In other news, I have a Twitter – just like everyone! Hurrah. Follow me here. Or don’t. Maybe you’re not that sort of person.
But of greater interest, I will be launching a new webcomic fairly soon. (Some of you may be aware of my old one, hello earthling). The new one, however, will be entirely different – something personal, story-driven, emotional, and in full colour. It won’t change the world, but it’ll be challenging my abilities as an artist and a storyteller. Keep an eye out – as soon as I have something to show, it’ll be on the aforementioned Twitter. (I’ll also eventually blog it here – see the subscribe options to the side.)
This is really trying to show what Flash games can be, to me. Each car has its own feel, and no single car is able to win every race. There’s over 60 races, though they are nice and quick – I believe the game can be finished between 1.5 to 3 hours, depending on the choices you make. And that’s really what it’s about – giving the player free reign to buy all sorts of cars, and discover their own personal favourites to upgrade, so they develop an attachment to their own garage.
A lot of heart went into this one. I cared about little details, such as how brands in-game have a consistency between their car types, or how they are affected by the era they were built in. Before release, I was panicking that I had wasted time, and that no-one would care.
So it is thrilling, for me, that they do. Out of 6600 players today that Playtomic recorded, 32 players spent presumably 4+ hours collecting every single car. There is no incentive for this – the game can be completed with 10-20 cars on average, there are no achievements, and the game does not provide anywhere near enough money to buy all the cars in one playthrough. But these few completionists have made me feel totally justified in putting in as many cars as I did, and I only hope they enjoyed the time they spent with the game. Better yet, they are not alone – from the data, it appears that there is a respectably big drop as players work out what the game is and some dislike it, but of the ones kept, the retention rate is excellent; of the players who get 3 cars in their garage, 20% go on to spend long enough on the game to get 20 cars – that’s a lot of gameplay time! The average play length is very healthy, between 20-25 minutes.
Right now it is an exclusive for Mousebreaker.com, who hired me these past 8 weeks. The reaction has been more positive than I hoped for, and I am pumped for the global release!
Surprisingly, though I have rarely touched Flash this year, I got a job this summer working 5 days a week at Mousebreaker. (That’s this Mousebreaker). As such, I have been powering away at Flash, and with any luck I’ll come out of it with something cool to show for it. Here is a little preview of the first.
Menu ripped off from the original Driver. Let’s call it an homage.
The working title is “Literally Insane Racing”. This is one I’ve been wanting to make for a while – the biggest Flash top-down racer I can imagine, with 40 cars available to play. The hook is that the cars are all useful for different races – rather than a linear progression from slow to fast, in this game no one car will be able to win every race. Oh, and it’s going to have a stupid story attached, because it’s one of my games and that’s what I do.
(I think I got better at drawing in the last year despite not drawing at all.)
We’ll see how that goes. Incidentally, there’s nothing quite as scary as opening up your game on your home PC and seeing how the colours look vastly different.