Game Preview – Rune Hunt
When I discovered Flixel some months ago I was impressed by the wide range of of quality flash games that had been been developed and released based on it. I gave it a closer look, liked it and started to play around with it. I’ve not had a personal game project for years and had almost forgotten how much fun it is: Working on a project where I have complete creative control, no time constraints and where a broad range of skills are getting challenged. Skills like doing graphics and sound effects, thinking about gamedesign and story – skills that in my day job as a programmer are done by others.
Progress on my game project has been slow (I only work on it a couple of hours a week) but steady and I’m at a point where I’m quite confident that it’s eventually getting released and playable for a larger audience. So why not preview it on my blog?
When I posted the first tech demo of Rune Hunt (a working title that will probably stick) in the Flixel forums I described it like this:
The setup is classic: a hero in a dungeon full of treasure, traps and NPC of questionable attitude. The twist is that I’m limiting the player’s view to what his avatar is seeing. Top-down-ego-perspective so to speak. I hope it’s making exploring the dungeon more interesting and the enemies more scary if you don’t see all the stuff long before it becomes relevant/dangerous.
This is still more or less accurate. The opportunity to take all kind of ideas and concepts that I come up with (about algorithms, about gameplay mechanics, about game design and narrative) and just try them in-game is something I fully embrace and thus I’m really not sure where it all ends. So I won’t linger on describing story or game mechanics – you’ll see it when its done.
“When it’s done” is a pretty lazy approach to project management. It’s also coming with a high risk of never beeing done at all – just think about Duke Nukem Forever. Maybe I could create a more fun game when I’d take a different development approach, when I’d stick closer to what has worked before and apply proven game design practices instead of following a vision that is constantly in flux. But I wouldn’t have more fun creating it that way. And maybe players will like it in the end – despite the lack of standard feedback loops (like competing for highscores or leveling your character or mastering the mechanics to beat the game) that I left out because I am personally bored of them. Maybe others can appreciate what’s there instead: stuff that I considered worth trying out and then good enough to keep it in. I’m curious to see if playing the game will be as much fun as creating it was!
But if not I’m still having plans to extract some value out of it. But that’s another story…