How to start a mod?
I wanted to know how you guys started off your mod. Since I’m seeking a career in Game Design and mapping I feel like I better get a preemptive strike on the market before I head into it or for the rest of my life I’m going to be stuck in a job I’m just not happy in. I have an idea and the tools but I just don’t have a team! Its not like I haven’t tried or anything its just it seems a week after I get one together I can’t contact anyone anymore.
Can you guys offer some advice and maybe some assistance?
My Idea: A series of short action-packed Half Life midquels and interquels, the first of which taking place along highway 17 shortly after the events of Half Life 2: Episode One. Since I don’t want to face the wrath of the HL2 canon police I have decided to keep all main characters out of the plot completely other than maybe a mention here or there. I need mappers, modelers and a coder right now.
I understand this topic isn’t aimed towards me but personally here’s some advise from me: If your trying to create a team with skilled individuals, first start the project by yourself, unless you happen to know another developer with skill, and then when u’ve created something showing potential etc, such as an environment, then post it advertising for help.
Just remember, people won’t offer there time and assistance for a wall of text, they want evidence that they will get something back from spending there time on it; that something being their work used and played by the fan base. Basically just think, if you was highly skilled at modelling, would you apply for a position on a team with no evidence of there own skill?
Also some advise on making the actual project itself: Plan properly and in detail, you may improvise at times, that’s normal but ensure you have set your sites on the goal properly and you know exactly what your doing. When making the first level for example don’t just open hammer (for Hl2) and improvise, ensure you know what you want to achieve with it, how you want the player to react to each thing etc, make basic blue prints, it may not turn out exactly how you planned it, but atleast you have a base to work on.
Scorp had some really good points you should consider before getting started. I’ll chip in one that will seem obvious, but is actually overlooked by 90% of MOD teams and thats why the failure rate is so high. You have to pick something that people legitimately want to play, not just an idea that you think is cool. To create a successful MOD you have to stand out from the other MODS and the best way to do that is to have fundamental differences in the foundation of your project relative to any others. If people cannot look at your work and within 30 seconds deduce what is special, unique or cool about your project, then no one will care, and that’s just the harsh reality of it.
I’d also strongly advise that you join a MOD team before trying to create your own, the amount of experience that can be learned from others in this situation is immense, trying to start out on your own without any knowledge of project management, marketing or communication amongst a group is almost certain for failure. Essentially my advice would be don’t get ahead of yourself trying to start a new project right out the gate if you don’t have a very very good idea and a couple of close contacts that are talented. And by being on another MOD team you build contacts you build up that network of talented guys for future projects, its an important aspect of it. Hope that helps in some way…