As we announced in the previous episode of the game development show, with the new year and episode 27 (= week 27), we’ve entered the second half of the season for Project Spaghetti, which means we’re shifting from laying the game’s foundations to brushing it up.
Started half a year ago on July 4th, Project Spaghetti has come a long way from an empty Game Maker project, and while there are still features left in the task list we could add, we want to brush up what we have, then decide based on the amount of time left whether we can tackle those “reach” features or not. (Fearon G’s suggestion for a challenge mode is definitely at the top of that list!)
Like any creative work, there are always things that can be added, but a game only starts to shine for players other than the creator when it gets that coat of polish. At the moment, we couldn’t hand the controls off to someone and expect them to enjoy the game (not much anyway). That’s because it’s missing all of the little things that make a game experience feel complete, things like menus, music, proper graphics, proper animation, hints, game tuning, and of course bug fixes.
The act of creation is always going to be more exciting than the act of editing, which is why a lot of creators prefer to focus on creation, leaving a trail of half-finished works. But there’s a lot that can only be learned through the final editing process. Every Saturday morning (here in Japan), we start the episode with a promise: to show everything that goes into making a game from concept to completion, so completing the game is half of that promise, and in some ways, the more important half because getting things done is much more difficult than getting things started. Getting from 99 to 100 is as difficult as going from 1 to 99. It’s also painful. When a project starts, the possibilities are endless, difficult decisions can be put off for later, and the mind races with new ideas, but when a project ends, the possibilities are limited by time, difficult decisions have to be made, and the mind has to hold back on new or better ideas to keep the project scope under control and prevent feature creep.
Our goal is to get the game experience packaged, polished, and ready to play by the end of June. Whether we can squeeze brushed-up, non-PC versions in by that time will depend on the schedule, but ideally we would have it working on whatever platforms we plan to put the game on.
Thank you for watching the show, we hope you enjoy the second half of Project Spaghetti’s season!