PAX East is nearly upon us! We will be there, and for the first time ever, be making a playable demo of Road Not Taken publicly available for all to enjoy!
This may have triggered a wee bit of panic in our studio.
Suddenly, all the little bugs we’ve been ignoring demand attention. That crash that occasionally happens during the first mission? Must-fix! Slow loading times? Speed those suckers up!
Aside from fixing a boatload of bugs, we’ve also been spending a lot of time tweaking the first mission of the game, since that’s what most people will experience at PAX. Initially, we didn’t worry about it much. After all, we have a tutorial that we’ve revised at least a dozen times. The first mission just has to be “relatively easy” and all will be well, right?
While the core mechanic of Road Not Taken is relatively simple, there are dozens of unusual objects and creatures you encounter in the game, and almost all have secrets to them. Initially, it was possible for many of those unusual objects and creatures to spawn inside mission one. We were reluctant to remove them because we were afraid it would make the game feel shallow and boring. But it turns out that immediately after going through the tutorial, a stripped-down mission one is exactly what most players want! They need more opportunity to practice the things they’ve learned. They want to know there are dozens of secrets in the game, but they want to experience pretty much all of those secrets a little later. Obvious in retrospect.
For example, in Road Not Taken, we’ve got some mysterious floating spirits that haunt the forest. They are the key to a bunch of cool tricks. They’re also a huge pain in the butt once you get really low on energy (at which point, they convert into “doom spirits” and hunt you down.) They were blowing our playtesters’ minds in mission one, so we’ve pushed them out to mission two. Now playtesters seem intrigued by them instead of overwhelmed. Mission accomplished.
We’re working day and night to continue polishing the demo in preparation for PAX. It’s nerve-wracking, exciting, exhausting and exhilarating. We can’t wait to show you what we’ve been up to! :-)
What does the Spry Fox say Audio Contest!
In related news, we’ve also been adding a bunch of new creatures to the game. One of those creatures is very close to our heart:
Yep, there’s a spry fox in Road Not Taken! But there’s just one problem… we don’t know what he says! So we’re holding a contest for the best fox sound! Check out our contest announcement video:
Contest submissions will appear on our YouTube channel. Submissions with more likes will have a higher chance of winning, so check back often to check out the competition or like your favorite entries!
For the full details about how to participate in the contest, terms of participation, and more, please visit our blog. This contest is created and managed exclusively by our studio, Spry Fox. Sony is not affiliated.