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I cringe every time I watch people play my LD entry.

I saw people taking a long time to figure out what to do. Some never got it at all. Those who did, saw potential. Potential that could have been realized if it were not for the horrible design decisions that I’ve made in an effort to make it more fun.

I wished I had more time so I could have improved it some more.

Capture2

But that’s the thing. I realized that without Ludum Dare’s really short time limit, I would not have finished a game, I would not have gotten feedback and criticisms, and I would not have learned anything at all.

The trick is to accept what you’ve made, learn from it, and move on.

What went right:

  • Gave time for polish – I’ve added a menu screen, UIs, some nice looking art and it helped make the game stand out a bit from the others.
  • Practiced clean and organized code – Helped me understand my code as I went along with the project. When I woke up the next day, I did not struggle too much and picked up where I left off.
  • Went with a simple art style – I realized that I did not have time to animate characters so I just used static images and relied heavily on tweens to make the game look polished

Capture

What went wrong:

  • Capture1Focused too much on code structure – Little to no hacks were made. I wanted to have a robust system out of habit. Unfortunately, it took too much time away from what really mattered.
  • Focused too much on fixing bugs – Sure, I ended up with a highly playable game that works as intended. But I realized people would rather play a buggy game rather than a broken one.
  • Did not playtest at all – I thought that I won’t be needing it as I felt it was already fun. Watching people play surprised me.
  • Placed too many mechanics in an effort to make the game fun – I know that it had potential so I crammed more mechanics in order to let it come out. It did the opposite which ended up with unneeded bloat that clouded the fun gameplay.

 A Post-Compo Version:

I’m planning to improve the game using the lessons I’ve learned and release a post-compo version. Some of my friends who saw the potential with my game has come on board to help out on the art and music side so I can focus on the design and programming.

Thanks for taking the time to read! If you have the time, play and rate my game here!

 

 

Timelapse of my game, This Way!

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Wednesday, August 27th, 2014 3:32 am

It was a long and tiring 72 hours but I really had fun making my entry. To those who want to see three days of game development condensed in a few minutes, then click on the image below:

timelapse_screenshot

Go here to play and rate my game!

My game is “This Way”. Come see it! (Heh)

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Monday, August 25th, 2014 6:36 pm

Hi guys! Here’s my jam entry called “This Way”. Play and rate it here!

this_way_gif

“This Way!” is a puzzle-like game where you need to get as many coins as you can by directing your jellies through a level filled with arrow plates that throw you in the direction they’re pointing at.

The game involves looking for a way to get the most number of multipliers. There’s a lot of thinking ahead in here which becomes easier the more you play through it.

I’ve incorporated the theme by having the two jellies reside in different realities. When the green jelly places a tile, it appears on the reality of the pink jelly but it has a negative effect when he steps on it. Vice versa.

This was originally supposed to be a compo submission but decided to move to Jam instead as I needed more time to polish the puzzle mechanics a bit.

HOW TO PLAY:

  • Get as many coins as you can before you run out of turns!
  • The more tiles you step on, the higher the multiplier!
  • Stepping on tile of the other character resets the multiplier!

Play and rate it here!

On-IN-on

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Friday, August 22nd, 2014 3:09 pm

After months on hiatus dealing with work and spending time on my personal game, I’m back to do another LD to unwind.

I was able to make a decent game last #LD24 and I’m looking to what I can come up with this time.

Here are my tools:

  • Unity or Haxe Flambe – The two that I am most comfortable to work with at the moment
  • Gimp 2.0 – For art asset needs
  • Mercurial -Nothing else compares
  • ASFXR – For the blips and bloops
  • Audacity – For the editing and cutting of said blips and bloops

I’m looking forward to the theme.

Escape of the Minibots: End of Week 3 Update

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Saturday, October 20th, 2012 11:48 pm

It’s week 3 already? Wow.

I’ve done a lot of progress over the past week. Most of my days were spent working on my very own 2D Tile-Based level editor in Unity.

This has sped up the level creation as the editing and the testing can now be done simultaneously. No more pausing the game just to change stuff and then playing again.

Here’s a full list of stuff I’ve made this week:

  • Level editor
  • Map saving and loading
  • Sprite animation manager (not seen in screenshot but def working)
  • 25 basic (easy) levels
Here’s what to expect on the next update:
  • More levels
  • Basic menus and GUI
  • Sprites and Art assets
Stuff I might add after the challenge:
  • Playtesting system
  • Optimizations
  • Release of level editor

I’ve thought of putting up the game on Steam Greenlight. Will read up on the steps needed to make it happen.

