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Mobile Game Development II

What Went Right

This month was very successful. I am happy with the progress I made on my slot reel bonus feature. At this point, the game is functioning as I intended. The bonus reel demonstrates my understanding of how the slot reels work and the combinatorics involved. Of course a 3X3 slot with three symbols is much simpler than a 5X5 slot with 15-20 symbols found in casinos. Still, I now have the confidence to take on a more complex slot reel system with this experience as my foundation.

Tying the bonus value to the currency earned in the round was simpler than I expected. Before I started on the slot reel, I added a temporary button to mimic the ad bonus feature to work out the function of multiplying the earned currency and adding it to the total. Once that was working as expected, I spent the rest of my energy into making the slot reel as complete as possible. This made the process smoother because I was mentally drained after completing the slot reel. I cannot say for sure, but I think I would have struggled trying to come up with those calculations after making the slot reel.

What Went Wrong

Even though I am happy with the bonus system, I am way behind on the other features. I intended to get the store and character animation done as well, but there were so many components to the slot reel that I didn’t imagine taking so much time. The research required by itself was time consuming. Both the creation and the combinatorics were new to me, and it was not as simple as it seemed. I watched many YouTube videos on the topic and I found one that I used as a reference to get started. It was a 1X3 system and it took some time, but I was able to make my 3X3 slot reel from this.

The purpose of adding the slot reel was to show my understanding of the combinatorics, probability, and the functionality of a casino-level sot reel system. I intended for this to be used as a tool to show potential employers my skillset and to display my ability to create a functioning slot reel game. I am wary that what I made is too simple to accomplish this goal. A casino slot game has bonus features, many more symbols and more complex pay lines. I am not dissatisfied with my result, but making games is about the experience, value and content for the end user. I don’t know if the end user will gain the level of confidence I hope for to discuss potential employment opportunities specifically for slot reel games.

What I Learned And Next Steps

This month was full of great lessons I can use to fuel my journey towards becoming a Game Designer. Complex systems are derived from simpler ones, and understanding the simple systems is a great foundation for making the complex ones. Making a 3X3 slot reel system from the 1X3 example really boosts my confidence to now make casino-level complex slot systems. After I graduate, I plan to solidify my understanding of the slot reel system by creating a standalone slot-reel game with the complex pay lines and the multitude of symbols and combinations. I want to overdeliver on the value so potential employers will have more than enough confidence in my abilities to make employment decisions.

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