One of my favorite trends in video game development is how increasingly open its become. It used to be that game creation was (to players, at least) an unknowable and arcane process that you could only catch glimpses of in magazines or websites.
These days you can find all sorts of examples of refreshingly open development – there’s Dwarf Fortress’ extensive roadmap and dev logs, Subnautica went and made their whole Trello board public, and even big companies like Fortnite are letting everyone see progress on feedback and suggestions.
I’ve been creating developer diaries and public demos since I started Village Monsters, but I wanted to do even more – I wanted to be as transparent and candid and naked as possible.
So I decided to do just that. Not the naked part, I’m still mostly clothed.
Village Monsters development is open to the public
You can now follow every aspect of Village Monster’s development in real time: everything I use to plan and catalog my work is now public.
Want to see the progress on all the goals and features? Done. Looking for timelines and dates for releases, including future updates? Nothing to it. Want to track individual tasks I’m working on day-to-day so you can yell at me for being lazy? I got you.
You can also access all these and more from the Open Game Dev landing page.
There are certainly risks to this approach. You’ll be able to see my bad days, my slow days, and my days in which I only do one thing just to undo it the next morning. If you’re used to the more polished approaches by other studios you may be put off by the warts that exist working on an unfinished game.
However, the benefits of fostering an involved and curious community far outweigh these potential problems. If you know what I’m working on then you can tell me if you’re looking forward to it, or if you think it’s a mistake, or if you’d do something differently.
Villager Monsters is a game about community, and I want that reflected in the player base that forms around it.
Not that I’m calling players monsters. You guys are all great, and I’m sure you’ll never call me bad names in a Steam review or yell at me on Twitter.