Friday, November 27, 2015

Localization, Clear Save Game, and Offline Play

I ran into a couple of things that I'm trying to slip in at the 11th hour (still trying to make my personally-imposed Sunday night deadline!).

First of all, I decided that I had enough friends from around the world, that I could probably localize my Google Play game description and summary into a couple of languages. I don't know what the pay-off for this is going to be, but it doesn't cost me anything to ask a few favors, and I hope it'll convince a few people to try my game. I imagine that if I was a non-English speaker, then I'd be at least more interested in trying out a game whose description I could understand. I'm not doing any localization of the game itself, though. That would be a much bigger task. My languages so far are English, Spanish, and Korean. I'm waiting on someone to see if they'll translate it into Japanese for me. I lived and taught English in South Korea for 3 years before getting into game development, so that helped me build relationships with people all over the world.

The other thing is a "clear save data" feature. I mean, this is a puzzle game, and you can always go back and replay earlier levels. I was resisting adding this because I didn't want someone to accidentally hit this button and then email me angrily wanting me to restore their data. Hopefully that won't happen, but I've decided it's worth throwing this in. I can imagine scenarios where maybe someone's spouse or kid wants to try the game on the same account, and wants to clear all progress so they have a fresh experience. So I'm gonna throw that in this weekend.

The third thing is offline play. Obviously, this isn't a game that requires the internet (except for the cloud save feature), but someone actually tried playing the game yesterday completely offline. Turns out that every time they completed a level, the Google Play Store login dialog appeared and asked them to try to log in, and then would of course fail because they were offline. Every time. So, I see now that I need to remember if the game doesn't log in on game start, and then not ever try to connect again that session.

Any changes this close to launch are dangerous, I know that all too well. Especially since these two changes affect save data. Dangerous stuff. I'm gonna try to get this done and over to my testers to get as much coverage as possible on it before Sunday.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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