Unlike most other action spy games, my goal with The Analyst is try and show the player the dark, morally-shady, and mentally draining part of covert espionage. A big part of my plan to accomplish this is the method with which the game delivers the news of failure to the player when the player did not succeed.
A big challenge about this is trying to come up with a method which does not get (reasonably) repetitive and at the same time, packs the punch of failure I want the player to experience.
It may sound like The Analyst is going to be some sadistic game with no victories or happy endings, however that's not the whole picture. The accuracy of the 'intelligence' the player gathers in The Analyst will have a direct impact on how well the player accomplishes his mission.
Currently I am considering showing the player some newspaper which describes the terrorist attack the player failed to prevent, and the newspaper would talk about how many died and were injured, and some more details such as those, however this might not end up being the best solution. I have yet to see.
The Analyst is my first game using turn-based game mechanics, and as I try to figure out how exactly the turn-based game mechanics will work, I must also remember to keep the game's pace at an exciting and enjoyable speed.
The plan is to limit the player to being able to recruit only one informant per turn (if the game allows it at that time), however at the same turn the player will be able to do other, smaller actions as well.
When I first came up with the idea for The Analyst, I had a pretty clear idea of how I wanted the game to play out, so I started working on a rough-draft of the game when suddenly Galactic Lander happened. It took me around two to three months to finish Galactic Lander and once I did, only then could I refocus my attention to The Analyst, which is where we are today.
The challenge for me now is trying to make sure The Analyst stays fun and enjoyable for the player, while also taking longer than an hour to finish (since most players reported completing Galactic Lander in around an hour, and having almost nothing else to play in Galactic Lander).
The Analyst has the potential of becoming a boring click-and-wait game with no enjoyability, so I want to make sure the player always has an objective and fighting for control in the complicated and twisted world of covert espionage (based in a time before computers and internet) focusing only on HUMan INTelligence.
I have chosen to make The Analyst turn-based in hopes the player will have more time to make decisions and understand their situation. My fear is that a turn-based game (which I have no experience in doing) won't be too boring and still enjoyable for the player.