This often happens early on in game development as new ideas begin to flow, not when the game is only weeks away from completion. Well we broke the mold.
Last night we put our game mechanics through the gauntlet and found that the original core game loop we were working on was boring. That’s a tough conclusion to come to when you’ve poured hours of love and development into a game (and with very little sleep).
But George and I felt that it was a necessary and ultimately a healthy approach to critique our own work. In the end, it proved to be the best decision we’ve made.
Originally we had the idea that the game would see the player control an entire herd of Wildebits (Wildebeest-like creatures) from a top down perspective. This ended up being boring and restrictive, so we changed it to a side-scrolling game.
This was much better but was still met with a lot of issues. Firstly, trying to control an entire herd complicated the controls too much. There was the herd to move, wild dogs pursuing them to fend off, things to pick up, obstacles to destroy and it all just got a bit much. We decided, if it was too complicated for us to make, it was definitely too complicated for the casual gamer to play.
Surprisingly the new concept we devised did not differ all that much from the original, however we feel it has been overall, drastically simplified and vastly improved.
The new controls George has implemented are beautiful. They are much better to those in the previous version, feeling more fluid and responsive. There are now only 2 main controls, swipe and tap. Tap can be held for some weapons.
George and I both felt that what made our game worth playing wasn’t necessarily any revolutionary new mechanics, but rather its crude humour, theme, polish and replayability.
That’s not to say the mechanics aren’t unique, but we tried to design them to feel familiar, logical and responsive.
It’s not long now before you can all play the game. We’re both eager to see it up on the store and to hear your feedback, good or bad!
The moment we release Bits & Bites we will moving straight onto our next couple of projects which are very excited about (and can’t wait to play ourselves!)