26 Feb 2020
I received some great help from my colleagues on the Creative Bridges course this week. We were challenged to come up with an experiment to test an assumption as cheaply as possible. We formulated the assumption as “We believe that players whose avatars have the same personality as them will be more engaged with the story.” To test this assumption I would ask candidates to take a personality test and send me the results. I would then write a story where the protagonist has that personality and one where the protagonist has a very different personality and then ask the candidate to rate the stories.
However, I’m not convinced this is worth pursuing. The last part of this assumption (“will be more engaged with the story”) was, if I remember correctly, something that I came up with on the spot. But it’s not what the game is about. It should be “will learn more about themselves.” And that’s a really difficult thing to answer. I will have another brainstorm on what is important and unknown that I can test cheaply in the coming week.
I’ve finished the first pass at the stockpiles; you can create stockpiles, name them and edit the types of items contained in them. It’s disheartening to be working on a task and seeing lots of small things that annoy me. Things that need to be refactored. Questions about performance that I can’t really answer without bench-marking.
Stockpiles are another thing that provide jobs to agents. An agent’s Needs provide jobs and there is the mining and building jobs. When scripts were added I needed a Move-To job and ended up hacking that on top of the mining and building jobs. Stockpiles have a number of other properties that don’t make sense for other jobs so they are part of the job-providing system but also exist separately. I expect I’ll do a bigger refactor when I add prioritisation between job-types.
I had an excellent chat with a tutor on the Creative Bridges course, Danae Shell. I now have a concrete goal of getting a mailing list of 1500 people for the release of the first vertical slice in September. I’ve not managed to get any customer interviews so I’ll be making two short questionnaires and posting them on Twitter and Reddit in the coming week.
I was out looking for a fantasy genre writer on Tuesday evening. I ended up pitching my game to Charles Stross without realising who he was. Afterward, at GameDevEd, I drank one pint over my limit, got a play-testing session in and discussed bringing on an intern to do sound and music.
Release 0.8 is now available for $3 patrons on itch.io. Release notes:
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