Zorba the Hutt (zorbathut) wrote,
Zorba the Hutt
zorbathut

Your Shopping Adventure! Postmortem

I’m having a tough time making a postmortem for this because almost nobody played it. C’mon, people! Gimme something to work with!

I had a few goals for this game.

First off, I wanted to piss off people who thought I was making a sexist game. I got a few bites on that front so I’m considering it a success. Sort-of-unfortunately, everyone laughed it off once they realized what was actually going on. I guess my friends are just too reasonable. I’m not really complaining about this aspect of things.

Second, I was trying to come up with a game that wasn’t trivial to minmax. I made great strides in this direction and figured out the first really interesting scoring mechanism I feel I’ve managed. That, along with the “grades”, made for a game where people were competing for highest score. Some of my early testers and most of the people who commented on it later, in fact. That’s pretty cool! I thought score was a worthless mechanic, but I may have finally figured out a way to make it worthful: first, make it interesting to max out, and second, introduce goals so people know what they’re shooting for. Doubling your score isn’t motivating, but getting from a B to an A is damn motivating.

I’ll probably write up more on my scoring mechanic later.

Third, I was doing more with 3d. Some of this was successful – the isometric viewpoint turned out pretty neat – but I had trouble getting stuff to work right. I need to learn more about 3d math and I just plain haven’t. That’s bad. It could have been much better.

Unfortunately, the rest of the game kind of fell flat. The entire thing – to me, at least – feels a bit sterile. I had trouble putting soul into it, like I have with several before, and I’m starting to feel like that’s just sort of a random thing. Either it Works, or it Doesn’t. K0R and Nieuwe Aarde worked. This one didn’t. I’m going to be keeping a close eye on my future games to see what results in style and what results in no style, but that’ll take quite a while to narrow down. On the list.

I’d say “it might have been that I had so little time available for this, it was really time-crunched” but I mean look at Nieuwe Aarde which was completely made in basically a state of constant panic, or K0R where I spent almost the entire game development process saying “goddamn, there is no way I’ll get this done in time”, and . . . well, honestly, being time-crunched generally seems to help. So I have no idea.

In terms of score, I broke fantastic new ground. In terms of everything else . . . well, needs some work, let’s say.

Tags: design, monthly game
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