Gridiron Solitaire #86: Final TweaksOkay, here are the final tweaks, which I decided on after about 20 additional hours of playtesting.
1. I changed the message delay time on field goals to correspond to the length of the field goal attempt. Previously, the delay was the same, whether it was a 20-yard field goal or a 55-yard field goal. That didn't feel right.
2. There were also some field goal messages that didn't make sense in the context of the length of the field goal. I had 25-yard field goals "drifting", but kicks of that length don't have time to drift. So I punched up the messages for shorter field goals.
3. Hail Marys were so difficult to complete that they were basically impossible, so I removed one of the extra card slots for that play type.
I've found very, very little to correct in the last 20 hours of testing. I'm going to test the three changes I just mentioned, and play a few more seasons over the next day or two, but the game has everything I wanted it to have, and it's playing like I wanted it to play.
I feel some relief at this point. The additional testing I've done has made me more confident that the release version is going to be very, very solid, and I've had some games that were just terrific. In my last season, I needed to win to get into the playoffs, and the Surf took a 34-28 lead on me with 1:20 left. I marched down the field and reached the 6-yard line on the last play of the game, hit the Big Play button, and got stuffed.
6 yards short of a playoff berth. That hurt.
It was the kind of pain, though, that I want in this game. I don't want people winning every time, because winning has no drama when it's guaranteed. In this game, nothing is guaranteed.