Ciao!

Escape of the Minibots: Week 2 Update

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Friday, October 12th, 2012 9:18 pm

Progress is going great for my entry. I ditched the last idea I had and revived an old one that I was poking around with a few years ago.

Here’s the mock-up I’ve made:

Everything will make sense when you get to see it in action soon

So I went ahead and coded like hell for the past two weeks. Here’s how it looks like now.

Those different colored blocks signify progress.

It may not seem like it but there are a lot of progress on the screenshot above. For one, the different colors signify different objects and all of them are working perfectly and can be interacted with.

I’ve also finished working on a basic 2d tile based level editor in Unity. This will help speed level creation when I get to doing the puzzles.

My to do list:

  • Basic levels
  • Sprite / graphics implementation
  • More levels
  • Gameplay optimization
  • Map editing optimization

May not seem like a lot but I bet it would take me until the end of the month to finish all of these.

Awesome. Now back to coding.

I’m in. Let’s make some moolah!

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012 5:47 am

This October challenge really caught my interest. All of the games I’ve made are all freeware so I have zero experience in making commercial games. Perhaps this challenge would change that?

Anyway, here’s a screenshot of my game. I call it, Megamalistic. It’s a super fast action flight game where you fight super mega giant monsters and robots.

Perspective in play. That scorpion thingy is the size of a skyscraper.

It’s already a few days of progress. Right now I am just making the gameplay solid enough.

My target is that I should have a game finished by the end of the month so I could concentrate on selling it on the next.

Goodluck to us!

Complexitivity (Post-Compo): IGF China 2012

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Tuesday, September 11th, 2012 3:37 am

At the suggestion of a friend, I decided to submit my game to IGF China 2012. Of course, for it to have any chance against the other submissions, I’ve spent the whole week improving the post-compo version.

Frankly, I’m not really expecting to win at all, I just wanted to have another deadline to spur me into completing it. Yeah, it is deadlines that greatly motivates me to get things done.

So here are all the changes I’ve made for the latest version:

  • Improved UI and Graphics
  • Ability to shoot and repair tiles
  • Upgrades!
  • Difficulty tweaks
  • Control, Mouse and Volume Settings
  • More music and SFX
  • Bug fixes

I must say that I am really happy on how the game turned out. Granted, there are lots more to improve upon, but being a game that is completed at a very short time-frame, I’m actually pretty proud of myself right now.

Thanks, Ludum Dare.

You can play the latest version here! If you still haven’t tried the original one, go here.

Complexitivity (Post-Compo): Version 1.2

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Friday, September 7th, 2012 10:50 pm

The post-compo version with the improved UI and graphics is now playable here!

Users can now also adjust the volumes, change the control scheme, and tweak the mouse settings! A “How to Play” section has also been added for new players!

Kindly tell me if you encounter any bugs! Comments and suggestions are welcome!

Complexitivity (Post-Compo): Before and After

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Thursday, September 6th, 2012 11:28 am

I decided to focus on making the post-compo version of my game more visually appealing. To achieve this, I decided to give my interfaces a… ehem … face-lift. Here are some before and after shots for your viewing pleasure.

Main Menu Interface

 

The screen on the lower-left shows the player the playing field. It gives them an idea of what to expect when they click the start button and it helps in making the menu less dull.

In-Game HUD

I still kept the visor concept and overhauled it a bit to make it look more futuristic. The icons on the bottom represent the number of “repair bullets” you have left.

I still haven’t uploaded the new build yet as I am still working on the other menus. Sorry about that, I was so happy with how the interface turned out that I couldn’t wait to share it. Haha.

While waiting, you can try out and rate the original game here. If you would like to check out the latest compo version, go here

Question: Bugfix for Submitted Version

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Wednesday, September 5th, 2012 8:18 pm

Hi guys, I have this bug I want to fix for the submitted version but i’m unsure if I should proceed or not.

Basically, the problem is that when the player dies and restarts a level, the difficulty of the game does not reset. It remains at a difficulty where they last died (the levels get difficult overtime). Although unintentional, this punishes the people playing the game multiple times. Newbies who couldn’t handle the difficult part get stuck with it which greatly frustrates them.

