writing chapter 4.1
this is as far as i’ve gotten, i’m just going to post it as is, for a change. this is what i worked on today and for the past couple of days while i haven’t posted.
10-14 the 1st thing they do is break down their vision and build up the level document, which would be a discussion between anomia and josh with fairy asking questions and forcing clarification. or else we can set the stage, explaining what each of them are doing, and only after that introduce the debate. or, we can start wtih the conversation about levels, break to see what else they’re doing, and then go back to the level diagram and watch them fight over it.
In a theoretical block universe, all times exist at the same time, like a tray of lasagne. The beginning is at one end, the ending is at the other, and everything happens in between, connected to everything else by layers of big lasagna noodles running down the length of the tray. You can call it predestination, but the slice you eat now doesn’t confuse itself with the slice you eat later. When we first meet Josh and Anomia their lives are already intricately bound to the people they become by the end of their story, but they are completely unaware of the future. Rather blissful in their ignorance. They run around like ants, get together for a splotch of concerted effort, then run around like ants for awhile, and never notice the edifice they’re building with all their activity.
or start with the mechanics of observation, as if this was a quantum experiment and we were changing out point of view for a different result, moving our observation point a little down the block. we’re going to move our observation point a little down the tray of lasagna, and make another slice, to see what they’re doing. We took another observation.
Josh, Anomia and Fairy all had their heads together designing their quantum videogame. You’d never know it to look at them, because they were almost never in the same place at the same time. Anomia was at work all day, and at home on her desktop all night, but Josh and Fairy didn’t have day jobs as such. Josh was flat out unemployed, and usually spent his days hanging out in Anomia’s apartment, or down in the basement of his parents’ house, or in some coffee shop or some bar, or sitting on the couch in a friend’s living room. And Fairy was freelance, and could be anyplace, but mainly worked on the game sitting in her local coffee shop, or propped up in bed.
They’d divided up the work, sort of. Josh took Anomia’s map and turned it into a level diagram with specific areas and obstacles, and then he listed the skills needed to overcome them and level up. Anomia started the design document, working out the distinctive landscape and recreating the look of their game vision. Fairy was left to draw up the world diagram, asking them lots of detailed questions about their vision game, and compiling a master list of locations and objectives.
since anomia and josh have everything in their heads, it all has to be laid out, and so they tell fairy everything and she writes it all down and organizes it. then she lists the obstacles and skills and npc functions and gives it to josh, and it fucks with his layout of the geology and resources and physical details, and that messes with the landscape and design anomia has already been working on.
we have to start with the level list.
together they work up the level diagram, a 7×7 matrix of qualities ranging from blah to blah. in their game, they started on the rocky shore of a huge, uninhabited continent with nothing but the clothes on their backs and a few rudimentary tools, and in each level found a less-hostile environment and had more resources to work with. The landscape progressed from wasteland to mountains to alluvial valleys to vast plains and wetlands to the cities of the hinterlands, and finally a vast, futuristic city full of wonders, beyond which lay only the inaccessible mountains where they had their epic battle and death scene. They told all this to Fairy in minute detail, and she wrote it all down and organized it into a spreadsheet that then became their world diagram, the bible of everything they wanted to put into teh gema.
Josh decided to work on the level design, and started with Anomia’s map and Fairy’s list of assets and objectives. Anomia worked on the graphics, starting with the backgrounds, photoshopping images of landscapes that reminded her of places in their game. Fairy managed the world document, and worked on the objects and character design, handing the objects off to Radhu. (show fairy switching from the group document to the child document and telling radhu what to do, taking credit for it in the main chat.)