Dare to be Digital 2011 team Team Swallowtail talks exclusively to Develop about working on their entry title Tick Tock Toys.

Dare Blogs – Team Swallowtail

Tick Tock Toys is a 3D puzzle/maze game which takes place inside a cluttered toy box. The aim is to change the position of the toys inside, to clear a path for the clockwork robot to reach his goal.

We realised that the most successful iPad games have a ‘pick up and play’ gameplay style. So, our game will have a few micro levels, which will all vary in difficulty, making it easy for the player to jump in and out of the game. The platform lends itself to the playful nature of the game, where the user can touch and interact with all of the different toys. We also hope to encourage co-operative play using the iPad’s multi-touch feature.

Dare to be Digital has been a very valuable experience for us all. Working in a group of five in a way that mirrors game industry practice is a fantastic opportunity and I would encourage any students who are interested in this area of work to submit an application. The interview/pitch stage of the competition may seem intimidating, but it is an interesting and insightful experience. The industry mentors that frequently visit the studio are always helpful and honest, but sometimes different opinions can conflict, so it can be hard to decide whose advice to act upon. 

I’m very pleased with the game’s progress so far. Every member of the team works efficiently and with much care. During our first week, we managed to create a working prototype on the iPad, which became a huge advantage for us, as it gave us time to experiment with various gameplay and aesthetic aspects very early. It was important for us to get a working level up and running early in the competition, so that the team can focus on making a delightful gameplay experience and achieving a high level finish. We learned that it’s very beneficial to schedule our work, set weekly deadlines and to be aware of what each member of the team is trying to accomplish each day. Since none of us had worked with the iPad before, careful planning was vital.

We are all looking forward to the coming weeks where we can start to add more gameplay mechanics and see our game come to life. After our first couple of levels are finished to a high standard, we are hoping to create a themed toy level. This will hopefully show the market potential of our game by giving examples of possible download content. Such themes could include toys from other cultures, time periods, and even holiday events.

The team is excited about showcasing Tick Tock Toys at ProtoPlay, as we will get to see people of all ages play our game. It will also give us the chance to play the other Dare team’s entries, which all look great so far!

Team information and videos can be found on the Dare to be Digital team profile.

Also, we have a team Twitter account: @TeamSwallowtail

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