Why make a video game?

in Community

So perusing our forums, I ran across an interesting thread. The thread was titled “Why bother making a video game?“.

A pretty dismissive title, but the question itself is really an interesting one. Why DO we make video games? Obviously, we all have different answers to this, and I want to, of course, hear your answers as well, but in this article, I’m going to give you mine.

But first, a little about me. My name is Nick Palmer, the social media and community guy for the English RPG Maker Community. I’ve been known in the community as Touchfuzzy for years, long before I was ever hired on by Degica, I was making games with RPG Maker.

This was the first RPG Maker I ever used. Seriously/

This was the first RPG Maker I ever used. Seriously.

I write. A lot. I mean, obviously, most of my job is writing (and yes, I know, I’m prone to incredibly long sentences (and parenthetical asides!)). But I love telling stories. When I was a kid, and well, even now, I want to be a novelist. I’ve played tabletop roleplaying games for many, many years (something like 28 years now?). I want to tell stories and for people to enjoy them. It is one of the primary things I like in life.

But on the other side, I also like math. And puzzles. And just taking things apart and learning how they work and putting them all back together. It is why I have an unhealthy obsession with board games for instance. I love playing within a system and figuring out how to make it tick.

And making games with RPG Maker? That combines those two things like peanut butter and chocolate. I get to play with systems, I get to learn eventing and manipulate things to get the engine to do what I want, and all the while, I get to use that manipulation to tell stories. Then people get to play within the system I make and see the story I told.

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I did actually finish one game, it was pretty fun, though horribly unbalanced and some of the puzzles were really, really unnecessarily hard.

To be fair, I also rarely finish anything. I have a secret project in the works now, but will it ever see the light of day? Who can say (well, it is work related, so probably my bosses would be unkind if it didn’t)? But even if I never do, it is fun to see the stories come to life, to manipulate the pieces and tools to get it to produce something that is uniquely mine. Unfinished or not.

So, why do you make games? Tell us in the comments below, or join the forums and ask in the original post!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • D KWest

    I’m actually trying to figure out WHY I want to make games.

    ever since I was little I wanted to make games, and I’d devise card games and board games and logistic games.

    I’d play games intentionally wrong and make my own little “sub-game” inside of it.

    I loved reading about eve online, Warhammer. all the facts and figures interest me greatly. never quite made a finished product but always played around with systems (RPG maker was one of them but that was a long time ago.) – got into programming and electronics, and seeming how I should take a more “sensible approach to getting a job” I took up robotics (which is another interest of mine)

    even now that I have a job in the electronics industry and still studying robotics (but not quite put /in use/ I guess) I find myself now, 9pm on a Sunday, making a random little world map in paint, thinking how quickly I could just try and make a little diplomacy/resource-based game.

    I’m not sure what interests me, but there’s always more games to be made