August 24th-27th 2012 :: Theme: Evolution

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Species Hunt

by Frib - 48 Hour Compo Entry

Species Hunt! A game where you have to shoot birds! With a camera!

Enjoy a peaceful stroll on the beach while snapping some exotic (Ha! I mean common) birds. Try to take the best photo ever! Or fill up your collection of new species you have personally discovered, then name them after yourself! Or just enjoy the view and watch the birds muck about.

Requires XNA 4.0. Should work on most machines, but if it doesn't, let me know and I'll try to fix it ASAP!

Controls are editable in-game. But a quick rundown:
Move with WASD/arrows
Equip camera with RMB
Take picture with LMB
Show/hide photo album with tab
Run with shift
Zoom camera with Q/E or mousewheel

Photographs taken in-game can be saved for use outside the game. Simply click on the photo in the album, then save to disk. You can also enable autosaving every new photo taken automatically in the options menu.

Please note: Key configs are persistent, but all other options are not.


Update 27/08

I've added a post-compo version with a widescreen resolution of 1280x720, which makes photographs of 1920x1080. So if you want to make prettier photographs, now you can. The system requirements went up though as you need a slightly more modern video card now. And the camera lens rectangle is slightly smaller than the photos. But other than that, everything should still work fine.

Also, don't rate this version! Rate the original.

Downloads and Links




cacciatc says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 5:27am

I enjoyed this game. The clouds were a little distracting since they moved too fast. A shutter sound for the camera would be a nice addition.

Gareth001 says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 7:42am

Wow... That is an amazing game

Dadeyemi says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 8:04am

Impressive I would have liked some graphical flares (seeing as the game is about the environment) but all together very relaxing and enjoyable.
Also if you stand in one place and take pictures by turning in a circle you can ramp up your species score quite fast.

Frib says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 8:18am

Thanks for your comments!

@cacciatc a sound should play when you make a photo. It's not a 'traditional' camera sound though.

@Dadeyemi Right now the only fancy graphical stuff is when birds land in the water. They make a splash then (which increases your photo value!). But I didn't have the time to add other fancy things.

And yes, it doesn't take distance into account, nor obstacles, so you can just spamclick everywhere and it will most likely register a bird very far away on the other side of the island. :D

Zanzlanz says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 11:49am

Aww I can't try it out :(
The program crashes as soon as I try to open it in Windows XP.

rhysvdw says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 12:01pm

I felt like I was really there!

Frib says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 1:10pm

Zanzlanz, that's not good! :(

Make sure you have installed the XNA redist. And maybe you'll need to (re)install .NET framework 4. It should technically work on XP, and a crash on startup might mean one of those two is missing.

XNA is linked above and .net 4 can be found here

If that doesn't work either, please let me know because then something else is wrong :D

josefnpat says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 8:30pm

Sorry, couldn't emulate through wine on linux :(

Xaychru04 says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 8:40pm

A very surprising game, I like it !
(I like the clouds too x) )

berkano says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 9:16pm

A lovely game, walking around in the environment was very relaxing especially after playing some of the more terrifying entries :-) The photo album concept is really well executed. Nice work!

kyyrma says ...
Aug 27, 2012 @ 9:56pm

This is so far my overall favourite entry. I would really really like to see this game being further expanded and polished.

I might write some more suggestions at a later time when I'm not so busy, but the first thing I noticed was that the camera shutter sound is bad. Shooting a camera - be it in real life or video games - you just kind of expect this very distinct camera shutter sound. The sound you have now is really disorienting. For the longest time I thought it meant I had failed to take a photo!

Frib says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 9:11am

Haha, yes, I'm not happy with the camera shutter sound either. But I couldn't generate a decent camera-like sound with bfxr that doesn't hurt your ears. So I went with this one :D

I'm happy to hear any suggestions you have. I might continue working on this game, if time permits. There are a few directions this could go to and I'm very happy with the potential it has.

Ragzouken says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 12:57pm

I loved this as soon as I started playing! The simple graphic style, combined with the music and leisurely gameplay is really beautiful :)

Jiggawatt says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 3:35pm


The left photo was a "scenic shot" and the right one was a photo of a bird. wat

Besides some flaws like that, (and the programmer art :P), it's a cute and immersive game with emergent gameplay.

Jiggawatt says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 3:42pm

Looks like that bug is pretty commmon at high zoom levels, but when you zoom out, it counts as a bird shot. Interesting.

Frib says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 4:05pm

yeah I'm aware of that. If a bird is not completely inside the view (and it's a bit picky at high zoom levels because the math is off), then it doesn't register.

But it does not 'see' terrain, so if there's a bird somewhere in the distance, it will register that even if you can't see it.

It's a bit silly, I know :D

Zoomyzoom says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 5:44pm

I like the art in this game :) it goes past what it needs to have.

Maple says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 6:26pm

Very interesting! I got 3636 points for a photo I took of 3 different species birds standing next to each other on the ground. The menus could have looked a little nicer and had a back button instead of ESC and stuff but I mean what is there more to say, other than more species or animals, etc? Hmm. I'm not sure if multiple birds are taken into account when photographing because it only gives info on the one at the front, but to take things like that, and flowers and trees and angles etc into account for the points would have been amazing. And if so, maybe different tree types attract different species and look better or worse etc. But yeah, what you have now is nice. Good job!

zkenshin says ...
Aug 28, 2012 @ 8:12pm

I really enjoyed how different the game was, and the relaxing feel to it.

jplur says ...
Aug 29, 2012 @ 6:06am

Very inspired, I just wish it would tell you something about these birds when you discover them.

Andrei Barsan says ...
Aug 29, 2012 @ 10:19am

I liked it, although it felt a bit boring. Adding something like popup text after taking a photo telling you how many points you got and how many birds you caught could make things more interesting.

Also, whenever I looked straight up, the camera view glitched a bit and a bit of the skybox got clipped and replaced with a plain green color.

Also, I appreciated the fact that you could actually see your body when looking down! :D

Porpentine says ...
Aug 29, 2012 @ 7:51pm

ah what a cute game! i greatly desire more freeroaming photography games and for some reason no one really makes them. looking forward to any more work you do on this! i also like the Tribes-style skiing when you press Space

Spelchan says ...
Aug 29, 2012 @ 8:03pm

Didn't think I would care much for this game but actually enjoyed it quite a bit.

Benjamin says ...
Aug 30, 2012 @ 4:20pm

The camera sound is quite funny. It's a nice idea but I get bored pretty fast. Maybe you can make it more catchy by giving some ingame objectives ( 10x differents birds picture in 1 minute, 1 red wings walking bird picture in 1 minute etc )

Cipher says ...
Sep 1, 2012 @ 2:13pm


Cipher says ...
Sep 1, 2012 @ 2:13pm


goerp says ...
Sep 1, 2012 @ 4:19pm

I like it a lot. Very original. I like that the birds have behaviors and different looks.

sev_inf says ...
Sep 8, 2012 @ 1:31pm

Pretty good game, reminds me some stages of Beyond Good and Evil.

garygreen says ...
Sep 8, 2012 @ 1:39pm

This is a really nice idea. I enjoyed the calmness of it too. I also liked the way some of the birds seemed to know you were taking their photo and posed for you. :-D

Pierrec says ...
Sep 8, 2012 @ 3:15pm

Very relaxing. I like the fact that you actually can see the pictures and name the birds.

vilya says ...
Sep 9, 2012 @ 10:10pm

Very nice idea & a lovely peaceful ambience to it. My one criticism: I couldn't really figure out what the criteria were for scoring the photos. Some info about that would make it even better.

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