Tips for Making Fangames

Fontbane

Not a Russian Troll
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85
#1
Do you have any tips for those making or helping with fangames? You can post them here!

My tip would be, include easy access to healing in your routes or dungeons to encourage players to battle more Trainers.
 

Dragonite

Have they found the One Piece yet
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238
#4
Ah, there are so many "dont"s I could pull out of my nose right about now but I'll restrain myself for now.

Check your spelling, grammar and mechanics. Nothing makes me roll my eyes like lines featuring "your" instead of "you're." I know Language Arts class was pretty boring but for crying out loud if you're going to try to communicate something at least make it look like you tried. ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)
 

Domiok

Local Goof
Member
#5
Ah, there are so many "dont"s I could pull out of my nose right about now but I'll restrain myself for now.

Check your spelling, grammar and mechanics. Nothing makes me roll my eyes like lines featuring "your" instead of "you're." I know Language Arts class was pretty boring but for crying out loud if you're going to try to communicate something at least make it look like you tried. ლ(ಠ益ಠლ)
I would like to add a corollary to this. If you are writing in a language that is not your native language, I would suggest that you make certain to have someone who does natively speak the language proofread your writing. It is invaluable to have one or several native English speakers preview your game's script if you do not speak English natively. Words, of course, have big influence on the impact and meaning of a scene, and as Dragonite stressed, prevalent issues in your writing will become noticeable and may likely hurt your game's significance for the player.
 

Fontbane

Not a Russian Troll
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85
#6
I would like to add a corollary to this. If you are writing in a language that is not your native language, I would suggest that you make certain to have someone who does natively speak the language proofread your writing. It is invaluable to have one or several native English speakers preview your game's script if you do not speak English natively. Words, of course, have big influence on the impact and meaning of a scene, and as Dragonite stressed, prevalent issues in your writing will become noticeable and may likely hurt your game's significance for the player.
The worst of this is when they clearly know all the grammar and stuff, but get canon grammar/spelling wrong. Like misspelling names, pluralizing Pokémon names wrong, not accenting the é in Pokémon, there's a lot of things that can make your game look sloppy like that. So for my next tip:
Before writing dialogue, make sure to read over some dialogue from the official games for a guideline on what to capitalize, how to spell things, etc.
 

moca

Aki's Favorite; Next Mod
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21
#7
The worst of this is when they clearly know all the grammar and stuff, but get canon grammar/spelling wrong. Like misspelling names, pluralizing Pokémon names wrong, not accenting the é in Pokémon, there's a lot of things that can make your game look sloppy like that. So for my next tip:
Before writing dialogue, make sure to read over some dialogue from the official games for a guideline on what to capitalize, how to spell things, etc.
I feel like misspelling canon stuff is pretty common though. I never accent the e in Pokemon not because I don't care, but because I just genuinely forget. A friend gave me a Pokemon spelling cheat-sheet and there was so many things I spell wrong without even realizing it.
 

Dragonite

Have they found the One Piece yet
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238
#8
pluralizing Pokémon names wrong
You mean, pluralizing Pokémon names at all. Pokémon names are, for whatever reasons, the same both singular and plural form; for example, one of me would be one Dragonite, and two of me would be two Dragonite. Same for the word "Pokémon" itself. (source). This has been today's English mechanics lesson brought to you by your friendly yellow dragon.

I'll give the acute-accented é a pass only because it's hard to do (most Americans don't have the alt code memorized or a nonstandard English keyboard) but realistically it reflects how much overtime work you're willing to put into your game, and I'll make of that what I will.
 
#10
I'll give the acute-accented é a pass only because it's hard to do (most Americans don't have the alt code memorized or a nonstandard English keyboard
I can't ever memorise the alt code, so what I always do is search 'e accute acsent', copy it and paste it in whenever I need it. It's probably not the best way to do it, but it works ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 

Sparta

Someone who does something.
Member
#12
I think my tip would probably be to avoid biting off more than you can chew. Don't start out promising a bunch of shiny new features that you can't actually create on your own. That never goes well. Ever. You'll just end up overwhelmed. Don't get me wrong - there's nothing wrong with having ambition and wanting to learn new stuff to do cooler things - but it's always best to work within your own understanding early on, and branch out as you go.
 

Alaguesia

The Magician of Oddities
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21
#13
Being more technical than anything:

When starting, give the wiki a quick read to know the basics of the basics. Questions like how to make an item, a wild encounter, a trainer battle, all are in there.

