Wake up call: why Slain failed and how it affected us

Cubic Pie team was shocked by the release failure of ambitious Slain (they now have Mixed reviews, but before the first patch – Mostly Negative). Stunning Pixel Art, amazing soundtrack, lots of features, loyal community (full of backers from successful Kickstarter campaign) – what could go wrong?

The answer is simple – shitty controls.

Filled with furious anger, in their reviews, people continuously blamed it together with level design, overall experience and even music – this is how the controls issues affected an overall good product! Call it ‘The Anti-wow Effect’.

But why did this happen? Are the developers so lame that couldn’t understand the importance of the controls? Or maybe they thought that everyone should have a gamepad or (even better) a console instead of PC to enjoy?

Well, we don’t think this is the case.

The thing which probably happened (and which is, btw a disease of many indies) – as the game has been in development for a while now, the developers (and even testers) just got used to all its unpolished details and some compromises made in the beginning.

So yep – you have to give your game to test to new people every now and then.

BTW, Cubic Pie has been developing Too Loud (with pauses, but well…) for an year now… Realizing that, we actually gave a very unpolished Too Loud build to one of our fellow developers recently (who is also working on a platformer btw) to test the controls. And guess what?

Those turned out to be shit!!!

We’ve spend the whole Friday night re-working the physics and playing with coefficients – and now (hopefully) the experience is completely different and much better.

Thank you Lenya and good luck to all devs – give your builds to your gamer friends early, guys – don’t be shy. Or it might be a bit too late.

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