PoV’s post about the rules on bugfixes state that only crashes and typo bugs are allowed to be fixed. I just want to be sure if this bugfix is allowed and won’t get me disqualified.

You can tryout the submitted game here.

Thanks a lot, guys!

Complexitivity: When players beat the developer

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Wednesday, September 5th, 2012 7:45 am

It is said that developers spend so much time testing their games that they become an expert playing it. Because of this I was able to secure the top spot on the leaderboards easily and held the title ever since.

I thought that no one else can dethrone me, it seems like I am wrong. 😀

I congratulated the guy for beating me fair and square. The 150 mark is one of the hardest difficulty, let’s see if more people can survive past it.

Try out and rate the original game here.
Try the post-compo version here.

Complexitivity (Post-Compo): The basic core mechanic

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Tuesday, September 4th, 2012 2:04 pm

Try out and rate the original game here.
Try the post-compo version here.

Ever since I have determined that my game lacked “lasting appeal”, I spent the last few days experimenting with a number of gameplay mechanics to add to the existing one. There were some that were interesting (like one idea where you can fight the virus directly by shooting its core) but most of them detract from the basic player experience that I want to retain. And that is the tension of dynamic platforming.

Most of my decisions so far was dictated by my desire to retain the core mechanic. My rule of thumb right now is if the player is not jumping around all over the arena, then there’s something wrong with the design.

New additions:

With update 1.1, I’ve introduced a new pickup-item: The recovery node. This replaces the repair node in terms of functionality. Picking this up will recover nearby tiles and increases the points to reach the next level. On the other hand, picking up the repair node will add one “repair bullet” which you can use to repair tiles at will. By having two separate pickups, each with their own risk-and-rewards, I am forcing the player to choose under pressure which can add more to the tension.

I have also changed the way on how a repair bullet works. Before, tiles are restored at random which made the resulting platforms very unexpected and risky. With this new change, the immediate surrounding neighbors are the ones that are restored forming a nice big platform which is very helpful to save you in tight situations.

Update 1.1 summary

  • Picking up repair node (wrench and screwdriver icon)  gives you one “repair bullet”
  • Picking up a recovery node  (the bandage icon) increases your points to get to the next level
  • Repair bullet now restores tiles with a definite shape
  • Placed a “bullet” counter at the top of the crosshairs
  • Some performance and code improvements

Try out the post-compo version here. If you still haven’t, please rate the original entry here.

Complexitivity (Post-Compo): Fire at will

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Tuesday, September 4th, 2012 4:44 am

Try out and rate the original game here.
Try the post-compo version here.

Since I have some free time before my next project, I decided to continue development on Complexitivity. For this post-compo version, I have added a feature that drastically changes how you play the game: The ability to restore tiles from where your crosshairs are pointing at. GASP!

I’m serious. This new addition gives the player a bit more of a fighting chance against the virus at the expense and adds to the choice the player has to make.

If you have played this game, I welcome any comments on this new addition.

Update 1.03 includes:

  • You can now restore tiles at will by clicking on the left-mouse button
  • Made controls more responsive
  • Made jumping less floaty
  • Tweaks to difficulty
  • Improvements to performance and code

Try out the post-compo version here. If you still haven’t, please rate the original entry here.

Complexitivity: My game’s biggest flaw

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Saturday, September 1st, 2012 5:19 am

Try out the game and rate it here.

The past week has been great. I managed to gather a lot of really helpful criticisms and suggestions about Complexitivity. This gave me insight of what the game’s strengths are and where it falls short.

The biggest flaw that seems to be keeping the game from being great is its low lasting appeal.

“It’s fun for awhile”

I seem to get this often just like in my previous LD attempt. I always manage to come up with a fun core mechanic but fail to sustain it for a long time. Sure there were those who enjoyed it and played it for a few times, but according to the statistics, some just played it once and then moved on.

As can be seen above, there were those who played the game a couple of times. Some were very skilled that they don’t need more than 4 tries to get the top positions.

From what I learned above, it is the high score that motivates more playthroughs.  I believe, however, that this is not enough as noThere should be something else that should hook the players.

What is my solution? I’m not sure yet. But at least I know now what to improve upon on my post-compo build.

Complexitivity – A gameplay video

Posted by (twitter: @accidentalrebel)
Thursday, August 30th, 2012 9:21 pm

I decided to make a gameplay video for my game, Complexitivity. Watch it here.

You can try out the game by going here.

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