The power of the dictionary

Wordsmith already has words that generate new words – a nest makes birds, a rathole makes rats, and many other interactions. One thing we don’t have – in the demo version, at least – is many words that generate new locations.

The castle, mine and wreck illustrate the general idea: objects you create can be locations that you enter and explore. The plan was always to have more such objects, but the Unity engine really doesn’t make it easy to have persistent levels that you can move back and forth between. In the demo, all four locations are packed into a single Unity level – which causes bugs (such as the disappearing skeletons in the wreck) and also performance issues. When I sort out a better way to organize levels, the way is open for locations that lead into more locations, and so on.

So if you create a City, it probably ought to contain a bunch of different buildings – such as a palace, a market, a jail, a bank, etc. Furthermore, the bank would also contain a vault, the jail would contain cells, and so on.

Another thing that just occurred to me: people keep telling me this game has huge replay value, and they enjoy playing just the same demo level again and again, trying to see what words they can make and how efficiently they can play. To celebrate the game’s replayability, I really ought to be putting in a scoring system.

I think, each time you spell a word, you should receive points equal to the square of the number of letters in the word. Everyone likes spelling long words, right? 🙂

However, I don’t want to push people into dull grindy “spell as many words as possible” gameplay, so here’s the plan: for a word to score any points, it must contain a letter you have never used before.

In other words: at most, you’ll get 26 opportunities to score during the game. Use them wisely!
(Ok, ok, maybe other actions will also score you points. Slaying the dragon, cracking the bank vault, escaping the jail… we’ll see how it goes.)

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