SCALE is a Game!

UPDATE! If you think this game looks cool and want to help it get made back the SCALE Kickstarter:

SCALE KICKSTARTER WOO!

———————————————————

So I was at E3 this week, showing a prototype for a new game at this year’s IndieCade showcase at E3. The response kind of blew my mind. People seem to be EXTREMELY excited by the concept. Far more than I anticipated. My roommate totally called it. GOOD JOB KYLE PULVER.

Scale screenshot
Click here to EMBIGGEN

Also, note that the awesome TED MARTENS is helping out with art.

E3 Coverage Roundup:
Kotaku
Gamespy
RockPaperShotgun
IndieGameMag
Yogscast
Joystiq
IGN

The idea’s been a spare time project for quite a while. I’ll get a steveswink.com/scalegame/ page up in the next couple days. For now, thanks for stopping by, thanks for being interested in the game, and here are answers to common questions I’m getting:

Q: When will the game come out and on what platforms?
A: When it’s a thorough, polished exploration of the ideas and mechanics of growing/shrinking objects at will. I firmly believe that games should only be shipped when they’re done, good, and worth a player’s time. That means…yeah, I dunno. Making games is hard, dude. Like a year or two? Something like that. As for platforms, the game is being made in Unity3d. So that means I get Mac/PC for easies. I have been approached by some of the major consolebros. I told them THANKS BRO + I’ll hit you up when the game is good and cool and ready to go. Let me know what platforms you’d like to see the game on!

Q: But the game looks done now. Why can’t I play it?!?!?
A: Woah man! Calm down. Don’t pee. The game is very VERY early. I’ve just got the core mechanics kinda working. Since Scale delves into some mechanics and ideas that haven’t been thoroughly explored in a game before, there are still a few crucial things to figure out. For example: how to gracefully exit scaling when something would be overlapping something else. For another example: how to launch the player in a sweet way when they scale something they’re standing on. I have a long list of ideas for creatures, structures, game objects, and mechanics I want to prototype. Making things bigger or smaller is on its surface simple concept, but a lot of interesting puzzles is emerging from that premise. With some game concepts I’ve explored, finding interesting puzzles/ideas is like pulling teeth. With this one, the list of puzzles to prototype keeps getting longer. I’ve shown a few examples publicly to help everyone understand the basic idea, but I’m keeping what I think are the most interesting uses of the mechanic secret for now. Plus, you don’t want all the puzzles spoiled…

Q: OOH OOH it looks just like MINECRAFT! You filthy INDIES need to stop abusing the pixel/voxel aesthetic…
A: This is placeholder art. The important thing right now is gameplay: getting the basics of the scaling working well and feeling good. The simple style really helps with quick prototying and experments. I’m not sure what I’ll end up doing for visual treatment for the final game, but doing low-res pixel textures on 3d objects is quick and easy for mocking things up. One interesting thing about this game is the degree to which the shape of objects changes their use in the world. So doing a bunch of high res realistic artwork isn’t really viable for the prototype phase.

Q: So it’s basically Minecraft meets Portal, right?
A: There are surface similarities. Portal is about portals, though. It’d be silly not to look at Portal and what it did well and think about how those lessons apply to what I’m doing. But scaling things up and down in an unconstrained way and exploring the consequences of that is pretty different. It’s an exploration of a mechanic and a concept. As I mention in some of those various videos, the concept of scale is inherently interesting to humans. Things have some ‘normal’ size and when they deviate from that size they become fascinating. Extremely large fish, bears, dogs, buildings, chairs, nickels – all suddenly interesting. That’s what the game’s about, and it explores it through a mechanic.