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oh, v quick comment on the disasters: they're meant to be unavoidable in some cases, acting as a hard timer that doesn't look like a hard timer. i've got to think a bit harder about the design in this particular case... well, in a lot of areas of the game, but i feel genuinely rejuvenated by your post!

my next game that i think exists in similar design space is a card game that must be ready by the 11th of may, so please look forward to that. and maybe i'll find some time to spice up IC afterwards -- with your suggestions as well as whatever i learn from this other thing :3

Hi droqen. I'm very glad to have "rejuvenated" your energy on this game!

>  i love the idea of different levels -- that sounds very doable and rich space for new social constructs

FWIW what I was thinking of was less along the lines of "you finished Level 1, now on to Level 2" and more like Mario Kart or Counter Strike where there are a bunch of different levels to choose in the menu, or they just rotate around after 10 minutes or so.

Since you asked about play-by-play, I'll tell you my favourite little moment: one of my brothers and I were stuck on the top floor of the tower with no ladders down, wall on the left, high drop on the right. One of us had to jump off to push the arrows. I had 1 heart and my brother had 2, but I was on the right so I had to jump off first. We had a pushing struggle for awhile and in the end realised that if I pushed him up against the wall on the left, I could squeeze past him and he could jump off non-fatally. But in all this time, the other brother activated some machine (don't remember which) causing the one up top with me to lose his second-last heart and now one of us was forced to suicide.

Looking forward to your May 11 game!

I agree, not levels you earn or progress through, I'm thinking more or less free access to different places with distinct differences so you don't feel the grind of the same generator over and over.

Hehehe those pushing struggles. Really good story.

> oh, v quick comment on the disasters: they're meant to be unavoidable in some cases, acting as a hard timer that doesn't look like a hard timer.

Hmm, if there's going to be some disasters that kill everyone and others that are avoidable, I think I'd rather know which one is coming. Perhaps the one that's going to kill everyone should be called a "catastrophe" so that way everybody knows a big one is coming, changing up the social dynamic to "we need to get out of this level now".

As it is, I think we largely ignored the disaster timer, just reacting when they happened but not really taking any action while the timer is counting. Whereas if we knew a "catastrophe" was coming, maybe some people (with lower HP) would be more inclined to cooperate to exit the level.

Iirc you can't really escape disasters.  It's not a hard timer to keep you exiting a screen before it's up, it's a timer to more generally add pressure. The timer sticks around between screens, I think.

But still, the social dynamic of disasters could stand to be sharpened a bit :)