HelkeGames’ diary #AZOR – POST MORTEM

Posted by (twitter: @XxDarkmaidenzxX)
December 17th, 2014 1:11 pm


Here we are with a Post Portem update after the awesome LD31. We want to talk about how Azor was born and how it has developed throughout the Ludum Dare.


Azor: the concept

I’ve been thinking about making a platformer/adventure game since my last Ludum Dare entry (LD26) and during this year I developed many projects, some of them are somewhere in my computer folders, others are waiting to be resumed and maybe one day the will become a finished project as AZOR.

It was friday night (here in Europe) and I was sitting down in front of my computer waiting for the theme to be announced, as I saw “Entire game on one screen” I couldn’t imagine something better for a platformer game. But immediately I realized this theme would have limited a lot the features of my game because, since I started thinking about a “room” game (with a story and something to explore), putting the entire game on one screen meant to spoil the end of the story! So there were two possibilities: find a solution not to spoil the end or try to not follow literally the theme! After a huge brainstorming I decided not to show the entire game on one screen but to put a dark (loading) screen when the player would have entered in the next room.



AZOR: First day

After facing the theme I began to seriously think about the game. It may seems strange but I got the name before the concept itself! I was thinking and… “A… AS… AZOR!” . Starting from the name I decided to find a plot that would have fitted the theme… AZOR seems something regarding the space stuff or futuristic stuff, isn’t it? So I have the settling… Space! I developed my story throughout the three days… and well it was becoming more complicated than I imagined! At the end I got a cool story, but sadly I had to cut it, since I hadn’t enough time…! But I want to develop the story and for this reason I will continue to develop AZOR… I want to get a final version and maybe upload it to Desura or Steam! After that, it was afternoon, I contacted my team mate for making the soundtrack, and as I told him the concept and the story he decided to help me and he made the splash screens for the introduction and the end. While he was working on the splash screens first, I started the level design and the making of tilesets/graphics! But the first was coming to an end…

AZOR: Second day

The first day I went to sleep late since I wanted to plan the level design for almost the whole game… Immediately as I woke up I started working again… Fortunately I finished to code all the mechanics and the scripts (Oxygen, timers, files, animation… and a lot of stuff!) in time… because sadly I had to go out (to the real life) it was an afternoon evening…. As I came back home (It was 11 pm) I completed the level design for all the levels… I only had to decorate rooms and improving the lighting system, I particularly dedicated a lot of time to lights… I wanted to create a cool and innovative platformer! You can check my lighting work throughout the game… changing of lights intensity, color and position…! So if you haven’t tried it yet… do it now! At the end of second day I had levels, character and light system (almost done)! Terribly tired, I went to sleep…

AZOR: Third day

I woke up really early in the morning since I had to work really hard to complete the game in time (1 day left)… I called my team mate for sending the screens but sadly he was still working on it… I couldn’t make the introduction so… I had to wait him…! I designed all the tiles and put them into the levels… I tried to make it playable but not so hard… (who played my first entry can imagine), for this reason I decided to help the player by putting in some rooms of the Lab oxygen capsules, to regenerate some Oxygen! I sadly had to stop the development of the story and I only put 3 files to find in the game… I couldn’t afford to make a longer game since I still hadn’t got a main menu, an introduction and an end… But… suddenly in the late afternoon my friend called me! He had finished the splash screens! Immediately he sent them to me and working faster than I could I made the introduction and the end… leaving the main screen for the last day… tired I fell asleep.


Main Splash Screen

AZOR: Fourth dat (Final day)

As I woke up I set a target: I shall finish the game in the morning since my friend is working on music. I did it! I finished to code and to design the main menu within the morning and in the afternoon I went to my friend’s house to see the making of the music. He had already made the main theme for the introduction and the main menu so… we only had a few hours to make the levels soundtrack! We worked… and even if I wasn’t so satisfied at the end we got a really cool track that fitted the atmosphere of AZOR! It makes a sense of pressure mixed to paranoia! You can feel it when you play the game and oxygen is finishing but you haven’t got all the 3 files…! I ran at home incredibly fast and I put the music into the game… But there was a problem! 2 hours before the deadline I realized the game was unplayable since there was a huge bug… if you had only 1 file, when you collected the third one it was like you had found 2 files in 1 so it added 2 to your file… you would always win! Moreover when you got to the last room (to the spaceship HELKE 1), it would have subtracted 1 file to your files so… the game was unbeatable! I had to fix these bugs within less than 2 hours! I closed in my room and I worked as hell! Finally 1 hour before the deadline I did it… I tested the game, I sent it to my team mate to test it too (looking for other bugs… I hoped not to find other bugs otherwise well… it would have been a serious trouble!) and finally I published it! I submitted it to LD31 ! AZOR WAS BORN!

AZOR: Post Mortem

I immediately started to play a lot of other entries and I was amazed by seeing a lot of cool and well done entries! You guys did a really good job in this LD (well I haven’t partecipated to the last LDs so….) ! I was really happy when the first people tried my game and actually they liked it! Nothing is better than seeing your product so liked and played by the people! In these days I hosted it to ITCH.IO and GAMEJOLT and as I finish to work on it, in a nearby future I want to publish the final version on Desura, ITCH.IO and maybe Steam?! (I think I’ve already said it ahah I don’t know anymore) Waiting for the results now I’m writing this Post Mortem and I’m trying other amazing entries!

So people! If you haven’t tried AZOR yet… after I’ve been writing this post for 30 minutes now ahahah CHECK IT OUT ! Play, rate and enjoy AZOR… tell me what you guys think!

I think my team mate the last day made a huge work by making the official trailer for AZOR so… check it out!

He also released the main theme soundtrack on SoundCloud !

In these days I think I will also upload AZOR to HelkeGames website… you can check it HERE!

So… well I know this post may seem huge… but I told you guys the making of AZOR and my awesome adventure in this Ludum Dare 31! It’s always a pleasure and an awesome experience taking part into this competition! Waiting the results I will try other games ! So do the same with AZOR… I’d be really glad!

– Joe Recupero (Hellequin) 조셉

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