GameDev log #4

Game of Spoons is done.

That would be probably all if I wanted but there’s more. At the beginning I planned more activities to happen so the initial maximum of spoons in the game was set to 200. Through testing I have found out that that’s too much and simple math confirmed it.

There are 19 decision points which costs spoons. At each point the player can choose between a move which costs one to three spoons or three to six spoons. How much it costs is random every single time. After calculating 19 times 6 is 114 I used that number. Unfortunately it’s quite easy not to hit zero even after that because the average cost of any decision is 3.5 and 3.5 * 19 is 66.5.

So I had a question in my head “how to balance the game so it isn’t that easy?” My first step was to lower the default minimum and maximum to 20 and 90. This means that on good days player will be able to complete every activity in a day, if they are lucky enough, and on bad day the player will do her best to save as many spoons as possible.

Game of Spoons has three difficulties. On Level 1 the player will see exact number how many spoons she has at the beginning of each day and how many spoons she has throughout the day. On Level 2 she only sees word description. Level 3 is almost same as Level 2 but it adds another variable, how much food the player has left at home.

The reason why I used numbered levels and not ‘easy’, ‘normal’ and ‘hard’ is that this is a skill game and I wanted to reflect it. At the moment me as a person I am on Level 3 or higher when it comes to managing meatspace1 spoons and it took me a while before I got there.

I plan to upload it somewhere this week when I am sure it’s without bugs. Link will be waiting for you in GameDev log #5.

Screenshot of initial screen of Game of Spoons

  1. Real world, not online world http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=meatspace