Posts tagged: games
So the project is done. The proposal is handed in. Nothing much left to do except close-up shop here. So did I do what I set out to do? Kind of. Though Fives evolved and changed as we went along I think that I stayed true to my ultimate vision of making a game for football fans. A game that I would genuinely want to play. I think that’s always a good thing whether designing a game or writing a script - make sure you’d enjoy it because at least then one person will!
So what about me and games? Much of this blog’s early focus was on my relationship with video games and how that had changed as both they and I did. Before the start of this course I was at a point where I didn’t own a games console and only played games in a social setting. That hasn’t really changed. In terms of playing games on the console or PC/Mac there hasn’t been a moment where I’ve thought that there was something I absolutely had to seek out and play. Though I have to say I was very impressed with some of the free online games available (Go and play Mini Golf now!). I think I still prefer a good (e)book next to the virtual fire.
What did excite me was some of the other stuff we looked at. How companies like Distrify and Zappar are pushing technology forward and integrating it with our environment. This tech is mostly being used to sell stuff (Have to say that one of my favourite parts of Fives was coming up with a marketing strategy with this stuff in mind) but I think it’s clear that sooner or later it’s going to do much more than that and become part of our every day lives. Ultimately, anything that makes life more like Back to the Future Part 2 is OK in my book.
In conclusion, I had fun (With the exception of Pitch Day. That was dreadful. Seriously.) I can’t see this being a path I go down professionally (I’ve seen the Social Network. I know the temptation of Justin Timberlake) but I’m glad I’ve kind of touched base with where we’re at. I’m not sure how directly it’s going to influence my writing but with my desire to work in the mainstream of film and television it’d be nice if one day it did come up and I could vaguely know what I’m talking about.
Thank you for reading. I’ll still be tweeting away @steveolawrence and my main blog lives on here. I actually have less followers there than I do here so it’d be swell if you haven’t had enough of me and want to jump on over.
Thank you Mario! But our princess is in another castle!
One thing we’ve barely even scratched the surface of in class is how much it would cost to develop a game/app/interactive book. The conclusion to this article seems to suggest that the cost for a decent app with a marketing budget would be… lots of Euros. I’m no good with exchange rates but I’m under the impression lots of Euros is approximately the same as lots of pounds.
I’m not going to break down Fives section by section but it’s certainly an ambitious project and would tend toward the more expensive side especially when the cost of launching the game in the already crowded football market is taken into account.
Because I’m seeking out a more casual game playing crowd it would live or die by the smoothness and simplicity of the experience out the blocks. The longer time in development would increase the costs but revenue is generated in the back end so the important thing with Fives would be getting people hooked and coming back. If the game isn’t good then this won’t happen.
So only a couple more days before this blog is locked down. If I can calm my Avengers excitement down enough I’m planning on doing a recap / retrospective kind of thing before Thursday. Although with the Interactive module having such a focus on looking forward I feel maybe I shouldn’t be looking back. Does that make sense? My mind is kind of fried as I put the finishing touches to my Project Proposal. Everything I wanted to say on pitch day (even typing that sent a shiver down my spine) but didn’t have time.
At the moment I probably have too much stuff. Just need to figure out exactly what is necessary to communicate the essence of the project (After pitch day (there it goes again) I’ve really tried to focus on the gameplay and mechanic of the thing) and what maybe isn’t so important. Maybe I can lump some of the other stuff on here? I’ll see what I can come up with.
Fascinating article on the growing Arab Video Game Industry. EA Sports release the first Arabic version of the Fifa franchise this year.
Fan made video based on Fifa advertisements. This is the kind of humour I want my marketing campaign to have.
Good old Wikipedia. Analysing the football game market… There have been lots of football games!
So going back to the pitch I was left with a decision. I could stick with the format of the Facebook game and completely overhaul the game mechanic or move to a different format (thereby losing the chance to go after the neglected male market of Facebook gamers) and keep the game mechanic intact.
What I decided was that it was more important to keep the spirit of the game intact. The whole Anti-Fifa ethos of a football game that’s about the joy of playing with your mates rather than the glitz and glamour of the premier league. I think if I stayed with Facebook and tried to make it a turn based game I could conceive of a project that’s Anti-Fifa but only so much in that it wouldn’t be a football game at all. Sports games are about immediacy (if you look back to my History of Gaming that’s something I respond to) and this is something I can’t lose.
So what is Fives now? Inspired by the sophistication of some of the live multiplayer games available for the I-Pad and I-Phone I’m going to go down the route of the App. It’s still a five-a-side game with a focus on the fun and instinctual but now its touch screen.
I’ve referenced Nintendo World Cup Soccer before. That game was based on the use of the direction pad and two buttons. With Fives you control your one character’s movement via the tilt of your device. You control their actions by virtue of a single (pass) or double (shot) tap. These controls change based on if you’re in defence or attack and if your player has the ball or not.
The problems picked up on in my pitch resulted from overreaching and overestimating the technology currently available. As we get to these final stages I want to keep my focus on something that is do-able (especially in terms of live multiplayer!) but also fun and customisable. Building a community is such an important step and I’m fully committed to creating a project that can truly be controlled by the fans.
This blog has proved an invaluable tool as a kind of rough notepad but now I need to separate and define each stage.