Play the game online right now! -> Click here to play Dead Run
It’s not a Flappy Clone
One day, myself and Loet was working on Rocketto, and we got pretty tired. It was taking so long. So we started talking all sorts of rubbish, which naturally included Flappy Bird. (just kidding, we actually like Flappy quite a bit as a well-polished focussed piece of entertainment with some good hooks)
So, inspired by the Flappy Bird story, we decided to take a break from our usual project and spend two weeks to create something with minimal scope, hyper-focussed, with enough time to polish the crap out of it, with the goal of releasing.
An alpha build in 2 weeks: Dead Run.
- The game is an endless runner, with a single input: attack.
- You’ll come across zombies. Kill them or you get munched.
- You’ll also come across other survivors. Kill them and you lose, don’t kill them to rescue them, and they’ll join your party.
- How many survivors can you save?
The razor-sharp focus and concentration needed for something this simple is actually unnerving, even I still get tense further into the game
Discuss the game on the Dead Run thread on makegamesSA.
Learning by doing
This two-week exercise was super valuable in what it takes to finish a game.
- One of the most important things we learnt was that keeping scope down is very important for a limited project. Everyone has great ideas, but ideas do many things: 1) Needs time to be created 2) Has implications on other things, especially game balance 3) Needs to be re-tested by more/other people.
- Finish and polish is super important to create a good impression when you’re aiming for a public release. A good balance needs to be struck between good game and good juice/polish. They’re at least 50/50 in terms of importance.
- Must. Show. Other. People. ASAP. This cannot be stressed enough, the sooner you show other people the sooner you’ll discover things that may be wrong with the game (no matter how good you are you cannot anticipate everyone’s understanding of your baby, and that’s really important), and the more time you have to fix them, and the less backtracking and useless work you’ll do.
- Be ready to fail on any idea. Don’t hang on too hard to things that appears to be not working when tested against real people who are not you.
Spit and shine
The idea was to create a game in two weeks, then polish it up in the last and release, as a hyper-focussed exercise to learn from. So far we’ve got a few things that we still need to do on it to make it as juicy and crunchy as we want it to be before setting it out into the wild, but we’re pretty much on schedule, which is super damn exciting!
Again, you can play the game online right now! Dead Run Web Build