One of my dreams is to start a game studio and while I’d love to have a big room where the programmers and artists could get together and brainstorm on huge whiteboards before diving into a new project, that’s not going to happen this week. 🙂
And while I know about some of the pitfalls that can plague virtual teams, I’d like to give it a try, just to see what can be accomplished.
I have an idea for a simple iPhone game that would be aimed at kids probably K-2nd grade — 6 year olds would be the target.
The game would be free with the possibility of updating it with “content packs” as in-app purchases, but I wouldn’t even plan on doing that unless a significant (actual number to be determined later) number of downloads happened.
That means team members would be working with the expectation of getting ZERO dollars from the project. What they’d get would be experience, a published game with their name as part of the team, and space in the app to promote any other project they’ve done (or will do). If an in-app purchase shows up in a future update, those proceeds would be split among the team members.
Here are the team members I’d like to recruit:
2 Artists – There are three separate parts of the program that all need art. One area requires someone who can draw multiple characters, from head to foot. Not realistic, but cartoonish. Here are some examples of the style I’m talking about (grabbed from Google):
Some human, some other, they just all need to have heads, torsos, and legs. Not sure how many characters we’d need, but probably at least a dozen. They will be mixed-and-matched so will all need to be the same size. (More details in the actual spec.)
The other two parts of the program are the interface, such as the main menu, options screen, etc., and a game-play screen which will be fairly spartan. Just some platforms to jump on and a background.
My thought is that one artist could focus on the characters and the other artist on the other parts of the game. If it turns out
3 Programmers – Looking for Corona SDK programmers, of course, and people who know what they’re doing. That doesn’t mean you can’t ask questions, it just means you’re not asking NEWBIE questions. Much. 🙂
One programmer will focus on the interface (main menu, turning on/off sounds and music, etc.), one programmer will focus on the part where the user chooses an avatar (where you’ll have scrolling heads, torsos and legs to mix-and-match) and one will focus on the game-play, which is like a very simple version of Doodle-Jump using the avatar the user has created.
1 Project Manager – This position is already filled. It’s mine. 🙂 While I may jump in and do some coding if necessary, my role will basically be one of creating the spec, parcelling out tasks, and putting everything together into a publishable app for the App Store.
Why so many people?
While the app could be done with one programmer and one artist, I’d like to split the tasks up to the point where it’s easy to get done. I don’t have any firm numbers, but I’d be willing to bet a TON more projects get started by virtual teams than ever get finished and I’d really like to make sure this experiment is a success for all of us.
I’d like to start this project as soon as possible and I think it should be done fairly quickly — artwork within a couple weeks and programming in a couple. Those two 2-week periods would overlap by 1 week and then there would be a final week of testing and such, so from start to App Store should be about a month.
How to join
If you’re interested in joining this team, send an email to email@example.com with the subject line Virtual Game Team and I’ll get back to you. If you want to join the team as an artist, please include links to samples of your artwork. If you want to join as a programmer, send links to apps/programs you’ve already published or some other way that allows me to see that “you can do the job.” (Already published is NOT a requirement, just an easy way for me to see you can program.)
I’ll be sending interested people a spec to look at so you can decide whether you want to be a part of this specific project. If so, then I’ll put your name in the pool of people I’ll be picking from.
I think this is going to be a lot of fun. We’ll all get some cool exposure out of it and depending on how the app is released, maybe even a few bucks. 🙂