We’re in the homerun stretch! At this week’s sprint review, we had a faculty candidate there to give more feedback. We pushed hard over the weekend to make sure it was finished but despite our best efforts, the build didn’t come together until about ten minutes before the presentation. Nick and Blake did a stellar job highlighting our most recent iterations and fielding questions. The standout feedback was about the theme we had chosen – child soldiers in Columbia. I understood where lots of people were coming from – that it felt tacked on and not naturally integrated with our gameplay. On the other hand, that’s how lots of juicy themes start, just tacked on to be juicy. I think it’s a great question to continually ask ourselves through development and make sure it doesn’t seem way off base as a theme, but in general I think we just have to trust our artists and design and just make it super juicy by the end of development.
A great point that the faculty candidate made after the presentation was that guards simply patrolling back and forth seemed like a low-stakes situation. His suggestion to make the game more high risk was create AI that systematically searches the room/level, that you can always hear getting closer to you, so you are sweating trying to get ahead of the guards. In the end, I’m sure a good mix of patrolling guards and systematic search guards will create the experience and tension we’re aiming for.
On the horizon is the last week of the semester! We’re looking forward to EAE Fest as a team so we can see how people play the game, use that to direct our future development, and have a great summer 😀