Behind the Scenes of Octoberville
When you visit a place such as Octoberville you think of haunted houses, mazes, hunts, Crowbar, and making friends, but there is so much more to Octoberville than meets the eye.
Beginning with a brainstorming session that usually takes place in June; we devise the continuing story of Octoberville. Sometimes, it can be quite a challenge to maintain the original sleepy, autumn feel, while adding the elements of fear and delightful frustration that Octoberville is known for.
As the project manager, it is my job to make sure that everyone is on the same page and we are on schedule to have the build completed and tested by October 1st. This can be quite a challenge as we all have real life jobs and responsibilities to balance as well. It is also difficult to motivate people to work on autumn projects when its 90 degrees outside and thoughts of swimming pools and backyard barbeques seem more relevant.
By September 1st, the main maze and general layout of Octoberville is completed, but the haunted house and the actual game still needs to be developed. With only a month left to create the meat of the game, life becomes more hectic. Everyone in the family, including our daughters, is consumed with finishing the project. After school, before and after work, during dinner, we are sharing ideas, arguing points, and putting the pieces together that will soon become many fans’ favorite Second Life event.
By the middle of September, nerves are on edge and we, too, are counting down the days until October 1st. While Nathan is finishing up the code to the hunt, Master Kaos is coming up with puzzling rooms for the haunted house and putting finishing details around the rest of Octoberville to make everything look realistic. My daughters are taking the scripted hunt items and hiding them, while I am making sure that everything flows correctly and ensuring there are no holes in the game.
The final week before opening is probably the most stressful time of the year. We are hiding the last of the items and testing the game in its entirety.
Finally, on October 1st, our efforts pay off as we watch Octoberville become filled to capacity with fans within 1 minute after opening.
Photos by Taylor Flanagan
About the Author: Cherub Spectre (along with Master Kaos and Nathan Oddfellow) is the creator and designer of Octoberville, which is celebrating its seventh year on the grid. Visit Octoberville in Second Life!