Restless Ground (working title) is a match-3 game. Yes, I know. Match-3 games have been done to death even before they were done to death with Bejeweled and Candy Crush etc. The core gameplay of the genre has barely been improved on since it first appeared in 1994. But hear me out:
I wanted create an actiony-RPG but to limit the number of inputs.
I love the idea of a stats-heavy RPG, but I feel like a lot of modern RPGs fall short by not limiting players enough. On the other hand, I didn’t want to create something with a single input (like Mario Dash). In this game, you always know what you can do — move some tiles, move your character or use a skill. That may not be a lot of interaction, but it should be fun.
I wanted to start with something that people already found fun (and people apparently find match-3 games fun)
I have big ideas about games that I’d like to make. Grand narratives. Monstrous experiments. This isn’t one of them. I know that people like match-3 games. I know that people like RPGs. I’m not creating an art game. I’m learning how to MAKE a game.
I wanted to take a common game element and take it in a “new” direction.
If I can combine the elements in a slightly novel way, I feel like I can create something that 1) isn’t totally alien to new players and 2) provides a framework for me to finish a game, finally.
So this isn’t my dream game?
No. This is a game that I think that I could finish, by myself, in a year or so. I think it’s a reasonably FUN game, and I’m really enjoying the process of making it. But no, it isn’t my dream game. I might take on a more ambitious project after this, but I don’t feel comfortable leading a collaboration until I have had a chance to create something myself.
In essence, I made this because I thought it might be kind of easy.
Okay, it’s definitely not easy. But it’s been manageable. I have gone from knowing only a little bit about Unity (from trying to make a very unfun AI-based Sims-type game)… to being pretty proficient while making a much simpler game. I’ve learned about asset management and refactoring. It’s not been easy, but every challenge has been a great chance to learn something new. I’ll cover those in future devlogs.