The past month was filled with lots of internal discussions that allowed us to more concretely set our goals, expectations, and timelines. These aren't things that we can physically show, but gets us excited and sets us on the right paths moving forward.
The majority of our time outside of that went to reworking level loading and nailing down background concepts. This was especially time consuming because we want it to strike the perfect balance of tone, mood, & narrative progression while maintaining the abstract, minimalistic art direction. Thank you to everyone who provided their input and feedback as we posted ongoing concepts and updates!
Lastly, we are working on a demo for an upcoming online festival! We're currently fine-tuning existing levels while developing more narrative beats and defining what they will look like for a player. The demo will ideally need to represent all aspects of our game from the characters, mechanics, puzzles, story, sound, and art design in a concise manner that reveals enough to keep you interested, but doesn't reveal too much, but also doesn't progress too quickly, and isn't too hard, but isn't too easy either...
Once the demo is complete we expect to need another round of playtesting, this time focused more on the narrative than the mechanics, so keep your eyes peeled for more details to come soon and let us know if you're interested!
JUNE BUSINESS! This past month we've:
Learned of a new online festival - PAX! :D
Outlined our demo
Reworked how levels load, which we talked about in previous updates here and here
Experimented with several new backgrounds
Started implementing narrative beats - dialogue/UI/encounters
Discussed community goals
Supported and played a lot of cool games that went to a good cause - as part of this itch.io bundle
Discussed our 3-act narrative and outlined story beats - it's getting real, you guys!
Discussed the industry as a whole - lots of recent news about toxic cultures and the terrible repercussions
Had our typical conversations on game design principles, this time on playing vs. watching action and how it affects immersion (we'll talk more about this next week and are excited to hear what your thoughts are on it!)
Discussed at length the recently re-posed 'are video games art?' debate - we appreciate those that are with us on this.
The Last Of Us Part 2 - while the technical feats were astounding, we have lots of mixed feelings overall
Zelda - always
Animal Crossing - launched a new summer update and we learned that after over a month away you get roaches in your house ??? Anyway, still haven't caught a shark.
Slay the Spire - is there any better example of a primarily systems-designed game that is so fun to play for any amount of time? Survey says probably not (there's a lot of amazing examples, don't hate us)
Destiny - watched the Beyond Light reveal and had to go back to the ol' stompin' grounds
Jackbox - have everyone use a variation of the same name, nothing can go wrong.
Cribbage - a classic, ask your dad about it.
Talk next week!
B-Side Arrives 2021
Follow our Indie Journey with us! @LittleSquidStudios