I’m finally back from LA! I’m so exhausted I can barely stand. Indiecade was, once again, an amazing festival and conference. I didn’t win any awards with At a Distance, but I don’t care; Indiecade is something special for me, and I was incredibly proud to be a finalist at it again this year.
I was hoping, after this, that I could lock down the basic design of At a Distance and start thinking about how I’m going to release it more publically. Showing the game at Indiecade demonstrated that it’s not yet ready for that, though.
My biggest issue with the game is that it’s still kind of a “gamer’s game” (as a fellow designer described it). Indiecade is different in an important way from, say, the Eurogamer Expo – in that it’s open to the public. And seeing the game being played by people who, for example, weren’t able to jump in first person, was a bit of a shock – it was kind of depressing to see people unable to put any of the game’s concepts together, because they were still struggling with things I take for granted. I don’t want people to have that experience with the game.
Most of the time that didn’t happen, though. In fact, a few people at the festival had an absolutely perfect experience with the game, the sort of experience I wish everyone who played it was lucky enough to have – shared moments of realisation, an open discussion about the systems in the game and how they could experiment with it – when it works, it makes it all worthwhile.
There are a few more events this year I’m hoping to showcase the game at, which I’ll have more details about soon. Oh! And I meant to post this earlier, but Phill Cameron of Gamasutra talked to me at the Eurogamer Expo about the game. His write up is relatively spoiler free, so it’s definitely worth a read if you want to know a bit more about it.