I kinda fell out with my four letter word game. Very shortly after I posted about it. I think we’re reconciled now, though.
I actually stopped working on this game very shortly after that blog post. It started out as a cool concept I wanted to make playable – challenging design wise, but something that I thought had the potential to be really special. I was so, so into the idea, but then I made the stupid mistake of entering it in the IGF.
The pressure distorted the game for me. Trying to get something coherent in time for the deadline meant I started making bad decisions, and ended up with – well, something pretty traditional. A linear adventure game, with a progression of puzzles and a world that gradually opens up. Another fucking videogame. Basically exactly what I was trying to avoid. I hated it, and didn’t touch the game again until yesterday.
A couple of things happened to rekindle my interest in the project this week. The main one is that I was working on a throwaway side game, and suddenly realised that it basically was Four Letter Word. Kinda like I’d been subconsciously thinking about it all along.
Tomorrow I’m gonna start working on At a Distance again, polishing up some minor details for Wednesday’s launch. After that, I think I’ll focus on this for a while. Next year I’m planning to make a dramatic change to the way I work, so it’s good for me to get this sorta thing out of my system while I can.
(yes, that’s an actual screenshot from the game)