One game I have been enjoying thoroughly is Farmers.io on the IPhone. This game has a pretty simple architecture, similar to other .io games like Slither.io and Agar.io. I was thrust into a game with other players where we are tasked with eating or in this case, shucking, as much corn as possible to grow bigger. The bigger one’s truck is, the easier it is to eliminate smaller players and get bigger.
This game has one main loop where a user learns how to move the farm truck with their finger around the field, eating the corn and then eliminating other trucks in the field. There is not really much of an arc in the game since there is not much storytelling or narrative.
In the primary loop:
- The player confronts a mental model that prompts them to drag their finger around the screen where they see corn in the field.
- The player makes the decision to move in specific directions, towards or away from other trucks.
- The player applies an action, dragging their finger to direct the truck to either hit or swerve from other trucks.
- The mysterious black box updates the player’s status points such that if the player eliminates the other truck, the size/points of the eliminated truck are transferred to the current player’s treasure. If the player did not eliminate the truck but swerved, the game continued. If the player hits the truck but gets eliminated (if the player’s truck is smaller than the opponent), the black box triggers to end the game.
- The computer generates visual feedback if the player beats the opponent by showing the player’s points increasing drastically and showing the opponents truck disassembled. If the player is beaten by the opponent, the program shows the player’s truck disassembled, followed by a dialog box indicating “Start Over.”