TALE TUESDAY #15 – SIERRA NEVADA – IMPROVED THE SYSTEM?

Hey everyone!
It is time for another ‘Tale Tuesday’ and we’re changing the topic a bit. We’re moving from more personal details about the game development and we move into actual game development and work organization.
Time to find out more about behind the scenes of ‘Sierra Nevada’!

It is good to make it clear: from the beginning, ‘Sierra Nevada’ was a project to test out our new strategies. Its purpose was to find out if our newly planned ways and organization will work better than what we had or should we adapt something new. It included a lot of changes in order to truly improve from the past.

First major change was the project scheme. We’ve always been using Git software to track changes in our files, however we’ve changed the strategy of receiving and uploading the updated files. Without going into many technical details, in the past it was much more effort, each person operating on separate repository and pushing to one, main repository with the game files. ‘Sierra Nevada’ changed that forever: all people work in one repository, just on certain branches. They are also maintained differently and new rules apply to using it.

Second major change was the marketing method. In the past, we’ve been up to date pretty much all the time. We’ve showed people all freshest content. However, with passing time, we’ve realized that it is not possible for a small indie dev studio to keep up with a planned, regular scheme. In order to fight it, we’ve went ahead and postponed releases and announcements from actual builds finishes. A certain build could exist for weeks at the point when it was announced, and many new ones came in that time. The point was to make sure we do have content for as long as it is required and to avoid disasters and voids in schedule in case some accidents happen. And it quickly proved to work just fine! During development of ‘Sierra Nevada’ we had a major incident, where the main developer did not have a hardware for over two weeks. Even though we’ve struggled and the development came to a complete stop, we still had things to post and we did not stop.

It’s worth mentioning that general approach has also changed. We’re approaching projects differently now, trying to imagine its final stages, so that we can make space for features that might show up in the future. We’ve attempted that for ‘Sierra Nevada’ and it worked pretty well, however there’s always room for improvement.

In general, ‘Sierra Nevada’ really helped us find a proper working ethic. It helped Iguana Mercenary to properly come back to life after series of stops. It was definitely a great test and an experience.

Stay tuned for more ‘Tale Tuesday’ soon!

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