2 Mirrors, 1 Fate (and Other Bad Ideas)

When last we left THE NEXT BIG THING IN INDIE ADVENTURE GAMING, The Beard in the Mirror* (nee testgame):

  • The game was almost fully coded, from opening to epilogue.


  • The game actually IS fully coded!


…Actually, I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned this here already, since it happened like two months ago. I guess I’ve had other things on my mind.

So now what? Now we’re knee-deep in the hard part: actually for real finishing the game. The game’s fully playable, but that doesn’t mean the work is finished.

Lizo’s been making a lot of progress in Mirror’s art over the last few months, spurred on by our new arrangement whereby for every piece of art she completes, I will watch one (1) episode of Avatar: The Last Airbender with her. The first half of the game is now essentially complete, with the second still missing a whole bunch of art assets (and the coding to make them all work).

airbenderFigure A.

Meanwhile, I’ve been playing through the game as it is—which has been a real treat, since in the eight years we’ve been working on it, we’ve never been able to play through the entire game from beginning-to-end before. I’m testing and re-testing, tweaking dialogue, replacing emotes like “*hands over item*” with actual animations of handing items over, and—most noticeably—introducing sound effects and music, mostly from freesound.org and incompetech.com, respectively. Now, Mirror’s not only looking like a videogame, but actually sounding like one, too. It’s amazing how much richness a few well-utilized sounds can add to a game.

Back in December I offered a few statistics showing roughly how much of the game is complete, and how much is still left to go. Here’s a quick update:

  • Story: 100%
  • Puzzles: 100%
  • Backgrounds: 75%
  • Character art: 65%
  • Animation: 55%
  • Coding: 90%
  • Music/Sound: 70%

* Oh, and by the way: We did FINALLY settle on The Beard in the Mirror as the final, definite name for the game, after brainstorming through several pages worth of alternative titles (actual examples: “A Grizzled Fate,” “2 Mirrors, 1 Fate“, and my personal favorite, “King’s Quest,” but that one was apparently already taken).



  1. Well, if you need a beta tester, you know who to call. And if you need a proofreader, you know whom to call.

  2. Congrats! I remember when I reached fully playable alpha of my game Postmortem and had the same realization – holy crap, my game is complete! Sure the ui is crude as heck, sure the art is all placeholders, and there’s probably tons of bugs… But it’s fully playable from start to finish, from main menu through the actual game with all desired features, the ending, and final credits. Such an awesome feeling.

    And completely changes how you think about your game, from “I’m making this” to “it is made now I polish and expand!” :)

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