Boss Review – Final Judgment?

Dear Insane Children, 

Alex sent along an exploration of a Boss Fight based on The Queen + Judgment. I thought you all might like a peek into the creative process back-and-forth and so share our exchange here…

Of this he writes: 

A while ago I was asked to look into exploring game mechanics and attack patterns for the Final boss battle in Asylum by Omri.

This was an idea I’ve had floating in my head for a while, and wanted to put pen to paper as a warm up. It’s rough, but I hope it communicates the idea.

The puppeteered queen and broken throne room from Omri’s work can still be applied to this concept.

The boss is based on the theme of “Judgement”, using a macabre Scale for symbolism and order. I’ve written some design and encounter notes on the artwork.

As the boss is battled, the weights of the scale would be thrown off balance and detatched, and the force of them falling would rip the boss in half as pictured.

Descending the fight from order, into chaos.

Phase 1 and 2 are pictured, with phase 3 being the big reveal as the character devolves in the tentacle mess monster from AMA. 

To which I replied: 

The images look great. A bit confused by something though… is this meant to be the Queen (in Anger) boss fight? Or you say “Final boss battle in Asylum” … ?? The Final Boss

If this is meant to be a battle against the Queen (or the Judge in Judgement) in the area representing Anger, then I could see how we might make that work. 

If this is meant to be the final boss for the entire game… I am not in a headspace to think about what that might look like. But if I were pressed to consider this concept as going into that slot … I’d say this (at this point) does not feel at all appropriate. Why? Well… the overall theme of the game is not “Judgement” therefore I don’t think it would make sense for the final boss to carry that theme. I also don’t think the Queen is representative of Alice’s struggle in our story.

The final showdown – the boss, location, mechanic – has yet to emerge from the story we’re working on… but if you pressed me (again) to take a stab at it today… I might suggest that we start with the theme of “adult Alice going back into her mind to find and rescue child Alice” – a journey to save the inner child. 

And that during this journey we explore the concept of mental prisons – how we construct them and how we destroy them. I think where we’re going with Hatter in this next chapter will illuminate more of this… There’s an idea that his tinkering with the nature of reality (of the elements and properties of Wonderland) causes a dissonance that rips apart the seams of Wonderland. 

That explosion does something to reveal the nature of Wonderland’s reality – and gives Alice a glimpse into the truth of her situation (trapped in a mental prison). 

Alice is in a prison of her own mind. She’s essentially kept herself trapped in this place. So our final boss encounter needs to represent that concept. 

That’s where we’ve toyed with the idea of “Shadow Alice” – the figure representing “adult Alice” – the one who returns hoping to free young Alice from the mental prison… only to find that she’s stuck, unable to free herself, etc. 

Anyway… we’re not there yet. 

I’d like to suggest that we use this Judgment Boss for just that… a boss encounter to wrap up the sequence of events which starts with Alice entering the Courthouse. It could be that we make our way through the entire section (including the deadly croquet game) only to come face to face with this thing. 

Thoughts on that? 

Alright, Insane Children! 

Let us know what YOU think! Is this Final Boss (for the entire game) material? Or might it be better placed as the (mini? doesn’t look “mini”) boss for the end of the Judgement Area in the Queen’s Domain? 

Personally I like the idea of placing this encounter after the Courthouse/Croquet section.

Let us know what YOU think in the comments below!

We’ll discuss your feedback during the YouTube Livestream this week (link to that coming later!). 

From Shanghai with Tentacles,


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