About a month ago, I started working on an online version of Monster Zoo to help with playtesting.
My main reasoning behind creating an online version of the game was to get more feedback. I was finding it hard to get local playtesters and most playtesters get tired of playing every version of your game.
Here are some of the cool things you can do with an online version versus a physical version of your game:
- Rapid Updates – I can easily change the value of a card and all playtesters will get that update next time they play. With the physical game, you would need to print new copies of the card and send the card to all your playtesters.
- Forced Blind Playtesting – Since the game is online, most of my playtests have been blind playtests. I can’t physically assist anyone or really explain the game outside of text chat.
- Less Local Restrictions – Last night I played a game with a player from Singapore (I’m in California). You aren’t limited to just your local area for playtesting.
- Heavy Initial Investment – I spent a good month learning how to program. That time could have been spent working on the game. My hope is that the feedback I get from the online game will make for a better game overall.
- Harder to Fix – It’s easy to “fix” a card in the physical world, you just take a pen and write on the card. But when code is involved, something that is broken could take a ton of effort to fix.
Here’s a sneak peak of how it looks:
Right now the game is only available to playtesters. If you’re interested in playing the game before everyone else, I’m looking for more playtesters.
What are you using to code? What did you study in that month? The game digitized looks good!
I’m completely new to Ruby Cow Games, so I don’t yet know too much about your blog.
However, the online version seems like it’s relatively convenient in terms of playtesting–it seems easy to distribute/play because people can just turn on their computers and have Monster Zoo right there for them.
Depending on how the online playtesting goes, are you thinking about making a full conversion to online rather than physical, or are there other benefits of having a physical game that the online version would not be able to replicate?
I ask this question because–in the development of a game I’m currently working on–we felt that physical cards add a certain nuance to the game which might get lost if we just converted to online (and we don’t have the money to do online either