It’s been a busy past couple of weeks so I figured I would post a bit of an update on progress and upcoming plans.
Just before Christmas I uploaded All Ways Down to newGrounds and shortly after to Kongregate, with some reasonable success, managing to hit the front page of newGrounds just a few days after uploading :-). I received some great feedback from the users of these sites, which has allowed me to improve the gameplay, iron out some bugs and give it some more polish overall(I’ll include the full list of changes at the end of this post).
Because I’ve been working on these further updates I decided to temporarily put the android build on hold, and focus on improving the version that was available. But, do not fear, I am still planning on releasing All Ways Down on Android. However, I want to make sure it is ready and tested before I do so, which may take a little longer. Though I do currently have a stable finished build running on both a mobile and tablet so it shouldn’t be too long, it just depend on whether or not I add a feature I’ve been thinking about…
Now All Ways Down is almost finished, (again), I’m starting to think about my next project. I have a couple ideas in mind which you might hear more about once I’ve fleshed them out a bit. I also have a couple ideas for this site but we’ll have to wait and see.
Anyhow, I’m off to go have some fun in Unity,
All Ways Down Change-log:
Increased pickup size.
Increased goal detection area.
Increased level rotation speed.
Improved various UI elements.
Added current level number to pause and level complete screens.
Added trail effect.
Tweaked overall game difficulty.
Added mute button.
Added mouse input for level rotation.
Tweaks to early levels to adjust game’s difficulty curve.
So I decided to enter Ludum Dare again, the result of which can be found here, over on the Ludum Dare site. I’ll probably write a post mortem sometime during the next week. However, in the meantime you can watch a gameplay video I put together of my entry ‘Court of Talis’ below or you can check it out via one of the links at the end of this post 😀
So it’s almost been a week since I finished All Ways Down, and seeing as everyone else is doing one :-), I figured I’d do a bit of a postmortem of the game/experience, looking at what went right and what went wrong. Like many who entered, this was my first Ludum Dare, and whilst at times it was stressful( especially the last two hours), in the end it was an amazing 3 days and I had a lot of fun taking part. Overall, I’m very happy with how the game turned out, though there are plenty of things that I think could be improved (more on that at the end). The jam also meant I got to learn a bit about Unity webGL exporter, which up to now I had not really been following.
What went right:
The mechanic: The basic concept started quite simple, ‘a rolling ball that has to be a certain mass to finish a level, it does this by consuming objects and growing. Player can spin the world?’. From this I sketched out what I thought a level would look like with a simple storyboard for play and put some ideas for level hazards underneath. Thankfully I was able to implement this mechanic and it worked.
Thankfully most of the core development went quite smoothly(unless you count Unity crashing twice), with no major issues or bugs.
Sound: This is an area I generally find the hardest, but I’m quite happy with the end result, and have got some positive feedback on it.
Unity webGL, a day before the jam I decided to update unity. In hindsight this could have ended up going very wrong but, in the end it meant I learnt more about unity’s WebGL exporter, deciding from the start that I would use WebGL as my target platform.
What went wrong:
Whilst not wrong per se, based on feedback the ball could be a bit heavier at the start of levels, so that it moves around the level a bit quicker.
Deciding to make 5 more levels 4 hours before the end of the jam, resulting in no playtesting of these levels.
The size of the web player. I would have liked the actual game screen to be the max size allowed on this site, but unfortunately as this was the first time I had used the WebGL exporter I didn’t realise that the export size set in Unity doesn’t include the custom Unity bottom bar, thus cutting off bits of the game screen when its embed size is set at the same size as export. Meanwhile exporting without the Unity bar means you need to provided the functionality that makes it go fullscreen. I really wish I had known all this before the jam, and not learnt it in the last two hours when I was trying to submit😀
I think I’ll be developing this game further post comp. I’d like to make more levels, add in a couple of hazards and puzzle that didn’t make it due to time, along with polishing the graphics and adding more effects, maybe even a camera shake 🙂 . I’d also quite like to port it to mobile as I think its control mechanism is very well suited for the platform.
Overall I’m very happy with end result, and looking forward to working on it a bit more and making it even better 😀
It’s been a few weeks since my last post, a busy few weeks, so I thought I would do a quick update on a couple things.
First there was loading jam. This was a bit of a last minute decision to enter, though I’m glad I did. I didn’t hear about the jam until three days before it finished and even then didn’t decided to enter until the next day, which gave me less than 48 hours to make a game based around loading and possibly patents if possible, though totally optional.
You can check out my finished results over on my new itch.io account(pc, mac and linux) which probably deserves a post in itself.
I think the game turned out well, though there are a couple things I’d like to improve based on feedback, such as adding some tutorial text, stopping the mini games from going straight to the main game if you fail, and maybe build a web version.
This brings me to my second game jam of the week/two weeks, Ludum Dare. This was my first Ludum Dare so I decided to take it easy by entering the jam rather than the competition. I was slightly more prepared for this jam, though only slightly. The theme was two button controls and or growing(there was a tie, so two themes were chosen), which seemed somewhat familiar. It was an amazing three days, stressful at times, but still fun! You can check out my entry page for the jam here, or check out the game over on itch.io.
I’ll probably do a recap post, which will included ludum dare posts and screens from various stages during development. And eventually I might do a reflection post on the experience and the finished product(or not so finished???)
Finally, TaOvarg update:
Yes, I have been working on an update to TaOvarg. Unfortunately, progress on the update was slowed by an input bug, however, as soon as I’ve ironed it all out it will be ready for release, and will give TaOvarg full controller support, along with a couple other new things. Joe
It’s been awhile since my last project Mamore, almost two and a half months in fact, but during this time I haven’t just been playing through my Steam back catalogue whilst refreshing the Fallout 4 countdown timer(even though I may have a couple of times), instead I’ve been busy working on my next project. In fact you may have already seen some of the early screenshots and concept art for the game that I’ve been posting over the last month. Now today, I’m happy to officially announce my new project TaO-VARG.
TaO-VARG is a challenging action puzzle game where your goal as the player is to guide a Ballistic Acceleration ellipse(BALL for short) to the goal by using two special gravity particles: Thrusts and Orbits. Further, in order to successfully complete a level, not only must the BALL reach the goal, but it must do so within certain limits, these limits are imposed on the number of respective particles that can be used each level, with three pass marks(bronze, silver and gold) associated with how few(or many) the player uses. If the player reaches the goal but uses too many of a particular particle then they must try again.
In total there are currently 40 levels to beat, with the later levels becoming more and more challenging for the player(though some of the early levels can be a challenge as well). The levels start simple, but as the player progresses through the game they will encounter a variety of obstacles, ranging from turrets to lasers.
The game is currently still in alpha, though it is finished for the most part(I’ll list the things I want to possibly add to the game at the end of this post, along with download links). But the game does need some fine tweaking. This is where I’d like you, the reader, to come in. Unfortunately I’m a bit too familiar with the game(having made it and all), so it’s hard to tell if some levels are a bit too hard. Therefore, I need some more widespread playtesting and feedback on the levels, so that I can put the finishing touches on the game. Basically, I’d like you to just play the game; if you finish it that would be awesome but its not a requirement, and hopefully whether you finish or not you have some fun doing so. And if you want to give me some feedback on the experience that would be awesome too, all constructive criticisms are welcomed.
Below you will find a link to a windows installer along with a standard Unity standalone package.