Some folk from the brough games discord organised a 7 Day Broughlike jam last month. A bit confusing but an honour. Heart emoticon.
I'm never sure how much people are joking when they call things broughlikes? Like roguelike was already a silly genre name so whatever (& whatever meaning it once had has been totally lost and sometimes reversed), I guess I just have to embrace it at this point but I still try to remind people I don't just have one genre ok. And also I'm far from the only person making smaller-scale roguelikes, e.g. Jeff Lait has made way more.
But obviously I do like them whatever we want to call them.
I made a game for the jam, what else could I do? I flirted with the idea of doing something completely utterly different from anything else I've ever made just to show, but honestly that would take too long, I have a baby now (who is amazing) so doing a jam would have been unrealistic if I hadn't been able to reuse a lot of work. So I just did the obvious thing of making a game like the games I make for the jam about making games like the games I make. And it turned out okay! In fact it was really good for me, I haven't released a game for a while and I found it really freeing to just make the kind of thing I've made before and not worry about pushing boundaries or whatever. I realised how much that feeling that I ought to do something new isn't really inside me, it's about what I think other people are going to perceive as being worthwhile. Fuck that. I can just make whatever. It's the apocalypse and sometimes we feel a lot of pressure to be doing something meaningful, heal the world or go out in glory, but that's too much to take on, stress doesn't help anything, and anyway doing meaningful work isn't something you can quantify like robots maximising utility to create something 5.1% more artistic and 33.4% more effective at melting the corrupt hearts of rich men. Just like things that you like and make things you like because you like them. Imagine your lungs filled with soft moist earth, green roots growing through them spreading out along your arms reaching towards the horizon.
And celebrate achievements even if they're not like the maximum best thing you ever hope towards. My baby is so determined to get to crawling and walking that they'll keep trying and getting frustrated and crying but still trying, and if we pick them up to stop them overstraining themselves they just struggle to get back down and try some more, so we throw a parade in their honour and all dance around the house in a conga line to help them celebrate what they have already done instead of being frustrated at what they can't do yet. I try to remind myself the same. There's a real technical craft in making these games, making them actually work as game, and having mastered an aspect of that it's worth exercising it with joyful making and not always having to be expanding to try encompass more, there's still plenty I can do with variations within the space I've already explored. Appreciate small differences, maybe they look the same if you look from distance and squint but actually playing them is a different game, minor concept variation expands into bigger differences when you grow it into full soul, like every person or tree is the same basic structure with the same types of features but it's worth getting to know individuals. And trust, trust that if you grow in self then what you create will express more and be worthy without frantic trying to make sure it is. Just be and make and making will be. Do art for the artist not for the art, art will take care of itself.
Now in my usual way with jam games I got a bit sucked into spending more time on it. But now it's done, for good, I think. So I release an iOS version:
P1 SELECT on ios appstore
P1 SELECT on itch.io
THE REST HAS SPOILERS.
It's basically a variation on concept of Imbroglio: grid of different weapon types and moving through the maze also moves through different weapons. Main difference is that attacking in a direction also moves on the weapon-selection grid, so it's not equivalent to maze grid. This is "glitch mechanic" too, I tried to tick as many boxes as possible in what someone listed as characteristics of my games. I try to create the fiction that it could be a real game without this "bug", it sort of works, with luck (and the hp banner) every hero except MIDAS could conceivably complete the game, and MIDAS could get a higher score, maybe I should have just made that game instead of trying to be fancy haha.