NOVEMBER 23RD, 2015
It’s time for the second installment in our series of posts about the prototyping work we’ve been doing here at Mediocre. This time we will take a look at a project not quite as refined as the Garbatron prototype. We present to you…
[Unnamed multi touch prototype]
This prototype was a quick experiment in multi touch gameplay. The idea was that the player touched objects on the screen, and held the finger on each object until a timer indicated that the finger should be lifted for the object to be removed. With different sizes of objects requiring a different amount of time to be removed an intriguing gameplay mechanic occured, not entirely unlike playing a musical instrument. Fingers often ended up in intricate interlaced patterns messing with the players ability to correctly identify which specific finger needed to be lifted at specific times.
One of the most obvious problems was that the fingers obscured what was happening on the screen. This was mitigated by the ability to move the fingers away from an object while still keeping that object activated, visualized by a line being drawn from the object to the corresponding finger. While this problem was kind of solved, another one was that the game more or less required the device to be placed on a table (or other appropriate surface) due to the heavy focus on 2+ finger multi touch. And in the end we decided to scrap the idea since it wasn’t that fun.
Below you can see a quick gameplay prototype I whipped up to test the mechanics.
OCTOBER 14TH, 2015
Hello game lovers,
Coming back from summer vacation we decided that we should spend a month or so to prototype different ideas that’s been floating around. That month has now come to an end, and it resulted in a strong and interesting concept that we will now develop further. But we thought you all would be interested in getting a glimpse of all the crazy stuff we’ve been doodling with. In a number of blogs we will take a closer look at these ideas. So, without further ado, Mediocre presents…
One of the first ideas we explored was called Garbatron. A game where the player slices objects with the purpose of recycling the parts in return for energy. You got energy whenever you managed to get parts to fall through the holes in the floor, and you lost energy for the parts you did not manage to get through the holes. Red objects which explodes when sliced were added as a method to get rid of small pieces, which had a tendency to stack up in corners and other hard to get to places. However, getting any part of the red objects through a hole also mean a loss of energy. The idea was that this was going to play out in some kind of junkyard, and the player would be tasked with slicing up bigger and more absurd items the further the game progressed; Coffee cup -> Laptop -> Microwave -> Fridge -> Sofa -> Car -> Mini van -> Shipping container -> House -> Ferry -> Aircraft Carrier and so on. Also objects with different effects were envisioned; like a water tank dropping water when sliced which could be used to wash down leftover parts, propane tanks for explosions and so forth. Unfortunately, there was a couple of issues with the idea which ultimately led us to scrapping the concept:
- Slicing objects was fun and very rewarding but also very difficult to do in a controlled and predictable manner (from a gameplay perspective, not technically difficult). It kind of felt like the equivalent of button mashing in Street Fighter.
- A lot of pieces were stuck on flat areas and in corners. This was somehow mitigated by the exploding objects, but not completely. It felt unfair to lose energy due to parts the player had very little possibility of salvaging. Creating sloped floors was considered, but it would likely just mean that the game became a test of how fast the player could slice up objects small enough to automatically slide down through the holes.
- To retain long term interest the game would need to be very content heavy with lots of detailed objects of different kinds and sizes.
- It was difficult to see how the game could be expanded to retain interest after the first few levels.
Please enjoy this short video of an early prototype Dennis whipped up in the Smash hit engine:
SEPTEMBER 17TH, 2015
Here at Mediocre we’ve been working on the Smash Hit VR version for quite a while now, and we are really excited about letting all of you get to play the game in fully immersive virtual reality. The premises of the game is the same as before; You travel through a surreal otherworldly dimension, moving in harmony with sound and music… while smashing everything in your path. But now with the added freedom provided by glorious virtual reality.
The Mediocre Team
JULY 5TH, 2015
We’re hard at work with something super exciting at the moment. Have a look and tell us what you think!
JUNE 10TH, 2015
Amazing news, everybody! Our latest game Does not Commute has won an Apple Design Award over at the Apple Worldwide Developer Conference in San Francisco this week! We’re so excited and humbled to receive this prestigious award, it’s one of the biggest awards there is for games and apps. Huge thanks!
To check out the full list of all winners and some photos from our office, please head to Apple’s awards page. Below is a photo of the stylish prize itself.