“Best New Games”, “New Games We Love” -2016
In So Choice Softworks’ “Maim Street,” you are a crossing guard helping people across the street. But there are too many cars. Like, way too many. You can’t save everyone! Earn prizes to upgrade your game, and even unlock the powerful bazooka to turn the tide of the intersection war! Rescue pedestrians to learn secrets about the town. Plenty of games reward perfection, this one rewards adequacy.
So Choice Softworks’ debut title, “Maim Street”, launched in March 2016 to viral success. However, with limited resources and a team of only 4 individuals, the challenges in creating Maim Street were numerous. The concept for Maim Street came about in late 2015 as we considered a ‘simple pilot exercise’ to get our feet wet before tackling larger projects. Yet, even as we began to dabble in the idea of a simple crossing guard facing numerous and perilous odds, the team quickly fell in love with the game and we worked to make it into a fleshed out concept in it’s own right.
I was brought on initially to help design and test the UI for the game, but quickly found a place in character design, marketing, game design, and in general helping to shape the experience and thematics of the game.
Below are some early process shots of the process:
Maim Street has a simple and straightforward gameplay mechanic- mainly swiping left, right, up and down. However, the concept of the game and the ‘joke’ behind it- that you simple cannot, nor should not try to save every pedestrian, was immediately non-obvious to our beta testers. This required several iterations between reworking the tutorial (which was often skipped) and the game interface and feedback loops in order to successfully instill in players the true objectives of the game- that being to keep your crossing guard’s stamina up as long as possible by saving at least one pedestrian before the stamina meter runs out. Add into that dozens of in game upgrades and modifications, including a bazooka and costumes that change the gameplay, and you get the addictive and chaotic (and adorable) Maim Street.
Roles:UX/Modeling/Art Direction/Game Design
Team: Wes Citti/Exec Producer/Dev, Tony Wilson/Creative Direction, Jeff Ames/Lead Dev