Functor: A post-mortem

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April 23rd, 2015 9:00 am

I think it’s safe to say my ambitions were a little too high this time around, especially since I was originally planning to do the compo. But after crossing well into the jam time-frame and getting no sleep before having to go to work… I ended with a completed game, albeit very badly balanced šŸ˜›

You can play the game here: Functor

The idea of the game is that you’re unconventional weapon isĀ functions, and you fire these functions that apply themselves to the surface of a planet. The idea came from a real-time liquid surface simulation I once wrote, which used functions like sine to simulate ripples. Having done something similar I thought it would be a quick process to get theĀ mechanic working for my game… I completely overlooked the fact that applying them to a spherical surface was actually quite different than applying them to a flat surface šŸ˜

Once I realised this wasn’t as easy as I thought I probably should have backed up and changed the game to use flat surfaces. But I already had this sweet little solar system set up in my game, so I just bit the bullet and committed to it. In the end I’m happy I did, since the effect looked pretty freaking sweet and it’s given me some great ideas for future work.

However the downside to spending most of time on implementing the mechanic was that the game-play suffered from it. Once I finished the surface deformations and had them working I thought to myself “Uh oh, I actually need a game to go with this”. So with very limited time I implemented a game-play mechanic that didn’t make sense and was pretty hard to understand. But hey at least there was game-play! In the end I didn’t get time to balance the game properly, and since the AIĀ is random: sometimes it’s near impossible, and other times you can complete a level by doing nothing.

This Ludum DareĀ is also the first time I’ve felt my engine hasn’t been a hindrance to me. Most other times I normally ended up spending Ā large amounts of time fixing something in my engine rather than making the game. And with only one crash report so far it’s something I’ve been extremely happy with šŸ˜€ You can find my engine here:Ā (it’s still very uncompleted though).

The surface deformation mechanic (and art style) is something I’m definitely going to have a go at extending into a full-fledged game, probably some sort of strategy game. There were some pretty cool visuals you could get when the function power was cranked right up so there’s lots to explore. I’ll leave you with some of crazy effects while developing the game:



2 Responses to “Functor: A post-mortem”

  1. Tuism says:

    Holy cow that looks incredible. I really love the dynamism of the ball, it even looked like a heart in the one pic. In most cases I’d say NO to own engines for making games, but damn that’s cool :)

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