Didn’t I just ask for advice for finding inspiration for writing about games? Now I’m probably going to give it. It’s not enough to write about a popular topic people want to read about, it needs to be something people can learn from, and will benefit from. Open-sourcing your code, or putting your code on Github, isn’t just an open invitation for people to steal your code. It is an opportunity as game developers to get immediate feedback and ideas on how you can improve your project. A lot of times, open-sourcing code is the most efficient way to get feedback because you are offering it directly in the open with no strings attached.
I’ll share why I think you should consider open-sourcing game development code, and provide four tips for making it happen.
Build awareness for your game.
When people see that they can play it and change it, they get excited. They become invested in what you’re doing, and they want to support it. It’s a great way to get people talking about your game before it even launches!
Most gamers stream games nowadays. If they stream your game, it can potentially reach other gamers and viewers who can be interested in your game and will support it.
Reduce your workload.
When you’re developing a game, you have to do a lot of things at once: art, design, programming, tools and digital assets management are all separate tasks that take up a lot of time and resources.
But when you open-source your code, you can share the burden of those tasks with other people who are interested in helping out. This means that instead of focusing on one thing at a time, you can work on art, design and programming – all three at once!
And when it comes to digital assets management, there are tools and tips to save some resources such as a video compressor to save some hard drive space, zip for archiving, Google drive for some extra space etc. The formats should also be universal and popular for easy retrieval in the future. For videos, it would be Mp4 and compressed with an Mp4 compressor to shrink them.
Get more development done.
The more people working on the same project, the faster it will be completed—especially if those people all have different skill sets and can each focus on a different part of the project. When you share your code with others, they can contribute in whatever way works best for them, whether that’s just sending in small bug fixes or working full time on new features. This is great if you’re in need of some extra manpower, but don’t have anyone available to hire on permanently.
Also, it’s best to record your development phase using a screen recorder. That way, you can share them through videos and share them with the community.
Section: Improve your code quality.
By making your code available for others to inspect and contribute, you’re inviting them to help you identify problems and fix them. This helps you avoid issues like memory leaks and other performance issues that can make your game lag or crash, as well as security holes that could allow hackers access to your game’s data.
Additionally, open-sourcing your game will give other developers the opportunity to contribute fixes and improvements that might not have occurred to you—not only because they have different perspectives, but because they can take advantage of more resources than you might have at hand while developing solo.
Game developers have a lot to gain if their code is open-sourced, and few reasons not to do so. Doing so can increase the community’s reaction to your game like most communities and gamers wants their games to have MODS and can be played to any system and it can even give your game a lot of exposure from sponsors and game supports, help you identify other developers, and generate interest in your products from a wider audience. Plus, there are plenty of development, support, and collaboration tools available online such as discord and slack and share tools to make gaming development easier such as Blender, video editors and debugging tools that make an open source strategy even more viable. Game developers may have to overcome some initial apprehensions before taking this step, but the benefits of releasing their code far outweigh the risks.
Cris Mark Baroro – I’m a Search Engine Optimization Specialist from VEED.io. I love technology. I can also be a writer, programmer and a QA system specialist. VEED is a free online all-in-one video editing platform.