We’re running two game design experiments on our internal build, both of which are going to fundamentally change the balance of the game if we stick to them, and it might be interesting for you to know why! Or turn back now and forever revel in blissful ignorance.
Experiment 1: The Seven Dwarves
Many of the start new game parameters are holdovers from when we needed to test things in the game quickly and easily, and we’re starting to re-examine what we give the player upon game-start with regard to what’s in their best interest. Usually we have been tending to reducing the resources the player has available at the start because we want to stress the importance of interaction with the environment. We toned down the number of logs given at the start as an initial test so that interaction with the environment is required to build anything and thus deal with an increased decision space. But we’re still dropping new players into a realm of “too much choice”. Starting resources can be allocated poorly, and players often designate dozens of jobs then get frustrated that they’re not all executed in the order or at the speed that they’d expect.