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Author Topic: IT Simulator  (Read 4768 times)
nonplayercat
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Developer of IT Simulator!


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« on: May 09, 2016, 09:52:46 AM »




About




Keep the office running smoothly in the face of increasing user stupidity, unlikely disasters, and demanding bosses. Fix computers, put out fires, buy new hardware, unjam printers, and remove the adware that keeps plaguing Janet’s computer (spoiler alert: it’s because she keeps installing browser toolbars)




Manage boring corporate offices, a robot laboratory, mission control of a space agency, trendy startups, and more.





Background


A couple months ago, I quit my job as a game artist at a relatively large game company to become a full-time indie developer. IT Simulator is my first solo game! I’m really hoping to find enough success with it to keep making cool things for you.




Team



  • nonplayercat - I’ve been in the professional games industry for about 6 years now. I do the programming, art, and UI for IT Simulator.
  • perplamps - I asked him what he does and he said: “nonessentials”. He actually does a lot of the game design, production, some art direction, and handles a lot of the marketing.



Release Plan



We’re planning on starting Kickstarter and Greenlight campaigns at the same time, but only after we have enough of a community built up to know anyone will hear about it. I don’t know exactly what the target should be, but I think ~2000 followers might be enough to start. So if you’d like to see the game launch, follow us on all the things!




You

I'd really love to hear your ideas and feedback! Since this is our first game, the most important thing to me is building a good reputation and community. I'll read and try to respond to all comments, messages, tweets, and whatever other forms of communication you can throw at me.

If you'd like to get in touch with me directly, feel free to DM me (https://twitter.com/nonplayercat) or email me at [email protected]





I'll keep posting updates and WIPs here as long as you'll have me!


« Last Edit: May 11, 2016, 02:20:32 PM by nonplayercat » Logged

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michelmohr
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« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2016, 10:38:50 AM »

I really really like this! :D
I'd pieced some stuff together from your twitter posts, but I'm really excited for it now I know more haha!

From what you say about the toolbars, will there be windows 95 type computer interfaces with mice moving in the wrong directions, displays being flipped vertically and embarrassing backgrounds?

And VR for some sweet fire extinguisher action?!
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pxloto
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« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2016, 10:54:00 AM »

Love the aesthetic. This looks super fun. Smiley
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2016, 10:59:29 AM »

Thanks Michel and pxloto!

From what you say about the toolbars, will there be windows 95 type computer interfaces with mice moving in the wrong directions, displays being flipped vertically and embarrassing backgrounds?

And VR for some sweet fire extinguisher action?!

There might be now! Those are some good ideas. I love getting suggestions because the game allows for a lot of variety in terms of events and minigames (meaning we can actually implement wacky suggestions instead of writing them off!).

We're already working on a little close-the-pop-ups minigame that will end in you getting rid of all the toolbars creating them. We were also thinking of making it so everyone's computer has them playing minesweeper or solitaire until you walk up behind them and they'll alt-tab to a spreadsheet or something.

VR is possibly on the table but will likely have to wait until we get a successful Kickstarter (and possibly as a stretch goal) since we don't have a Vive or Oculus nor a computer powerful enough to run either.
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2016, 01:19:54 PM »

Since I haven't been devlogging since I first started IT Simulator, I thought it'd be cool to dig through some of my old files for you. It's a nice reminder to see how far I've come in just a couple months:


Late January:




Early February:




Late April:

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lululuprimal
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« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2016, 02:14:04 PM »

The concept looks hilarious!! 
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Lydia Primate
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Game music composer, singer, songwriter, performer
https://soundcloud.com/lydiaprimate1
michelmohr
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« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2016, 02:23:23 PM »

More idea spewing:
- there's no problem with the pc, someone stuck a post-it under the mouse to mess with the guy
- all the mice are hooked up to the pc next to them, so one over
- the keyboards type verbal abuse instead of proper words
- out of the corner of your eyes you can see a face looking at you from the monitors, but when you look it's normal
...

This concept is so much fun!
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Qbopper
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« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2016, 03:42:50 PM »

Wow, this looks great. Hope it keeps going, this is an awesome idea
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2016, 06:37:14 PM »

Thanks for the kind words, everyone!

More idea spewing:
- there's no problem with the pc, someone stuck a post-it under the mouse to mess with the guy
- all the mice are hooked up to the pc next to them, so one over
- the keyboards type verbal abuse instead of proper words
- out of the corner of your eyes you can see a face looking at you from the monitors, but when you look it's normal
...

This concept is so much fun!

That last one's a bit off the reservation! "Alan Wake At the Office" maybe, or "Amnesia, The Dark Cubicle"

Speaking of mice being hooked up to computers, right now everything is wireless. I might make it so that if we keep using a snap-to-desk system, a little visual cable will snap to everything as well, but it won't be physical. It is possible to do physical ragdoll cables, but it's probably too expensive (hardware-wise) to give everything a physical cable. I was thinking of some sort of discrete cable-matching minigame (match the cat5 cables on the server?) or something that could use them, though.
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RujiK
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« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2016, 04:38:46 AM »

Where is the coffee maker?? Game looks really funny.
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Fenrir
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« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2016, 04:56:42 AM »

Nice concept, keep it up!

