After being an Alexa skill user aswell as a designer for a year now, i realised that there was a hole in the market for 'Scary Games'. There a lots of family games and trivia games, but not a whole lot of horror type games. We all love to be a little scared now and again, so i wanted to make something that fits this criteria. So this is what gave me the idea originally for X-Skyz, voice first unique and fun that also keeps you on the edge of your seat.
What it does
X-Skyz is a Maze Run challenge that will take you through the depths of hell. Tackle unique scenes of horror and terror to get to your exit. You must race against time to make it to your exit. A game of life and death, you must choose the correct path to save your life. You will be given options of path such as left or right, right or straight and each path has the possibility to send you back to the start. You must make the right choice to live and keep going.
How I built it
I made this skill by integrating a range of different sound effects and background sounds, synced with recordings from a speech assistant to make the original scenes. A lot of time was put into building each scene listening to the sounds again and again to make it work with the right pitch and timing.
Each scene was curated to present it's best possible sound quality while making it creepy enough to keep you wanting more. After coding most of my skills in the past, i decided to try something different this time, using a code-less platform and give the famous, 'Voiceflow.com' a go to build this skill. I found it easy to learn, fun and most of all, i had the opportunity to just focus on the content of the skill and not worry about bugs for this one.
Challenges I ran into
Building games has been my biggest challenge, There is so much more to consider than other genre's such as longevity of skill such as enough scenes to make it work and keeping it interesting right through till the end of the game. As i wanted to make something unique yet interesting to all Alexa users, by designing a voice first skill, that incorporates movie type scenes, i wanted to make something that presents as different, yet attractive to continued usage.
Deciding witch ISP products to integrate into the skill was also a challenge at the start of development. Once i had the framework of the skill, it was quickly apparent that Extra Lives were what was needed most. I also built the secret passageway to elevate the user through the skill quicker if chosen.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
I'm really happy with how the scenes turned out, the scenes were how i imagined them at the beginning of development and most of all, my boys said the skill was really cool to play. This is my number '68' of Live Alexa skills around the globe currently and they have never shown as much interest in my skills as this one. So i think it's a winner. (Happy Face, With Teeth))
What I learned
I learnt how much effort is put in to making a game skill with extra sounds work well. I have made game skills before, but the sounds were not as intensely made as this one. The amount of testing that goes into a skill like this one, is not only necessary to make sure everything works well but also essential to make sure the scenes gell well with each other.
What's next for X-Skyz Maze Runner
Bringing it to the worldwide market listing ISP is my plan, such as Germany and Japan. I do not speak or understand Japanese or German but i have made skills in these markets before. I do know that the skill development will take triple the time to translate one language to another but i have the determination to make it work. I would also like to make a sequel to this skill if this one is successful.