and we grew up with that sort of when you're short on motivation...go back to what gave you the motivation to make games in the first place : playing games

There are plenty of good titles these days : Skyrim, batman, Assassin's Creed, battle Field and so on. Take a break

I see… I am really impressed by “Take a break”. You’re right. Seeing as I am admin of Caiman, I will go look there for simple, successful games. Thanks for your input man :slight_smile:

What gave me motivation to do my games was RPGMaker :D. When I used RPGMaker, I didn’t know what is “programming” at all :P, I was just a poor child wishing do my first game :roll:.

Yeah I also think just playing some games will give you the best ideas. Maybe just some detail that reminds you of some concept from long ago that you liked. Actually playing Red Faction:Guerrilla was what made me think of BattleZone again which in turn gave me the idea/incentive to start doing MonkeyZone. As the time I invest in jME3 can be excessive at times I just as excessively then put my attention to the PS3 just to be reminded what kind of stuff I do this for actually :wink:

The problem I usually have to face is the fear of ending up copying other games. I will play some childhood games to get the feel back. Thanks :slight_smile:

Playing games and get the feeling, that the ki and fun factor can be done better.

→ Applies for numerous MMORPG’s

1 Like

@glaucomardano :stuck_out_tongue: how old were you on that time?

Don’t be afraid to copy other games, I lived in fear of that for a long time until I learned innovation is not about being original, e.g. Battlefield and MW3 are in no way original, and as I’m sure we all know Minecraft isn’t particularly original. Apple are (unfortunately :P) one of the most successful companies around because they innovate other peoples ideas: they weren’t even close to being the first mp3 player or the tablet pc :wink:

Don’t just look at games, also look at your favourite movies and books, and think about what why you like them. You could think of a favourite actions scene and try to recreate that in a game (mTheoryGame goes this way to much, but screw everyone, I do what a I want :wink: ), or flesh out the world a movie or book is set in and make it your own - start with Bladerunner you could end up at Deux Ex … kinda.

Even the smallest idea can grow into a game (as long as you have the passion), I attempted to replicate the lighting style of the coral from Finding Nemo and the idea snowballed into the Cove; When I started mTheoryGame all I had in mind was 2 ninjas with swords flying through the air at each other, the rest has fallen into place along the way.

There are a bunch of ‘game idea’ forums out there but I haven’t had any luck finding good ideas in there, and they aren’t very inspirational so not that useful for sparking your own ideas. I find it far more productive to flip through the likes of deviantart and get inspired by other peoples passion.

1 Like
@iamcreasy said:
@glaucomardano :p how old were you on that time?

Hmm, let me remember...I was about 12 years old :P. Good times! Good times 8)...

@thetoucher, So if I get you right, I should first look at other media for inspiration. Then I should create my idea, making it as simple as possible. Thanks for your valuable tips.

I wanted to make games because i am poor

As i was a child i played arcade games, where we have to buy coins and put into the game machine

My dream was having a game machine at home, so i can play freely all day.

Then later there are ps2, game console, and finally computers and also jme3

so i make game to make my dream comes true, for myself only.

games i make are like games i played and love.

tekken, little fighter → the ****** child of mine

battle city —> my current tank game

others–> ???

so my games are copy + modified version of other games

later if my skill is good enough i would love to mix things together and there might be something new.

I got inspirations from other games, when i play games i tends to get new idea for my own game, althougth their genre are different.

1 Like

I sometimes use music as an analogy. If a musician refused to ever play or listen to another person’s work then we’d think that was silly. Of course you learn a ton by trying to play other peoples’ music and the same is true in video games. And just like in music, if you were ever to try and 100% duplicate exactly someone elses work you would find it the hardest and best learning experience you’ve ever had. (In fact, if you ever try producing music then I highly recommend trying to duplicate some other sold song’s “sound” exactly… you will learn 100 things you never knew you didn’t know.)

So, while duplicating someone elses game feature-for-feature may be hard and an otherwise throw-away effort, you would learn something about making your code perform exactly as some predefined requirements… right down to how the game feels when you hit the buttons. Such small things. And then you also realize how easy it would have been to make it completely different just by letting your own imagination have some input.

