To me, the longest journey was sitting through the reams of dialogue they threw at me. i didn’t even get to the interesting stuff in the alternate realm. i really like the world, though – how the richer you are, the higher up in the city you live, and the super-wealthy never set foot on solid ground their whole lives.
i never played The Journeyman games because i read a review talking about how you’d catch 80 diseases in the first one, and constantly had to monitor your food levels. Didn’t sound like fun.
i love That Game Company too!
i think “neesh” vs “nitch” is an American vs. Everyone Else thing, like the metric system.
i really want to be clear, though, that Spellirium is not an educational game – any more than Scrabble or Boggle are educational games. i’m not trying to teach anyone anything. The difference is this: an educational game TEACHES you something. Games like Spellirium, Scrabble and Boggle REQUIRE YOU TO KNOW SOMETHING in order to play them.
It’s a lot like trivia. Trivia is only educational insofar as you learn stuff you didn’t know, AFTER you fail. But to succeed at a trivia game, you already have to know a lot of the answers. If anything, Spellirium will teach you how bad you are at word games, and how much you could stand to improve your vocabulary and spelling. ;)
Thanks, Cole. Download instructions are described in the beginning of the book.
Yeah – i’ve got a bit of a struggle here, because i’m inclined to position this one as “the game you never knew you wanted.” i might have to turn that around and attune its positioning more to an existing need. One thing Spellirium has going for it is a genuinely good story. There’s a lot of moaning about how weak game stories are, so we could fill that void.
The way we’re doing it is that every challenge is going to leave behind something … some reminder. At one point, you defeat a little spider, and it leaves a splat on the ground. If you click on that splat, Todd says “Remember when i battled that ferocious spider? …” and we do a Wayne’s World-style flashback screen effect. Then you replay the challenge and try to get a better star rating.
Certain gates in the game will require you to have earned x stars.
Not a bad suggestion, but the (perhaps?) tricky thing off the top is figuring out the default difficulty level. i’ve heard it’s bad form to have the player choose Easy/Medium/Hard before they even know what the game’s about, so i’d have to make a judgement call very early based on the player’s performance. i’d also have to make a judgement call (or do significant testing) to determine that making synonyms for “scissors” is easier than making synonyms for “cut”.
The sheep challenge is just one example of a “word quality” challenge, where the solution to the puzzle hinges around the words you spell. There are also word length, word direction, and word colour challenges, to name a few.
In this case, you definitely have to understand the meanings of the words you spell. The sheep challenge requires you to come up with five synonyms for “cut”.
The shoe, she fits.
Hey, Paul. Looks like you just have an extra } at the bottom of the Change function. Please also note that in AS3, functions/methods should not begin with a capital letter … that’s a convention they use in C# and certain other languages, but not AS3. It won’t break your code – it’s just a “best practices” thing.
Weird. It works for me?
Thanks, piedma! It’s tough to keep the site functional … things seem to magically break without us even touching them. We’re due for a patch job in the spring.
You’ll need a Mac for the very final step (outlined in Part 6 – coming soon), where you actually upload your file to the iTunes App Store. But that element is SO brief, that you can very easily borrow a friend’s computer for an hour (tops) to complete that step.
Thanks, Delfeld. We mention those facts later on in part 5.
It’s working. Just click.
A few dads reached out to me to tell me about the games they made with their kids. But not many. And not all of the kids were girls. And perhaps most importantly, none of the games were necessarily playable and enjoyable. These differences give Ponycorns a distinct edge that make it worth talking about.
You need a weapon from the other side of the compound.
Thanks! Which door? :)
page 4 is fixed :P
Let me clear a few things up:
- “Gate keepers” is usually a term reserved for portal or platform owners (Big Fish, Facebook, Apple, etc).
- “Their” is the possessive form of “they”, not “there”.
- When you split up two independent clauses with a comma, it’s called a comma splice, and it’s ugly. Try using a period to start a new sentence or, if the sentences are related, you can use a semi-colon.
- i assume you work in the games industry, not the gaming industry – unless you work in casinos or build slot machines?
- i also work in the games industry. Not sure what you meant to imply?
– “Then” is temporal. “Than” is comparative. Each time you used “then”, you meant “than”.
In sum: don’t be uppity, you little pimple. Creighton can dish it out.
It’s true. Tell your friends.
LinkedIn? Really? i haven’t had much use for it … but then, i’m not an active job-seeker.
i totally agree with networking … i’d even suggest that in-person networking is FAR more important than online networking. i see a lot of students and grads who attend our local IGDA chapter hoping to network with someone who will give them a job, but what i don’t see is people agreeing to collaborate with each other to create something. There are lots of low-status people trying to meet high-status people, but i think low-status people would be well-served to meet other low-status people to see what they can accomplish.
i crafted a Twitter assignment for some of my students. They had to create an account, follow 10 different types of people, and tweet in 5 different ways. It was intended to help them get the most out of the service as job-seekers and networkers. i’m a big believer in Twitter.
(remember, too, that these guys have magazines to sell … and lumping a bunch of obvious choices in with a 5-year-old girl on the cover might help them move a few more copies … :)
Maybe, until you consider the ramifications of a 5-year-old girl making a video game.
First, there’s the “women in video games” angle. The video game industry is woefully under-represented by anything but jocular white males between 18 and 30, and the games show it. Cassie is an inspiration for burgeoning female game devs … many have told me so themselves.
Then there’s the generational angle. We haven’t really seen video game development pass through generations from parents to children because the medium is so new, but we have seen generations of talent in other, more venerable media like film (Judy Garland -> Liza Minnelli, Kirk Douglas -> Michael Douglas, Martin Sheen -> Charlie Sheen & Emilio Estevez, etc). i think it’s just dawning on many of us that our talent in this industry can carry over to our kids. Ponycorns is a symbol of that.
There’s the “kids and computers” angle. i’ve started teaching game development to grade three students because i was dismayed to find that computer education in elementary schools hasn’t change one lick since i taught it fifteen years ago. i think a lot of people were inspired to see someone so young being so involved, because elementary school-aged kids are often overlooked in the area of tech education (we focus all our attention on high school students, and by then i think there’s a very big missed opportunity). This ties into the various “game-based learning” initiatives. Ponycorns is a success story that will help that movement along.
Finally, there’s the “girls and math” angle. There are a lot of articles and studies floating describing how girls are not being allowed to play, and are being subtly excluded from or turned off STEM stuff (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Of course, the highest-paying jobs in the world are predicated on these areas of study. The story of a little girl being given such a world-renowned head start in STEM is a coup for people who want to shatter the glass ceiling and see wage equality for women in the next generations.
The story of Cassie and her Ponycorns game, and what it all represents, earned her a well-deserved place on Backbone’s list.