Wow, what a weekend! Showing Roxy’s Quest at rAge was one of the most uplifting, exciting experiences of my life, and I’m glad that I was pushed to get the game done in time for the show.
We had some hiccups on the Friday; with the game being practically untested externally there were bound to be bugs and glitches, and boy did they come out. We had a few serious game-breaking bugs, but I worked my ass off that night to get them all fixed. Almost. I found myself putting out another build during the Saturday morning, but by 10am the game was running well. There were still a couple of issues that cropped up but there was only a single instance of the game outright crashing from that point on. I call that a success.
People definitely had a good time with Roxy’s Quest, but having that delicious grand prize of an MSI GX60 gaming notebook (thanks Corex!) meant there was plenty of incentive for visitors to stick around and push their skills to the limits. The chap who set the highest score at the end of Friday continued to be the reigning champion throughout most of Saturday, but as the day pushed on the average score crept ever higher, and eventually around mid-afternoon a new record was set.
And then it was Sunday – the last day for visitors to have a crack at setting a high score. We eventually had to limit playthroughs to make sure everyone had a fair chance, and ultimately it came down to four guys vying for the highest score. One after the other they took turns (eventually we set aside a single machine just for them, while the rest of the public had a go on the other PC) and each successive play blasted through the high score. Even my own personal best was beaten as emergent gameplay took over and the competitors figured out clever ways to farm score in the final level by sacrificing lives and gambling against the countdown timer.
Eventually, the final top score was set by Matthew – he reached 19,455 points and actually died as he killed the final boss. We all froze. I wasn’t sure what the game would do in that situation as I’d never experienced that before. But it did indeed reward him with a final score sufficient to beat Reinach’s previous best of 19,183. That placed Mischa in third place with 18,773 and Allen in fourth with 15,210. Matthew takes the grand prize of the MSI notebook, and we’ll put together a little something for the three runners-up as thanks for all their effort. Congratulations guys! We’re busy processing the prizes and will be in contact shortly.
I want to thank everyone who came through and had a go at Roxy’s Quest. I had an awesome time watching the competition escalate, chatting with people about the development process and raking in loads of feedback on gameplay, bugs and level design.
See you next year for the sequel (maybe)!