chool of Inafune Semester 3-6 12/13
Today was the big “present your project plan to Inafune-sensei” day.
Team Diver was doing pretty well. On the other hand Team Souseiji, and Team Funk-ing’s project plans were shot down once again.
“A tablet game with social asset” was the theme given by Inafune-sensei. The theme is blinding them. In result, they are not trying to merge their ideas into the theme. That was Inafune-sensei’s analysis.
They had to go back to the drawing board. How did they come up with the idea? and how did they make the project plan? They needed to revisit their concept, and it made them realize that the project plans they have are just ideas gathered together and nothing more. Thinking logically is one of the keys in any creative work.
As a training of “expressing”, students had to tell an absolutely funny joke.
School of Inafune Juku
Inafune-sensei couldn’t make to the class today.
Today’s lesson started with each group’s presentation of “Soul Sacrifice”. They were not provided with any information of the game, and the assignment was to make presentation out of what they know about the game.
The game hasn’t been released yet, but if the students can see the concept behind everything, then they can well enough make a presentation. After all, that skill is needed for every creator. The students had hard time, but they focused on two key wards “Fighting together”, and “self-sacrifice and price” and made their presentations.
After the presentation it was time for their own presentation. Normally they will be evaluated on their original project plan, but since team Funk-ing and team Souseiji haven’t decided on which plan to develop, so all of their plans were evaluated. Every project plan had pros and cons. Their homework was to pick one and present it to Inafune-sensei next week.
Today is the 2nd presentation day.
Team with totally new project plan, team with modified plan, and team with both solutions, what they all did was they made their presentations based on their own project proposal.
Team Diver’s project plan can be a interesting one, if they can expand the concept well enough. However, the other two teams needed to put more works into their plans.
Today, we talked about presentation. “Doesn’t matter how good the idea or the concept is, if it the listeners can’t understand your presentation, then it is meaningless. Creators need the abilities to create new ideas, but they also need the abilities to express those ideas into words that others can understand easily.”
Inafune-sensei continuously says this, because this is the one point Inafune-sensei pays attention to, when he makes presentations. First, you need to say, what is good about your project plan, but at the same time, you need to think about what will your listeners ask after hearing your presentation. You have to plan for everything.
Today, each team has picked their team names!
Team Diver (Director Ito-san)
Team Souseiji (Director Fukuda-san)
Team Funk-ing (Director Tsukane-san)
Each team started planning on their project proposal by choosing which project to go with from all the project proposals each team made when they applied to Inafune-juku. What this means is that, they have to pick a project proposal to present to Inafune-sensei later on. The responses they have received from Inafune-sensei weren’t too good.
The assignment they got from Inafune-sensei was the same from last semester.
1.Game for tablet, or smart phone.
2.The game must have social aspect to it.
The rough plans we got from each team were “just another social game”. “Everyone was behaving too nice. There weren’t enough adventure and challenges for teams full of youngsters.” That was the feedback from Inafune-sensei. What we are trying to achieve in Inafune-Juku is not to create “ordinary”, we want create “groundbreaking”.
Like the semesters before this one, we made three teams. Each team is made of one director, and four or five teammates. We have total of three teams in this semester of Inafune-Juku, and all of them will come up with their own project proposal. More than anything, they will have to present their own proposal to Inafune-sensei.
We had many volunteers to become the director of this semester, so we had a little election for the task. At the end, Ito-san, Fukuda-san, and Tsukane-san were elected as the directors, and the best part is the students get to choose which director to follow. Of course, not everyone can have his wish to come true. When that happens, they will have to talk it out, because communication is a huge part of game making. However, if nothing gets decided for too long, then it is time for good old rock, paper, and scissors.
This will be the last entry of blog of Inafune-Juku’s second semester.
We have learned how hard it is to create something with other people. We need to make the planning simpler, but still true to the concept. We need to expand the concept, but still make the concept crystal clear.
It was different from planning anything by yourself. Inafune-Juku was a great experience. It was different from any experiences you can get in any school.
The greatest experience was speaking to Inafune-sensei face to face, and learning from him. The question is when can I actually put these experiences to use. Maybe 10 years later? I will make sure I don't forget anything, and one day I will meet with Inafune-sensei again as a successful creator.
For those of you who are interested in Inafune-Juku, I leave you the following message.
“Do you have your own concept? If so, make sure you don’t lose it and keep it close to you!”
Thank you and we shall meet again!
Last presentation in the final class of Inafune-Juku.
