After my three hour sleep (see power nap) from 4.30-7.30, it was time to begin day 3. This day was much more focused on a sprint to the finish than anything else, but lessons were learned all the same.
1) Work hard, work fast, cut the fat
For me having a working game is more important than any feature, so if a feature is going to take too long and isn’t important/crucial then cut it. It’s hard to balance polish and functionality; both are very important when it comes judging, but generally what your game lacks in graphics or sounds can be made up for in smooth game play and the players enjoyment. We had many mechanics we fully intended to include in our final game, but accepted losing them in return for more important mechanics and fixing bugs which affected how smooth our game would run.
2) Your presentation time is precious
All of your hard work boils down to few minutes which can make or break your weekend. A good presentation can make a good game great, but a bad one can ruin even the most fantastic of creations. Taking some time to make sure you can show off your game at its best and fit all of the key features in is very important; why have an epic boss fight if someone has to play for 30 minutes to get to it? Like I said before, if you can get the judges to enjoy your game or at least be impressed by it, that can cover any ground lost by a lack of additional features or functionality.
That’s all I really have for the final day as that covers everything I was involved in; finishing the game and presenting it to the judges. After that we spent a few hours awaiting the results and were lucky enough to reach the top 6. While we unfortunately didn’t place in the top 3, it was a massive leap forward from last year where we failed to reach the finals. As you can tell, I’ve learned a lot from this weekend and I am already looking to my next jam, which will be Three Thing Game in April/May. In the meantime have fun coding!