Behind the Shapes #3: Rest in Pieces
It's time for another part of Behind the Shapes series. We're happy we can show you the story about how the pieces got where they are now — all the way from paper to injection molded acrylic. And as promised, this one will be messy, so viewer discretion is advised. ;) But seriously... games got hurt.
Please not that in the previous part, it may have looked like we are going to produce the games ourselves, which isn't the case. These are all about our internal prototypes that we have used as a baseline for specifications of final game components. Project L will be manufactured by Panda GM to make sure every part of the game will be top notch.
Entry #1: Adam's first iteration of the immersive tactile experience consists of 3 layers of thick colored paper glued on top of each other. After lots of playtesting, we know how much more Project L deserves!
Entry #2: To take the quality up a notch, we moved on to wood. Laser cut, of course! :) It was a dead end. Too bad, the smell of laser-cut plywood was as close as we got to the feeling of having a fireplace in our office. No regrets, though. We now call it a do-it-yourself wooden earrings construction kit! Live and learn..
Entry #3: We've spent a lot of time appreciating the amazing pieces in Azul lately. They are so captivating! We just need to find out all about the magic (or ... resin) that's inside them. Getting to their arcane knowledge seems to be the only was to go. Jaroslav (the product designer) will lead the expedition. We are afraid to even imagine what we will find out. And what we will become in the process...
Entry #4: Jaroslav's dedication to emulate the wonderful feeling of the Azul pieces is inhuman. We wouldn't settle for anything less so he proceeded to transmute them directly into Project L! With a power saw...!!! Please don't tell Sisi, it was her copy. (Michal's note: Get all games out of the office ASAP!)
Entry #5: We've left resin behind. The main reason is that we wouldn't be able to ensure geometrically precise sharp cut edges. We have charted the progression of the geometrically precise experiments on the picture below. All the lab results show that all other materials are well behind acrylic in the qualities we seek. Also, Sisi is talking to us again.
Entry #6: We are closer to our goal that we have ever been, but there is still something missing to the laser-cut acrylic pieces we made. They are geometrically precise, great to hold in hand, and fit the puzzles perfectly. Yet, something is still missing. ...Probably color (duh!). Let's solve that! :)
Entry #7: Improving our lab safety measures is crucial (but is it really worth all the fun we'll miss?). Not learning from Jan and his glue fumes story, Jaroslav also almost didn't inhale an unhealthy dose of varnish. Moreover, I'm pretty sure the floor in his office wasn't purple before. Still, we're there and all the sacrifices were certainly worth it!
Research Complete! The final pieces will not be spray painted (only our current prototype is). These will be injection molded Pantone colored acrylic. This will ensure the pieces will be precise, vibrant, and simply beautiful.
What do you think about the progress the pieces made? Let us know in the comments! And if you have enjoyed the story, do check out the previous parts of this series if you have missed them!
Thank you for supporting us in this wonderful journey with Project L!
Jan, Michal & The Project L Team