War of Words has been in playtest for one week and I’ve gotten several pieces of good feedback. I’ve made the following changes in response to this feedback:
- Font readability was a small issue with certain things. I’ve increased the size of some of the fonts where I could. I also switched to a different and hopefully more readable font on the critical menus. The instructions have been increased in size by 30%.
- There’s a few places where on-screen button hints appear. These help you remember button presses.
- Backspace and clear word have been swapped in the control scheme (B performs a backspace while LB clears the word).
- The map has a title.
- The letter blocks have been completely redesigned for more readability. They looked very red in previous releases and now they look more like wood.
- There’s some basic help when you first start the game on the map.
- Sign out of profile could crash the game in certain circumstances, and this was fixed (this was the only crash bug found).
- Several people reported that the game was too difficult. In response, I have made some of the first few encounters easier by reducing hit points and increasing other attack stats. I also scaled back enemy stats and “dumbed down” their AIs a little. It should be much easier to beat the first two enemies now. Getting up to level 10 should be easier too.
- It was also reported that battles took too long. They’ve been implicitly shortened by the actions taken in the previous bullet point.
I hope to get another week of playtest in. If a crash bug is found, I will fix it and re-release. The idea is that the game will be crash free going into peer review so that the review process is not compromised.
On a positive note, testers were in agreement that they enjoyed the game, which is a good sign! I hope that I have crafted a game that people will enjoy. I just want to be sure that it is accessible to the first-time player. It can be hard to judge how easy or hard a game is that you create because you are already an expert at it.