If new to RPGXP you should look for a video tutorial to familiarize yourself with the tool. As far as I know essentials, you can skip all the database stuff since it doesnt use it (could be wrong)

Backup your stuff in the cloud regularly, keep a previous version in case you ef things up. Keeping a changelog might come in handy too.

Doing Ctrl+shift+f in the scripts lets you search all the scripts for keywords.

For some questions, trying things up is quicker than asking the comunity (Ex: If I do X thing, will I get Y result?), you wont make the computer explode so dont be afraid.
 

mej71

Novice
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Posts
16
#14
Learn how to code, at least the basics. Not just so you can make fancy new scripts, but so you can implement ones you found here properly, fix problems, make minor edits, etc. Most of the time the hard part is done for you, you just need to understand basic coding structures/syntax to be able to fix it.
 

Dragonite

Have they found the One Piece yet
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238
#15
Learn how to code, at least the basics. Not just so you can make fancy new scripts, but so you can implement ones you found here properly, fix problems, make minor edits, etc. Most of the time the hard part is done for you, you just need to understand basic coding structures/syntax to be able to fix it.
And if you're not sure where to start with Essentials, open up the Intro and start screwing around. There's a lot of RPG Maker in there, it's basically how I learned how the whole thing worked :P
 

Fontbane

Not a Russian Troll
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85
#16
Here's a tip I just remembered. When taking a screenshot of your map, go into one of the tile layers, then go to View and deselect Dim Other Layers. This way, you can see the map as a whole without the gridlines from the event layer. There's also a program out there that will take pictures of your maps with the graphics of the events included, so if you use that it would make it a lot easier.
 
#17
This tip isn't specific to fan games and can likely be applied to most creative processes, but I find it relevant to fan game development.

Learn to not only accept constructive feedback, but also to trust your own creative compass when it comes to your own projects.

Constructive feedback is very, very useful especially if you're not very experienced in a certain area of fan game development, and honestly even if you are. You'll want to pay attention to what people are saying when they give you feedback, especially if they're finding the same nitpicks as one another. One of the quickest ways to improve and hone your skills is to obtain feedback and act on it.

However, at the end of the day, you are the developer for your project. Trust your gut. If you feel like your game would be more enjoyable or personable to you if you did X thing when Y is suggested or the norm, don't let others sway you. Sure, take into consideration what's being said, but don't ever feel like someone else's critique is something that's objectively correct about your project. No one else will ever care about your project as much as you, nor will someone else spend as much time around it as you.

Don't use this as an excuse to be lazy and not implement or rework something that can be done better, or not to learn how to do something. It's a balance. This is less applicable to technical things such as tile errors, but more creative directions you can take your fan game.

Make the game you want to make.
 
#18
My tip is to literally make games. Get a copy of Essentials and make practice maps and testing areas.

It takes work to plan out what kind of game you want to make, and there can be a pretty hard decisions, but just starting on it a little bit will make those decisions so much easier.
  • "I think that I want to make a game that does this, but that sounds like it could be hard to event..." Do it! Just make one map trying to pull off that complicated mechanic to see if it's something you can do, or even want to do.

  • "I'm not sure that it will be fun for players..." Do it! Then try playtesing it for yourself! You don't need to get fancy, just see how he gameplay feels when it's barebones and you'll know when it works.
Making games is fun, but you don't have to develop an entire game everytime you open up the engine. It's totally okay to have a "project" that's just you testing out some new tilesets, or trying to event something interesting. Maybe it'll go somewhere, but maybe not! Just as not every sketch becomes a painting, it's natural to experiment and just have fun without committing to some grander goal.
 

Evan

in another life, Starrcasm
Member
#19
I've said this many places, many times, but essentials is its own best tutorial. Within that game folder has examples for almost any basic thing you need to make a Pokemon game. Play around, create test maps, and reference the examples in essentials in the wiki as often as you can, without any shame. Practice and practice until certain things become second nature and then you'll start feeling comfortable enough to start branching out and experimenting with things yourself.
 

TheGamingPaladin

TheGamingPaladin - Youtuber, Foodie, Gamer 4 Life
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#20
Playing around with Essentials definitely seems to be one of THE best Tips for Pokemon Fan Game newbies like myself, a lot of things can be learned and adapted upon by studying already coded content, whether it be Moves, Evolutions, Items, or Scripts.

if i can add a tip i will add one that i learned from Yanfly on MV Tips and Tricks, Your First Room in the game when creating it should be a debug room to test EVERYTHING you wanna implement, so you dont make a mess of the game when trying to put in a new event.
 
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