iGIPF — An iOS Game in 2 Weeks

Alexey GrunichevApr 18, 2012

Day 1.

We all remember those “How to learn C++ in 21 days” books.

Many people are probably skeptical about this idea, but (as we’ve already been into the future) there is no reason to doubt it? Before we delve into the specifics of our programming venture, here is a brief introduction to our team. We are a couple of programmers with no claim (oh, really?) to fame like Angry Birds and, moreover, with very little experience in iOS or GameDev in general. Roughly speaking, for us, this project is being undertaken as both a challenge to ourselves and, ultimately, for the pure fun and experience even if little can be achieved (oh, really?) in the end.

Now that you know at least a little more about us than Google can tell you, let’s talk about the rules for this endeavor. “Two weeks are enough for every project” was a statement made by one of us (let’s call him Bill…No, Bond is better) in a Skype call late one night. “Okay, but maybe…” was the reply that was abruptly cut off by “No buts or maybes.” Well, OK, if you say so! Of course, we could spend these weeks investing time in our families, working, taking care of the fate of humanity, or any number of other noble pursuits. Yeah, right! If you’ll buy that, I have a bridge to sell you. If we weren’t doing this project, the honest truth is that we’d be playing Starcraft, wasting time on Facebook, or just drinking beer.


Anyway, back to the rules, which have been set:

Two weeks of deeply intensive development is enough if you think about it. After all, 2 * 7 * 24 = 336 hours, which translates, via the following sophisticated math (336/8 *7/5 = 58.8), into nearly 59 calendar days or 2 whole months! Clearly the math justifies the time limit (looks like there might be a trick somewhere… But millions of managers can be wrong!). And, quite seriously (this is a serious post; honestly), our programming practices prove that the best way to raise the priority of any given task is to decrease the time limits for completing it. So, exactly two weeks (“exactly” means two weeks plus an extra two weeks depending on the situation). Rule 1 is complete!
Work on other rules later.

What to Write

OK, now that the time limit is set, we must decide what we should write. After an objective evaluation of our capabilities (who are we trying to fool?), we decide not to write a 4D-shooter with RPG (or BDSM) elements and multiplayer capabilities for 20,000,000 simultaneous players. However, after some discussion, we do think that having a simpler multiplayer option our game is a grand idea.

As a basis, we took the game called GIPF, as there is nothing in the AppStore (and not planned, as we see). We decided to change the rules of the original game a little bit to make it even simpler to play, to ensure that it is not an exact copy of the original game, and to make it even more fun. In short, it will be a logical game with rules a bit more complicated than Tic-tac-toe and with a bit less need for strategy than chess. This seems like a good way for roughly 67 to 68% of Americans to spend their time. This number of users is calculated using extremely strict formulas with basic expectations about the number of sales of the application, at the price of $149, that are needed in order for us to purchase an island in the Mediterranean Sea on which to live and carry on about our programming. These numbers can be slightly reduced (~1,000 fold) in case we decide that money is not the main goal of our lives.

Our plans for the day:

  • High-level architectural design of the application
  • List of tasks and time limits
  • Make decisions about the supported platforms and iOS version

We’ll talk about this in next post.


uDevGames 2011

Convergence — Best Gameplay
Kung Fu Killforce — Best Overall Game, Best Audio, Best Presentation
Flying Sweeden — Best Graphics, Most Original
Time Goat — Best Story