30 Change of pace

I am switching from consultancy job because of an opportunity that opened up.

At the same time, I have prepared for this so Find the Gnome is in a good place now to work part time on it.

Blast from the past

This is me, doing a vlog in 2018 on my first Find the Gnome game (on my old channel). Always nice to see old stuff, think about the progress I have made since then and the learnings I have had.

A new contracted job

I have a new contracted job starting this week at Topicus in the Netherlands. I planned for this, to keep the money coming in so I can stay developing my games. I will keep working on Find the Gnome part time.

Because I new this new job was coming, I have emphasized certain tasks on the rework on Find the Gnome. This was what I was doing most of the time in the past 4 weeks.

Find the Gnome is now in a good place where the most difficult parts have been sorted out. Most of the mechanics are sorted out, working technically and balanced in the gameplay. I have practiced my asset pipe so I know can easily put out more content, while at the same time work on my other job.

Back to that job. I am looking forward to it. It is close by (a 30 min drive), so I will be partly working on site. I will be enjoying the live presence of colleague’s again. That on itself is a reason for me to enjoy this new opportunity!

Find the Gnome

So, where is Find the Gnome currently at?

It is currently OK-ish. You can find and catch gnomes, unlock stuff in the level, have required and optional objectives. Sound and music is still very early with being worked on, and same for the HUD/UI.

The gameplay is fun but short. It is in dire need of more levels and more variation. But that was exactly where I wanted the game to be: polished gameplay, ready to add more content.

To give you an idea what I currently have:

  • 2 levels: 1 tutorial level, 1 ‘normal’ level
  • These levels feature:
    • 3 different hiding place models
    • 2 additional interactive models
    • 6 non interactive environment prop models
    • 3 ground tile models (excluding the variations)
    • the ‘normal’ level has 10 gnomes to find, 3 Required and 1 optional objectives
    • 4 different interaction sounds (excluding the variations)
  • 1 type of gnome

In addition, I already have 8 additional environment prop models (excluding the variations). I have 2 additional ground tile models (excluding the variations). I have 1 additional level fully prototyped but not with final models. I am working on 1 additional distinct gnome type behavior.

If I look at competitors, it is important to have object variation. They don’t have that much interaction variation. I do have a lot of variation for my starting scenes objects already, but I personally do like it to be even more, to add replay-ability to earlier scenes. And I definitely want to have more interaction variation, to get more out of each level.

And I have a good functioning CI/CD pipe, but its delivering up to test currently. I am working on adding automatic deployment to Steam. I hoped to fix this also in the past weeks but that task was a bit more difficult than anticipated. When this is ready, I will probably be releasing another video on this subject (CI/CD with Unity and Azure DevOps).

I think Find the Gnome is in a good place currently. Still needs a minimum of 6 weeks of part time work to get it up to quality for a beta release on Steam. But that was expected.

Published by Erik_de_Roos

Erik de Roos is a Freelance software developer.

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