In Gamasutra's latest feature, a postmortem
of Mediatonic's Monsters (Probably) Stole My Princess
, Mediatonic's head of games Paul Croft and producer Jim Griffiths discuss a major mistake the team made with the game.
"The main criticism we got for Monsters
was concerning the length of the game," the team writes. While there was a lot of content in the score attack mode, many users played only the story mode and then complained that the game was short.
"Generally, we saw Story Mode as a way to tell a great story, set up the character and his world, and introduce the gameplay concepts to the player. Score attack mode was where the 'real' game began, so players would hopefully train their skills throughout Story mode and then go on to rinse the combo-based Score Attack," writes the team. However, it didn't turn out this way for many users.
Even worse, they write, "We'd hidden an entire stage in Monsters
, which was unlocked if the player attained gold medals for the five main story levels."
This means that one-sixth of the story mode content was actually hidden
, and, they write, hidden well:
"Avoiding overt hints that the level existed was a deliberate decision, mostly because we wanted people who unlocked it to be completely surprised and bowled over by their discovery. However, we failed to properly indicate that the level even existed, so any unlocks that did happen were by serious players and ardent completists discovering the sixth stage accidentally."
In short, the game faced major criticisms for the dearth of content, but extra content was there -- but hidden far too well for the majority of players to ever see it.
The full postmortem
, live now on Gamasutra, goes into much that went right
with the game's development, and explains in detail the thoughts and process that went into developing the title, which has been released on PlayStation Minis and Xbox Live Indie Games.