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Wargroove dev demystifies game development by involving its community

March 14, 2019 | By Emma Kidwell

"We make games for ourselves, so we know when things aren’t appealing to us and we know how to appeal to us. And that’s always sort of been at the very very core of our strategy."

- Chucklefish founder and lead designer on Wargroove Finn Brice on the business side of game dev.

It's no secret that running a game development company is incredibly tough, especially right now. There are always lessons to be learned when it comes to figuring out what works and what doesn't.

When asked In a recent livestream with Gamasutra about where the studio succeeds and where there's room for improvement, Chucklefish founder and lead designer on Wargroove Finn Brice admits that there's "lots and lots" of lessons to pick from.

"I think that one thing that we’ve done well is that we have an identity, we’ve made games that fulfill… I think we make games aimed at a certain kind of player and perhaps that player hasn’t had, there aren’t a great many games out there that perhaps appeal to that player," Brice says.

"And the reason we do that is because we make games for ourselves, so we know when things aren’t appealing to us and we know how to appeal to us. And that’s always sort of been at the very very core of our strategy," he goes on.

"As long as we are entrenched in games and we’re playing lots and lots and lots of games, and we know when we’re kind of feeling a little underwhelmed by something or we’re missing something, we can fill that gap."

Brice explains that the reason why Chucklefish is so open about its development process is because they want to demystify game development as a whole. There's a disconnect between developer and player if there isn't transparency.

"At the same time a lot of game developers, a lot of game companies do everything they can to hide how difficult it is to make a game. They want to sort of come out with this product that looks as if it was made by magic. And its fresh and perfect on release, and to the end user it looks like there was no effort involved."

"So we want to try and change that," Brice says. "We understand why gamers don’t understand the process and we want to open up. As a result we’ve been really really forthcoming with our community, we involve our community in development."

He does this through going to their Discord channels, Reddit, etc. and asking the community for feedback on various subjects. If there's a reason why something may not be feasible, they communicate it.

"So I think our connection to the community and our sort of transparency in terms of the process is something that we do very well."

But navigating how to communicate with players can be tricky sometimes. How do the Wargroove developers manage that? Take a take a look at the full interview over on the GDC Twitch channel to find out! It's well worth the watch. 

Gamasutra and GDC are sibling organizations under parent company Informa.

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