From Hobbyist to

Full-time Roguelike Developer

Josh Ge

@GridSageGames

Background

  • !CS
  • Languages
  • Freelance everything

Pre-2006

First Game

  • Brother vs. Brother AI
  • SRPG, not roguelike
  • Learning experience
  • ~10,000 hours

2006.2 ~ 2011.6

My Year of the Roguelike

  • "Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup"
  • Amazing genre never heard of
  • Wanted to make one immediately

2011.6

Research!

@

Exploring Options

  • All-time favorite

2011.6

X@COM

(XCOMRL)

  • Roguelite
  • Good starting point
  • Technical/UX focus

2011.6 ~ 2013.12

Mods

  • Battlescape fun
  • Community + fan base

Branching Out

  • New engine
  • New game
  • New tools

Rogue Engine X

  • Based on SDL
  • Fully object-oriented (C++)
  • 32-bit color console
  • Command-driven input processing
  • Sound/music support
  • Archived resource access

2011.11

7DRL

  • BattleTech
  • Thailand / Planning

2012.2~5

  • Almost too ambitious

Cogmind

  • Crazy week
  • Two months
  • Tournament
  • "The End"

2012.2~5

  • ASCII Art
  • Other uses

2013.5+

Community

  • Avoided social media
  • Blogging
  • Reddit
  • Forums / Twitter
  • Pulse of roguelike world

Roguelife

  • @ + @ = @@@
  • Now or never
  • Made possible by previous years
  • Turn 7DRL into a small game

2013.6

"A Small Game"

  • Polished 7DRL, limited scope

2013.6 ~ present

Greater Goals

  • Share methods to help devs
  • Expand roguelike audience

1.0?

  • Good reception
  • Want impressive first commercial game
  • Always more you can do
    with a grand roguelike!

How?

  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • Polish
  • EXTREME
    POLISH
  • (Then polish some more)

Important Features

  • Audio
  • Accessible & Intuitive UI
  • UX / Player convenience
  • Eyescii candy

Audio

  • Immersion
  • ASCII + SFX + imagination
  • >1,000 samples

Accessible & Intuitive UI

  • Mouse support
  • Drag-drop
  • Context help

UX / Player Convenience

Auto-labeling

Inventory sorting

Smart inventory management

Data visualization

Tileset

  • Accessibility
  • ASCII characteristics

Pixels by @ThKasparrr

Particles & ASCIIplosions

Animated UI

(Gameplay)

"Working" so far...

  • A first roguelike for many
  • Reviewers see mix of old and new
  • Lots more data on dev blog

You

  • Resources
  • Dedication
  • Do it for the love of roguelikes!

From Hobbyist to Full-time Roguelike Developer

By Josh Ge

From Hobbyist to Full-time Roguelike Developer

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