Refactoring the meta-game in Intergalactic Delivery Driver

Last week was an interesting week for Intergalactic Delivery Driver, the game I’m currently developing. The week started with a crisis in confidence as I debated whether the meta-game would work and ended with a number of changes and much greater confidence in the quality of the game in general and the meta-game in particular. Continue reading

Why Freak Factory?

You may be surprised if I tell you that Freak Factory is about life, but it is.

Every time you play Freak Factory you lose, eventually. You may prolong the game, you may get a high score, but eventually you will lose. Losing is inevitable and every Freak you make reduces the space you have, reduces how much game you have left. While you play it the game doesn’t get harder, it gets less. With every move you make you see the end approaching. Continue reading

Seeing what’s really there

This blog post was originally published on the Develop:Brighton website on 26 June 2015.

I remember as a choreographer at dance school showing my choreography teacher my first dance piece. I’d spent a term making this dance, working with three dancers who were studying with me. This was extra-curricular activity but I wanted to make this dance and I felt good about it. So, in search of praise I asked my choreography teacher, Ingegerd Lonnroth, to look at it. Continue reading

What Makes a Good Collaboration?

This blog post was originally published on Gamasutra on 17 June 2015.

Before I became a game developer I was an independent contemporary dance choreographer with my own dance company. And in my 14 years creating dances, and a further 14 creating games, I’ve experienced all sorts of collaborations. For me, there are three key ingredients to a good collaboration. Continue reading

Bubble Pack update – monetisation

It used to be the only question about monetising your game was how much to charge, and you could leave that decision until quite late in the development. But in this era of free-to-play we have to ask ourselves how we propose to charge for the game, and we have to ask early because the decision can have significant ramifications for the game.

How to charge for your game is sometimes very simple and other times very hard. With Bubble Pack I have always known that I want the initial download to be free. There are two reasons for this Continue reading

Bubble Pack update – gameplay

I have been playing around with the gameplay for Bubble Pack, adjusting it to get the right difficulty balance. There are lots of small adjustments that can be made to make the game a little easier or a little harder and I also tried a couple of bigger changes.

First I tried letting the player set the power at which the ball is thrown. Unfortunately, this made the game far too easy whilst also making the controls more complicated, so I ditched that idea. Continue reading

Bubble Pack – my first indie game

Wow, setting up a company is a lot of work. More than I remember from last time I did it (fourteen years ago!) but I’m getting there. All the admin has had a substantial impact on development of my first game, so progress is slow. I have also neglected to tell you about the game I’m making, which is remiss of me. That changes now.

My first game is called Bubble Pack. It is a physics game – how many bubbles can you pack into the screen. You launch each bubble to bounce around the screen, and when it stops it expands until it touches the side wall or another bubble. You have to pack as many bubbles into the screen space as you can. Continue reading