Week 3: A lot of thinking and redesign

Uncertainty and Scope Creep

During these few days, I had done a lot of thinking. When developing the game, I realized I was straying away from my initial design of the game. At first, I wanted to make a party board game with Fantasy RPG elements in it, the gameplay should be fun, light-hearted and easy to pickup. However, I realized I was making the game more and more complex, implementing more and more systems, which adds much more complexity to the game. The game was shifting towards a more competitive gameplay, which is the opposite of what I want to achieve. Not only that, I almost fell to scope creep and thinking to design many unnecessary features for the game, like inventory systems, a character development system etc. I was very uncertain of how the game should be developed.

After some thinking, I have decided on making the game to be more of my liking. I will implement necessary systems to the game, which might make the gameplay more complex and harder to pick up. However, I will introduce more uncertainty elements to the game and try to make the gameplay less competitive and more causal. For example, in Smash Bros, it uses stage hazards and items to bring more uncertainty and chaos to casual gameplay, which generally makes winning less skill based, thus less competitive. I want to achieve something similar with my game.

To sum up,

  • Implement features that are necessary, and don't dig too deep.
  • Make the game more causal by introducing uncertainty and chaos through items, random events, randomized outcomes.

Scope Creep: Adding Equipment to Minions

Originally, because of scope creep, I was thinking of designing an entire inventory system for managing different equipments. Luckily I realized this soon enough and now when players get an equipment, they need to immediately equip it to the minion, which doesn't really make the gameplay worse, and maybe introduces another form of resource management.

Remaking the Combat System

Since this is the first time making a complete networked multiplayer game, I finally stumbled upon something that I have design totally wrong. The original design of the combat system was unnecessarily complicated, there were many network calls that need to be done. After asking for some help, I realized the whole thing doesn't need to be this complicated... 

The new implementation will be much more simple, and hopefully I can finish it up quickly and work on other aspects of the game.

Although not much actual progress was done, many concepts were cleared and the direction of the game is more clear to me now.

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