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making indie console games possible? (Forums : Console Gaming : making indie console games possible?) Locked
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Dec 5 2011, 12:46pm Anchor

I've had my gaming console for a while and I enjoy not only the comfort of gaming from my couch, but also the ability to do several tasks with a simple cordless controller. However there's many things that annoys me with it, how patches are extremly controlled by the network, how locked-in I become and the amount of features that are disabled. There has been several tries at making an indie console which none really has taken off, except if you make a DIY SNES emulator or similiar.

This is what I hope Desura will change.

Since this is a indie distribution platform for PCs, Desura could also turn our PCs into a console if we wish, just like XMBC turns them into a media center. The catch is of course how to control the game which are traditionally keyboard + mice controlled, but with some guidelines laid down and encouragement to the developers, this would be doable!

I really hope this will take off, because I rather play Xonotic instead of battlefield, I rather play any roguelike instead of diablo and I rather play dwarf fortress instead of civilizations (well, almost! I was raised up with civilization series). It's just that I prefer gaming from my couch - with a controller.

I hope this will start a civil discussion about the topic and not a PC vs console gamer flamewar.

Dec 5 2011, 1:28pm Anchor

I couldn't really see the issue with making a game controller compatible, but Desura is just starting to wade the waters on PC's. Steam has a deal with the PS3 as far as games being available on both platforms under one account, but it started this year (and steam + PS3 have been out for a while). You don't have to have a console to use a controller either. That's what USB ports are for.

KhaaL wrote:There have been several tries at making an indie console which none really has taken off, except if you make a DIY SNES emulator or similiar.

They failed because there's no point in buying a secondary gimped/limited PC when your main desktop/laptop would be able to do the same thing the same way. Just make games controller compatible, hook your PC up to your tv, and hang out on the couch!

Maybe in the future Desura could try to team up with Nintendo or something, but there's a long way to go before they need to worry about another platform.

Dec 5 2011, 1:35pm Anchor

Just make games controller compatible is exactly what I'm hoping desura will encourage developers to! And add some sort of icon to show if a game is playable with a controller or not, just like windows / linux games are shown. I'm hoping to dump my console permanently and just use desura for gaming, but thats just a dream for now.

Dec 5 2011, 1:46pm Anchor
KhaaL wrote:... add some sort of icon to show if a game is playable with a controller or not, just like windows / linux games are shown.

That would be pretty handy! Honestly controller support is usually ignored because there are plenty of programs that are available for the purpose of remapping keys for controllers. Maybe someone should make a startup company where the goal is to produce the best open-source controller? I think dev's would bite if it was free and easy to implement the support.

Dec 5 2011, 4:34pm Anchor

It's not the hardware that is the problem, it is the software. Anyone can plug a controller into their PC and run it from a TV.

The developer (in this case Indie) needs to make the effort to give players the choice and make it playable (and enjoyable) on both. Some games are impossible to play on a controller which is why we have PC's and keyboards in the first place.

What also needs to improve is the distribution and opportunities for indie devs to develop for a console. Xbox Live has an indie download zone (which are mostly really basic games) so it is possible but no where near as possible as it is to develop for the PC.

Edited by: Tetsuo3

Dec 5 2011, 5:20pm Anchor

Consoles are mostly "closed Hardware/Software" so that developing Games on such an Plattform can cost much effort/time and maybe Money (because the whole Process must go through Companys like Microsoft or Sony.) You also need the Developer Kids for the unque Plattform, which isn't free for all.

The PC is "open" for every developer. You can just start from tomorrow developing a game on an PC with any Software that you want.
XBox Live has an IndieZone because of XNA which developer can use for free if (i think) they arent' sell their software without Microsoft.

I'm not such an expert at this Topic. ^^

May 1 2012, 3:52pm Anchor

there is a free game development tool you can use to make games for consoles(im not 100% sure, i know you can make phone and cell phone games).
the engine is called Unity. it starts with a few things,but you can buy(or find) models and stuff.

ambershee
ambershee Nimbusfish Rawks
May 1 2012, 6:50pm Anchor

Console development with Unity is definitely not free.

