Welcome to the new TinyWars! We are working every day to produce the finished product, or at least a replica of it. The “Story Demo” of TinyWars is the reflection of the final product, and likewise, the features, gameplay elements, and graphics are set to be 1:1 with that of the final game. Of course, this is a demo, which means it might only contain 10% of the content we would have in the final game.
What To Expect in the Demo
We are running on a limited budget here, but I had plans to include at least the first 10 – 15 quests in this demo. That should just about cover the bulk of the “Stump Town” which is the first world players will experience in the full game. As you can see by the map (game screen mockup) below, there is a lot of further worlds planned for the game, but each world should have more than enough content to provide hours of gameplay.
This story demo itself should have plenty of content for someone to experience a good taste of the project. The goal is to have a good deal of content packed into this demo to provide a meaningful experience. I can’t expect people to want to buy or support our project based on the previous “Gameplay Prototype” that we released on PC and Android last year. That was merely a tech demo as well as a concept for showing off our art and music styles, but does not provide any meaningful content or a proper taste of what is really to come.
It is also quite difficult to maintain a social media and online marketing campaign for a project which has no content released. There’s only so much we can talk about when it comes to the ideas we want to have in our game, as opposed to actually showing off the features and content of the game itself. This new “Story Demo” will really reshape the image of TinyWars as well as our media campaign as a whole.
The game utilizes quests as the primary mechanic for progressing through the story. Not all of the quests are mandatory of course, but players who choose to go above and beyond on the optional quests will be rewarded for their efforts! What are these rewards? The rewards could come in the form of a few things which would be meaningful to the new mechanics of this game.
Right off the bat, I want to say that we really do not intend to have players use real money into order to obtain any of the virtual currency (Of course, that really depends on our financial forecast and how confident we would be in sales of the game or crowdfunding.) The items for virtual currency include: Gold Magical Mushroom Spores, and The Blood of the Witch (Or the Blood of Mother).
The two virtual currency units will be used in different ways that can shape the way your units function and behave! This is because we have greatly expanded upon the traditional model of a “tower defense” game that we have been used to playing in the past.
Expanded Gameplay Model
We actually try very hard NOT to refer to our game as a “tower defense” game. Many people are immediately turned off from that word due to the negative connotation a tower defense game holds in the gaming community. I have heard things such as “tower defense games are simple and boring,” to things like, “tower defense games are basically copy/paste style games, gets old after a while.” We want to assure our fans that TinyWars is NOT a traditional tower defense game by any means!
While our game does maintain the core elements of a traditional tower defense game (building units, defending against waves of enemies, upgrades, etc.), we have greatly expanded upon that model and have added some elements that are less traditional in a tower defense game. (I’m not sure if any tower defense game exists that holds these gameplay mechanics!) The virtual currency comes into play due to the ability to purchase more permanent items in the game.
If you are familiar with tower defense, then you already understand how unit upgrades do not persist from level to level. Each level begins with basic units which need to be upgraded as you earn currency through defeating enemies in each wave. Part of the reason I believe many people will refer to tower defense as boring is due to the nature of this system. I have definitely experienced times when I have played through 20+ levels of a tower defense game and it started to feel old when I have to start with basic units over and over again.
We’ve added a system that will allow the player to progressively increase and maintain persistent upgrades from level to level. I truly believe we have an original gameplay model on our hands, a sort of hybrid between tower defense and an RPG game. Because of this, I really do not want to spill the details until we get to a point where I can display a gameplay video and really break down and discuss how the gameplay works! (Sorry!)
Of course, this is called the “Story Demo” for a reason! You will get a glimpse into the full story of TinyWars from the very start of the game til the demo ends. Each level begins and ends with a short cutscene that progresses the story a little further. Not all of the cutscenes have been fully written for the game yet, though the main story and plot points have already been established. We have designed the cutscenes to leave little cliffhangers which encourage the player to continue to the next level to find out what happens next!
Just a glimpse into the TinyWars story as a whole. Just like life, the beginning is filled with fun, light hatred joy and some painful moments. As the game progresses, we will explore the life of our main characters as they begin to develop their friendships and establish their role in their life. We will see the characters transform and the friendships strengthen over time. Of course, as the story continues, the tone will begin to get progressively darker and darker until we hit a few key turning points.
The Combined Experience
Combining all of the new elements from map exploration, virtual currency, new gameplay mechanics and story will really help to create the full fledged TinyWars experience that I have been wanting to share with the world for quite some time now. I have not even discussed the music or artwork in this post, but I hope that some of the media shared above drove the point across. This is the point in which I believe we are developing a AAA title here, and we’re putting the remaining budget into this Story Demo. I hope it will be one heck of an experience for you all, I’ll post further updates as we continue to progress in this long journey ahead of us.