Game Dev Tycoon is, as the name implies, a game creator simulation game developed by Greenheart Games and it is available for Windows, Mac, Linux and Windows Phone. Will you be able to create your own corporation, travelling around this dark jungle avoiding bankrupt and scammers or will you fail as many others?
Game Dev Tycoon
After the creation of you own avatar, you start your humble beginnings from a garage (An 80s garage!), and the first thing to do is to develop your first game. Develop a game is not easy but in Game Dev Tycoon everything is very user-friendly and comprehensible.
To do so, you will need to choose a theme (like Sci-Fi o Zombies), a genre (like Action or RPG) and a platform. Then you’ll have to plan how the developing time will be split in the many phases (Story, Game Engine, Graphics, etc.). You have to be careful, because if you focus too much on one phase the other ones will be omitted or too weak for the game to be a success: you have to learn which areas are the more important for the genre you chose.
After this planning phase the avatar will start to produce “bubbles” which are one of the few kind of points you will earn in the game: design and tech Points, they give you an idea about the quality of the project; Bug Points, they have a negative effect on the quality of the game; Research Points, used with money to do research and add more depth to your games (like new themes and genres), to have a better way to target your audience and train you employees, upgrading their status.
After the release you will receive some reviews based on your time plan, on the relation between the genre and theme chosen and “Design Points/Tech Points”. These reviews will affect on the sales and on your profit.
It may it look very complex but when you start playing you can’t stop. And this very addictive formula remains the same even in late game and harder modes.
Progression in the story will reward you with new consoles, you’ll be able to create your own game engine, to hire new employees, to participate in game conventions, to make MMORPGs. You will even be able to make your own console.
Seems cool? Trust me, it is.
There is no real “story” but a series of programmed events which explain the born and death of some consoles. Many of these events are amenable to real events in the past, teaching a bit of gaming history, which is good. Sadly the “story” it’s the same every time you play, so this will become predictable very fast.
This is not a minor issue. The player has no effect wathsoever on this story and it’s really a wasted opportunity. It could be really awesome to change the story only by publishing your games, having an influence on the success of the consoles maybe. I’m still hoping for a DLC with this content.
The cartooney characters and the simple menu style are really nice. The bright colors will catch your attention all the time. The animations are also simple but very fluid and the environment is relaxed. You can easily spot many references to Indie Games and many little details making the waiting times not boring at all.
Sound and Music
All the sound effects from the “bubbles” to even the text sound are very nice and never annoying, in my opinion. The main issue with the title is the music: it’s completely bland and uninspired, becoming redundant very quickly. I usually find myself muting the music. I have a serious hate relationship with it.
Game Dev Tycoon will have your attention for a long time. Nice sounds, graphics and user interface are just a few of the many elements you will enjoy from this game while you develop your very own company. A must have for simulation fans and friendly for beginners and experienced alike.