The choices you make when designing your video game are the absolute most important ones you’ll make for much of its development. After all, if you don’t design the game right, it won’t matter how well your marketing is, or how low your price is, people will hate it, and not play it, and then you’re sunk. But often, potential players have questions as to how and why developers make certain decisions. Take for example the team behind Soulblight, the top-down roguelike game currently on Kickstarter.
The team has been asked by many why they choose the top-down style instead of an isometric or even a side-scrolling point of view. Well, on an update on Kickstarter and Steam, they revealed a little insight into why they did it.
A big point of contention was the artstyle. While an isometric view would’ve been cool, they note that it would’ve forced them to make everything in the game 3D, which would’ve taken a lot more work as they are a small team. With the top-down view, they can make certain things 2D, and thus focus on other things.
The other issue was the style of game mechanics they wanted in Soulblight. They wanted a strategic fighter and tactics game, one where “button-mashing” wasn’t a thing. They also wanted to have a stealth aspect to everything, and the top-down view helped not only that, but also gave players a large scope to view the battlefield and thus strategize before they went into battle.
Now to be fair, the team admits there were problems with the top-down style as well, but they worked out some unique solutions to those problems and figured out how to make it all work.
Soulblight is still on Kickstarter now, and if you like what you see and read, you should consider pledging.