How to Cooperate with a Development Team


#1

WARNING: Typed on a phone and will probably have really odd typos and autocorrect making stuff into French

Let’s been blatantly pessimistic for a second—the relationships between many developers are terrible. Your Twitter timeline is probably filled with a ton of drama and developers fighting over seemingly small things. And it only gets worse. What can you do? Well, I’d recommend you prevent it from happening to your own development team, and here’s how.

1. Recognize your fellow developers as people

It should be obvious, but apparently, this needs to be said. You need to remember that, you know, that girl or guy (or other gender) on your team probably has feelings. And (s)he’ll probably be offended if you treat them like a robot and don’t reward them for their efforts (or, at the very least, praise them for their work). People will be a lot more motivated if you treat them like humans, honestly. Try to understand that people have certain specialties and might be able to build a house that makes you want to live in your computer screen but build a car that makes you want to throw your computer away (because I might be that guy who builds that really, really bad car). And hey, don’t be that guy or girl who just goes about and takes all the credit. Big hint: NO ONE LIKES THAT GUY AND BRAGGING DOESN’T MAKE PEOPLE ADMIRE YOU. Deep breath in; deep breath out, Derpy! To the next section!

2. Don’t give people work you know they can’t do

If you’re using this as a way to put yourself in the spotlight, congratulations! You’re making it easier for the angered developers to aim their weapons at you! If you’re the big boss, maybe you’re hoping you can pay them less because you gave them something they can’t do. Obviously, you shouldn’t make a scripter build a mansion or a music composer animate some guy jumping out a window because he needs to escape his greedy developer boss. You should also confirm with the developer that they are able to do the job before telling them to do it; it kind of prevents them from losing all their hair at sixteen. Oh, and please don’t make your deadlines one hour after the task. We have lives, you know!

3. Don’t tell people off because they didn’t do something like you thought it would turn out

Constructive criticism is good. Punching people in the face with words isn’t. If someone doesn’t do something…greatly, don’t fire them unless you really know that’s their standard quality. I mean, it’s called “being nice”. Tempting, I know. But hey, you can always let them improve instead of telling them, “LOSER! YOU’LL NEVER GET BETTER! YOUR CODE LOOKS LIKE DERPY WROTE IT!” Be. Nice. And don’t remind me about how bad my coding is.

4. Analyze why you feel a certain way about someone on the development team

Often times, we kind of just don’t like someone. Some psychologists say seven seconds makes our first impression. But why? Is it because they wrote a boring tutorial about how to get along with your development squad? Psychologists also believe that a lot of the time, you don’t like people because the world is a mirror. Learned that from my uncle, so I know it’s a trustworthy fact. Wink, wink. Hey, he’s a programmer, so I guess we can learn a bit from him him, eh? (Canadians don’t actually say eh.) Anyways, what does this mean? Well, if you meet someone and dislike them, it’s likely that you despise them because they have a trait that you have that you don’t like. Boom. Mind blown! Learning this fact can help you grow as a person. Just realize no one is perfect.

5. If a developer is the cause of the drama, don’t make it worse

You walk into a mall and find some guy running around stabbing people. What are you going to do?—go stab people too? “Hey, he started it!” I think we can be a bit more civilized than that, friend! The passive voice is your friend. Also, humour can help too! Try to lighten the mood by making the whole situation seem funny and not that big of a deal if possible and appropriate. Try to make everyone happy and not just yourself. Know that others have different opinions and mindsets. That brings us to…

6. Be accepting of differences

Politics, religion, and whether or not Jailbreak is a good game—they all have one thing in common: They are all sure to spark a rather heated debate. But really, our opinions are our opinions. If someone disagrees—and specially about these subjects—it’s really best to avoiding what’s about to come next, and if it happens, try to find something the other person says that you agree with and to focus on that. Chances are, they’ll probably love you a lot more than if you insult their favourite candidate’s hair. If I hate Trump, it doesn’t mean you have to! Now go spread the loooooooooove. uwu

7. Critique work, not persons

Imagine this: You are hired to code a collapsing roof, but you accidentally make the gravity reverse and the Robloxians collapse on the roof instead. You tell your boss you’re sorry and (s)he says, “I WISH THE ROOF COLLAPSED ON YOU INSTEAD!” I bet you just love the boss now. It probably would have been a lot nicer if (s)he helped you by telling you what is wrong with what happened and how you can improve it (as long as they add an emoji; emojis make everything better). I’m assuming you wouldn’t have realized that there is something wrong with what happened, anyways. :innocent:

8. Try to understand where others are coming from

It’s hard to see a side you’re against. I know that. I can barely look at people who eat pineapple pizza. (Kidding! I actually think it’s okay!) It’s a good idea to question your own opinions before you press them onto others—especially your strong opinions. It’s a lot better to lose an argument with yourself than to lose one with a developer who is supposed to be on your side. It’s like robbing yourself of your self-esteem! Cheerful. I mean, imagine if you argued with someone and told them ten comes after eight. How embarrassing would that be? If only you thought about it before saying it.

