Duality – the state or quality of being two or in two parts.

Thought I’d write a little something to

A) Throw up some updates on Chroma, how it’s coming along and what kind of role it’s taking in my life
B) Note some of the themes of the game and some random design facts I will be applying

So I have now been off work (the day job) on holiday (making games) for one week, and I can safely say when the second week is over and I have to go back I will be a sad panda. It’s been good, and I’ve made a lot of progress so far – fingers crossed for more. It’s been a bit of a battle, because a lot of the stuff I’ve been doing has been pretty nasty and/or complex to code so I had to push through some walls to get stuff done, not much fun design stuff happening. I wish I could have got more done so far but I underestimate how long things will take and give myself a hard time when I’m being slow or lazy.

Anyway, I have now got a FULL intro working to the point where you get your power and the game gets going. It isn’t totally finished yet, there’s a bit in the middle that I think will be pretty rad but also a total bitch to code so at the moment it’s half there… TODO.

The picture above (which is 1920×1200 if anyone deems it worthy of a place on a desktop) shows part of the intro phase, loss of character only occurs for a very small amount of time for ‘cut scene-ness’ but I’ll get to that in a second. The picture portrays a key theme the game will have, light and shadow, yin and yang, 2 parts of the same entity in harmony, working together to overcome obstacles. The game is inherently dark, in lighting and in tone (if that actually makes sense), it’s pretty much a metaphor of itself.

Here’s a few key design things the game will follow:

No Music
Lot’s of sound from different objects in the world and ambient noise, but no music.

No Text
Pet peeve – text in games. If I wanted to read a story I’d buy a book, I want to play a game; a game is the BEST medium to tell a story through – there’s no need for streams of writing to deliver chunks of story. There’s a really cool sense of mystery and imagination in older games like Sonic on the genesis/megadrive where you knew the jist of what was going on and then you filled in the blanks with your imagination – now THAT was cool. I might take this no text thing a step further (maybe too far) in not having any text in game at all – no title, no options text (if I can pull that off) just imagery and intuition. The title is just a handle so it can be found outside of the game, within the confines of the game it’s not really relevant.

Let me play, please
I’m not a fan of cut scenes. I don’t like losing control of the character, which is why I’m keeping that to an absolute minimum. So far, I think you lose control for around a maximum of 10 seconds, and it won’t be too much more in the full game hopefully – just on specific collection points.

Anyway there’s a wall of text and a half, hope some of that was interesting to someone. Even if not at least I vomited some thoughts out of my brain so I can re-read it later and check whether I’m sane.

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2 thoughts on “Duality

  1. “No Text + Let me play, please”
    Good to hear that I’m not alone on this one. Recently trying out some indie games/demos I was attacked by tons of textwalls. I’ve even stumbled upon shooter: game starts, enemies appears aaand BAM game locks and some popup appears with text like “Those are enemies. Kill enemies with your weapon”. First bonus fell from enemy? Next useless pop.
    Yes for storytelling. No for wasting my time.

  2. Really like the idea of having no music and only ambient noise, but the no text will be very hard to do especially for credits, settings etc. But it would be something different and interesting to see.

    (p.s. using the screenshot as wallpaper, looks fantastic)

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