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  • Writer's pictureLucy Rodham

Development Log 11/2/2023

Hello there, welcome back to my weekly game development blog where I share my experiences as an indie game developer and show off the realistic workload I do each week!

This week has been slower than the last, I spent most of the week in discussions or doing more theory-based work. We started the week with a peer review critical feedback session and got people to play SpiritSweeper on both Steam Deck and Windows. We allowed play testers to give us feedback either in person or through a google form where we could ask specific questions and better collect data. Taken from the report made from the feedback we gathered we found that 86% of play testers were in our target audience and around 85% of people found the game to be enjoyable. We also found that the controls are easy to pick up, which is what we aimed for as non-regular gamers are part of our target demographic. However, there are still a few issues regarding the Steam Deck touchscreen controls such as their sensitivity. Moreover, we found that the players liked the spirits, which made me smile as I designed them, but found the game to be repetitive. Thankfully we already have different features to combat repetitiveness in the process of being added.

In terms of actual practical work on SpiritSweeper this week, I have been primarily working on 2D spirit assets mostly focusing on smaller, simpler versions of each spirit to decorate tutorial borders or loading screens. I also finalized our updated Reenie reference turnaround so the artist who will be modelling the final version of Reenie can make them look exactly how we had envisioned. Here are some images of the work I did this week:

- Image 1: SpiritSweeper's main character Reenie is shown in a T-pose facing forward, right, and behind. Reenie is a 13-year-old wearing a baggy t-shirt, dungarees with a broken strap, rubber gloves, and "spirit boots". The notes on the image read:

- "2 hair clips"

- "No fingers", is a note to the character artist so they know not to give Reenie fingers and instead replace the hands with a sphere. This is so we don't have to rig and animate hands.

- "Make sleeves a little baggy but not too much", This is another note to our character artist because making the sleeves too baggy will create issues when animating the character.

- "Cleaning gloves"

- "Broken strap"

- "Spirit boots"

- Image 2: Shows 3 simplistic versions of spirits Oose, a dust bunny-like spirit, and the Cactitot.

- Image 3: This is a first iteration of a new spirit! Not sure how much I can say about it right now but I'm sure you'll get to see it in the game soon.

In my personal time this week, I got the time to make more progress on the piece I showed off in my last post. I also made a doodle of a very cool rat that I thought I'd show off too because as an artist I never always work to make good art sometimes I like just drawing funny-looking things.

- Image 1: This shows the line art for a drawing I've been working on for a few weeks. The artwork depicts a punk-looking person playing guitar whilst they lay down with their head out of a window.

- Image 2: Doodle of a rat wearing a Hawaiian shirt and sunglasses.

Thanks again for taking the time to read through this week's update log! Personally, I'm taking a break from work this weekend to travel, it's good to take breaks and you should take one as well. Hope to see you next week for another development log!

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