“It’s a literal crime that this game isn’t as popular as some others, and i love watching how the game expands and adds new content.”

Iestynd – Steam Review

Paper Pirates is a party social deduction game for 1-10 players, in a similar vein to Town of Salem or Jackbox Party Pack 6’s “Push the Button”, and is closely related to physical games- Ultimate Werewolf and The Resistance: Avalon.

Developed in the Unity3D engine, players are connected to the game via web enabled devices using a Node server.

The game was created over the course of the UK Games Fund funded graduate competition Tranzfuser 2019, where our team successfully pitched for money to continue the project to industry professionals, as well as taking the game to Manchester Comic Con, Insomnia 63 and EGX 2019. We created Iteration Games, and released Paper Pirates to Steam in late February 2019.

We currently stream the game weekly over on the Iteration Games Twitch Channel and the game can be found on Steam.

In Paper Pirates players must make it to shore safely before their treacherous crew mates sabotage the adventure! Players start the game by connecting with web enabled devices, where they are secretly given the role of either a human, or a ghost. Humans win by making their way back to shore by obeying their captain’s commands, whereas ghosts will want to disobey the captain, without giving away their hidden role.

Once the crew comes to a decision on who they think is haunted, at the end of each round, they can vote over a player. Players voted overboard will return as a stowaway ready to make their way back up the ranks of the ship. The new stowaway will always be human, but whether they were human or not when they went overboard well decide the fate of the rest of the crew. Throwing a ghost overboard is great, no more ghost. Throwing a human overboard is going to make a ghost, and it’s going to haunt one of the players that threw the innocent player overboard.

As part of Iteration Games, I am one of only 3 core members, so I had a lot of roles to fill. I was responsible for the Unity side of the game. This involved the vast majority of all the code in Unity, as well as all of the animations and art that make up all the visuals. Paper Pirates took us just less than a year to put together, but over this time, I learned so much about developing games in Unity; the general development cycle, how to upload things to Steam, how and why the animator is your friend, not your enemy, and a million things that if I did it all again I would have actually done differently and got right the first time round.

Since the start of the lockdown in the UK, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, work on Paper Pirates has only increased. Our weekly streams have really enforced a deadline to the now scrum style methodology we use to keep updating the game, and we’ve been able to get loads of feedback and testing in that really makes it feel worthwhile. Working separately has made us document changes, bugs and ideas much more methodically and I want to keep this going with future projects.