Tip of the Quill: A Journal
Postmortem: Showtime

Want a behind-the-scenes look into the development of our “IGF Grand Prize finalist and XNA Community Games standout” game CarneyVale: Showtime? That’s just what programmer Bruce Chia and artist Desmond Wong provide in a featured postmortem article at Gamasutra that just went live.
Highlights of the piece include detailed lists of what went right and what went wrong during the game’s development, as well as an in-depth look into… The evils of HD?

When we were building the game, we made sure that it looked great and ran properly on our development machines, not realizing how much influence that would have on our production. Not planning for wide distribution of our game made it much less accessible to other languages, regions and screen setups.
Our team had an HDTV in our lab that we used for most of our initial prototypes, and all of our computers were capable of rendering at high resolutions.
This led us to work under the incorrect assumption that we were developing the game only for HD displays, and we lacked the foresight to support lower-resolution televisions.
In our zeal, we created so many assets that when we finally realized we should cater to lower resolutions, downsizing those assets was an insurmountable task.
For example, we had many lines of text that we’d rendered as image files with fancy effects. Although the Xbox Live Community Games reviewers did not reject our submission for this reason, many of them did complain that words were cut off and that some text was too small to read.
This was especially evident on CRT television screens that were less than 20″ in size. However, due to time constraints and the need to ship, we had to push the title to Xbox Live Community Games without catering to lower-resolution television sets.

D’oh! Check out the full postmortem for this and other stories.