A lot of games were already discussed in this book and before you get to your final blockbuster game I want you to think about creating your own little game with your existing engine. You saw all the important steps in this chapter, from creating the project based on the Rocket Commander XNA engine to the XNA Shooter engine, that is even more powerful (except you want to make a space game, of course). You probably have some great game idea in your head already and you should not wait any longer to start this game idea if you haven’t done so already.
It took me more than half the time to implement all the additional helper classes for XNA Shooter; even more if I put the shadow mapping in, which had to be adjusted quite a lot to look good in the game. Coding the game itself was a lot more fun and having to play it over and over again was also a lot of fun, especially at the end when all the effects and units were correctly implemented.
If you have a really big game idea and not some kind of a simple arcade game you should try to build a prototype first because doing a MMORPG (which stands for Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) like World of WarCraft alone is just impossible and you might spend years before you realize that you can never get as big as those monster games. When I give advice to beginners and game programmers this is my number one tip: Start with a small game and work your way up. This does not mean you have to create Tetris or a Jump’n’Run game first if all you want to do is to create an RPG (role playing game), but try to implement only one small part of your game idea (maybe running around with your hero and slaying or shooting at some simple monsters) and go from there.
Writing games is not easy today. It has gotten a lot easier thanks to XNA and many useful tutorials you can find on the Internet, but getting everything together and working is often underestimated. Try to get your first game working (including UI, input, the menu, and some simple game logic) and then think about your next monster project instead of the other way around. This is the number one reason why more than half of all game projects on the Internet are canceled before they are halfway done.
Anyway, good luck with your game project. Feel free to contact me and tell me about it, especially if it is based on one of my game engines.