Tell us a bit about your game and what was it that inspired you to make this game?
Run Around is a Hyper Casual level-based runner with a twist: you run inside a danger-filled circle, and the only way out is to color the floor with your feet and complete the circle. Sounds easy, but it is wickedly hard 🙂
As part of our brainstorming process here at TabTale, we need to come up with lots of new ideas every week, to keep up with the high volume of games in development.
We always loved loop runners, where you run around and around (games like Infiniroom by Lonebot and Circle Surfer by Sevo games), but most of them are endless, frustrating and struggle to appeal to a wider audience. That’s why we came up with the idea that you draw a line while you run and you need to complete it in order to finish the level – this simple change gives the player a clear and obtainable goal.
Naming a game is almost always one of the most difficult tasks since that’s what people identify it with. Was this name the first choice for the name? If not then what were some other options you were looking at?
Run Around was the original name of the game, even as a one pager idea. We tend to prefer a simple, catchy and clear name that tells the player exactly what the game is about. You can always change it later, with the help of the brilliant, creative minds of our marketing guys. But in this case, the original name survived the process with honor 🙂
The artwork of this game is simply gorgeous. What sort of thought process went behind that?
Although the original concept for the game was a graphic stickman runner theme, we tried various approaches before making the final decision. We were able to experiment with different themes, thanks to the amazingly talented and diverse art department we have here at TabTale.
We eventually decided to go back to the original concept; to keep it clean and focus all the player’s attention on the gameplay. The game is hard enough as it is and requires split-second decision making – the last thing we wanted to do is add distractions for the player.
What was the major challenge in developing this game?
Every game has its challenges. With Run Around, it was finding the perfect way to make the stickman jump inside the circle. When you take a straight road and curve it to a circle, it changes all the physics: gravity, forward momentum, etc. It took some time and brain-twisting calculations in order to make this feel natural for the player while remaining playable.
Another major challenge was the GLD (Game Level Design). We needed to make sure that the game has a sense of progression, with new obstacles and new experiences as you pass levels (after all, you are always running around in a circle). With more than a 100 levels, this was no easy task.
Any in-game secrets that could be easter eggs for players to discover?
Each level has a unique name, and every name has a meaning that relates to the specific level. Try and find out what the designers meant, and you might even learn something new. For example, in level 26, where you’re a tiny runner facing huge obstacles, the level is named “Brobdingnag” – Google it! Level 42 is all about giant guns, and it’s called Navaron. Level 64 is called Commodore. Get it?
Will there be any addition or exciting new updates for the game in the near future?
How much time did it take to get this game developed and what can players expect in updates for this game?
The original idea had been on the table since November 2017, but production only started around March 2018, and the game went live in July 2018.
Our process is pretty straightforward once we start production – only very, very fast. The goal is to get to soft launch as fast as possible in order to check retention and marketability. We leave all the heavy machinery (monetization systems, analytics, SDKs, etc.) for after the first soft launch; that way we can focus purely on the game and keep the team slim and agile.
What are your future plans as a game developer?
How long have you been developing games and what is the most enjoyable aspect of game development according to you?
Our Hyper Casual studio is working for 1.5 years now but some of the team such as Itai the product owner and Eyal our Game Designer have many more years of gaming experience. Elena our game level designer is newer in this biz and we all love it!
There are 2 points in the development process that we find most fun and challenging:
First there’s the prototyping phase – where all of the possibilities are in front of you and you try to discover the fun and uniqueness of the game.
And then there’s live-ops – the game is out, people love it, and now it’s time to make it better, more successful, deeper and more profitable.
Of course, the people and the collaborative nature of this industry are what I love most about my work.
How many people worked on the development of this game and any interesting dev stories?
What are your personal favourite games?
Run Around, what do you mean 🙂
Aside from the obvious – there are so many favorites, and it always comes in waves. At the moment, The favorites of the team here are Slices by Good Job Games as a time killer, and Fortnite, of course. As a Hyper Casual studio myself, we like to diversify – we don’t have an all-time favorite, except maybe for 1010! by Gram Games, when we’re on flights.
Any message for our readers?
Are you still reading this? Go download and play Run Around NOW!!!
Keep playing, let us know what you think, and help us make a better game!