The New Game+ Problem

Progress on the Android version of Inferno 2 has been stalled for a while.  Pretty much everything has been done for a few weeks except New Game+ Mode.  Part of the problem has been lack of time, due to working hard on the new large project, and playing too much Hearthstone (much more enjoyable than spending too much time on Twitter).  And I’ve just needed a break from working nights after doing it since July.

Play It Again?

But the real problem was that New Game+ just was too similar to the main campaign after the initial few levels, and I didn’t have any good ideas for how to fix the issue.  I’d done all the work aside from adding a few extra enemies to the later levels, but there wasn’t a good reason to play through all 80 levels again.  It felt less interesting than New Game+ in Inferno+, or than Dark Mode in Super Crossfighter.

Part of the problem is that the game is just so long, it needed to be more than the same thing but with more upgrades and faster and harder.  You essentially had that experience in the later levels of Inferno 2, doing it again for the whole game (even with extra upgrade slots) just didn’t feel cool enough.

In anticipation of getting some actual time this week to work on finishing the game up for release on Android (and version 1.1 on iOS), I finally started thinking about additional ways to make New Game+ fun and interesting.  The breakthrough came when I told my wife about the reason I hadn’t wanted to work on Inferno 2 lately.  She had a few different suggestions, and one of those led to the new plan for adding variety to New Game+.

The New Plan

Out of every 10 levels in Inferno 2, 8 are normal levels, 1 is a Core Destroyer level, and 1 is a Survival or Boss level.  In New Game+, 2 to 4 of the 8 normal levels will now have special rules/challenges.  Which of the 8 levels has them will be randomized, and the sub-rules of each special level type (there are 2 types) will be randomized as well.  You’ll always get to choose between 2 of those sub-rules when you get to a special level.

The hope is that they’ll add enough interest and variety (in addition to the other enhancements), without messing with the overall game flow, that the game will still feel fresh and fun if you want to play New Game+ multiple times.  That plan may be modified slightly as I actually finish and play New Game+, and it’ll be less confusing to understand when you’re actually playing, but I have a plan at last.

The game will be out on Android in early December, with the iOS 1.1 update around the same time.  I’m not going to state an actual date given my terrible track record of hitting them with Inferno 2, but I’m excited about working on it again, and that’s something I haven’t been able to say for a while.

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