I am excited to say that two years ago today, on August 27, 2019, I launched “Regina Cemetery Tours – The Game”.

There have been a lot of improvements to the game in the past year, but none of which I planned for in my last anniversary blog post. Some of the things I wanted to improve on were:

  • Getting the game into classrooms – This proved challenging not just because teachers are busy and curriculums don’t often make time for cemetery video games, but also because 2020/2021 was a difficult year to get anybody into a classroom. It’s an initiative I plan to work on going forward, but unfortunately, I don’t see it happening in 2021 either.
  • Rebuilding game mechanics – The game is pretty polished, but there are some definite issues. One is a type of memory leak or rendering issue that occurs during long-term gameplay. I would like to pull out some of the jQuery-based functions and replace them with vanilla JavaScript, as well as add more performance-enhancing CSS such as the “content-visibility” styles. It hasn’t happened yet, but it’s on my radar and I’m thinking about it almost daily.
  • Get new flower pots – I hate the summer and spring flowerpots in the game! I will be a much happier person when they are finally redone.

Instead, I added other changes to the game that I think are equally as exciting!

  • We got merch! Have you ever wanted to wear a 64-bit ghost on your t-shirt, or carry around a “Regina Cemetery Tours – The Game” tote bag? You can get swag for all the characters on the Red Bubble Store!
  • We got new stories! We added two new stories in the cemetery this past year: a husband and a wife, both whom end up dead at the hands of others. Be sure to check them out.
  • We got new NPCs! The best part about wandering around the cemetery is the interesting people you meet along the way. This past year we added two new people into the cemetery, and their stories are sure to send shivers up your spine.

We only got about a 1/5 of the traffic to the game as we did in the first year of “Regina Cemetery Tours – The Game” so for our third year we plan to do more promoting, more posting and more updates to make the game more accessible, more fun and more exciting to play.

Some of the things I am hoping to do in the next year (besides fixing some performance issues and getting new flower pots) is adjusting the screen on mobile devices so that more of the cemetery can be seen. The cemetery is a maze already, and having a limited screen size makes it very difficult to play.

I am also looking into adding the long-requested “pause” button. If you’ve ever played “Regina Cemetery Tours – The Game”, you would have noticed that the game stops when you stop moving. Ghosts stop floating, the clock stops ticking, and everything pauses when you pause. This was a quick fix from some of the comments I received from my beta test players in the summer of 2019. One player had just about finished the game, left his computer for a moment, and came back to have a swarm of ghosts kill him. With no way to pause the game, he was a fish in a pond. By pausing the game when the user pauses, this solves that issue.

However, I like the idea of having to react in real-time. If a ghost is coming towards you, you need to get out of the way. Right now, you can just stop moving or start walking into a tree and let it pass you. The ghosts become a significantly more complicated threat if they don’t stop moving when you do.

If I changed this, I would need to add a pause button, and I think that will be one of the biggest projects for the game this year.

Beyond that, thank you everybody for another fantastic year. There have been some ups and downs this past year, but the support has been overwhelming and I really love sharing the game and the stories with you.

Tip for the game: the statue will light the way.

Until next time,

Keep on playing.