Happy Accidents

In my last post I described how we got to the basic idea for 99 Bricks. So why were there only 99 Bricks? And why didn’t we use tilting like in Wario’s Block Star?

Let’s begin with the second question. Using tilting would be a pretty straightforward move looking at the original inspiration. Well the answer is simple: we were Flash developers and we had no intention of bringing this game to any of the mobile platforms at the time. And we’re lucky we didn’t, because about two weeks before 99 Bricks came out a game called Topple was released, which did use this mechanic. What makes this even worse is that for some time we actually considered Topple as a name for 99 Bricks!

As for the first question and how the game got it’s name. We actually wanted to create a game where you could stack bricks infinitely, but when we crossed the 100 brick barrier the game’s physics simulation started to kill our frame rate. We’ve spent hours and hours to improve the frame rate and even thought about building our own physics engine instead of using Box2D. We soon realized that this was a terrible idea and decided to cap the number of bricks. This actually was a simple but excellent move, which made the game so much better:

  • We ‘solved’ the physics problem
  • We had a clear ending to the game
  • Dropping bricks or discarding them wasn’t an issue anymore, as this would mean you could build less high

So why 99 Bricks, why not 100 Bricks? Do you really have to ask? 99 Bricks is a way cooler name than 100 Bricks. And here are some more benefits of the name 99 Bricks:

  • It starts with a number so you’re pretty much on top when listed in alphabetical order
  • It explains what you get in the game
  • I’ve got 99 problems and the bricks are all of them

Thanks for reading, stay posted for more stories on the history of 99 Bricks!












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