Week at the Knees (Ha ha, Oh god.)
I’m still working on these games that take different lengths of time to play. Currently I’ve been chipping away at the one-week long game. These sorts of “concept games” where I end up having some sort of idea or title first (e.g. the Mumble Indie Bungle or PONGS) are really weird to work on because the base concept is both so generative and so frustrating at the same time.
In the case of these durations I’m being constantly torn on what the “point” of the durations is. Is it a kind of way of observing the ability of a computer (and therefore game) to take any amount of time without any qualms? Is it simply that it’s kind of funny to think about a game that simply is a week long? Is the idea to create games that make sense within their particular duration? What do you do when these different streams of thought conflict with each other, as they constantly seem to?
As with many games I’m often caught up in questions of what is “reasonable” in the concept of an “unreasonable” game. So you accept that you have a game that lasts for a week, so you’ve already kind of thrown a lot of sensibleness out the window, but then you create these kind of alternate universe where you have to ask “does this make sense in this game that takes a week?” And answering these questions is hard.
The one week game is a stake-out, because that strikes me as fun and I quite like games where you control a camera and can take photographs. But should the game tell you what is suspicious and what to photograph? Or should it present the world just as a place that you can photograph at will and not really know what’s “worth” photographing?
And just how involved should the inner processes of a game that takes a week be in the first place? You have a terrible tension between the (presumed) fact that nobody will ever finish said game and the fact that you’re sort of trying to “fill” a week’s worth of play such that it’s somehow “reasonable” that it takes that long.
All of this is both delightful and torturous in equal measure. I have no answers, only half-agonized half-cheerful questions.