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How I (finally) Made My First Video Game. By Chris Sanyk. How I (finally) Made My First Video Game. By Chris Sanyk. About Me. First exposure to computers c. 1980 Atari 2600 , Commodore 64 , Apple ][ Game concepts on paper at age 6 10 + years in various IT roles. Programmers…. ( Me ).

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Presentation Transcript
about me
About Me
  • First exposure to computers c.1980
    • Atari 2600, Commodore 64, Apple ][
  • Game concepts on paper at age 6
  • 10+ years in various IT roles




f(x) = Greatness++

early paper designs
Early Paper Designs

Sadly, most of those original conceptual docs no longer survive…

…if they had, this slide would have been a really awesome collage… :(

  • As a result, I questioned whether the game industry had a future for me that I still wanted.
  • I put programming aside…
  • …graduated…
  • …thought about grad school…
  • Played around with computers instead, until I ended up with a career in IT.
the dream lives
The Dream Lives

2006: IT took me back into software development.

2007: Tried, failed.

2010: Tried again…

my first game
My First Game

30 years in the making…

game maker1
Game Maker



  • Cheap (Free/$25).
  • Quick to build simple things.
  • Easy learning curve.
  • Its capabilities grow with you.
  • Developer community is relatively strong.
  • Slow script interpretation.
  • Object-based rather than Object-oriented.
  • All variables are public.
  • Weak on debugging.
  • Weird data typing.

How I happen to do what I do

my development process
My Development Process
  • Vague list of ideas
  • Pick one
  • Build it
  • Test, Tweak
  • Freeze
  • Document
  • Build
  • Release
stuff i learned
Stuff I learned
  • You are ready.
  • You are not ready.
  • Now is the best time.
  • Take small steps, make many of them, start right away.
stuff i learned1
Stuff I learned
  • Programming is harder and easier than I thought.
unsure how to proceed
Unsure how to proceed?
  • The best thing to do if you’re not confident about how to proceed is to DO ANYTHING and watch.
  • Do the smallest/simplest part of what you think you need to do that might possibly work.
  • Run it.
  • Learn.
  • Iterate.
heed your calling
Heed your calling.
  • Do what you were meant to do.
be a development fiend
Be a development fiend
  • Read like a fiend.
  • Code like a fiend.
  • Test like a fiend.
money so what
Money… so what?
  • Stop worrying about whether and how it can make you money.
  • Do something cool first, figure out how to monetize it later.
  • Hands-on demo after this talk
  • Playtesting feedback desired
  • Looking for: designers, programmers, artists, sound/music people to collaborate with on this or other projects.