Working with Templates

I was just wondering if anyone had any advise on how to use templates to make innovative games. I like templates for learning how to use GS, but I want my game to be unique, and not just another copy... Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


  • tatiangtatiang Member, Sous Chef, PRO, Senior Sous-Chef Posts: 11,937

    This is such a vague question. To make innovative games, you need to be innovative. Using a template isn't really a means to do that... you have to find innovation elsewhere. Yes, templates are useful for learning how to do certain things with this tool but they won't provide what you're looking for.

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  • quantumsheepquantumsheep Member Posts: 8,188

    Hey Zumbiso,

    What a lovely surprise your post was :)

    Templates, or demos, can certainly be useful for certain game mechanics. For example, a double jump, or relative touch, or high score saving etc

    A lot of these tricks and tips can be found for free btw :) This thread is a wonderful example of that:

    Also, have a look at this thread:

    I only bring this one up because it used a demo I was also using, and lots of people gave the guy some good advice on how to improve it.

    This is my version of the same demo:

    I think the main problem is that too many templates are 'full games' based on popular titles that have recently done well, or have been done by 1000 other people before.

    People are trying to 'get rich quick' with clones and the bare minimum of effort. Then they wonder why their game is getting no attention when they announce it.

    It's really a lot of work to add stuff to a template to make it your own. You seem to have the desire to make more than just a copy, so I'm keeping my fingers, toes and eyes crossed that you do so!

    Good luck!

    QS =D

    Dr. Sam Beckett never returned home...

  • gamestudentgamestudent Member Posts: 504

    I suppose you could come up with an innovative idea, and use templates to learn how to do certain elements of the game that you are unsure of.

  • zumbisozumbiso Member Posts: 6

    Thanks guys, I definitely can use your example quantumsheep since I saw that you used a kind of template to start your newest game, and made it into a really original product.

  • UtopianGamesUtopianGames Member Posts: 5,689
    edited August 2014

    When we make templates we always think of several different games and themes from the mechanic, you just have to think out of the box sometimes.

    I think the trouble is people's lack of imagination when viewing templates.


  • zumbisozumbiso Member Posts: 6

    I know that you're right Darren, I guess that I have become a little disillusioned since I have seen so many people in the app stores take the simple route and just put up exact copies of the templates they buy from businesses like yours.

    I really want to create something that I can be proud of for years to come, and I don't mind using templates as a starting point to learn and get inspired from, I was just wondering if there is a methodology that other programmers use to make templates unique.

    I guess in the end though, this is all pontification, and a distraction from me getting down and doing the dirty work of figuring it all out.

  • yattamoveyattamove Member Posts: 236

    I'll finish a template and post it here sometime.

  • LovejoyLovejoy Member Posts: 2,078

    I find it helpful to browse the App Store and downloading some games. Theres times where it makes my mind ponder and a lightbulb lights up.

    Fortuna Infortuna Forti Una

  • willkeslingwillkesling Member, PRO Posts: 123
    edited September 2014

    I think templates are great for helping you understand game mechanics. A lot of successful games aren't all that innovative. They simply re-theme an already existing game mechanic. ( see angry birds )

    Innovation can come in many forms. GameSalad provides a logic library that will let you do a ton of things.

    the key, I think, is to make a simple game mechanic first and then release it and get feedback.

    It's hard to tell if your on the right path if you aren't testing your games out with users often. I don't know about you, but I don't want to spend a year working really hard on a game that no one wants to play.

    I am on pace to have released a game a month for a year straight. I can look at my analytics and tell what game ( a thus mechanics and theme ) seem to do well with my audience.

    Sorry for the long winded answer, in short. Make small short games. You will learn a lot each time and get better with each new game. Take simple mechanics and make simple modifications to them. The more complex the game the more time it will take to get a user up to speed.

  • jigglybeanjigglybean Member Posts: 1,584

    Templates are great when they are set out with notes. The last few I have purchased have been in different languages and no notes on what rules have an impact where.

    So going forward, I will only be purchasing templates that have clear notes.

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