With the spread of the Internet and social networks, online games have fallen in love with users and are actively developing. Many artists, animators, screenwriters and programmers found themselves in their creation. Some popular online games have started out as small projects that are feasible for an aspiring developer who is initially working on his own.
Soberly assess your knowledge and capabilities. You will need knowledge of at least one programming language. It also requires an understanding of the technology of creating computer games, for example, you must understand what an event queue is, multithreading, user interface, client-server interaction and know at least the basics of computer graphics. You will also need at least one reliable server for the head end of the game. It needs to be well tuned, surge-ready, safe enough and tested. An online game, as opposed to a regular game, requires a better service. No player will like it when, at the most crucial moment, the server starts to reboot due to a failure or becomes unavailable for several hours due to a DDoS attack. It is practically beyond the power of one person to successfully cope with all the requirements. Therefore, you need a willingness to work in a team and the ability to assemble it.
Make a design sketch that you can bring to life. The creation of good computer games is a very laborious process, in which many good specialists are involved in their field. Do not try to overtake them immediately, otherwise you simply will not be able to complete the creation of the game.
Keep in mind that modern technology does not allow many technologies to be realistic. Many projects are limited precisely by hardware requirements, and not by a lack of ideas or specialists. Additional restrictions are imposed by the need to support the simultaneous play of a large number of players, which, with a large functionality, will require powerful expensive servers, the requirements for which are already very high. Therefore, in the initial stages, it is important not to get carried away with the maximum detail of graphics and gameplay.
First, create the smallest possible but fully working model of an online game that can be extended. It should consist of the simplest client-server system operating on one computer and provide: the simplest possible model of the game space; creating, entering into the game and saving the state of the character; the possibility of communication; the ability to move and the ability to perform actions.
Develop a protocol for communication between a client and a server over the network. A single standard for data transfer greatly simplifies development, but it is often irrational to standardize all tasks and leads to the generation of a large amount of unnecessary traffic. Try to find a balance between the general standard and the traffic volume. Also at this step, work out the software part of the server. Decide on how to use multithreading and how to interact with the client over the network.
Ensure safety. Your server can be attacked at any time to gain access to the player database, which can backfire. Also, the server side of the game may be subject to a DDoS attack. For example, mass registration of players with a special script and their simultaneous connection to the game. Such an attack will quickly deplete the server's resources and will require making quick decisions while it is running. In order not to inconvenience the players, the mechanisms for such situations must be worked out in advance.
Gather a team to work out the graphics and expand the functionality of the online game. At a certain stage, you will be able to launch the project and, depending on how the players accept it, develop it in one direction or another.