“It became much simpler, but a bit too simple” said Inafune-sensei.
Keeping the core (concept) of the game, while adding enough elements to make the game exciting. It is hard to keep the balance between the two.
We even had a graduation ceremony.
Inafune-sensei gave us some very memorable words.
“Every existing contents are roads, and all the roads are still on going. There will always be a reason if you were led to that path. Be thankful to the ones who laid those roads, and continue on that those roads.
We, the new comers, should learn from the creators before us, face forward and place new paths for the younger generations. Maybe, once in a while look back and be thankful to the ones who laid paths for us to walk on. I will keep on walking the path I found.
Until the day we meet again, farewell.
Since this will be the last entry of second semester, I will do a little summary of the things I thought was very important.
* Your own concept
What is the concept of your life?
This was Infune-sensei’s last question to us.
My concept of life, at the moment is “influence people’s lives through my creations”.
“Concept can be changed in midway, but make sure you finish it and achieve it”, I have learned that in my time at Inafune-juku.
I will from now on, keep on asking myself that question.
“Is your concept changing? Are you working towards your concept?”.
“Don’t judge anything only based on information, trust your own eyes”
I just like this quote.
If you do this wrong, it can be seen as bluff. To be truly confident, we need knowledge and experiences.
Inafune-Juku has been one of my most valuble experiences. Hopefully I can be as confident as Inafune-sensei someday.
Other things I have learned.
“Look for things that’s simple and interesting”
“Don’t expand anything other than the concept”
“Try to think more than one thing at the same time”
Until the day we meet again! God bless video games!!
Team JYK - Ken Tutumi
We thought we understood.
From Inafune-sensei we got the comment of “think simpler”.
From Ono-sensei we got the comment of “focus on the most important part of game (the concept)”.
We have been receiving these two comments since the beginning of Inafune-Juku. We thought we understood these two principles, but we didn’t.
We have learned many things in Inafune-Juku, but how many things were left in the state of “we thought we understood”.
We have only one class left in Inafune-Juku, Inafune-Jukue will continue inside of my mind until the day I can fully understand what I have learned in here.
Team SIN - Toshiya Tanaka
We in the final polishing stage since last week!
We have to narrow down the concept to prevent the concept to shift, but at the same time we have to expand the concept.
We can just add fancy accessories and make the game look like it’s got nice volume, but that’s only the outer look.
There are many games with good ‘accessories’. “Dragon Quest 9” had wireless connectivity, and used it to let players to exchange maps. iPhone5 has made its display bigger, and thinner body.
Then again I think they made good result only because they are sequels.
What we are doing in concept is “learning how to make the original Dragon Quest and iPhone 1”.
At the end of the class, we had some feedbacks from a journalist who sometimes write about Inafune-Juke.
“Team SIN can either score a homerun or straight strike out”.
Some people might love it, some might not like it at all.
This is the concept we decided in the beginning of the Inafune-Juku.
This is the flag we raised, so we can find our way back to it when we are lost.
I think now it’s time to look back and look for that flag.
Team Picasso - Takahiro Hori
We have only one more class left in Inafune-Juku, and we have decided to change our project plan, from the concept.
In the last class we added too many unnecessary things, and made the game, well not fun anymore…
We decided to get rid of the ‘drawing’ concept and went to a new direction.
The result wasn’t bad, but still have a lot more planning to do.
Our new plan got decent reviews, so I think there is potential in the new plan!
We have one week left, and only about 2 hours of meeting time left. Within two hours we have to use everything we have learned to make this a better project plan.
Making games for kids is so hard…
Team SIN - Akimichi Nagayama
Time really flies, but this is way too much…
I couldn’t make it to the last class, and we only have two more classes left!
I have so many memories.
I think I can understand the process of planning projects.
The most important thing of planning is the concept.
We only need to think simple, nothing more.
I am still a student and looking for a job. I have to rethink all of my original planning documents, and work as hard as I can, as a member of team SIN.
Team JYK - Misai Jinbo
We have finally done it!
We lost our concept…
Our director Jinbo-kun got some tough comments from Inafune-sensei.
(but those tough comments were filled with love, I can tell)
Our concept (To kill zombies with office work) went the wrong way because we wanted to include some new system. That even included the UI and more things. Since it’s office work, we thought it was better to include some of the management aspect into the game. The result was a game of company management…great.
After the presentation we have learned that the ‘concept’ is a scary thing.