Quote
We’re planning on starting Kickstarter and Greenlight campaigns at the same time, but only after we have enough of a community built up to know anyone will hear about it. I don’t know exactly what the target should be, but I think ~2000 followers might be enough to start. So if you’d like to see the game launch, follow us on all the things!

On our side, we started the KS campaign with around 1200 twitter followers, around 900 likes on facebook and a newsletter with around 300 subscribers, and it was quite a tough campaign, we reached our goal (70k) just a couple of days before the end. Any idea of the amount you would need?
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2016, 05:47:12 AM »

On our side, we started the KS campaign with around 1200 twitter followers, around 900 likes on facebook and a newsletter with around 300 subscribers, and it was quite a tough campaign, we reached our goal (70k) just a couple of days before the end. Any idea of the amount you would need?

Wow, thanks for the insight! We've been trying to match social media followers to successful Kickstarters for a while now, so your numbers are really helpful.

Since it's our first game, we were thinking of setting the goal to only include software+hardware needs (licenses, computers that aren't 6 years old, etc.) and not labor. That means maybe only about $6,000. It's more to gauge interest and see if we should continue putting our all into it or move onto another idea.

I'd really love to hear any tips you or anyone else has in terms of marketing, since we're just learning the basics.

Where is the coffee maker?? Game looks really funny.

Don't worry, it's coming!
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2016, 04:51:02 PM »

I pulled an all-nighter and came up with a new office layout which supports a lot more NPCs!

Here's a gif:


There's a lot of fine tuning and improvement that needs to be done to the NPC AI. One of the difficulties of this game is all of the physical/dynamic objects, making pathfinding a bit more complicated to implement. Nothing so bad that it can't be solved, though!

Also, another bonus, I don't have to look at that blue carpet anymore! It looked great when I first put it in, but it doesn't take long to get sick of seeing the same thing on your screen every day. I'm sure other developers can relate Smiley
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Fenrir
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« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2016, 11:54:28 PM »

Quote
Wow, thanks for the insight! We've been trying to match social media followers to successful Kickstarters for a while now, so your numbers are really helpful.

Since it's our first game, we were thinking of setting the goal to only include software+hardware needs (licenses, computers that aren't 6 years old, etc.) and not labor. That means maybe only about $6,000. It's more to gauge interest and see if we should continue putting our all into it or move onto another idea.

I'd really love to hear any tips you or anyone else has in terms of marketing, since we're just learning the basics.

My advice would be to search through KS for other projects of this type and see how they performed (even given the originality of the concept, it won't be easy). Now I think that your project has a lot of potential to attract some press, and one article on RPS for instance can definitely allow to fund it quickely. A ~10k target is perfectly doable with a bit of preparation and some press coverage!

On the project itself, currently I think that the description is missing information about the main gameplay loop, it's still vague on what we exactly need to do. And are you planning any multiplayer (local at least)? Maybe something in the Overcoocked vibe, with cooperative work?
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2016, 04:57:56 PM »

Devlog... 2? (I should probably start numbering these)

Promo Images

Our promotional images were severely lacking, so we spent a couple days to make them look a bit more professional.

Here's what we originally had (quickly) made:






For the update, we had an idea to make the text 3D in physical game space. Here's a little gif of the progress:




And here's what we ended up with:






Let me know what you think!

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Bakuda
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« Reply #15 on: May 11, 2016, 07:26:57 PM »

I'm loving this!!!  This looks like a wonderfully fun, witty, and amusing game.  I also love the cartoony design.  There's a ton of potential here.  Can't wait to see how it turns out.
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #16 on: May 12, 2016, 05:53:23 AM »

On the project itself, currently I think that the description is missing information about the main gameplay loop, it's still vague on what we exactly need to do. And are you planning any multiplayer (local at least)? Maybe something in the Overcoocked vibe, with cooperative work?

Whoops, sorry I missed this earlier. Definitely agree, but I'm finding it difficult to distill the gameplay since it's so varied. You'll be doing things like buying components, replacing stuff, fixing photocopiers, upgrading server capacity, putting out fires, catching drones, resetting passwords, trying to keep the business afloat, and a bunch of other things! The interactions involved in each of these will be pretty disparate, as well. Some will be 2D UI, some first person action, some management juggling.

No multiplayer in the cards yet (but not completely ruled out). There's a lot of physics involved, so that always makes multiplayer difficult. The first person perspective makes local MP/co-op difficult as well.


I'm loving this!!!  This looks like a wonderfully fun, witty, and amusing game.  I also love the cartoony design.  There's a ton of potential here.  Can't wait to see how it turns out.

Thanks so much! We're still at that super early phase where every little bit of positive feedback makes us go "yaaaay!"
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nonplayercat
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« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2016, 07:36:13 AM »

I figured I'd show a little behind the scenes process of some assets:



And here's the finished product:



Also, a little unused alternative for the soup:

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« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2016, 08:14:30 AM »

The art is absolutely amazing. I like that you showed the process of creating your assets. As a starting 3d artist it's really helpful to see those. I would like to see more of your posts. You have so much done and so little written about it, i would definitely like to see what challenges you have and how you manage them and what are you working on right now. Keep up the good work Smiley
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« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2016, 03:44:56 PM »

I love how happy and clean the art looks!  game looks funny and awesome -can't wait to try it!  Smiley
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