The Lazy Designer

The Next Game

Yes, “The Next Game” is the title of my second Lazy Designer book but today I actually want to talk about the next Unity prototype-game that I am actually working on.

While building a technical framework to help me get Unity projects up and running faster I also started to think about what might be a fun game concept to explore for my next prototype. I decided upon a simple grid-based area editor. While this does not sound overly exciting it has been an interesting challenge.

I’ve gotten it to the point where I can place buildings from an list and rotate them. It ensures no buildings overlap and all the various grid rules are honored. It is also able to serialize and deserialize data to/from my server.

The main reason for building this is that I’m going to attempt to build a Simpsons Tapped Out styled game, albeit simpler and with a different “end goal” than current games of this type (more on that in a later post). But I’m also excited by a range of other uses for the system, which I’ve managed to keep fairly generic. It will serve as the core system for a couple board game translations I’ve been wanting to create in Unity for a while. It will also serve as a rudimentary area editor for simpler games that I might build in the future.

Anyways here’s an image of a small grid with a couple test buildings placed. Obviously lots of work left to go but with the core system in place I’m eager to mess around with it more (however I won’t, as I’ve accomplished this month’s milestone already and need to wait till next month).

I’ll do a proper write up like I did with the Hauler stuff, but that won’t be until later in the year, but basically my first prototype is complete and its just halfway through the month, so I’m pleased.

In writing related news, edits are proceeding on my kid’s novel. I’m taking a phase approach to these edits, with each phase focusing on one or two areas at a time (i.e., character development, setting development, et cetera). We’ll see how it works out.

Former lead designer at BioWare (Dragon Age: Origins, Neverwinter Nights). Creator of Raiders of the Serpent Sea.