Topic : Making a game: The Development
Author : Drew Sikora
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of Patches
As a last note, the most recent cry among gamers today is the fact that many games are shoved out the door sideways and land in pieces. Games are buggy, annoying, and not fun to play. Of course, developers donít seem to panic much. They can just release patches of the game to fix up troubles. Despite this obvious abuse of power, patches should never be viewed as a way to complete a game. Never.

Patches serve the purpose of letting the developers add new features and tweaking existing ones. This is not bug fixing, because these are not problems. The polishing of a product can continue well past development, as cases can arise that were not or could not be foreseen in the testing runs. But patches should not be considered bug-killers. The only place you should be killing bugs is in the office, during development.

Blizzard is the only company that openly says that they will not release a game until it meets their own expectations. Youíd think that because of their success, other companies would follow their lead. However, itís usually not the developers behind bad games, but the publishers. And even then, it may not be the publisherís fault. If you are going to take on the credo of "Itís not done until we say so", you had better state that in any contract you sign with a publisher, and they had better know it. It would be perfectly logical for a publisher to not allow you extended time if you did not inform them or your outlook on game development. Be sure they know at the start, so they can anticipate the chance that your project may run over schedule.

Did I forget anything? I canít think at all anymore, writing out this entire article in one day can do that to you ya know? Hopefully the information gleaned from this series will help you better design and produce your games so that people can enjoy them. The views represented throughout this entire series were mine alone, and therefore you do not have to follow them. This series was about what I believe needs to be done to create a great game that is enjoyable, long lasting, and easy to play. I enforce impossible situations such as a perfect schedule and architecture as goals to shoot for, not necessarily achieve. Good luck to you all.

Questions? Comments? Thatís what emailís forÖ

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