Making a game is a learning process. No amount of experience or planning can eliminate all issues and setbacks. It’s just part of game development. Indie developer Jean-Baptiste de Clerfayt outlined his own puzzle design hangups in a recent update for Lancelot’s Hangover.
Having raised €10,717 on Kickstarter to bring his Monty Python-esque adventure game to life, Jean-Baptiste has kept backers updated semi-regularly. His initial plan to focus on the puzzles and global experience of Lancelot’s Hangover before polishing mechanics hit a bit of a snag recently, after the release of Terrible Toybox’s Thimbleweed Park.
“To be honest, playing Thimbleweed Park from Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick was both delightful and quite depressing,” the May 5th Kickstarter update explained.
Jean-Baptiste praised the title for raising the bar for comedy adventure games. His only complaint was that playing made him realize he’d need to fix his own puzzles. Not to worry however, far from giving up, he’s already working on a solution.
“… after finishing Thimbleweed Park (and curling up naked in my kitchen and crying all night long), I have changed quite a lot of puzzles and I feel more confident now,” he stated.
In the typical off-the-wall style we’ve come to expect, Jean-Baptiste presented the overview map for Lancelot’s Hangover. Not to worry, this (unique) overview won’t spoil the upcoming puzzles. Or it’s at least obscure enough that you wouldn’t know if it did.
This follows a previous update where Jean-Baptiste showed off the new portrait interface he’d added. Piece by piece the game seems to be taking shape.
The More You Know
For more information on puzzle design, backers were given a link to Ron Gilbert’s blog and a peek at Bertram Fiddle creator, Seb Burnett’s process.
Clearly, we all still have much to learn.