AN ESSENTIAL SKILL TO HAVE!
We will talk about rapid prototyping and how it’s such an essential skill for you to get better at game programming and development. First, what is rapid prototyping?
Rapid prototypes are like sketches.
It means if you went to an art school, you would probably sketch a bit. You would only maybe paint one major painting in a given period. You had to do lots of prep work, and these sketches wouldn’t be masterpieces.
They would be kind of learning experiences for you to get the habit of making good art or maybe exploring some ideas and rapid prototypes as the engineering equivalent of that. Now, ‘rapid prototyping’ has a background in engineering. Rapid Prototyping is mostly used in car development, airplane development, and vehicle development.
When they do anything, they usually build scale models of the actual object.
They will test from there. Thus, it’s not uncommon for airplanes to have 1/4th scale models to test how it works because if you build an aircraft to get people up to 30000 feet in the air, that was a feat. So they may have to do some testing first.
Airplanes and cars are much more sense than art games.
So programming is like building a machine.
Rapid prototyping is building many different ideas.
These ideas will take you further.
Rapid prototyping is a great way to explore these ideas.
We will talk about why backward typing benefits you as a coder but let’s continue talking about what Rapid Prototyping is. You also want to keep all of your prototypes for future reference.
You do this to get to see your progress if you assume your tenth idea isn’t going to be the best. Thus, you always want to stay true to your prototypes.
Rapid Prototyping is good because you will figure out what is fun immediately, and you can discard something.
Therefore if it’s a prototype like a sketch, it will not be high quality. It’s just to see if this idea is fun. Then you take a run with it or maybe tuck it away in a file cabinet somewhere.
You also want to see what works.
That will show you if a game can be done or not. Let’s take a look at the benefits of rapid prototyping.
You can find new ideas.
I found more engaging ideas for future games.
It will also tell you how easy or hard a given task is.
Sometimes you might have an idea, and it may be too difficult to implement. If it’s too hard to implement, it is also hard to make a full-on game. If something is easy, you should probably do that game first.
It also helps you become a better developer. If you make ten shooters, it will be better than just building one shooter.
You’ll learn a lot more between games than you would make a game. It’s pretty counter-intuitive, but it’s true.
During game development, you will learn a few things about the game. But when you take your time to rest and think about how you can do better at that game. That’s where the real progress happens. The more you do, the better you get.
You can also see your progress.
I had a prototype about five years ago, six years ago, a pretty cool idea. That was awesome. I might make a game out of that so you can see your progress as a good programmer and a designer.
Eventually, you have a code. If you catalog everything correctly, you can take a prototype and then make a full-on game on it.