What to do next?

Hey guys,

I finished the Learn to Code course and feel I am at the stage I should have been by doing so. Basically I can watch a tutorial and understand the vast majority of what is happening and why, but when left to my own devices to "create" something completely from scratch I still have lots of holes.

So I'm wondering what I can do to progress to the stage where I can start a project, get most of the ideas I have completed with little help from docs, tutorials ect.. I understand that a lot of the time even "pros" have to reference these things, but I would like to get to a stage where I don't hit a stumbling block after a 30 minutes of making a project.

I saw the Godot 2D Secrets is called an intermediate-level course so maybe that is the best option for now? I'm open to both doing another course and/or using other ways to learn such as tutorials - I'm mainly just looking for guidance on the next move as I want to continue to get better and have found starting and stopping various ideas due to lack of knowledge is disheartening.

Also, with some changes in Godot 4.0 with Syntax or names for certain features, it'll be handy to know if the mainly written courses have covered this basis :)

Any help will be greatly appreciated!

  • godoterfr replied

    The Godot 2D, VFX, Shaders, and PCG Secrets bundle would certainly be a plus to have and also the Godot Node Essentials.

    However, I think you should also know that there is a difference between knowing how to use software and knowing how to use it to make a game.

    To be able to use your knowledge to invent a game without someone else having done the work first is hard. We are no longer in pure programming but in project management. And it is therefore new skills that need to be developed.

    And even if you learn these new skills, you'll still be without any real experience, so you're still in the dark.

    So you have to move on to a new stage: doing the experience.

    Try to create a mini-game or not even a game but a toy game. And in the meantime, keep taking the time to continue learning Godot here.
    Participate in game jams. Then add the project management that you will need if you want to build a solid enough game.

    I am not very experienced even myself, so my advice may not be the right one. I can try to provide an example of a path:

    Start with a project proposal (solo, you talk to yourself but that's okay. All these texts we write serve as a memory and also to make us accountable). Then write a "Game Design Document".  And finally plan the tasks.

    Project proposal

    - Creation of the maze game
    Problem: first game I make
    Why: to gain experience and confidence in my knowledge
    How: by forcing myself to create a game from scratch. Conceptualise the game, put my intentions on paper, force myself to stick to them, change my approach from a student of Godot to a game developer, learn project management

    Background: I learned how to use Godot and how to program but I can't create a game, I feel stuck
    Solution: have some notions of project management, develop my creative spirit, use free graphic assets, use free music and sfx, force myself to read the documentation and not ask for help too quickly, acquire habits and automatisms, be positive, persevere.

    Success criteria
    - Write a project proposal
    - Write a Game Design Document
    - Write a project plan
    - My game on Itch
    Time limit
    1 month (25/04/2023)
    300$ max

    Then the GDD : I look at how they are made. Some are 1 page long, others are 80 pages long! Look Diablo, Doom Bible or Silent Hill 2 for example.
    Example GDD [Database]

    Then plan in Excel how much time you think you will use for each action:
    - player movement (1 week)
    - find the free assets (1 day)
    - create several maze levels (1 week)
    - add colisions (2 days)
    - end of party code (2 days)
    - test phase (3 days)
    - debugging (5 days)
    - add sound (4 days)
    - etc (any piece of work to do)

    You can do it randomly if you can't estimate. This is a first game, not your 10th. Get more experience and you will be more accurate each time.

    Each major chapter of the schedule can be broken down into smaller tasks, for example, player movement:
    - 4-axis movement
    - opening doors
    - opening chests
    - falling into a trap
    - etc.

    You can use Online Trello to list your tasks and separate them into :
    - to do
    - in progress
    - blocked
    - done

    In short, it's not simple but not unachievable. Hang in there.

    2 loves
  • B
    BrianGodot99 replied

    Wow, a very in-depth and useful response which confirmed some of my thoughts around the "next step" to take in the journey! Thank you for all of the tips and suggestions :)