162 - Next game

Developer diaries about creating Neverending Nightmares.
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matt
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162 - Next game

Post by matt »

In this developer diary, I talk about some ideas for my next game. Is Neverending Nightmares a series? What defines a sequel? I don't know, but I try to talk about what I'm imagining.

-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

Grabthehoopka
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by Grabthehoopka »

I'm glad that you want to jump into making a sequel, and even more glad that you want to make it as different as possible from this one!

As for the name, as far as I can tell, there's four different ways to go.

The first is the good old fashioned number at the end. First Game -> First Game 2. The good thing about it is that it's simple. It tells you everything you need to know in the least amount of space. When Silent Hill 2 came out, I seem to recall it getting criticized a lot for being unrelated to the first game. However, I don't think you have to worry too much about that, since A.) I think modern audiences are more used to the idea of unrelated sequels, and B.) No offense, but I don't think Neverending Nightmares will be held in the same regard by as many people as the first Silent Hill was, so if a sequel is announced and then comes out, I doubt that it will be held to the same scrutiny that Silent Hill 2 was.

The second is the just as old-fashioned subtitle. First Game -> First Game: The Subtitle, or First Game 2: The Subtitling, or First Game 2: Nemesis/Resurrection/Revelations/Unleashed/Reloaded, etc etc etc. I know this is what you want to avoid, since most people tend to think of action movie sequels when they see this. Bioshock Infinite did this, but they had the benefit of having a one-word title. But, there's also the good old subtitle first title second, as in Subtitle: First Game 2, which I always tend to associate with PC titles from the late 90s/early 2000s. And Rambo.

The third is when we have to mix things up a bit. This is when you keep one of the words in the title and change the other. So if, for instance, you decided to make Neverending Nightmares 2 about pies, you could call it Neverending Pies or Pie Nightmares. However, since the original title is alliterative, then it would be more appropriate if the replacement word also started with an N. So, if you decided to make it about someone with a crippling phobia of nylon, it would be Neverending Nylon or Nylon Nightmares.

The fourth is where it gets a bit more strange. Change the title completely, but keep it alliterative. So, if you did a bunch of drugs or got brain damaged or something and decided to make the next game about mildly annoying stressors instead of terrible nightmares, you could call it Nagging Nuisances, or you could change the first letters, and get something like Evil Everlasting, or Relentless Revulsion, or Devoted Dismay, or Continual Cowardice, or something like that.

ranger_lennier
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by ranger_lennier »

Depending on how much you're wanting to do and how close it will be to Neverending Nightmares, you could avoid some of the name problems by making it DLC. Given the vague story and branching paths, I think it would be pretty easy to fit new sections into the game.

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matt
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by matt »

DLC wouldn't make sense because it'd be completely unrelated to the story and characters of the first Neverending Nightmares (which is why naming it is a bit tricky). I'm toying with the idea of a completely different art style, but I'm not sure if that'll pan out. At the very least, we'd probably try and take the art in a bit of a different direction.

Also, DLC is kind of bad because you are limited to a small percentage of your original audience, whereas if you are selling a new game, you can get all your original users and more.

I'm personally leaning towards Neverending Nightmares: Secret Subtitle. That what makes the most sense to me at this moment, but I have a lot of time to make my decision. :)
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

Harry Sunderland
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by Harry Sunderland »

Clearly you need to release the game only in one region of the world (ex. Japan) and call it NN2, and then later release a different game in the U.S. and call it NN2. Also, you can make the us version a sprite swap of some other game.

Grabthehoopka
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by Grabthehoopka »

Clearly, you should be focusing on re-packaging the same game with small, iterative updates. I can't wait til Super Neverending Nightmares EX Plus Alpha Turbo HD Remix comes out! I heard you're finally gonna balance air juggling!

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matt
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by matt »

Those both sound like good ideas, but I don't think I'll be doing them. hahaha
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

Harry Sunderland
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by Harry Sunderland »

Grabthehoopka wrote:Clearly, you should be focusing on re-packaging the same game with small, iterative updates. I can't wait til Super Neverending Nightmares EX Plus Alpha Turbo HD Remix comes out! I heard you're finally gonna balance air juggling!
I think I'll skip that release and wait for Super Neverending Nightmares EX Plus Alpha Turbo HD Remix Championship Edition. The discs for both games actually have the same content, but Championship Edition comes with all the on-disc DLC unlocked.

But in all seriousness Matt, while I like the Neverending Nightmares: Secret Subtitleidea, my personal experience (which may not be widespread) is to be confused by games titled like this. For example, I'm still not quite sure Binding of Isaac: Rebirth is. Also, Towerfall: Ascension. I didn't even know that Octodad: Dadliest Catch was a whole new campaign with different levels until I went back and played the original for fun (I learned of Dadliest Catch first, but just assumed the original game was a crappier version of Dadliest Catch).

If these games were from someone I followed closely, I'd probably be more savvy as to what they include. However, as a casual guy who just hears about a lot of indie games indirectly, I don't have a lot of info on the ones I know about indirectly.

The fact that it's popular to re-release games with added content+subtitle (AKA what I believe Binding of Isaac: Rebirth does) adds confusion to what's a sequel and what's not. Hell, some people were really confused as to what the difference between Wii and Wii U is.

Bringing it home, maybe my case is not widespread, but perhaps the secret subtitle should also somehow imply that the content is different. But anyways that's just my thoughts on the issue. It very well may not be an actual issue, but I know that I personally hear about so many indie games and don't have time to investigate them all. The NN fans are obviously going to know that the new game is a sequel, but I'm thinking more about casual fans of the game who maybe bought the game, beat it, and immediately moved on to the next indie game out there. Perhaps you may want to consider a way to broadcast to this audience what the new game is.

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matt
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by matt »

That is a good point. Harry, do you have a suggestion as to what I should call it? Neverending Nightmares 2? Something completely different? I suppose it doesn't really matter until I finish this game and get ready to announce the next one, so I have some time to make up my mind. hahaha
-Matt Gilgenbach
Lead Frightener at Infinitap Games

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gagaplex
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Re: 162 - Next game

Post by gagaplex »

It will also be about nightmares and horror and so on but won't be related story-wise at all? Then go with something evocative of the first title but distinct. Maybe. I'm trying to stick with the alliteration, but that's not so easy to do. "Unending Utopia"? "Deeper Delusions"? "Falling Further"? "Infinite Insomnia"? Or perhaps something that's not an alliteration like "No Awakening", "No Way Out", "Wake Up", "In Morpheus' Embrace/Grasp", "Lucid"? Bah, most of these sound like the title of a B-movie.

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