Tools we use for Planning and Project Management

We did one of these blog posts a while back, but we’ve changed some of the tools we use, so I thought it was about time for a new one.

Slack

We used to use Skype for team communication, but the team members on Windows were always complaining about the Skype app. A few of us had already tried Slack for a number of events and contract work, so we thought we’d give it a go. It’s good! No more lost messages and a decent sized searchable history for free! There are also plugins available for lots of other tools.

Google Hangout

We used to use Skype for calls, but with Google Hangout’s Slack integration, we’re moving toward it. You can even invite people/channels from within Slack. Nifty.

Google Drive

We use Google Drive as a Microsoft Office replacement. You can create a document, then share it and even have multiple people edit it at the same time. This is very useful for meeting minutes, as multiple people can contribute while someone else is talking. We also use Google Drive for project planning and financial stuff.

Dropbox

To share stuff that isn’t directly part of the game, we use Dropbox. It’s full of concept images, screenshots and trailers. It syncs automatically and runs on everything. Perfect for grabbing a screenshot for social media on the weekend when you don’t necessarily have a PC handy.

Randomly selected screenshot from Dropbox

Randomly selected screenshot from Dropbox

Perforce and Amazon’s EC2

To share and backup the Unity project files of Defect, we use a Perforce server running on Amazon's EC2. Perforce is a bit of a game dev industry standard for bigger teams, so we knew it would be rock solid for us. To minimise cost and maximise performance (i.e. speed and uptime), we decide to use Amazon's EC2. They have a free tier which lasts for a year. Because we only need a few users, Perforce is also free!

Trello

We started using the excellent online to-do list collaboration tool Trello at the beginning of Defect, as a simple Google Drive to-do document wasn't cutting it any more. It's a good compromise between full on task tracking software and a simple text document, for a small team that uses a very iterative process. We also use it for our public Defect Roadmap.