Week eleven updates:
With most of our movement and camera systems settled (for now, we believe they’re good enough to move forward with), we have been focusing our efforts on really nailing the attack/defend player dynamics. What do players do when they have the ball and are attacking? What do players do when they don’t have the ball and are defending/assisting their teammate? These are important questions for us, especially because the majority of the time players probably won’t have possession of the ball. Fostering the ability for players to strategize will help us promote the couch conversation we’re looking for with our game.
To break down some of the gameplay flows, our designers drafted this chart:
Currently, some of the solutions for encouraging more dynamic attack/defense in our game have been attaching a resource pool to the diving action – meaning players would have to pick and choose appropriate times to attack and get possession of the ball, as well as modifying the levels to account for different player movement across the court (thinking about choke points created by the boost pads, and ways that navigation can influence strategy).
In addition to this, since a lot of our playtesting time has been eaten up by players figuring out the controls, we have decided to print out control cheat sheets for each playtest (these would eventually be put in the game for players to check at their own convenience). Hopefully this will help us get to the meat of the game quicker so we can begin soliciting clearer feedback.
Art has also been added in this latest build – our artist and UI/UX designer have been working on overhauling some of the assets to provide more information and feedback to players. This includes graphic representation of players’ resource pools, VFX to convey direction and speed, and an enhanced pointer indicator to show players where their most relevant objective is.
As always, we have weekly playtesting on Fridays, and this week we got a mix of faculty and students. Most of the feedback this week was with regards to solving what defending players do, as well as how much skill is involved in attacking/defending.
This is overall good, since we were able to mitigate a lot of the problems with camera and controls in general, we are now able to focus on the actions with relation to gameplay – as mentioned above in this post. We will be working on refining these player interactions this week to promote more communication and strategy within the game.