These standards are not required but will improve your chances of success.
Size & Aspect Ratio
We recommend adhering to a 16x9 aspect ratio, which is standard for modern televisions and will allow your game or movie to jump seamlessly to a household TV.
Here are some WIDTH x HEIGHT suggestions based on the 16x9 aspect ratio:
600 x 338
640 x 360
720 x 405
800 x 450
848 x 480
Please try to avoid letterboxing your movie, it doesn't complement content embedded in a web page and just takes up vertical space. If your content is converted to video, letterboxing can be added as necessary.
Overlay Menu Options
This applies to movies. If you want to add options such as a quality toggle or a button to return to the menu, please make these appear on mouseover and vanish on mouseoff. They distract from the aesthetic of your movie and add useless clutter to any video conversions that may some day exist.
Have you ever found yourself browsing away from a game or movie because the intro credits were too long? Don't let this happen to your own work!
Have a loading screen that contains the title of your movie, teaser art, primary credits/logo and an optional Flash Ad
. Be sure to link your name or logo to your NG user page or website!
We are always happy to see NG preloaders
Upon loading, users should push a PLAY button and watch your movie instantly. Avoid additional intro materials unless they enhance the experience of the movie.
If you are running a Flash Ad
on your loading screen, style the surrounding space with the same aesthetic as your menu screen. Include a PLAY button after loading so that it doesn't skip past the ad. If you aren't running a Flash Ad, you can auto-advance to the menu after loading is complete.
If you have a sponsor, the sponsor splash screen can follow the loading screen. Try to avoid multiple logo splash screens; you can promote your personal site on the menu or loading screen if allowed by the sponsor.
The menu screen will follow the loading or sponsor splash screen. The menu should include a title, an easy-to-read menu and any necessary branding.
It is our opinion that no one clicks "Instructions" in the menu, so consider including brief instructions after the user clicks PLAY GAME. Suggested menu:
HIGH SCORES (optional)
LEVEL EDITOR (optional)
MORE GAMES typically links to a sponsor website; otherwise you should link it to your own website or user page here on NG. Don't waste the opportunity!
People are done with your submission and ready to move on. Why not show them where they should go?
After your movie has completed, consider an ending screen with a visual that reinforces a key theme from the movie. Include a promo and link to your user page or website for people who want to see more of your work. Also include links to 3-4 of your best works, with large visual icons. You will be surprised how much interest this generates!
Don't forget to include a prominent link to WATCH AGAIN.
When the game has ended, you can return to the menu screen or offer up a promo screen directing people to more of your work, similar to the movie recommendations above. Include a prominent link to return to the menu!
There are tasteful ways to present advertising so that people don't rebel against you. Present the ad at full size and be sure the space around it doesn't feel cluttered.
Tread VERY carefully with any ads beyond the loading screen. Ads littered amongst in-game menus and maps ruin the immersive experience. If you have a casual game with a score screen between levels, you can consider including an ad on this screen as long as the layout is attractive and there is a button to advance to the next level.
Pleeeease share your earnings with the songs you use in your games and movies!