Planning Out Beta 1

It’s a new year. People are coming up with (and perhaps already abandoning) new years resolutions, so what better time to talk about what Q1 of 2018 looks like for Village Monsters? Earlier this week the last Alpha demo was released into the wild. In contrast to the Pre-Alpha demos before it, the Alpha series has been the first time the game has started to look, feel, and smell like an actual, real-life video game. So what does Beta look like? Well, it’s a pretty big deal! There are just 2 more major releases between now and release, so it’s important to really nail both of them. By the time Beta releases, Village Monsters should undeniably be a video game that can be played for several hours. Today I’m just going to be talking about the goals for the first 3 months of the year, all of which culminate into the first Beta release – Beta 1! A Game Loop There’s no beating around the bush here – Village Monsters lacks a traditional game loop. That’s a problem. Some of this is by design. After all, my primary goal is to create a faff about simulator, and that means a game in which you have freedom to interact with the game as much or as little as you please. But it lacks connective tissues between it’s many systems and activities. There’s really no “main thread”, and as a result things feel disjointed; the whole experience lacks cohesion. Worse, there’s very little motivation to go and explore things on your own. You can catch critters, but why would you? You can head down to the lake, but why would you? You can talk with villagers, but why would you? Village Monsters needs an economy. It needs routines. It needs motivations to…

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