Dormouse Games has done some experiments online as we learn how to develop games, and put them on the web. Here is some insight we’ve learned since Jan 1 2013.
Steam Scouts: On Track is in the Google Chrome Store! If you haven’t played yet, head over and give it a try. If you have played we would be super appreciative if you rated it.
We have plans to put the game up in multiple locations across the web. That will make it convenient for whoever wants to play the game to find it, and use it. We’re looking into Facebook and Kongregate next.
Boston Indies, as always, was a very productive trip. Even spending an hour there was worth the commute time. The first time we attended way back in January, we didn’t have a demo. But we did bring some paper prototyping, and gathered tons of great feedback. Our plan was to show off the progress with a demo of Steam Scouts: On Track at the Boston Indies meeting on 5/20/2013. Things did not go to plan. We did not get to demo the game. But we did get to see some awesome games, which show great promise.
Emily Lubanko is creating the artwork for Steam Scouts: On Track. Her work is phenomenal and we are so excited to see things come alive! Today we want to showcase her art for the game. To show you what she been hard at work on and to tease the game a bit. Let’s see some new concept art created for one of the characters in the game…
HTML 5 for rapid prototyping.
Someday Steam Scouts will be available for Android and iOS mobile devices. For now we’re working with the web. Some folks have told us to skip development with HTML 5 and go directly to mobile, mostly for monetary reasons. But big monetization is not why we’re putting the game online first (which is good because it most likely would not work that well). When developing a way is needed to go from paper prototyping to Alpha to Beta to release. HTML 5 is a great way to do that for 5 reasons.
What makes a good Paper Prototype?
Slapping down a piece of paper with your game idea drawn on it is not a sophisticated prototype, and the end result will most likely not be playable. Inspiration alone is not enough, the work of game design comes in testing and revising the initial spark of and idea. A playable prototype is the first step in that work. The choice of medium in the prototype is really critical. Don’t use paper and ink if the computer version of your game will be forgiving of mistakes. This is a mismatch between the prototype and the finished project which will give players a bad impression of your game. Part of the art of the paper prototype is matching the physical reality of the game as closely as possible to the digital version you intend.
The January Boston Indies Demo Night was a packed event. For Dormouse Games it was amazing. Although we didn’t have anything to demo, we brought some paper prototyping. We had people play the game before we code the game. Seeing people work out the puzzles and enjoy the process was very fulfilling.