Monday, June 18, 2012

Same Old Story,

Tell me if this sounds familiar,

You come up with a simple idea. Something that could be easily executed. However, the more you think about and develop it, the more interesting or unique it becomes until finally, you feel as though it's an idea that shouldn't be wasted by a botched attempt. Twists and interesting concepts will only have the greatest impact the first time around, after all, so it's easy to come to the conclusion that you should set such an idea aside and pursue it in the future when you feel you have the skills to do it justice. Even if it means having dozens of concepts locked away that the world may never see.

I guess only time will tell if 10 years down the road this kind of mindset pays off or not. In the meantime though, it's making my job very difficult. Though I suppose an abundance of ideas is better than a lack thereof, so there's that.


Anyhow. Since I've decided to do something simple, focusing on execution rather than complicated gameplay mechanics, my only hurdle is coming up with a story idea that doesn't spiral out of control in it's premise and complexity. Seems to me that it's about finding a balance between story, and self contained events. For instance, consider the following example,

"At the behest of the king, a hero sets out to slay a demon lord who wishes to claim the throne."

As long as the story remains so simple, the actual plot is merely what happens along the way. Perhaps the hero comes across a village of vampires, or is captured by bandits. As a plot it's nothing more than a series of circumstances that the hero must face in order to accomplish her goal at the end. However, when considering such a story I instantly think,

"Perhaps it's revealed that the demon lord is actually that same hero, who has come back in time in order to rebel against the king, having stood by and watched as her homeland was destroyed under his corrupt rule?"

Suddenly, the purpose of the plot changes. Does the hero experience doubt? Does she feel guilty over the actions of her future self? Do her goals change along the way? This becomes the plot's purpose. It's about the development, where everything leads. The end is the outcome of an encompassing story, rather than the accomplishment of a simple goal that has been established and maintained since the beginning.

So the question is, where to strike the balance? Is it about the story as a whole, or individual scenarios tied together by a simple goal? A combination of both? I guess it all depends on how far your willing to take the story, and how important it really is to the game as a whole.

Anyhow, back to work.


Edit: And no, I don't need help with the story, or advice on creating one. This is just me thinking out loud. -_o

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Tower of Indecision

Well, it's been a while since my last post, and thus far my thought process has looked something along these lines,

That is, a mess of ideas.

I'm not going to bore you with the details of why I'm having a hard time deciding what it is that I'm going to make. There have been some technical difficulties with Game Maker when it comes to Japanese Fonts, priorities have shifted around a bit, I've realized some things about myself that in the long run will prevent me from...limiting myself in a few ways that I may have. Overall the last month has been a whole lot of thinking, drawing, and making sprites. Also, writing blog posts that don't get posted because they're too long and convoluted.

So, where does that leave me? Well, I've decided what I'm going to make. Though it may disappoint those of you who were expecting something exceptionally unique or different, it's not anything special. My goal is merely execution, and setting a high standard for any games I create in the future.

"....Uhhh, that's vague, so what are you doing exactly?"

You'll see. 

"You haven't actually decided yet, have you."

Pfffft, what? Of course I have. I know...what I'm not going to do, and that's almost the same as knowing, right?

"No, stop procrastinating. We want to see pixels fucking each other. Iris Action is taking too long." 

ALRIGHT FINE, I'm starting tomorrow. Sheesh. I'll have a precise list of everything that's going to be in the game within a week, as well as the initial player sprites. I'll also have some concept art and a run down of what I'm going for in terms of style, tone, etc.

Happy? Good.