So Goin' Mental has been out for a week or so. It was originally a game jam game back in December when the theme was hallucinations. But the team had an absentee programmer so after the jam test-object asked me to sign on so that their work wouldn't go to waste.
Unfortunately they designed a game that could not be coded in four days, which was the time limit of the jam. They didn't know that because they had no programmer to tell them that. I knew it wasn't a four day job but I still underestimated the amount of time I would have to spend on it because I kept thinking of it as just a simple game jam game.
Anyway, I finished the game back in May and I put it on FGL. It sat there for a long time and finally started getting some low bids. Not satisfied with this, we asked Tom if he'd like to sponsor the game and he did. He didn't beat the highest bid but we went with it anyway because we like Newgrounds so much.
It's clear that people find the game to be very difficult. Time and again we'd have to go back and make it easier. It's usually because people can't figure out what to do, which really makes me sad. I'm a big retro gamer and old games made you figure them out on your own all the time. None of us wanted to put in these hand-holding changes but we had to because our players aren't willing to experiment and figure things out. The fading text at the bottom of the screen? The flashing arrow next to the spiky ball that shows you that it's moving towards you? The flashing exclamation point above the worm's head that shows you that it's about to lunge at you? The glow around the worm that shows you when it's vulnerable? The giant help panel in the level select screen? None of it was there originally. The game seemed obvious enough to us of course. The worm already shook its head with its mouth open when it was vulnerable or with its mouth closed when it was about to lunge at you. But we have no confirmation that even a single tester was able to figure out how to beat the worm on their own. I still don't know if anybody actually gets it. People still probably don't realize that you're supposed to make the worm lunge at the bomb instead of activating the bomb yourself after the worm lunges. That's a hint by the way. We even had to put in announcements when you start each round because apparently it's not obvious enough that you've entered a new round from the music changing and the background changing and the enemies changing.
I'm pretty sick of this game though. Every time I have to go back and touch things up it triggers PTSD symptoms.
No. I don't wanna go back there. Don't put me back in DON'T PUT ME BACK IN THE BOX AAAGGGHHH!