Some interesting total view data you other devs may be interested in for my top games. I use Mochibot.com to record every flash view the game gets over the internet. Very handy for seeing which games are doing the best. Also shows how many websites it is hosted on. Below is my top games in views shown so you's can get a rough idea.
In order of the most views to the least >
The Unfair Platformer - 23 million views / 7800 hosts
Nodes - 11 million views / 6400 hosts
The Egg - 11 million views / 2100 hosts
Draw-Play 3 - 9 million views / 4800 hosts
The Infection - 9 million views / 4100 hosts
Knights Castle - 6 million views / 5600 hosts
Nodes 2 - 4 million views / 3900 hosts
The Tower - 4 million views / 4300 hosts
Mouse Under Siege - 4 million views / 3500 hosts
Heaven and Hell - 4 million views / 1100 hosts
Last Egg Alive - 3 million views / 2500 hosts
Enigma - 2 million views / 2900 hosts
Interesting stuff, as you can see The Unfair Platformer went super viral in popularity from the funny and amusing concept. My next game only matches half its views! that's an incredibly huge difference. Shooters seem to do the next best in popularity followed closely by my puzzle games such as The Egg and Nodes. This is always a good guide to look at which games do best that I should start making more games closely following these and try and make something as good as The Unfair Platformer again.
Just finished and released a new game called Silly Chicken it's a lot more comedy based. Wanted to make something a little less serious for fun. Poor little chicken being in love online! long distance relationships are really really tough, especially if you're a chicken! Comedy games don't do great for sponsorship really, but they are fun to make. So it's still worth it to get a good laugh out of people. Wasn't entirely sure on the text typing bit but I left it in anyways.
I'm getting back into the swing of things now, so except more games up and coming :) Next game will involve helicopters. Pew pew pew.
This is still sort of AS2 I'm not sure the syntax translation to AS3 but the same principles can apply.
NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF _currentframe
This really saves a lot of coding, it's not always efficient or practical for something complicated, but if you're in a rush or need to make a work around for a bug then this is a huge solution for doing things.
For example if you want a door to unlock when a key is touched. Simply make the key disappear on the 2nd frame by deleting it and have the door check if the key is now on frame 2.
You can make nearly any action happen this way. Hit tests can be combined with what frame the character is on as well to solve problems.
I tend to make the movieclip do something on the 2nd frame then just refer to that with _currentframe whenever it starts to do something.
I use this a lot for cutting down complicated code in half the time. Very useful.
It's funny I made this Category so late, I barely talk about game making on my website and a lot of you are probably looking for some actual in-flash knowledge rather then me always babbling on about my life. I've never given direct tips because I feel like I'm learning myself as I go all the time and any advice I give may become outdated or just simply be a bad way of doing it. Though I figure why the hell not, I'll stick to some basic tips to start off with for game design in a general sense and hopefully someone gets something out of it. So I'll start with some random tips I can think of for now. More detailed articles can come later.
- Plans don't always make the best games : When you hear the term think outside the box, that goes for your own ideas as well. Think outside the box on the stuff you've written down later. Expand as you go. A plans a rough guide. Ever heard the expression "I'm reading the book as I write it"
- It's not a bug it's a feature! Instead of dealing with the problem, sometimes it's more creative and easier to just work on top of it and make it into something as long as it's not too tacky!
- Beware of filters, glows and drop shadows. They make it polishy, but also tacky. Find a balance.
- If you're unmotivated to work on the main engine that day, make the menu or some other random part instead, you'd be surprised how it motivates you to keep going on the rest of the game. No matter how small the task complete, it's always rewarding
- Make what you want to play. If you try make what you think people will like, it just won't work. You have to make what you will find fun yourself and the game will take on life of it's own.
- Programming doesn't have to always be complex, remember no ones going to see the behind the scenes but you unless you partner with someone. Shortcuts save time, this may sound cheap, but it's better to shortcut then to never finish it at all from bugs overload.
- Keep flash open and minimised and look at your game all the time. Sometimes you'll get an urge to just quickly fix one problem you see.. then all of a sudden a few hours have gone past.
- Procrastination is all in the head. Theres a million rules to beat it, but the best is always, do 5mins work and then decide wether to do a days work or stop for the entire day. All you say is ONLY 5MINS THATS IT. The rest will take care of itself naturally
- Stop trying to game make and just game make
- Make everything you want even if you think it will be stupid, my most stupidest ideas have turned into my biggest hits strangely enough, and the ideas I thought would be the best have only done okish.
- Don't try and make a big thing straight up or you'll fail and never come back. Build on each game one bit by bit. Each game I finished was another 20 lessons I learnt in programming things. Turn each lesson into a game. Some of the most popular guitar riffs in the world come from simply a famous guitarist learning a new scale and messing around with it, just like messing around with a new game engine.
- If the engines not fun, then it won't be fun with awesome graphics later
- Try condense ideas into smaller ones. Big ideas lead to big disasters unless you're a great planner
- Don't multi-task projects. One at a time. Pour your creativity into one thing and if you have a new game idea, put that idea into the games level instead. Don't feel like your creativity will "run out" it doesn't work like that. It will respark when you start that new idea later on.
- Stop procrastinating by reading this and go open Flash.