What’s in a Score?

In games, a score is an abstract measurement of success. Some games – like Pinball – are about accumulating as high a score as possible, other games – such as golf – are about scoring as little as possible. Above the Fold is a newspaper simulation game, but at its core it’s still a game about getting points.

As you build and manage your newspaper. The score is a measure of how good you are at doing that. While the points themselves have a limited effect in the game, the elements that generate the points are all major features. The points earned are more than just luck; they reflect the player’s skill as shown below. Continue reading “What’s in a Score?”

Above the Fold is in Alpha, Coming to Steam

Above the Fold is a video game where you play the editor-in-chief of a newspaper. Back in spring, I introduced this new project to the world and now the game has just entered alpha, which means that most of the basic gameplay features are in, or at least planned out.

The game lets you build a newspaper from the ground up, hiring reporters, assigning them stories, picking up advertisements and shaping your content to cater to specific demographics. Along the way you have to make decisions based on both random and historic events, your reporters will get their own ideas, accidents will happen. Mistakes are made. Fun is had by all (or at least the person playing the game, one would hope).

Build a profit, invest in upgrading everything from your access to sources, to setting up your own email server – but do so wisely. Each upgrade comes with its own advantage, but spend too much, too fast, and you might run into trouble come pay day.

While the game was still in pre-alpha, I made this little teaser …

Continue reading “Above the Fold is in Alpha, Coming to Steam”

Your Indie Game Will Fail

The title of this post is true for most indie game developers out there, at least if you measure success in terms of profit. There are other ways an indie game can be a success but I’ll get to them in a bit.

In today’s video game marketplace competition is tough. It’s easier than ever to make, publish and distribute new games, but with that, it gets increasingly difficult to get noticed, attract an audience and make money. This is true for all games, but small indies typically invest their own money in everything from buying assets in the Unity marketplace to renting booth space at PAX, making them more vulnerable to the impact of financial failure. Continue reading “Your Indie Game Will Fail”