The term Traiteur is a Cajun word for a faith healer.
After a long and difficult process of making and releasing Close Order, we pursued Traiteur as a cathartic healing process to make a game quickly and effectively.
Unfortunately, our ambitions were too great and it hurt the project. Not only were we pursuing an oddly specific art style that was incredibly difficult to find someone to create, but we had trouble expanding the game outside of its narrative and into a compelling game that was fun to play.
We had to face a sobering reality check: Traiteur was not very fun, and although we were attached to it, the writing was on the wall.
On one of our first days of 2017, we canceled Traiteur and put our full focus on Evangeline.
To us, failure does not mean that the world is over; quite the contrary. Failure means one of two things: either 1) you gave up because things got too difficult and you chose not to go on, or 2) you completed something but did not achieve your desired outcome and learned nothing in the process.
By that definition we have never failed, and Traiteur was not a failure! We learned a ton of important things that ultimately made Evangeline, and our future projects, much better, including:
- Early testing with non-friends and family
- Focusing equally on narrative and gameplay in the beginning stages; if anything, gameplay should be built and then story should be tailored around it, not the inverse (which is what we did)
- Managing risks in how we want to pursue specific features or visual styles
- And much, much more!
Traiteur was a fantastic learning experience. It was not easy to say goodbye, and it will most definitely live on in our hearts. Ultimately, this led to our entire focus being on Evangeline, which Traiteur‘s lessons heavily influenced.