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someone asked me to post something i wrote in an area outside of a hidden forum, so here. it was in response to a guy who felt that a game isn't worth making if it's similar to other games, who was attacking another tigsource member for making a generic game. my posts were in that context.


to me the thing is, how does someone expect to make a new genre of game and invent something that works until they've made a traditional game? you can't be experimental until you've learned the basics. everyone's first few games should be clones or covers. there will be time for experimenting and advancing the bounds of game design or whatever later, but at the start you are just learning how to make fun things that people enjoy and the best way to do that is to make games within a traditional genre similar to other games that you enjoyed

i mean, imagine if an artist just started painting, and was told to jump right into impressionism or something, without learning how to paint still life first. even picasso knew how to paint in the traditional fashion and started out that way. if someone spends 20 years just cloning the same game over and over then there might be reason for concern, but if someone's first or third game is a clone that is a good thing, not a bad thing


i think, in order to keep on growing and keep things fresh, each game should preferably challenge its developer, they should try something personally new to them with each game

but that doesn't mean it has to be new to *everyone*, something that has never been done before, just something that developer hasn't done before (e.g. "i never made a platformer before so i want to make one now" or "i want to try making a game similar to my last one, but with multiple characters")

if you constantly compare what you are doing with every game that has ever been made, you'll wind up with the icycalm position that a game has to compete with the best games ever made in order to be worth making, and that consequently even a game like cave story wasn't worth making because it's inferior to games like super metroid. while that attitude is sometimes appropriate to a critic, since their job is to compare different games and determine which are the most worth playing, that's not appropriate to a game developer

game developers should not be concerned with whether their game is the best in its genre or not, because there are always going to be people who already played the best games in a genre are are looking for something new in that genre. for example, i doubt any rpg an indie makes is going to equal something like ff6, but i've already played ff6, i don't want to play it again for the 20th time, so i'd play any new rpg which looks fun