Groovelet Alpha Launch
It's still very rough, but this build is playable.
Lately I’ve been grinding to get everything ready for LAUNCH!
groovelet.com is ready to actually show some people.
Well, not a real proper launch, just the kind of soft quiet launch where I actually have a fairly playable build that I can show people without being too embarassed.
It’s come to my attention that the game I’ve developed here is almost painfully niche, but I managed to grab the attention of at least a few co-workers with the core loops. Stick around and realize that you’re playing a chill, Stardew Valley-inspired engine-building card game.
What Do You Mean by “Alpha?”
So, most of the game’s major mechanics are in place, if rough, and the game’s first three major biomes exist - Home, Forest, and Sleep. It’s like… Chapter 1. A lot of the art and writing is there but draft-pass rather than final quality.
How Does This Game Even Work?
The core mechanic is a little weird and hard to describe to people:
First of all, the game is all about playing cards
You can play cards out of either the Forage or your Backpack. When you play a card out of your Backpack, that card activates immediately (when the turn resolves). Most of the game’s puzzles are driven by playing the right combinations of cards out of your Backpack - for example, combining “Axe” and “Energy” to get “Log”. Once played, the cards go into your Discard pile.
The Forage is a constantly rotating set of free cards that you can grab whenever you want, but when you play them out of the Forage you don’t activate the card right away - instead, the cards go into your Discard pile.
The Discard pile isn’t the end of those cards, though, because any time you want you can spend a turn playing the Rest card to move your Discard pile back into your Backpack. So, every turn you get to choose between snagging a free card from the Forage to add to your deck forever, or actually playing cards from your Backpack to try to accomplish goals.
Woof, that’s a bit of a mouthful, huh? Once you’ve got that, though, that’s a big chunk of the entire game, right there. There’s … more, though. There’s a lot of GAME in this game. It’s hard and strange and information-rich and a little bit alien.
Smart developers would abandon ship right here, but actually that’s what I wanted to build all along. Something convoluted and complex and sometimes-elegant and always-weird, something that could, hopefully, appeal to a niche market of dedicated geeks rather than having much in the way of mass-market appeal. You wouldn’t get it (he says, defensively).
Ruuubick was the first ever player, and PhaseDragon was the first to beat it, clearing the game in 595 moves.
I have feedback, even.
So, ha ha! It’s fun enough that I managed to trap at least a few co-workers!
Then, uh, tweet at me to tell me what you think! Tell your friends about it! Beat the game in less than 595 turns!
oh, shit, I need a recordkeeping system in the game for that >_>