Congratulations on taking the plunge into the mobile games market! No doubt it’s been a remarkable and difficult journey for you and your game, but the design is nearly perfect, and you’re ready to share your creation with the world. Mobile games have come a long way since we first figured out how to put Tetris on our graphing calculators in high school, and it’s an exciting field that’s evolving and improving every day.
Sadly, when you dwell exclusively on the cutting edge of game development, it’s easy to lose sight of the basics. There are a few core tenets of mobile design that should be prerequisites for publishing nowadays, yet every so often, even the most experienced of developers forget them. No matter how impressive the graphics or how amazing and innovative the controls are in a game, it pains us when designers still get some of the basics wrong after all these years. Continue reading Mobile Game Design – Don’t Forget the Basics
The iTunes App Store is a booming marketplace, full of opportunity for independent developers. At an Apple press conference earlier this month, Steve Jobs said that over 30 million iPhones and 20 million iPod Touch devices have been sold to date. There are over 100 million customers on iTunes, and they’ve been busy – downloading over 1.8 billion apps since the App Store launched in July 2008. But with over 75,000 apps and counting (more than 21,000 in the game category alone), it’s a sink or swim space. The unique iPhone platform is luring talented designers from top names in the traditional video game development industry – ambitious artists, code-monkeys and entrepreneurs of all shapes and sizes looking to try their hand at a new medium, and take on whatever responsibility necessary – including new shoes they’ll learn to fill along the way.
There are already more than 100,000 third-parties in the iPhone Developer Program, and the App Store marketplace has created a community mindset among many of these smaller independent companies, who are willing to share some of their “secrets” and learn from their competitors to further their cause and to coexist symbiotically, if you will. One such indie developer is Rock Ridge Games. I had a chance to pick the brains of Rock Ridge’s president and VP, Mike Mann and P.J. Snavely, on what it takes to make the transition from licensed, big-budget console game development to the DIY world of iPhone app development – here’s what they had to say…
Can you give us a little background on Rock Ridge Games and your experience in game development?
Rock Ridge Games was started in April of this year with the goal of developing interesting and fun original games for the incredible new smartphones hitting the market. There are only two of us (Mike Mann and PJ Snavely) but we’ve got almost 30 years of combined experience in game development, having come from the console side of development. We’ve worked on everything from multi-million dollar licensed sports games to small independent titles for XBLA. The iPhone is our new frontier.
Continue reading Developers Gone Wild! iPhone Gold Rush Uncloaked: Q&A with Rock Ridge Games