Christmas is over, I’m home, and I have a bit of time before I go back to work. My resolution last year was to be more prolific – take on lots of different stuff, do it all, stop whining. In that spirit, I’m going to try to get a bunch of stuff done. I doubt I’ll manage it all, but here’s the plan.
Work on Gunpoint for two days straight
Making Scanno Domini in 48 hours was exciting and eye opening. The deadline not only sped progress, but forced brutal and useful decisions about the design. I want to do the same for my longer-term game Gunpoint, aiming to get it to the point where you can meaningfully complete a level using the game’s central mechanic by the end of the year.
Every hour of work you put in before that point might be a complete waste of time, so you have to get there as rapidly as possible. I’ll probably work on it on the 29th and 30th.
The intentionally misleading title of this place is starting to cause actual harm in world increasingly reliant on search ranking. I have to call it by my own name. I also want to make the design slightly cleaner and less busy, and implement infinite-scroll rather than those archaic ‘Older posts’ links. Might tweak the colours and add an archive if I have time.
A new category or subsite on here for what I used to call philosophy, but which has evolved into increasingly practical advice given by myself to myself. I need to write the shit I figure out down so I don’t forget what little I’ve learned, and doing it publicly helps get it straight in your head.
Post: What Makes Games Good
One I’ve been tinkering with for too long. It’s about giving names to the different metrics on which great games succeed – the ones that really matter. Because they’re not ‘graphics’, ‘gameplay’ and ‘multiplayer’.
Post: What Games Are Bad At
Less of a priority, but I’ve often wanted to do a series on the things I think the industry is repeatedly fucking up. Most of my obsessions about games relate to what they normally get wrong, so explaining why and how might turn that into useful advice for making them better.
Tweak Scanno Domini
So much I could do to this from here, but to avoid letting it distract me from more important stuff, I’ll stick to the quality-of-life essentials. Snow and single-barreled weapons fire both need to be darker – they’re invisibly bright on some people’s screens. Bots still sometimes get stuck camping you, forcing a restart. I really should let you use the keyboard for movement if you want to. And I might either make the game a little easier, add an easy mode, or do something clever with the difficulty so that it ramps up more smoothly. Watching my dad play it was informative.