Tuesday 9 May 2017

Weekly Development Progress Report, 08/05/17

So, Zombie Cannon Attack! is very nearly finished and I'm into the final testing, polishing and balancing stage of development. I find motivating myself during this stage a bit tougher and that's reflected a little in terms of hours last week which were still a little below average, although they were higher than I've managed for nearly a month and once again I got plenty done.

You won't believe what happened to the to-do list!

I added a music track for the title screen. I really love the track I've found, it's perfect for the type of game I'm making. I finished and tested the save system, it's only a local save to your browser but that's enough for a game of this size. I also added a simple credits screen and finished the tutorial (although I have a little more testing to do on this), added a few visual and sound effects to emphasize power-ups and added a proper results screen. That was pretty much my entire to-do list from last week. I spent the rest of the week adding small graphical touches and adjusting the volume on the sound effects as they were a little overwhelming when a lot was happening.

Now with added social media/website links and a slightly higher version number!
User-testing Usually Useful

I've also done some limited user testing, although I haven't really got anything useful from the testers yet I still find it helps me focus on areas that need improvement. There's something about knowing other people are going to start seeing my game in action that raises the standards I set for myself and makes me more focused on the user experience, especially the early game. One conclusion I've come to is that the game was starting off a little too slowly. A common feature of endless runner type games is an upgrade shop that helps the player get further, I want the player to feel they're making constant progress but the first few runs weren't feeling particularly rewarding. The runs are pretty short but even so players have limited patience and goodwill, I don't want to burn through that limited supply before the player starts feeling rewarded. I've already made a few small changes to try and fix this, but I need to be careful not to unbalance the later game which is working fine.

Once I'm happy with the game I plan to talk to potential partners about licenses and get the game ready for an Android release while incorporating feedback. If you would like to test the game I'm looking to add a few more testers, and if you give me useful feedback I'll be happy to add your name to the credits section. Contact me via Twitter or email me (rubble.game.studio@gmail.com).

Thanks for reading. All the best 😃

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