Interlinking systems, or Why you shouldn’t EVER have Interlinking systems

By @ 02/19/13 in experiences

So for the last day or so I’ve had my face buried in pages and pages of numbers working out our economic system. It has that all too familiar feeling which makes me feel like I’m ever so slightly wasting my time. But it’s very much my own fault, and the fault of the ambition of our project in general (which, I feel EVERYONE involved is starting to realise now that we’re nearing the game’s end).

Temp art here - we're not oozing grey

Temp art here – we’re not oozing grey

You see, our game involves a mechanic whereby you craft items, build buildings, hire NPCs, trade, sell and more.

Where this becomes a problem is that if I find out that the way I’m currently having people craft an axe is no longer relevant or doesn’t make sense and decide to change it – a LOT has to change with that.

For starters it often happens that some other item in the game has its crafting recipe infringed upon by the change and I need to find another way to make that work.

Then there’s the value of objects, which changes based on how complex the item is, what prerequisite things were needed to create it from a technological standpoint, and of course what components the item is made out of.

I change EVEN ONE of those things and the whole thing has to be re-shaped.

So although I spent days calculating the maximum value, minimum value, appreciation and depreciation rates and thresholds a few months ago, the multitude of subtle changes we’ve been making as we tweak the game for beta stage has meant that approximately 50% of the values are still current.

At it again, go I!

THIS time it’ll all match up for a final build. THIS time there’ll be no setbacks and it’ll hold through to the final version. Because of course no changes can possibly be made to any systems in between now and then, right? Of course not!


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