One thing I regret not being able to reconcile is that, pacing-wise, taking off in a rocket ship isn't nearly as exciting in the context of having just blasted into space bareback a few minutes prior. I'd initially conceived the underwater section of the game as being on Earth -- which is one of the reasons the background is blue instead of Mars-colored -- and that the rocket ship would take you to Mars. But the pile of fruit coming first, and the underwater cavern coming later, made for a much better build-up.
Do you feel like Frog Fractions is particularly a product of the indie game jam scene in some ways?
Crawford: I basically wrote Frog Fractions for my friends. Every weird new feature I put in, I put in with the motivation that I was going to get to see a friend's reaction to it that weekend.
The jam scene was a part of that, and being surrounded by and acquainted with indie "names" also provided motivation in that they made it feel more likely that I might be able to get the game taken seriously.
What are you doing to monetize Frog Fractions? It seems like it'd be a hard game to "sell" in a traditional sense.
Crawford: I won't put ads on my site and selling the game would be tantamount to fraud, but I do have the soundtrack up on Bandcamp.
I'm also talking to the art team about t-shirt ideas. While the music team gets a cut of the soundtrack sales, the art team is left out in the cold. I'm surprised it took me this long to think of selling shirts. Of course people will want in-joke t-shirts. Frog Fractions is basically In-Joke: The Game.
I hate asking obligatory questions like "what's next" but...what's next?
Crawford: I'm still thinking about it! Releasing Frog Fractions left a big hole in my schedule for interesting projects, and people are talking to me about how to fill it.
The honest answer is probably: being paid to implement somebody else's idea. I've put basically all my creative energy for the past year into Frog Fractions, and the nature of the project was such that if I had an unrelated game idea during that time, I didn't have to file it away for later; I could and did just throw it on the pile. I need time to recharge to make a thoughtful follow-up.
Now that you've played a bit of Frog Fractions and read Jim's thoughts on the game, marinate a bit in pondering the meaning of life and give these other free games a go.
Atticus and Boy Electric