None of that really speaks to inspiration except to not be afraid of seeking it from other games. On some level, there are only variations on 5 or 6 types of games anyway.

Personally, I think an open mind will find inspiration anywhere. Immerse yourself in things you enjoy, expand your horizons, maybe watch some movie you wouldn’t normally watch… etc… You never know where inspiration will strike. I purposely tried to watch a Masterpiece Theater mystery the other night to take a break from Mythruna. At one part they walk across this old stone bridge so embedded in the landscape that the bridge had grass growing on it… I missed the next 10 minutes of dialog as I zoned out thinking how I would make that bridge. :wink:


Thanks a lot :wink: I spent last night thinking about games I used to love playing. The first two which came to mind where Robin Hood and Thief 3. In these games, you had to steal things and/or ambush opponents. Will try and start something by next week. I have already created a sophisticated movement engine using pythagoras’ theorems for maximum precision, so I will try and use that. I will start off simple - move around, picking up objects as loot - and see where I go from there. Once again, thanks a lot!

As paul says, if you’re not a master at copying games you’ll probably end up with a pretty unique game even if you try to copy another game 1:1. Just look at Saints Row for example, feels and plays totally different than GTA though its basically a direct copy. I think the music analogy pretty much nails how you should feel about “copying” stuff. Rock and Roll needs a backbeat, its not “copying from all other songs to put the bassdrum on 1 and 3 and snare on 2 and 4” :wink: As @thetoucher says in the apple example, its not about doing it first, its about doing it right :smiley:

i just got redirected to this thread, really nice input from everyone, i wanna pitch in with what inspires me…

before, games used to be about content, you had people that worked to make their dreams come true… look at Dungeon Keeper… (or any bullfrog game)… starcraft or warcraft (shamefully blizzard became a MMO hoarder, and why not, they sure filled their pockets with money)…

look at Fallout 2… those games made a real impact… they risked everything for their ideas, their dreams, their concepts… look at baldurs gate, they made such a rich and sumersive world… i can go back even more, but my point is, great games where not about graphics (like all current games just are, skyrim was a huge disappointment, basically hack & slash promoted as RPG… an RPG which only has “mana”, “health” or “stamina”… today games are simplistic yet really high graphical versions of yesterdays games… and for me, making a snowflake fall on your hand and melt, is not a game improvement… )…

great games are made by dreams… dream what you love and do it… but dont do it halfway… (like spore… worst disappointment in my life, i waited for that game for 5 years… even the main developer said publicly that the game “was not what he wanted”, it got rushed by maxis for the christmas shopping spree -.-)…

live for your dreams…

you can take something you love and make it better, or you can dream something entirely new, something no one ever did before (or you can mix em both, like i do :wink: )

inspiration comes from life experience, usually i wanna do something but im compelled by laws not to do it (either physic laws or society laws :wink: lol)… as others said, you can read books, watch movies, or just watch thru ur window… go out, see the world move…

i’ve mentioned some games i was disappointed at, (and mainly becuz they didnt live up to my expectations) do know some people will be disappointed at your game, listen to them, even if it’s not constructive criticism, and even if it’s not what your game was aiming at, it might give you ideas…

and always remember, every game is a piece of art, even if it’s 5 minutes long or never ending… and as all forms of art, it cant be rushed, you have to take your time to finish it till you are pleased with what you have done…


This is the best game for me .

so weird, i cant edit my last post, anywayz… i wanted to add “Make the games you want to play”, i think that’s my main inspiration, i REALLY want to play the game im trying to make and i wish someday i can at last… and hopefully others will find it as entertaining as i will :slight_smile:

nice, FF tactics, awesome game, the PSP port was superb too… great gameplay, great story, great everything… :stuck_out_tongue:

@dixel said:
nice, FF tactics, awesome game, the PSP port was superb too... great gameplay, great story, great everything.... :P


@dixel said:
so weird, i cant edit my last post, anywayz..... i wanted to add "Make the games you want to play", i think that's my main inspiration, i REALLY want to play the game im trying to make and i wish someday i can at last... and hopefully others will find it as entertaining as i will :)

You can man