Magivoid Devlog #0 - I would like to make a game
Why and what?
I started messing about with computers about three decades ago (yikes, 2023), and I quickly gravitated towards building games. They weren’t really games at that point, but in my head that was always the goal. It was never apps or utilities, although various tools and scripts always ended up being coded to help speed things up or automate things. There was just something alluring about games.
I had played games for years before but that was on consoles like the NES and Master System with no option to explore programming. Once I got my hands on my first computer, I never looked back.
I don’t remember clearly how long various phases took, but it felt like a long time passed where I just messed around with QBasic and later Visual Basic. I remember enjoying it but feeling frustrated that it didn’t let me build what I wanted quickly enough. I somehow ended up using tools like Klick & Play and later its successor The Games Factory. It was fun times and many 2D prototypes were built, but never full games.
Once I hit the boundaries of what those early game maker tools could do, I went back to programming. I had a thing for JRPGs on the SNES, so naturally I attempted with little success to render tile based maps in a form in Visual Basic 6. That struggle lead to trying to learn C, which ended horribly and instead I went to Java and learned to build applets. I don’t remember the details, but I remember enjoying being able to render 2d graphics more easily. Eventually I went back to C and C++ and managed to learn those too.
I studied computer science and my first job out of university was a gamedev job. My path since I was a kid has been a fairly straight flying arrow into the game industry and I’ve loved every moment of it. By now I’ve shipped a few significant AAA titles and have touched my fair share of code systems. Yet, I haven’t built a game from start to finish by myself. There’s an endless graveyard of prototypes, demos, designs, and ideas, but no project that I could call completed.
I would like to change this now. I would like to make a game.
I don’t know what game I will make yet. It will likely be relatively small in scope so it can be finished. It will use Unreal Engine 5 and probably a lot of assets from the UE Marketplace. Not knowing exactly what the finished product should be is somewhat liberating. It means I can pivot, experiment and try different things until something works. We will see.
At this point in my career I know what it takes to build a game. Even as I type this I’m unsure if I will actually complete it. But who knows, maybe this time it will happen.