Looking Back

Hello everyone,

About a month and a half ago, I was planning on writing a “we the design team are done with the first chapter yay” themed entry and talk about what happened to us throughout the design process and how we improved ourselves. And yet last night I once again said “this time we made the final changes”, and just now I remembered that the last puzzle of the chapter still needs a little bit of work. At this rate, if I kept delaying this post I was going to have to write it on the day we release the game…

Hoping that I was able to convey the theme of the first paragraph, I’m moving on to the actual entry that I wanted to write.

Although the development of Macrotis started on January 2017, its roots go back to October of 2016. According to the decisions we made as a team then, and with the excitement of first starting a job, within three weeks we as the design team designed all the puzzles for our first two chapters on paper, and even started to implement them in Unity. But things did not go as planned. During the development process we realized that some of the mechanics we wanted in our game would not be possible to implement within the development schedule we’d given ourselves and sadly we had to shelve many of the puzzles we’d prepared for those two chapters. Months of effort we spent on those puzzles was wasted… would be a very wrong statement.

As you know, Macrotis is the first video game project for many of the people on our team. Especially as the design team, although we had designed games for years this was a very new field for us. When I look back now, I am glad that we had to give up on our first decisions. The new sections we’re designing are a lot more complex and compact compared to the giant empty sections of old. We have a much more intense and fun second chapter now. Even though it looks like half the size of the old version, when I go in and play it (and I’m happy that our dear tester friends agree with me) it feels as if it is much bigger.

As the project went forward we also went forward and grew with it. When I look back on us I see the excited youth of a year ago being replaced by a determined and driven youth. (Yes, we’re still young.) This strengthens my faith in our team and our project even more.

I hope when you play our game you’ll share the same thoughts as me.

We’re entering our second entry after a rather long wait, I apologize to all of you on behalf of our team, and hoping that our next entry won’t be “yay our game is out” I wish for 2018 to bring everyone health, happiness, and success.

How We Picked a Bilby as Our Main Character

Hey all!


Welcome to the Macrotis: A Mother’s Journey development blog. Today I will tell you the story of how we decided to use a bilby as our main character.

The story goes back to before we became an official studio. One day Özgür got an idea for a game where the main character is chased by a flood caused by the rain. The character would have to go underground because there is nowhere to run to on the ground level. The first brainstorm sessions led us to consider a few options about the game. We wanted either a survival game, an adventure game or a combat oriented game. Finally we decided to go with an adventure platformer.

At that time, we had no idea how to proceed with the story. So, we started to search for animals that could be used as our main characters. After an intense week of brainstorming we established the major features we wanted, what our main character would encounter and how she would handle them. We also decided to make our main character a mother of three, an adorable but strong female rodent. Later, Özgür and I researched creatures that live underground, can gnaw and handle a rough environment. Our first decision was to not use a rabbit or a rat as they are already used in a lot of products as mascots or main characters. We wanted something a little more original, an animal that was not known or commercialized much. A little more research revealed some interesting animals such as the shrew, the jerboa, and the bilby. We ruled out the jerboa because it can jump to extreme heights and we thought if we stuck to reality the gameplay would be a train wreck and if we limited its jump height that would be unfair to the animal itself. Our second option, the shrew, was eliminated since it is an extremely hyperactive animal with strong fighting abilities and we didn’t want to introduce combat mechanics for our game. With two of the three options dismissed we were left with the bilby.

Another week of analysis showed us that indeed the bilby was the best option for us. Bilbies have sacks, where the character could store items to be used in the game. They do not need to drink water, which makes having to deal with a flood more poetic. The father leaves early on and the mother raises the children, which is good for us as we didn’t want another character. It’s also an endangered species, so hopefully we may even raise some awareness about it. All in all the bilby really fits in perfectly with our story elements and environmental challenges.

And that is how we got a bilby as our main character.