10. Discuss aspects of games together

Whether they’re the building, animator, composer, scripter, translator, GUI designer, or just some random person on the development squad, talk together. Collaborate. Not only does this bring developers closer while stirring up new game feature ideas (it’s fun!), but it also means a combination of a variety of different minds to make one. These ideas are often more unique than that of an individual. Become one. :3

11. Be nice

Self-explanatory. .3.

Okay. Good luck not dying on Twitter! :wink:


Featured Games Program - Getting Started & Expectations
#2

I love this post so much!!
Especially this:

Not only does it help with what you described, but gives all the developers a very good idea of what you are trying to make as a team, and also means that they will be much happier doing that work as they contributed or at least understand the reasons for choosing that look / system.


#3

Great post! If only everyone worked with this mindset. :thinking:


#4

I can’t emphasize how important this is. @Spathi and I often spend up to an hour just discussing features together, fleshing them out, and talking about the pros and cons about the different aproaches for implementing the idea in the game every time one of us has an idea for our game.

Not only does it keep motivation going, but it allows us to make a nice, well polished idea. Sometimes it even makes the feature better than the original idea, because we both add little pieces to the idea as we’re talking about it, eventually making it a lot better.

Plus, it allows for the potential for new ideas to be spawned.


#5

Yes! I have a little article about idea creation as well somewhere here.


#6

Honestly glad you said that, I know this is going to sound cheesy, but in the past dev teams I’ve been in, they treated me more like a developer, when all I wanted was to be treated as a friend. lmao

However, even though I do get praise with people saying “You’re a great builder” or “Wow your better than [Persons name here]” I really don’t desurve it, hence why I turn the compliments down straight away. I compare myself to the best builders in roblox, but as you said

I can relate a lot to this post, and I’m just happy someone has the same views as I do!


#7

Amazing article!


#8

If I could suggest a section on paying developers? I think the payment of developers is a critical factor towards co-operating with your/a team, but I’ve only seen that word once on this page.


#10

This is actually really useful, especially for RDC game jam teams.


#11

wait why’d you reply to me


#12

Haha this made me crack up!

Loved reading this tutorial Derp - this was very informative and humorous! Thanks for going out of your time to make it.


#13

Hit the wrong reply button! :grin:


#14

What goes along with this is make sure you do critique work when it’s not what you’re looking for. It’s horrible to just say “yeah that looks good” to everything and then the project ends up being garbage and nowhere near where it was intended to be. There are times when you have to tell the team or creator or developer that what they made simply wasn’t up to par with what the project requires.


#15

That was one of my favourite parts to write! :laughing:


#16

I love your use of humour in the tutorial.


#17

Great guide, I couldn’t have said it better!


#18

I already follow everything you said on this post but I can’t figure out how to get the developers (mainly programmers) to meet deadlines and get the work done, I’ve tried every approach (being nice, giving them extra time, also the opposite being strict and enforcing deadlines and due dates) but always fails, any advice?


#19

Offer them more payment or if necessary say that you’ll replace them with someone else of you have to. Works for me.


#20

It’s hard, but you have to give them some kind of reason why it benefits them to do it in time. Like the guy above, maybe, if it comes to it, say you may need to replace them. It all comes down to triggering those rewarding chemicals in their brains.


#21

@HeadlessHorror

It’s that you’re not the owner of the group. Unfortunately some people don’t work as hard if they know they dont have to do anything and will be paid for it. The reason you have to be the owner of the group is because you offer the percentage for their portion of the game, which includes updates. It isn’t a one sided deal where the developer makes a few things and then profits forever off of no updates, mainly because with no updates the game dies out and makes nothing. The owner of the group has failed in this aspect if they don’t work a deal to motivate their developers to keep working. They’d be much more contributing members trying to make sure their percentage is guaranteed in the future rather than right now.