Posts by fminuzzi

Tea-Powered Games as a Narrative Design Consultancy

This blog post is a little different – it’s about us as a company, and what we’re setting out to do in the future. Tea-Powered Games is finally opening its doors as a narrative design consultancy!

Our first game as a company (Dialogue: A Writer’s Story) experimented with new types of conversations in games. From real-time active conversations to relaxed, exploratory chats and repeatedly re-written emails, we gave players different actions for different sorts of conversations. We told a story that was important to us, about the creative process and scientific research, and put together something that exemplified the kinds of things we wanted to do at Tea-Powered Games.

It’s always been a goal of ours to work with other studios and help them tell their own stories in new and interesting ways, and we think there’s no better time to start doing so than now! We know that not every team has enough time and resources to devote to making character interactions interesting, but we also know that the story, characters and ambiance of a game, from its music to its mechanics, can be a major selling point. This is where we come in, as a two-person team specialising in writing and design, making quality storytelling and design easier and more affordable. We can be very flexible – we know what it’s like to work on a small budget, on a short time scale, so we’ll find whatever works best for your game.

We’ll keep making our own games, of course! Our second game is in the works, and we can’t wait to share more about it! However, there are many interesting stories to tell, and we want to help other people tell them through their games and gameplay.

If you are a game developer and want to know more, have a look at our consultancy page, or send us a message via twitter (@teapoweredteam) or email (team@teapoweredgames.co.uk) and we’ll have a chat about your game. Whether you want a short script, more in-depth design work to integrate your story, or you’re not sure what you might need, let us know!

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Dialogue V1.1 on Greenlight

Firstly, a bit of news: We’ve re-launched Dialogue on Steam Greenlight. We’ve had a positive response to the game from many people, but we thought we could do a better job of giving this unique take on conversations its best chance. After pulling together feedback from a variety of sources, we’re happy to present a new version of Dialogue, with a complete visual overhaul of the user interface.

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Success and Failure in Games: The Dialogue Approach

In response to our Accessibility post, we received a comment about the lack of failure in Dialogue, and how that affected the game. This is something we thought about while designing Dialogue, and it seemed important enough to share these thoughts. The comment is found in the Accessibility post, but here is the part we’re responding to.

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Accessibility in Dialogue

One of our goals as Tea-Powered Games has always been to make our games accessible to as many people as possible. There are many different things to consider, but we tried to ask ourselves at every junction what we could do to make our game easier to play. We’d like to share some of the decisions we think helped Dialogue’s accessibility, and (because we can always do better) some which we wished we could have made work.  

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From Scenes to Game

Last week we spoke a bit about the process of writing and designing a scene of Dialogue. This week our developer, Antony, is here to detail how that scene then makes it into the game.

Hi! Antony here, developer for these here folks. Last week’s post told us about building the script which serves as the backbone for the entire game of Dialogue. This week I wanted to elaborate on the process of taking that and converting it into a game-usable format. Luckily, thanks to the amazing efforts of the rest of the team, this is mostly straightforward!

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A Prelude

Jacob_neutralFrom: Jacob Hawthorne
To: Lucille Hawthorne
Subject: Hey

Hey, have you talked to Dad recently? I wanted to ask him something but he’s not replying to his emails.

Have you started working on your new novel yet? What’s the new protagonist like? Have you done that thing where you have a conversation with him/her/them in your head?


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Primer on Dialogue: A Writer’s Story

Our upcoming game, Dialogue: A Writer’s Story, is set to release in a few months. Here are some quick facts about the game.

What is it?
Dialogue is a PC game about conversations. The player follows Lucille, a writer, helping shape her decisions and influence her story. Some conversations are quite relaxed, allowing for ample exploration of certain topics. Others are time-dependent, and therefore have certain added pressures. Some might even happen through short email exchanges.

Who is the game for?
In emulating real conversations, we aim to make Dialogue easy for everyone to understand, relate to and play. Conversations can be challenging to succeed at, depending on your own definition of success, but the player will continue the story towards its ending regardless of outcomes. Dialogue will appeal to players looking to gain an understanding of the characters and situations in-game. It is our hope that this understanding may provide a small amount of insight into real-life conversations and interactions.

When will it be out?
The release date for Dialogue has yet to be set, but we’re aiming for a release between March and April. The bulk of the game has been put together already, but there are many features we want to include, and time to be spent ironing out smaller issues.

Where will it be available?
Dialogue will be available for digital purchase from our website, and possibly also via Steam.

Why did you make this game?
Dialogue is hoping to bring a variety of new experiences to its players. The main focus of the game is a mechanical exploration of conversations, and the use of conversations to tell a story. We also have personal experience with the subjects dealt with in the game, such as writing and carrying out scientific research. We aim to share our understanding of these subjects with our players.

How can I find out more?
Major announcements will be posted on this website, and emailed to newsletter subscribers (you can subscribe using the Mailing List link at the top of this page). We have a twitter account, @Teapoweredteam, where we post and comment more frequently. If you have any other questions, feel free to email us at team@teapoweredgames.co.uk .

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