Game Development

Why Game Engines Spell Trouble for Indie Developers

Game Engine Thumbnail
Seduction comes in many forms, including game engines. Virtually in a matter of weeks, people who’ve never crunched code can churn out a mobile game. It’s that ease of use, on top of a basic engine’s cheap cost, that’s prompting newbies to create games and game companies. But as with anything, cheap and easy can have its pitfalls. “As with any business development, individuals need to go into the creation of a new enterprise with their eyes open, realizing all… continue…

Do Game Developers Need to Know Multithreading?

AA Game
In a word, “yes.” But — there is always a “but!” — it depends on the type of game. AAA games (or as my wife puts it, the games that make the fans blow loudest) are highly demanding of resources and computing power. Browser games may not need quite so much grunt work to be playable. But let’s have some background first. What exactly is multithreading? Multithreading 101 It’s easier if we start with an old fashioned PC where the… continue…

Developers Mull New Tech Strategies After E3

Posted In Working in Tech
E3-Thumbnail
Through new consoles and new games to run on them, E3 saw the introduction of a range of technologies and capabilities that left developers, engineers and other game professionals with greater insight into the skills they need to develop if they’re going to continue their success in the field. “The things that I saw at E3 that inspired me were a lot of new technologies that are multi-core or multi-thread,” said Shawn Halwes, a programmer at Ragtag Studio. In a… continue…

Tech Unemployment Numbers Hint at Demand for Women

Dice Techonomics
For the past three consecutive months, the unemployment rate for women in IT has been lower than that of men, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The latest figures, from May, show the women’s tech unemployment rate stood at 3.0 percent compared to 3.6 percent for men. A year earlier, the women’s rate was 6.8 percent compared to 2.3 percent for men. Digging into the Numbers When it comes to computer and math jobs, men outnumber women by a… continue…

Mobile Game Landscape Gets More Complicated

green labyrinth
Despite all the hype surrounding mobile games — and all the money companies are investing in efforts to push them — the business model to support them hasn’t yet made itself evident. You’d think that would give some running room to independent developers who’ve got a clever approach to attracting, keeping and making money off of players. But that’s more easily said than done, especially when the industry’s leaders are putting a lot of effort into remaking themselves. Part of… continue…

Zynga Layoffs to Hit 18 Percent of Workforce

Zynga logo
Zynga is planning to cut a whopping 18 percent of its workforce by August, the struggling social media game developer said Monday. The across-the-board cuts will hit “all functions” of the company and include closure of various office locations. Zynga expects to layoff approximately 520 employees worldwide and says the bulk of the cuts will occur by the end of the summer. “While our Farmville Franchise continues to perform well, other games are underperforming,” says Zynga, which has struggled to move… continue…

UC Santa Cruz Offers New Master’s in Games

505 Games Supremacy MMA
The University of California at Santa Cruz is offering a master’s degree in games and playable media. The program, which will be held at the school’s Santa Clara campus, covers advanced technologies used to produce computer games and interactive media. The 12-month program is intended for students who already have a foundation in computer science and an understanding of computer games. Those who pursue the program will “develop strong design skills as well as strong technical implementation skills,” said Jim… continue…

Game Developer Gives Pirates a Taste of Their Own Medicine

Posted In Living in Tech
Game Dev
By Scott Bowers Piracy is an issue that software developers big and small have to contend with. Some companies push tyrannical copy protection that can frustrate legitimate gamers, while others ship with no protection at all. Indie startup studio Greenheart Games took an unconventional approach to fighting off pirates with its maiden game, Game Dev Tycoon. The developer used pirate-favorite BitTorrent to seed its own “cracked” version of the game to the world, albeit with a slight modification in code.… continue…

Can Nintendo Win E3 Without A Press Conference?

Posted In Living in Tech
Nintendo/E3
By Scott Bowers Last month, Nintendo surprised everyone with the news that they would not hold one of the traditional giant press conferences at E3. For many years the game industry’s major players have staged their own events, usually just before the show opens, to gloat about sales figures and to hype their upcoming products. While Sony unwraps more details about Playstation 4 and Microsoft showcases the new Xbox, Nintendo is struggling against difficult and evolving market conditions. More and… continue…

4 Reasons You Don’t Want to Develop Games

Game Over
Are you an avid gamer? Do you think you have what it takes to work in games? Or better yet, Do you even know what it takes to work in games? You may think producing games would be a blast, fitting right in with your addiction. But the truth is, you may be better off sticking to the joystick. Creating games, after all, is a job and much like any other job it comes with a lot of drawbacks —… continue…