Inside Battle Slots: Artist/Animator Kent Stowe
April 11, 2011
Battle Slots is FUN!
Hi! My name is Kent Stowe and I was the lead Artist/Animator on Battle Slots RPG. I was responsible for most of the game’s main interface and layout, and for the technique effects and animations in Battle Slots. If it blows up, glows, or flies across the screen, I probably made it. It was a tremendously fun and challenging project and I’m very proud of the finished game. Why? Because Battle Slots is FUN! As a game developer, that’s always the main goal, make something fun! Well, that’s exactly what we did.
With Battle Slots we knew that the volatility of a slot machine would change some of the old rules of traditional RPGs. The question was, what fun benefits would a slot machine bring to a traditional RPG system? Here is one example of how Battle Slots RPG flips the script on role playing game theory and brings something new to the table:
So I’m playing an RPG and I have a cool new Spell, but I can’t use it until I reach level 5, and my character is only level 4. Obviously it’s time to kill some monsters and grind up a level. In a typical RPG I’d think to myself, “OK self, I need 100 more XP (Experience Points) to hit my level, I’m in the skeleton cave, and each skeleton I kill gives me 10 XP. Do some quick mental math… So I guess I’ll kill 10 of these in a row and then I’ll get my next level… Must be why they call it grinding…”
OK stop right there… that’s not fun, it’s boring!
In Battle Slots, the XP I earn isn’t some rigid number like 10 XP per skeleton. The reels of the slot machine determine the XP award. If I hit a big XP payout during the battle, I may get that 100 XP in just one spin! The enemies also spin their own Magic Slot Machine, and any XP or Money they make during the battle is mine to keep too, so long as I win! That means if the Skeleton hits an XP jackpot in battle and I kill it, that XP is mine too!
That volatility is so much more fun! Any spin could be a jackpot, so you always want to give it “just one more spin!” Then it’s 2:00 am…
Now take it one step further with the ability to decide whether you want 3 XP symbols 3 Money Symbols or a Mixture as part of your symbol set. Really want that new technique in the store? Switch your slot to have no XP symbols, just Money, and rake in the cash. Or vice versa. Need a level but have tons of cash? Go all-XP. Want some of each? Set
it with a mixture. The point is, you can customize the machine to the needs at hand, as the situation changes.
That’s just one example, and I could go on all day, but I don’t need to… As I write this, the Demo version of Battle Slots is upon us. I encourage anybody who likes Role Playing Games, Slot Machines, Casual games like Puzzle Quest, or video games in general to try it out and see how well this crazy mash-up works. If you like the Demo you’ll be able to continue right where you left off when the game releases.
So enough talking, get the Demo and see for yourself. Battle Slots is FUN!