Pico Pirates postmortem

On international Talk Like A Pirate Day 2019, I released a Pico 8 game that’s seen more attention than any of my previous projects, Pico Pirates.

In this post, I’ll be going through the development process from start to finish and touch on a few specific points, namely;

  • Why did this game take almost 2 years to complete?
  • How did the design of the game come about and mature over time?
  • How does the final product shape up? Was it worth the time and energy?

Pico 8 – It’s very good

I love Pico 8. It’s a fantasy games console that you can buy right now for only $15. This gives you access to hundreds of amazing open source games and more importantly, allows you to create your own programs, sprites, sound effects and music.

I’ve been getting to grips with Pico-8 in the last couple of weeks and also become quite evangelical about getting people to try it out for themselves (hence, this post). It’s a real treat to be able to iterate on tiny game ideas super fast and explore new ideas. Here’s a few things I’ve put together recently as examples;

LOTS OF GIFS AHEAD

#PROCJAM 2017

Last week I participated in #PROCJAM, an annual game jam hosted on itch.io now in it’s fourth year. The premise of Proc Jam is simple, make something that makes something. Most people make some for of procedural software but physical games and toys are also encouraged. If you haven’t tried procedural generation before as a part of game development I’d highly encourage it, and Proc Jam is an excellent time to do so.

Anyway, what do I do? Well, I made this racing game with procedurally generated racetracks and called it #PROCJAM Racer.