The Beginning of the Console Foray

Another semester, another class. It’s been some time since I’ve last written a blog post. I’ll be writing one again at the end of the week for an update to Sojourn, along with hopefully a new style that’s more engaging for readers, but also is less monotonous on myself to write.

With that quick intro out of the way, let me give the rundown of what Console is all about. Not surprisingly, Console Programming is just that – programming for consoles: Xbox, Playstation, Nintendo, or mobile, as the qualifications for this assignment generally fall into anything that’s not a PC game or application, although plugins that relate to consoles for Unreal or Unity count.

Above the console bit though is the fact that this is mainly a portfolio class. It’s going to be very self driven, so I’m hoping that once I begin work I’ll get swept away and really pulled into it.

It’s funny, I look at the development of my favorite games, and one thing they all have in common is that the time they all took to even get to the publishing stage tends to be 3+ years. It makes working on these short 4-5 month projects feel very constricting.

I know that a lot can be done in that time, and strong game concepts have been done in weekends, but even for Sojourn, which will have approximately 9 months of development, it still feels like a situation of “if only we had more time.”

I guess that’s my precursor for “I’m gonna do this thing but I don’t know if it’ll come out how I want because time is limited.”

That said, the aim is to make a single player roguelike wherein you play as an entire planet. The main focus of the game will be resource management, whether that be preventing the multiple governments of your planet from infighting, stopping the ecosystem from being torn apart, or defending your atmosphere against natural disasters from space.

There are a lot of avenues to take this. To satisfy the programming area, I’ll work on making it procedurally generated, but my main goal with this project is to showcase my ability to design within limited design space.

Ideally, the benefits to the development of this game will be in the adaptability of the expansionism of game content. That is, if after 3 systems (ex. Management of Governments, Atmosphere, and Oxygen supply), the game is still too simple, I can add more systems. If I reach a point where the players are managing a lot, I can move to either remove systems or balance further. And on top of it, all of the systems need to be coded, so I’ll be busy determining how exactly I want it all to work.

As stands, a lot of a it is very loose in plan right now. I hope to have a more solid plan soon. More to come in this area… eventually. Capstone at the end of the week, stay tuned.

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