I’m slowly starting to think about game ideas again. My baby is less than 3 months old, so this is probably insane. However, *fingers crossed* she sleeps really well (unlike our first child), and it almost seems like I might start to have some time to work on games again. So I’ve been thinking about game ideas.
As I’d mentioned in an earlier post, I realize that I need to attempt something that’s reasonably small in scope. I had thought that I should forget about platformers for a while, and focus on simpler projects like small puzzle games. But then I realized something last night. I spent about 9 months working on Neil Rajah, and the bulk of that was essentially spent on building a platformer engine. Right now, I could probably create a generic platformer game with less effort than it would take me to create a puzzle game of any kind. So that’s got me thinking about platformers again.
Of course, it will have to be limited in scope. There are a few things I tried with Neil Rajah that didn’t really pay off. Online stores, virtual currency, leaderboards. Which isn’t to say those won’t work with a platformer – I’ve seen it done very well, but it has to be designed in from the start. And that takes some fairly careful balancing of making it frustrating enough to make the player want to pay to get ahead, but not so frustrating that they give up and walk away.
It’s also pretty clear that I should try to think of something different, whatever that means. I know my games aren’t going to stand out based on their level of polish and style So I need to think of something else that will help it stand out from the crowd. I’ll probably do a traditional platformer in the sense of giving the user movement controls. Bus Jumper and Neil Rajah were both auto-running games, and I want to do something else.
I had one silly idea of making the player have hiccups – make the character randomly jump around, while the player controls left/right movement and shooting. Sounds kinda lame, or maybe it could work with the right kind of level design, especially if I make the levels silly and funny too. Don’t know. If you have any ideas along these lines, platformers with something new or different, please share them so I can steal your ideas