Inafune-sensei often told us that a concept is alive, and will move on its own.
That was so true.
We have to make sure that the concept stays the same during each meeting.
We need to make a game that’s fun to play but also simple.
Team Picasso - Takahiro Ishikawa
We had our presentation to Inafune-sensei.
The feedback we got from Inafune-sensei was “there are too many unnecessary things”.
Basically we added too many things and the concept was lost, and the project plan wasn’t fun anymore.
We have to think clearly, and need to know what is our concept and never lose it.
We have only two more Inafune-Juku left in the semester. I surely hope we can have many things come to reality.
Team SIN - Haruna Kudou
Kudou of Team SIN here.
It’s getting cooler these days.
Today we presented our team’s progress, and we had some question and answer time with Ono-sensei. After that we had team meeting.
Ono-sensei’s lecture today was about, creator categories. Some are good with making original contents, some are good with improving existing contents, and more.
Everyone has his or her strong points, and should learn to use them.
We came up with some new ideas for our project. We made some progresses, I think…
However we can’t relax until we present it to Inafune-sensei.
The goal of Inafune-Juku isn’t far from now. We won’t rest until the end.
Team JYK - Mizuki Wakatani
In this week’s team JYK, we planned about our game’s principle, and the social system.
So, what is ‘social’?
We played some social games and analyzed each game’s elements. We reconnected each element after. It’s kind of fun.
Social means society.
Society is community. Community is connections of people.
What is communication then?
Communication means to make action to other people, and get reaction in return. (I think that’s what it is, I think…)
With that in mind I played some of the social games out there. To me (players) the reaction part was more important than the action parts.
We can get numerous ‘reactions’ from the game. It is almost like having communication with the game itself.
Unlike console games, when you are ‘into the game’, it is fun even doing things other than trying beating the game.
Is this kind of ways to play game are out of date?
The world is changing every second. A creator’s job is to make something new.
A good creator has to know where is the industry’s front line.
I will try to be one of the creators to know where the front line is, but I will also try to be one of the creators to be able to draw that line, themselves.
I will write about weak point and strong point.
There are new title games and sequel games.
Some creators are good with making new title games, and some are good with making sequel games.
We even heard there are writers specialize in writing sequels. I don’t know which is better, but I think what is important is to know which will suit yourself.
I may not find out which am I, but this is a question to keep in mind.
Next week is the presentation to Inafune-sensei!
We only have a few more lessons left in Inafune-Juku, and I think our team is on fire! (in a good way!)
Hello everyone team JYK’s director Jinbo here.
We only have 4 lessons left in Inafune-Juku
This week in Inafune-Juku
We talked about Tokyo Game Show, and Ono-sensei brought us some board games today. This is my first time seeing such ‘hardcore’ board games. it was a very interesting lesson today (it always is thou).
Actual board game has that “richness” as an object, and it is sort of convincing. I thought it made the board game that much realistic. Also the range of tactics triggered by the simple and easy to understand rules have made me rediscover the origin of games.
This week in team JYK
We are working on the planning sheets.
All the game system, ideas, and everything about the game are in the planning sheets. The whole team is working so hard on it.
Hopefully the planning sheets will be good enough, so it can be used to start developing the game.
Team SIN - Takumi Honma
Ono-sensei brought a board game, and talked about the world setting to match the system of the game.
The world setting can be tricky. When you think you have a perfect one for the game, but if you see it from a player’s point of view, nothing works anymore. Just when you think you just build the most amazing system of all time, it might sounds like a total mess when you simplified it into one sentence. It is even harder for me, because I have difficulties putting my thoughts into words.
A project plans are meant to be presented to someone. In order to do so, we need to know how to express your idea to the listeners. Up until I joined Inafune-Juku, I never had any chances to present my ideas to anyone. All I did was speak to myself, inside my head. I did not know how hard it is to explain ideas to someone. I hope I can improve even a bit of my presentation skill in the rest of lessons.
Ono-sensei brought us some board games today!
We learned how important to keep the world setting and the game system consistence. If they are kept, design, game rule, will come together automatically.
After the class I thought about the digital games I created before and examined if they kept that consistency so that players won’t get confused.
“Did I make the players do unnecessary things and causing them not to experiencing the system itself?”
“The game system, and the world setting, are they estranged from each other?”
I discover so much in each Inafune-Juku.
Today I learned that in game design wise, board games are much easier to design than digital games. Board games have less elements to consider, (program, music, and etc), and easier to study .