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Showing posts from July, 2016

What is an edugame?

In simple terms, edugames is the result of combining education and games, or put in another way, using games to educate about a subject. The subject can go from mathematics, to astronomy, to traffic lights, and languages, but of course is not limited only to these topics, just anything that is knowledge and can be learnt by playing.
Parents find edugames great because they are a good compromise of only fun or only studying, and of course children can see that as well as a way to escape from the traditional, non-interactive way of studying.

Ponup Games is committed to do games that are suitable for young people, and therefore is preparing a few games which are going to be as educative as fun to play.

Game design documents

Put it simple, game design documents are documentation about games that cover things like what is the game about, what is the target audience, what are the game mechanics and to some extent how the game is going to be developed.


Writing a game design document is useful to validate a game idea before starting its implementation and is also a valuable document to atract new team members and/or investors.

Here there is a list of some document design documents we've found and could serve you as a foundation for your game:

Organize your game devGame pitchesRunaway studios GDDAn Ant's lifeProject ScarabDeathwith 1931

Other game development blogs

Let us share with you some of the gamedev blogs we are following, which are a source of technical knowledge and inspiration.

HobbyGameDev
http://www.hobbygamedev.com/Wolfire
http://blog.wolfire.com/LostGarden
http://www.lostgarden.com/Games from within
http://gamesfromwithin.com/Beautiful Pixels
http://beautifulpixels.blogspot.co.uk/
In another opportunity we are going to share also some of the game development portals we visit in the seek of news, tutorials and other info.

Ways to earn money with your games

If you are like we are, you are making games at least for these two reasons: (1) to fulfill your creativity needs (2) and to make money. There are many other reasons of course, like enjoying seeing people using your creations, finding efficient ways to develop algorithms, etc.


This post is about mentioning the ways one can make money out of games.

The obvious option: Selling your game for a price. Just set how much it costs and let the users buy the game in order to play it. Users don't buy something unless it looks great and it has great reviews. If you are in the stage of producing games of this quality, this option might be for you.

Second option: Free to play, with in-app purchases. Users are not that picky when the game is free to play. You can reach lot of players offering the game for free, and once they are playing it, it's relatively easy to get them buy addons, powerups and other extras.

All the stores (Apple/Android) offer you ways to set prices for your app and oth…

Games in the backlog

If you are a curious about what are the games we are going to be developing next, then we have something for you, the name of the next 6 games in our backlog!

Week 4th: Tic Tac Toe. Aimed for kids, there will be no AI. The computer is going to select a place at random.

Week 5th: Colours. A basic painting app. Select the color from the buckets, select the area you want to fill in the image, and done.

Week 6th: Connect the dots. Click the dots in order (from 1 to N) to reveal the object.

Week 7th: Street/River crossing. Help a frog cross the street/river without being hit or eaten by cars and predators.

Week 8th: Whack a mole. Hit the mole as soon as you can once you see it appear.


Week 9th: Maze. Go from A to Z without touching the walls or you lose.

It's getting harder and harder to come up with new game ideas that are simple, but luckly our experience and processes are getting better and we can tackle bigger game projects now, so the next 6 are going to be much more awesome!

A jigsaw based on superboy and supergirl (3rd week)

This is the third week since we started the "one game a week" challenge and this time we came up with -again- a simple game which is essentially a jigsaw puzzle.


To simplify development and design the pieces don't have their characteristic form but a simple square shape instead.

Development as with the previous weeks/games was done with Cordova + RequireJS + and the simplest of all Javascript and DOM manipulation. Code is available on Github and this is the link to the Play Store.

One game, multiple platforms

One of the best and worst parts of developing games Today is the number of target platforms you could use to market your game.

There is a proliferation of game consoles (Xbox, PlayStation, Wii) and in addition to that there are many mobile devices (leaded by Android, iOS) and then you have good old desktop and the shiny new Web.


Each platform is appealing for their very own reasons, but they also bring different challenges. The decision of what platform your game is aiming for is based on things like team experience, budget (both time and money) and of course, also your target audience. (are they young? are they casual gamers?)

Here at Ponup Games we do Web and mobile games mostly because of the time and team size constraints. We would love to work on bigger projects eventually, but this is all we can do at the moment.

Finding free game assets

When you are an small team as we are there are certain roles such as the audio engineer/musician that are missing from your projects.


In these circumstances you either contract somebody to prepare your music or download existing music and sounds from Internet websites either paying for them or using free ones.

Creating your own music gives you a unique thing that can be the reason why players pick your games and not others, so that's what all game developers should aim for if they have the resources/budget. If you can buy existing audio assets great, because there is a implicit guarantee those assets are not going to be as common as the ones found in the last category: free game audio.

Of course free game audio like the ones found in freesound.org are great to work with your prototypes and launch until you prove the game worth investing more time and money, but until then, why not to use some freely available for download?

These are just some examples of places you can find free a…

How to become a game developer

There are hundreds of ways to become a game developer but Today I'll quickly touch on online resources to learn how to develop videogames.



Full courses: There are many platforms (such as Coursera) that offer videogame development courses and entire specializations related to the game industry.
Example: Game Design And Development

Short courses: Websites like Udacity have many small courses in video format you can join and follow for free with excellent material on how to create videogames.
Example: HTML5 Game Development

Tutorials: Internet is plenty of tutorials and the game industry is not short of them. Google the game dev tutorial terms and you will find everything you need from simple to complex gamedev tutorials for mutiple platforms, programming languages and level of experience.
Example: Tower Defense Tutorial

Common game screens

Games are made of lot of things. You have the main loop/levels which is the hearth of your project but there are also other things that exist around that for the convenience of the player.


Those very common elements of a game are the screens:

- Splash screen: It shows during the (pre)loading of assets when you first open the game
- Intro: After preloading, some games show animations that constitute the intro.
- Main menu: Links/Buttons to other scenes.
- Help: Instructions on how to use the game
- Leaderboards: A ranking of all players, including you
- And many others.

You can have a game that starts straightaway with your main loop, but that's like going to a restaurant where nobody asks you what to eat, the food is presented, you eat and leave without even asking you if you want a dessert :)