I wanted to make a game from beginning to end by myself and see how it really fares out there in the wild. This includes the whole process from design to prototyping to beta to launch.
Mighty Arrow felt like it took a while, 100 hours really isn’t that much. It was pretty difficult trying to find time daily to squeeze this out. There was definitely feature creep during the development – people I’ve play-tested the game kept wanting more and more features. While the asks were valid and some did make it into the final version, I had to draw a line somewhere.
I’ve been working on this game very sporadically for over a year.
Why is it so hard?
Don’t worry, it’s not you (mostly). I designed this game to be very difficult. People who do not really play games will find it very frustrating. Something that Flappy Bird did really well was to make failing a sticky factor in the game where people want to try again and again until they beat their high score. I wanted to create that feeling in my own way. I locked on to the difficulty pretty early – in fact, it’s only gotten easier (and more fair) over the course of beta testing with some friends over a period of a month. Thank the playtesters :).
Did you make everything yourself?
Everything aside from the sound effect, is made by myself. This is my first time diving deep into pixel art and I quite enjoyed making all the bow designs and scenery. Unity was the game engine of choice.
How long did development take?
I started developing this game 2 years ago, but was not very serious about completion until December in 2015. It has always been one of those things that I tell people I am working on it to feel productive, but who am I kidding at the end of the day. I made a promise to myself to finish it and finally did. It was not easy though, especially as a side project that I can only work on after work.
Total hours spend – roughly 150 hours from start to v1.0. 30 Hours for the v2.0 update. 30 Hours for v3.0 update.
What was your biggest struggle?
Honestly, the biggest struggle was not being able to find the time to work on it when I really wanted to complete the game. Work has always been my first priority, so coming home exhausted made it pretty difficult to keep up the momentum I would build during the weekends. Throw in another game release at work and it was emotionally hard to muster up any motivation to keep going. I especially want to thank my work co-resident Cullen, who kept complaining about how unfair the game was to keep me going.
Credits + Thanks
Cullen Schwarz, Will Dunn, Hahn Lin, Dylan Agis