Turning Nightmares Into Levels Is Hard
Wow, these last two weeks have been super busy. I’ve got a bunch of gigs and new music coming out, plus IRL Chuy got jaw paralysis (he’s fine, he just looks really pathetic right now). I didn’t get as much done as I would have liked, but I still made quite a bit of progress. I started working on the final dungeon, which is a huge deal for me because level building is insanely tedious. Every single screen of the game has to be laid out by hand, and then tested to make sure there’s no bugs.
There’s 10 dungeons in total, and they’re each based on nightmares I’ve experienced or other people have told me about. Turning nightmares into playable levels is actually a tough challenge. One consistent thing I noticed about nightmares is that they usually center around an uncomfortable or horrifying situation. I also noticed that the objective of the dream seems to change as the dream goes on. For instance, in one nightmare, your friend tells you that her dad’s yacht was unplugged from it’s charger and now he’s upset. You board the yacht in an attempt to fix everything, only to end up helping your other friend cover up a murder.
Coming up with ideas for Bosses for each of the dungeons was an even tougher challenge. Another weird thing about nightmares is that they rarely have a physical confrontation. I also want the bosses to feel scary in a dream like way. The thought process is essentially: “A giant spider would be a lame boss; it should actually be a giant pizza that taunts you while draining your life before it chases you around the room.”
This post was pretty short, but I’ve got a ton of things going on this month. I also have a couple friends helping me with art and programming (thank god), so that’s awesome. Let me know if you’ve had any nightmares that might make good levels or side quests. Some of the most fun ideas of this game have come from some actual dreams people have told me about.