Mini GolfTue, Jul 14, 2015
This was a busy month between work and my personal life, and halfway through the month I lost the drive to release a finished product. Nonetheless, I learned a lot and resolved to a commitment for what I’m building next.
But first the game.
Black & White. The entire game is greyscale. I wanted to try and make something with minimal color that was also a game, but transparency made certain things a whole lot simpler. With only white and black, differentiating a ball from a hole is pretty tough.
Minimal interaction. The entire game is drag and release; that’s it.
I thought it would be interesting to focus on time in a mini-golf game rather than strokes, but in the end I realized how large and complex most mini-golf games actually are. I drew up three concept levels, but in the end I knew it just wouldn’t be that fun without either complex levels or changing level interactions that other mini-golf games all have.
It takes significant work to make mini-golf engaging; that was just out of scope.
So this was a failure?
Kind of. While I failed to publish anything this month, I also discovered an incredible opportunity and a project I think would be a truly fun, popular game on iOS were it to exist.
It’s hard to run full-speed toward an endpoint you don’t truly believe in, but there’s something that should exist in the world that doesn’t.
So what’s next?
A game. But it’s a quite a bit bigger than anything I’ve done. Why’s that? It needs…
- Real-time multiplayer. Latency is paramount, and updates need to be robust and at least seem fair if the player is on a weak connection.
- Player customization of characters. This is half the fun. This also means I need a way to store and update user data.
But how can you make this in a month?
I probably can’t. But I’ll learn a lot taking on this larger project, and I may even make something others enjoy playing at the end. But it’s going to take time. This is the perfect opportunity for me to go Swift-only and just bite that bullet while it’s still optional.
And while I tend to loathe node when it’s shoehorned into serving the function of Rails, poorly, it actually seems like a solid candidate for a back-end here.
Servers and real-time and multiplayer, oh my! Many years ago I broke ground on an app that would span years and actually help people. I want to build something significant again. Maybe this is that, or maybe it isn’t, but I’ll know more in a month.