How Things Are Going

on 07/21/2011 by christopher 1 Comment

Thorn has been out for over a week, and it has been exciting.

We prepared our toughest skin pre-release. I’ve seen what game releases can do to people, and it’s ugly. There are plenty of reviews and criticisms of games that I’ve read that are borderline soul-destroying. I mentally prepared myself to deal with utter rejection from gamers and reviewers. Luckily, that didn’t happen.

We’ve been well received. For the most part, I feel that players either fall in love with the game or level really fair criticisms at it. These criticisms tend to be:

1. Thorn needs Game Center integration. This is an easy one. We’re going to include it in the next build, which should be out in a matter of days.

2. Thorn needs more mobs. And this is a bit more interesting. Earlier builds of Thorn had tons of mobs with different attributes. Those days, the game didn’t include throwing weapons and it was way less fun. Now that we have ironed out a solid platform, we think it’s worth reintroducing these monsters. After the Game Center build, we’re going to start looking at how to integrate more enemies. Of course, this will probably thrash the legitimacy of previous high scores. If anyone has any ideas how to deal with this problem, we’re open to them.

3. People hate dying and starting over from the beginning. We’re talking about a way to deal with this. Perhaps there are checkpoints or multiple lives? Again, this threatens not only the balance of the game, but also the validity of previous high scores. Tough problems, but they can be dealt with.

As for sales, we think we’ve gotten lucky. The sales probably won’t come close to providing us with the kind of income we would have made if we’d been working at Jobs rather than making a video game. But that wasn’t really the point. Being included on Apple’s New & Noteworthy list was a huge gift and we think it put us on the map.

For our next trick: staying on the map.

One Response to “How Things Are Going”

  1. Vithiet says:

    Regarding point 3 I disagree with “people” then.
    I think this is what makes Thorn what it is, a SURVIVAL game.
    These “people” are probably the younger generation of gamers, who never spent time, sweat and mostly tears on TMNT for NES. Nowadays game are like perma-easy-mode with checkpoints every 3 steps.
    I don’t remember having a hard time to beat a game (not “finish”, “beat” as in “I fought for it”) in the past 10 years. I think that’s part of the old school charm of Thorn.
    Now get off my lawn!

Leave a Reply

Good Controller is a small independent video game developer based in San Francisco. We are currently working on Thorn, our first project for the iPhone.