Friday evening I attended the COGG Prototype and Play event, which had a fantastic turnout. I was able to demo “Prepare for Warp” to quite a few willing players, and the general consensus was that people loved the game. Phrases like “can’t put it down”, and “is this available now?” were heard throughout the evening. It was a good thing I brought the entire fleet of Nexus 7’s, because at many times all three of them were being played. Based on this feedback, I am very encouraged and excited to be releasing this game soon.
There were lots of other cool prototype games there, too, both in video and tabletop form. Todd Barchok was there showing his latest enhancements to his IsoTower project. YEI Technology was also there with some really cool-looking real-time motion capture and virtual reality technology, and I look forward to seeing them at the expo. Multivarious Games was also present with multiple games; the most prominently featured was their board/card game “A Bug’s Planet”. Seth Paxton, the event host, also had an early prototype of a zombie-themed board game I didn’t quite catch the title of, but looked like a lot of fun.
There were even more great games there and I would have loved to have been able to check out every one of them. Since I was flying solo and my game seemed pretty popular throughout the evening, I had to stay close to my setup and could only wander during brief lulls at my table. I still had a great time, and I hope to see the COGG do more of these types of events. It was great to see so many new faces and be able to get their perspectives and opinions on my newest game.
The Ohio Game Dev Expo is still over two months away, but I am already making preparations to “go big” at my hometown event. The trio of Nexus 7’s I referred to earlier were acquired mainly for my mobile showcase at the expo, but I am not stopping there. As opposed to my GMX 2013 display, which was put together in a very short period of time and on a very small budget, having three months to plan and budget for Ohio Game Dev Expo is making a huge difference.
As of now, I have procured everything necessary to put together a booth that I would be proud to take all the way to GDC. This includes table linens in Smiling Cat’s typical royal blue background color, and a pipe-and-drape system in the same color. Gill was very anxious to snap a photo of the new table linens when I tried them out, and it took some convincing to get her to wait for a few seconds while I set up the fleet of tablets on it for maximum effect. Once I test out the pipe-and-drape set up, I’m sure I’ll have more photos to share.
As for progress on the game itself, I can’t be more pleased. Yesterday I added a tutorial level, made a bunch of changes based off of feedback from the Prototype and Play event, and started adding the achievement system to the game. After that, there is not much more development to be done, only testing and tuning, so I seem very much on-target for my mid-October release.
By the way, if you want a cheap and powerful 7″ tablet, I strongly recommend the first-gen Nexus 7; the launch of the second-gen has made these ultra-cheap. They can be had in near-mint condition for under $100 on eBay, and not coincidentally it is one of the recommended specs for Smiling Cat’s next generation of mobile games.