Test... Test... This Was A Test.

Greetings oh ye of faith, we find ourselves somewhere on the spectrum between a little and mildly optimistic, albeit cautiously. We’re coming to you beleaguered yet hopeful after a very interesting few weeks. A number of titanic events have culminated in our current state, like some sort of games centric Ragnarok, except rather than the ranks of the restless dead champions of Viking tribes, there stands but 5 dishevelled, and hopelessly, hopelessly lost developers to stem the tide of utter collapse.


Chief among these aforementioned events is the recent 3 day testing period our game underwent. A crusade against bugginess and mediocrity from the fine young students of the Salford University CVG course and Futureworks Games Diploma with the gallant and positively effervescent Peter Yates guiding these currently bright and enthusiastic but soon to be haggard and jaded souls through the treacherous boggy marshes of QA.


We emerged the other side however, bloodied and exhausted, clutching a wad of paper upon which lay hastily scrabbled bouts of madness, flitting between sugar fuelled satirical jibes at our post-socialist culture, and wreathes of sometimes woefully inarticulate, sometimes obsessively documented and graphed (but thankfully none massively game breaking) bugs. Our primary goal for the past few days has to been to attack these issues with extreme prejudice, we normally pride ourselves on running our company well within EU prejudice and human rights regulations, but bugs are not welcome in this ramshackle affair.


In order to provide the necessary materials for our game to undergo proper scrutiny, we had to also tick another box, our game is truly 100% completable, the ease of such a feat is debatable, indeed I believe we had but 3 of our 15 challenge rooms bested by our valiant cohort of testers, but we penned that down as them being “lacking in the requisite cojones”, a label we’re happy for now to stick with.


In all seriousness though, on top of the bugs we managed to receive some vital feedback on the way in which we’re guiding the player and introducing (or not as may be the case) some of the subtler features of the experience. The kind of invaluable input you can only really get by just putting the game in front of someone and just getting them to play it, whilst carefully studying every finger movement, facial expression, and nihilistic despondent sigh as their soul departs through their eyes, as they’ve died on “that bit” again. We took no pleasure in such things, although our level designers were accused of being “sadistic” when confronted with the appalling detail that they hadn’t even scratched the surface of what lay for the full completion of the game, but at least we know it’s not too easy.


What lies ahead of us now is the short road to full content completion, something we aim to achieve within the month of July, a statement, merely by the act of keying it to this page, I feel has entered me into some sort of dread contract with Satan, where upon failure to complete, I will be forced to play tournament level Starcraft 2, where my hands have been replaced with massive melons, for all eternity, let’s not do that.


Lamplight Out.


01 July 2014

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Established in 2012, Lamplight Studios is a BAFTA-nominated, indie game development studio based in Manchester, UK. Formed by a group of graduates, they decided that, rather than get a real job at a real company, they would take a crack at making their own. As a result, their lives have been constant torment and anguish in the name of video games. We are stuff, you don't.


© Lamplight Studios Ltd 2015       contact@lamplightstudios.co.uk