Arachnotron Development Blog #1

The second semester of production on the game has begun. As I find myself in the position of lead designer, this week will be mostly getting the other designers acquainted with the game, and getting them up to speed on the design I’ve figured out so far. With the other leads, I’ve collected the team’s ideas from our planning meeting last semester and organized them into a plan for three more levels. Especially after meeting with the other designers to discuss these plans and work out a few more details, I think the plans we have will be a great starting point.

We’ve tried to make sure each level is an interesting variation on the base experience. The first one, to be an expanded version of the level that’s already in place, will be the introduction and tutorial. We’ve decided to re-design that one last, so that we can take we learned from the other levels to make a great first impression, and a well-designed tutorial. The second level will be a train-heist of sorts, starting off in the station the player will solve a puzzle to get the train moving, and then realize the train itself is the boss they have to fight after riding the train for a little while. The third level will play with sound and lighting to create a more suspenseful experience, where the player has to get in and out of a compound based on an anthill. And the final level will be a test of the player’s mastery of the wall-climbing movement as they race to catch the vehicle the final boss is trying to escape in. Once they succeed, that vehicle will be the arena for the final fight.

Everyone seems excited to start work on the game, and I am too! This week will be a matter of adapting to my new role on the team, doing more management-related tasks in place of the gameplay programming that took up a lot of my time last semester. I think my programming help will still be of use though, so I don’t intend to abandon that entirely. I don’t yet know what exactly I’ll have as my balance of work on the game, but I’ll figure that out over the next couple of weeks.

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