Right now, Laura is sitting at her desk, getting the final Chapter Six art assets from Hannah. Hannah, who has just exported an illustration of Flashpaw moving through an underground tunnel, has moved onto the second and final pass of all the art. Soon, Laura and I will sit down and layout the final chapter. Allyn’s worked out our buggy UI, and is taking on the “if we have time, we should” list. Will recorded a 30 second promo video, and is storyboarding our three minute vid.
What I’m trying to say is we’re almost done.
But it’s not over yet. We’ve had to make tricky design decisions. Two of the most recent issues were 1) page sensitivity, and 2) formatting for the text-plays-sound feature.
We talked to faculty member Jesse Schell about page sensitivity. His advice: look at what people have already done. We sat down in his office and looked at a PDF reader, which limits tap-to-turn to the margins of the pages, and a horizontal press and drag will turn the page regardless of location on the page. So, Allyn and Laura worked together to make some tweaks.
We’re also re-thinking one feature: activating a sound effect by pressing words. This is not too novel of a feature, but it gives us a way to use sound, and sound is powerful, so we’re keeping it (example: when Summer thinks about ripping paper, you can click “raw rip of paper” to hear the sound).
However, we’re struggling with how to indicate that a phrase is activate-able. The current state is that this special text looks like a hyperlink, and in playtesting, universally, readers have known to click the word. Recently it’s been brought to our attention that this style breaks the immersion of our fantasy space. On the one hand, that’s true: having something that looks like a hyperlink in the text, while you’re reading, may work against a consistency of content we’ve been trying to preserve (hyperlinks go to external places, right?). On the other hand, children have known how to use it. We haven’t needed to use instructions, they know it intuitively. The good news is that we’re playtesting one more time. Results from that should help inform our decision.
I’m also working on a “logic pass” of the writing – going through and making sure there’s consistency in the plot and rules of the world. Also grammar/spelling. Because it stings to have your spelling corrected by a 13 year old.
Softs are on Monday! We’ll be here over the weekend.