Neither of us had ever made a game before. I played lots of computer games when I was younger, but knew absolutely nothing about code. I vaguely remember breaking down every computer in an I.T. class once, and the tutor telling me she wasn’t angry, she just wanted to know how I did it. No idea! Joe started by making a code puzzle, which taught me how to create a header. I felt proud that it worked and nothing had imploded.
Although it was a bit daunting at first, it was easier getting started after we’d identified which coding skills we wanted to teach, and what the gameplay restrictions were. I found that the skills I used as a creative in advertising transferred easily when it came to creating levels and characters. And our friend Douglas Tarasconi gave us some great advice on how to structure the game in the best way - he’s made some lovely games including one to teach maths to kids.
Whilst working out the gameplay, we were also thinking of a name for the game. We initially called it ‘Kitten Quest’. I thought of names and checked the availability of their domain names for hours, and was ecstatic that the .com for Kitten Quest wasn’t taken. However, three days later, it was. Some lady had beat me to it, and this is what she did with it:
"Meet super happy Kimba. We also call her Little Fluffer Nutter... she is a little ball of fluff and just a little bit nutty. She gets so excited when she plays, she hops up and down and can barely contain her joy." - The person who bought kittenquest.com
Although it wasn’t so great at the time, I’m glad that Little Fluffer Nutter was such a source of inspiration. I suddenly realised that Kitten Quest sounded a bit safe, a bit twee, not to mention feeling slightly horrified that I’d had the same thought as this crazy cat lady.
So we panicked and started thinking of the edgiest names possible involving kittens. Finding the right balance was quite tricky - Kitten Rebellion was too tame. Kitten Holocaust was a bit much. Finally we went with Erase All Kittens (EAK) - the name of the cute yet evil rebel army in the game.