feb 9, 2007: world of goo is 6 months old.
by this time we’re already doing quite a bit of playtesting. we’ve got 20 levels in the game but only 5 of them would eventually make it into the final version. we’ve decided against having one world map and decide to group the levels into islands.
the art style is clearly coming together but doesn’t yet have the pop and polish of the final art. playtesting was still showing that people who don’t normally play games aren’t getting the game quickly enough to stay engaged. we first tried to address this by adding a tutorial system that you can see in this revision. it sucked. it was complicated and cumbersome and we eventually dropped it when we got the connection logic to feel intuitive enough and it was replaced with a single signpost:
another really ugly thing in this version is how levels end. we struggled with this quite a bit. we wanted the levels to magically end at exactly the time that the user thinks they’re done. first we tried ending them when the right number of balls was sucked into the pipe. that didn’t work because people wanted to suck out more than just the bare minimum. we thought we might want to end a level when no more balls could possibly get sucked into the pipe, but that wouldn’t work either both because it might take a really long time for the level to end while the player just sits there and because it was too difficult to have the game figure out when no more balls could get sucked. in this version we tried to have a 5 second timer after the minimum requirement was met before the level ends, which would allow for suckage optimization (the beginnings of OCD!) but people were simply confused. eventually we dropped the notion of something happening “magically” at the right time and made it a manual process (the continue handle).
you can download this build here. IMPORTANT NOTE: if you played the previous build you’ll need to delete some entries from your registry in order to run the game because the saved data format (which use to be stored in the registry) has changed. run regedit and delete \HKEY_LOCALMACHINE\SOFTWARE\2dboy before running this version.