Game Dev Tycoon review

It’s a game… about making games… GAMECEPTION!

Game Dev Tycoon is one of those games where most people would think that the idea would crash and burn. Then they get to play it, and realize that it’s brilliant. This is known, in the gaming industry, as a “holy sh*t moment”.

In Game Dev Tycoon, you play as a game developer (duh) who must make brilliant games in order to turn a profit. To make a brilliant game, you need to achieve the perfect balance between technology and design, although some games will require one more than the other. You also have to worry about bugs. You will be told about most of these, and after a game is finished your developer(s) will do some debugging along with the other finishing touches.

You start off as a lone developer in a garage. Your only choice is to make a game, so you do just that. First, you get to choose what topic and genre you want your game to have, as well as choose a platform and name for your game. At first, your choices are limited, but after a while, you will get more and more options, especially for topics and platforms (platforms stretch from computers to home consoles and even portable consoles, though you can’t release a game on several platforms). Your developer will start work, and as he is creating the game you will get asked what you want to focus on in the three stages of development. The first stage is about the engine, gameplay, and stories/quests, the second is about dialogues, level design, and artificial intelligence, and the third focuses on world design, graphics, and sounds. You also get several options for enhanced versions of said points, but adding these can be expensive. Depending on what platform you choose and what enhancements you pick, a game might be as cheap as a few thousand but might end up costing millions as well.

A big part of this game is research. Research is how you unlock said enhancements, but also things like target audiences, custom game engines, marketing for games, small contract jobs, and staff management. You research things by having enough money and enough research points, which brings me to my first big critique about this game. Research points are WAY too rare. Later in the game, you might have millions of dollars to spend on researching 3D graphics or surround sound for your next engine, but can’t actually research them because you don’t have enough research points (which, by the way, are earned by making games, doing contract work or even making a new engine which you were planning to do AFTER you had researched some things that you couldn’t research because you didn’t have enough research points).

The game is also slightly historically accurate, though. You start in the 80s with only some very basic 2D graphics and a few computer platforms available, but eventually this all branches out into better options everywhere (kind of like what happened for real). Obviously, the platform names have been slightly tweak to avoid Greenheart Games (the company that made this game) getting sued, but the Ninvento TES 64 is still released at around the same time as the real N64 was. Every new platform brings better hardware and specifications, and you must research these new options to make a truly excellent game on the platform (something which I already ranted about).

Overall, this game gets a 7/10. It’s a very interesting, addicting game, but it just needs a few tweaks. Although I do encourage you to go and buy it.

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One Response to Game Dev Tycoon review

  1. Phyl says:

    I always enjoy how thorough and detailed your reviews are. I don’t have any of these games myself, but I make sure to post links to your reviews on Facebook, since I have several nephews and other friends who are gamers. I think they agree with me that your reviews are really helpful and informative. Keep going! 🙂

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