Devlog #1 – Why Vooodoo?

By 8 octubre, 2017 No Comments

I’m Abraham Rojo, one of the creators, animators and game designer of Voodoo.

In this post I will talk mainly about the design of our game, but first I´ll tell you how we started this project in which we’ve been involved since 2013.

Long before starting with Voodoo, in 2010, Flavio and I began elaborating another indie/adventure puzzle called Project Mess. We were very enthusiastic about it, we wrote the plot, characters, main events and scenarios. We had it all planed, the problem was that none of us could write code, we were just two self-taught artists.

For months we’ve been trying to learn to code by ourselves, searching in forums, social networks, etc. We didn’t learn much but we met two people who, despite being in another city, were interested in our project. Finally we could start developing our game.

Project Mess’s first concept

We had a core team, 2 programmers and 2 artists, everyone working in his particular home. Although we had very limited tools and knowledge, we were so excited and passionate about it that we spent the whole day working.

Our purpose was to make a point & click game for mobile and tablets devices, it seemed like an interesting platform for that kind of games, so we started to develop it with Cocos2D. If any of you have ever developed anything in Cocos2D, you will know that it’s very frustrating for artists, at least compared with Unity, the engine that we currently use.

We’ve spent months working to create the core of the game but things didn’t go as expected. The gameplay was the usual one, as in all point & click games, but it didn’t work well and the programmers stopped being interested. One year later we reached a turning point and few months later both programmers decided to leave the project.

We were right back where we started from, only the artists.

Project Mess from sketch to final art process

Indie developers who read this already know how hard is to carry out a project like this, you put your heart and your soul in it, never stop working, neither mentally nor physically. So, after almost two years with this game, after putting all of our time and passion in here… there was nothing playable yet.

It’s so sad to look back and realize that in spite of having everything written, the plot, main events, characters and puzzles, in spite of having a lot of levels completely drawn, a lot of animations… we had nothing.

We knew that if we kept it that way, we’ll get nowhere. Even though this project didn’t seem too ambitious to us for starting, we realized it actually was, at least for the resources we had at that time. We had to make a decision so we left aside the project and started fresh.

I’m sure that many of the developers reading this had this feeling. It´s not easy to leave apart something you’ve put into so much dedication and hard work but at the same time it’s exciting to start with something new.

At that moment we thought we had to create a game that was easier to develop and finish, something simple and not necessary a graphic adventure or point & click game. It was then when we started creating Voodoo.

I’m glad to say that at this time the game has evolved so much that has nothing to do with its first version.

I’ll write about Voodoo’s gameplay and mechanic in future posts.

I got my inspiration from different places but I know most of it came from my grandmother. I lived with her her whole live, in her house, where there was a sewing machine and many crafted objects made from wool and thread. She loved making those little handicrafts while working at the factory, she used to create? them and afterwards give them away.

So, we thought it was a good idea to make a little and endearing fella made by thread, who lives adventures and dangers in an old abandoned factory

Voodoo’s first concept

After the esthetic concept we started planning the gameplay mechanics. I remember that when the first gameplay concept came out I thought we could finish the whole game in a few months, it’s funny to be writing the devblog five years later.

And like I said before, the truth is that the game up until now has nothing to do with how we planned it at first, which is something really positive.
It passed through so many processes, various redesigns at every level, always keeping the same looking and concept: a little and fragile character who is in a huge and hostile world.

We will talk about every aspect of the game, myself and the rest of the team, in future posts.

Abraham Rojo

Author Abraham Rojo

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