How to set up a website to manage game design.

Previously in ‘Cheap Game Design‘ it was mentioned that you can use google to provide a place to practice good project management.  Today we’re going to walk through setting up a website like the one built for the ZoRTS project.  The first site constructed was an internal website that the team could use to keep up with the project, store resources, and discuss the project without anyone outside the project being able to see it.  After setting up the internal site, the external site is much easier to start as you already have practice.

  1. Create a gmail account.  Make sure that all members also have gmail accounts.
  2. Go to sites.google.com and start a new website.  Access the site permissions by pressing shift + S.  The first permission you see is for the entire world.  Click the blue change button and set the site to private.  Add your team members and allow them to view or edit as you see fit.
  3. Set up the pages you will need, some suggestions below.  They will follow the same permissions as the main page you already created.  Here is google’s step by step instructions for sites.google.com if you aren’t familiar with it.
  4. Open up google docs and start creating your Game Design Document, or upload the document if you created it some where else.
  5. Create a new page on the Google site.  Edit the page and select Insert in the upper left hand corner of the screen.  From the drop down list in the “Google” Section select “Document”.  This will bring up a list of all the Google Docs you have created.  You should see the Game Design Document on the list.

What kinds of pages will I need to manage my project?

  • Issue Tracker (Feel free to post an issue in the example to test it out!).  There is a great youtube video explaining how to set up an issue tracker.  That video convinced me that for a bootstrap project sites.google.com was the way to go.
  • Tracker for social media (login information for forum boards, facebook page, twitter accounts, youtube account, etc.) that your game uses to find players.
  • Game Design Document (or documents) – Google docs are great for this…  You can make a page that links directly to them.
  • Timeline, Gantt chart, etc.

Now that you have the internal website up and running figure out what information can go public.  Making the external website is very similar to making the internal one.  You might need a few more pages, such as News, Events, Pictures, etc.

If you think of any pages that a project like this could really benefit from, post a comment!  If you were creating a computer game what kinds of things would your team need to know about?

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