GameDev News for 5 March 2021



Hello, everyone! Any roguelike fans in the audience? Because the 7DRL Challenge 2021 starts tomorrow, and something worth playing always comes out of it.

Apart from that, we have fewer news today, so I added a bit more commentary than is usual as of late:

  • First, we learn about Rings of Power, a most unusual RPG from thirty years ago, that failed, sadly enough, not due to its own failings but (where have we heard this before?) for being sabotaged by the publisher. Why people still seek one out in 2021 is beyond me. Also food for thought as to ways to make our games different, if only to shake people out of their routine. They'll remember it afterwards, and that's what matters.
  • Then, Aaron A. Reed's 50 Years of Text Games series just reached 1979, and with it The Cave of Time: the first modern gamebook, that started the Choose Your Own Adventure series and with it a hugely popular genre that was unsurpassed for the next fifteen years. How well I remember sitting on a train with a passage diagram like that, trying to make my own, because it was something I could imagine myself creating, long before I could code worth a damn, or at all. Likely before I could hope to own a computer. And that's just one of the things that make the medium so profoundly important.
  • Finally, Three weeks of Bonesweeper development is one developer's account of battling depression and burnout while continuing to make games. Short version: something's got to give. But also, tap into your other interests, and make something that feels fun to make. No, seriously. These days, pressure is literally killing us. From work. From money issues. From the ongoing world crisis. And we need to reclaim our lives.

Last but not least, an interesting thread on the forums asks about Class based RPG's with terrible choices of classes, and it brings up some interesting issues, such as virtually everyone wanting to play a Force user in Star Wars games, that I wrote about before. Not so much in the way of solutions.

But that would require an extended discussion. Maybe next time. Until then, have fun, and see you!


Tags: roguelike, rpg, interactive fiction, business, game design