I am actually pretty far, technically, with the game! Thanks to Adventure Creator (I will write about that later) I have got all the game triggers and 99% of required systems, like global variables, UI, saving & loading and inventory, for a game ready to go straight out of the box!
I also already had quite a lot of experience with it so I did not have to spend much time figuring it out. I needed to write some custom code and make some UI stuff from scratch, but now I am in a point where I need to start creating playable content to actually test the core gameplay idea and also to get an assetlist going. So I need a story.
and that is what I have been working on for these past couple of weeks. Working on a story alone is difficult for me. I am used to spitballing storylines together with people. But doing it by myself is making it hard for me to get the engine running. I am not sure what to call this condition. But the story is coming really slowly.
I started re-watching The Wire season 2 for inspiration, but there are a lot of scenes that involve specific knowledge of police protocol and how different departments work together (or don’t). Sometimes it is hard to know even who would be the first responder in a scenario.
Also I want to get the internal workings of a harbour correct. What are the roles of people there? Who has access and to where? How does the customs work?
And all of this in New York in 1990!
I have been thinking of interviewing local people here, but I suspect that things are a lot different here in Finland than in the US.
So as of now, the screenplay is just a google doc full of questions! And I suspect it will be like that for quite a while. Every time I fall in love with a scenario enough I get some assets to model and locations to scout, but I can not make much meaningful progress without working out the unknowns.
I have the overall story arch figured out and even some puzzles have taken shape, but a lot of work needs to be done before I know what this game really is about!