Warning – this post may contain unreleased details about our new game. In our last post we explained the importance of the Denki Difference. Today, we’re going to show how we practice what we preach by looking at how we’ve applied the Denki Difference to “Rapid Defence Force” (<- spoiler 1, title of our game).
The idea of working on a strategy game, (spoiler 2), is something we wanted to do for quite some time. Towards the end of Christmas, after we wrapped up development on Denki Blocks, we felt it made perfect sense to focus our attention on a strategy based game. In terms of ideas we had plenty, but then we threw war into the mix and our minds boggled at the endless possibilities! So with plenty of enthusiasm and excitement, we decided to march down this path and that brings us nicely onto the first stage of The Way: Preparation.
(1) The Preparation Stage
For Gaz, the preparation stage is about “cherry picking the moments that resonate”. It’s where we refine our ideas as a team and decide which one to take forward. It all comes down to discovering the key things that we are trying to do and addressing any fundamental qualities that we are trying to elevate. So in the case of Rapid Defence Force, we thought about the types of things would expect to see in a war game (soldiers, guns, grenades, bazookas, tanks) and the sounds we would expect to hear. Framing is also important. The game is being framed as a war game so the challenge is to find either the right words (i.e. “Armchair General”) or statements to encapsulate what you are trying to do or a problem you are trying to solve. For Colin, the problem happens to be a strong desire to conquer worlds in his coffee break (yes that’s what Colin is plotting and planning, you’ve been warned!) – “I love strategy games but I don’t have the days to dedicate to them. I would really like to get the feeling that I got from playing a good strategy game but I want it in 10 minutes”.
Think about who you’re making the game for and find the hallmarks of what it is you’re trying to make. You’re looking for things that generate a feeling e.g. radio chatter, debris from explosions and then weighing them up in terms of importance to determine how much needs to be fed into the game. It all comes down to feel and you try to suck in as much as you can by using examples either from film, story or words and creating mood boards. How you do these mood boards is entirely up to you. They can either be packaged up as a series of stills spliced up with music or as youtube videos or as documents (boring, nobody reads these!) or as interpretive dance. We’ve yet to find a technique that we like but if you have any suggestions or examples we would love to see them!
Now to convince Gaz about the merits of interpretive dance…