What are the stages of game development?

The game development cycle is not synonymous with simple programming. It involves a series of steps. The process is long and laborious. If you want to get a worthy product, you need to think carefully about all the subtleties. The main stages of game development can be identified:

  • planning;
  • development;
  • testing;
  • presentation on the market;

It is important to perform all stages of game development with high quality. They are interconnected and cannot be considered as independent steps. As part of the review, the first phase will be considered in detail: what needs to be taken into account, what processes occur before development begins.

Preparation and planning

It is logical that at this stage the idea of ​​a game is being developed, which can attract a more or less wide audience of potential users. Planning covers a lot of processes, including:

  • formation of the project budget;
  • elaboration of the concept;
  • thought over the mechanism of the game;
  • choice of style and type of project and more.

Everything in order. The game development process starts with an idea. All subsequent steps only bring the idea closer to reality. The main idea may be initially generated, but we must not forget that the raw version will go through a difficult path to the ideal.


The various steps involved in developing a game are complex in their own way. Budgeting is not just about assessing your capabilities. It should start with market demand analytics. The essence of a commercial project is to bring profit to its owner. In fact, this is an investment in its purest form. And if the final product does not have the potential for monetization, then work on it loses its meaning. Budget planning steps:

  1. Assessment of capital and opportunities to attract additional investment to improve the quality of the final result.
  2. Analysis of the work carried out, including payment for the work of developers, the purchase of paid products necessary to create a game and more.
  3. Type of graphics: the better its quality, the higher the cost of the project will be.
  4. Project format. In our case, we are talking about an application for mobile devices. But there are other directions, which are characterized by individual characteristics of implementation.

Another stage that affects the budget estimate is planning the subsequent promotion in order to attract the maximum number of users. It is also important to include in the price the services of ensuring the technical maintenance of the game, after it has entered the market.

Preparation for production

In fact, there is a smooth transition from brainstorming to pre-production training. The game design is based on an idea that primarily includes the basic game mechanisms and interaction options.

Defining a prototype – the functions or mechanisms that should be used in the development process – and planning them is another very important step at this stage. Based on the collected data and far-reaching considerations, a rough estimate of the development time and costs is then applied, which can then be presented to the publisher.

Development process start

With the start of pre-production preparation, the development of the initial or even several prototypes begins. A game design document is like a game developer’s bible. Thoughtful and complete documentation is extremely important, especially for the programmer, to avoid unnecessary questions and discussions. With the help of this document and the experience of the heads of the individual departments (code, art, game design …), a detailed project plan is currently being drawn up, defining the milestones.

Step by step, the game development process brings the time to market closer. Technical implementation implies:

  • the development of models of the main characters, the design of the game as a whole;
  • elaboration of gameplay mechanisms, scenarios;
  • programming and voice acting.

In fact, a whole range of specialists are working on the development of one game, from artists to marketers.