Cute Things Dying Violently Post-Mortem

Posted by Alex Jordan on

It's that time of the year again. Having worked on Cute Things Dying Violently for longer than Michelangelo worked on the Sistine Chapel*, I have written a post-mortem to document every up, down, left, right, in, and out of that process. Maybe some back and forth, too. I dunno, whatever. You can read the whole thing here.

I should warn you, though, that it's long as hell. 14 or 15 pages long, in fact. Why? Because I'm a good writer, and I like writing, and because I am like Samson at the gate when it comes to fighting the ADHD-riddled masses out there, wielding my wit and shining knowledge like the jawbone of an ass. Is that even still Samson? I can't remember, but everyone can enjoy a good chuckle about the fact that I referred to my wit as coming from the mouth of an ass. Get it? GET IT?

For anyone who wants to skip to the summary, I've posted it below the fold:

What went right:

What went wrong:

Here's the thing about the controls: they're “analog”, meaning that they're analogous to the player's dexterity. The various reviewers that have complained about faulty controls or hyper- sensitive controls? They're talking their own inability to pull off the necessary flicks, not the games's. The controls are set up in such a way that a lot of people were inferring flaws in their design that don't actually exist.

EDIT: Yeah, the reason that's struck out above? It turns out a minority of players have been getting some flicking issues that really are bugs. I'm flabbergasted, because the flicking algorithm is written to be specifically airtight. It even factors out the movement of the thumbstick rocking back to the center position, so that your originally-chosen angle would be unsullied. These bugs should theoretically be impossible, but several users and reviewers have confirmed them, so now I have the unenviable task of trying to hunt down a bug that I've never ever experienced that only appears infrequently. Great. END EDIT.

But as it stands, that's cold comfort. I didn't set out to design a game for the most dextrous elite. In fact, I failed to consider that some players wouldn't have the hand-eye coordination or the spacial coordination to play the game properly. And although I'm not about to change the controls (EDIT: Except to squash whatever this mystery bug is), seeing as how most of the reviewers and players liked (or at least, understood) the importance of having complete analog control over the flicking, I am busy working on new aiming tools that will give players who are bad shots the opportunity to improve their aim and learn from their mistakes. I hope that will keep the core game intact while also mollifying the reviewers and players who didn't enjoy the game through no fault of their own. I'm not designing for just my fans, I'm designing for everyone.

What went ???