May 2 2012, 12:22am Anchor

If you need console gaming engines. Visual3d.NET is a great engine for xbox. If you would like to create it for console game.

May 3 2012, 7:39pm Anchor
mageskill wrote:
Maybe someone should make a startup company where the goal is to produce the best open-source controller? I think dev's would bite if it was free and easy to implement the support.

Man that just sounds fantastic! An open source controller along with a very good API and instructions... That sounds like a real business.

Edited by: AMCerasoli

May 9 2012, 1:53pm Anchor

I just came across this thread while googling to see if my new kickstarter project was on the front page.

i feel much the same way you do about consoles vs pc's, and specifically that indies have a hard time getting on big consoles.

so i came up with this:
Kickstarter.com

i dont know if it will take off, but i thought you might be interested.

Dragonlord
Dragonlord Linux-Dragon of quick wit and sharp tongue
May 9 2012, 2:01pm Anchor

I know much better open game consoles: PC + Linux. You don't need new hardware, you don't need new SDK/Compiler, you don't need new engines (well, you need mine but that's a different story ;) ) and you don't need licensing costs or other hooks and everybody has one usually. An Indie console sure would be nice but why adding another box to the stack of gaming consoles piling up in the living room if you have the best gaming console on earth: your Linux PC.

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Jul 10 2012, 4:19pm Anchor

I prefer keeping my PS3 for full-fat, polished games like assassins creed and battlefield. My computer is used for mods, indie games, etc.
i don't think i can see indie games becoming truly popular on consoles, because they're more accessible to a wider audience. it wont take off.
just be happy wih our well-informed community on desura steam etc. ;)

Jul 31 2012, 3:24pm Anchor

Well, as a developer who recently implemented controller support for my game that was originally built for mobile touch devices, I think I should chime in here! :)

Porting to controller means that you need to rethink (and reprogram) all of the previous assumptions that were in place for other control schemes. Not all game engines support controllers well, either! In my case, changing to controller meant I had to swap my entire UI / Interface library for one that would handle controller-based button activation, and on top of that, the in-game "feel" changed significantly when moving from swipes and taps over to button presses.

I ended up creating combo "gestures" out of directional controls + buttons / triggers, and supporting that was tough but it led to a much better "feel". There was also the interesting difference that controller input feels a lot more instantaneous, so I had to re-time the entire game to make sure that you could press the buttons more quickly and wouldn't feel like the game was laggy or unresponsive. So it's not only a programming issue, it's also a design challenge!

Just my 2 cents, hope this helps explain why "adding controller support" can be a lot more work than it seems!

Jul 31 2012, 4:12pm Anchor

A)
Couch furniture for your PC

This model is quite cheap, and has a good hight for a desk.

B)
Plug PC to TV. Use wireless keyboard, mouse and gamepad.
Place keyboard + mouse on a bed tray if needed.

Edited by: Melerski

Aug 4 2012, 2:39am Anchor

indie games are good on the console but not as good as it is on the computer.
i love games like amnesia it is so :sick:

TheUnabridgedGamer
TheUnabridgedGamer It's been a long time...
Aug 14 2012, 3:06pm Anchor
Melerski wrote:A)
Couch furniture for your PC

This model is quite cheap, and has a good hight for a desk.

B)
Plug PC to TV. Use wireless keyboard, mouse and gamepad.
Place keyboard + mouse on a bed tray if needed.


^ or the Ouya if you want to only pay 99 bucks.

Feb 2 2013, 11:06am Anchor

If you're asking for indie console games that require being put on CD, it's a bad idea for them.
Blank CDs cost money, as well as a place that would download the data onto them repeatedly.
That's just the start of the problems, though.
Anything that allows downloads through a console instead of by CD has already gotten rid of a lot of costs and hassle, though.

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