It wasn't that anything looked bad, but it really all seemed to look entirely too much like The Legend of Zelda. While this game is obviously highly inspired by it and pays homage to it in a lot of ways, i was starting to realize that a game who's core theme and idea is about pretending and using your imagination was really starting to lack exactly that. Imagination.
While I think I've done a great job with coming up with fresh new mechanics for the game to help set it apart, the theme of the game itself was still lacking something. I just couldn't put my finger on it.
So, I set out to try and change things up a bit, and really embrace the theme of the game. The game is really at it's core about a much more simple time before the Internet existed when kids had to use their imaginations to keep themselves entertained. When we would make our own props and our own weapons out of whatever we could find laying around and we would have pretend adventures in our back yard, and I really needed to embrace that theme.
While one could argue that since the dungeon's in the game are largely in Sidd's head, they could look as elaborate as I wanted them to, they still needed to carry with them a look that suggested this kid with the help of his father made these things to help him better imagine the adventure that he's on.
What started out as a very Zelda like concrete Dungeon of bricks and mortar, has turned into a much more themed, cardboard themed Dungeon, after all a large portion of the title is "Board" and that needs to remain a recurring theme throughout the game. I also assume that Sidd or his father may have put a lot of this together in his backyard, and some of that environment should also show through in the Dungeon.
After toying with a lot of different ideas and drawing a lot of the stuff out on paper I finally reached a look that I think is really going to not only compliment the game, make it stand apart from the game that's inspired it but also make it really stand out on its own.
To be honest before I had all of this figured out, I got extremely worried! This was really one of the first major hurtles I've had to deal with through development that really made me worry about the future of the game.
But now I'm even more determined to see where it goes, and I can't wait to see where this ends up!