Thursday, July 23, 2009

What Is App-a-Day?

I've seen some people and some reviewers who I don't believe really grasp what exactly App-a-Day is intended to be. I've read reviews where the games were treated like full productions, and some individuals who don't seem to get why I didn't really add the polish the games deserve. I'd like to try and explain that.

As a video game designer, I come up with a massive amount of game ideas. Some are pretty crappy, some are so massive a team of hundreds would be needed to make it, and some just walk that line of "it just might work!". In the game development industry, for big funded companies, there is a rule when it comes to testing out a new game idea - you get a month. If your team is unable to produce a fun prototype in 30 days, then the game is typically considered too big / too complex of a project to be financially manageable, and you move on to something else. App-a-Day is sort of like this, only I give myself 1 day to do the entire polished-prototype phase rather than 30. It is an incredibly vigorous cycle with a lot of me staring at a blank monitor and asking myself, "What the hell kind of game can I make with a bottle cap??".

App-a-Day was not started for me to make 30 blockbuster, AAA video games that will be remembered for all time. However, it was created for me to stretch my legs a bit as a designer. I don't have project managers breathing down my neck. I don't have a budget I have to manage along with 15 employees who I have to oversee and make sure they get their work done correctly and on time. All I have to worry about is taking an idea - be it fun, questionable or flat out quirky - and turn it into a playable game. Not a finished game, and by no means polished - but a game that shows off my concept, and might even show off a glimmer of something larger.

I have always planned to do something more with App-a-Day when it is finished. Because when I am done, I will have created and published 30 playable, polished, finished prototypes. All 30 of these will be in the hands of people around the world, and I can ask the public, "What did you like? What did you not like? What do you want to see more of?".

Actually, that sounds like a good idea... I should ask the public. In fact, I think there may even be a contest out of this. A contest where you, the people, vote on your favorite App-a-Day game, and the winner gets turned into a very polished, big title, where I place a team of developers on its development, and the game is produced as a full and complete title. And I think whenever you enter to this competition, it will also enter you to win a prize. Maybe an iPhone, maybe an iPod Touch. Maybe an Xbox 360... heck, maybe I'll give away all 3!

So let's hear from you. 7 App-a-Day games are released, and my crazy contract work is slowing down, allowing me to begin to dive back in. What do you, the people want to see?

What would you like to see from a competition?

What prizes do you want?

What themes do you want to see in upcoming App-a-Day games?

I'm a video game designer by trade, and it is what I love. By nature, I am an entertainer, and I wish to entertain you. Tell me how you want to be entertained - and I shall fulfill!

1 comment:

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