Ludum Dare 31 — December 5th-8th, 2014 — Theme: Entire Game on One Screen

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Creatures of Torzig

by SwiftIllusion - Jam Entry

CREATURES OF TORZIG
---------------
Take care of your creature by feeding it and play Volleyball with it to improve its skills, aiming to receive one of the medals available.


GUIDE:: (also available in-game)
http://i.imgur.com/84n4grE.png


Hope you enjoy playing :), please let me know if you experience any bugs, or if you hopefully had fun.



POSTJAM CHANGE SUMMARY:---
:: ADDED- Sounds, and music by Kevin Green.
:: ADDED- Medals to be gained when achieving a certain amount of passes.
:: ADDED- Visual notifications when you achieve a certain amount of passes, and when the creature levels up in Volleyball skill.
:: CHANGED- Massive changes on how feeding works, so it is now simpler to understand while keeping its original dynamism.
:: CHANGED- Simplified the volleyball target icon and updated it to give a better indication of how long each stage lasts while keeping it easy to read.
:: CHANGED- Massive balance changes for how the creature performs in Volleyball based on its energy, which now decreases as it plays Volleyball (instead of the original static decrease in energy after the game) which adds a level of increasing difficulty over time even after you reach Volleyball skill level 5, which is now the max level instead of 10.
:: CHANGED- Many balance changes for the Volleyball and Feeding system.
:: CHANGED- Adjusted the guide to be a refined quicker read and take into account the latest changes.

Downloads and Links


Ratings

Coolness54%
#229Theme(Jam)3.86
#345Humor(Jam)2.90
#363Mood(Jam)3.24
#631Overall(Jam)3.06
#667Innovation(Jam)2.79
#754Fun(Jam)2.71

Comments

Ossi says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 6:42am

Very cute game! I like the art style and playing with the creature using the volleyball was pretty fun. The tossing mechanic works really well even though it's all in 2D. And I never experienced the joys of leading my target with food so he won't starve! Well done!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 7:05am

Thank you very much Ossi :)! Really happy you enjoyed your time with it and liked the mechanics for the volleyball, and felt just as I had hoped about the food :). ^^

admix says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 12:52pm

Nice graphics but, I don't get how to play it =(

blackmagic says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 12:53pm

The game looks nice but is hard to understand :)

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 2:17pm

Thanks for your responses, I updated the guide hopefully making things more clear to understand, hope you're able to try it again and have more fun knowing what you are doing this time :).
Also fixed a bug where in-between values weren't updating the energy/happiness value, hopefully that's all of them :).

Dec 9, 2014 @ 3:35pm

Couldn't get the fruit to work, for some reason, but the game is adorable! I love the beautiful art, and tamagochi style creature buddy pal is such a great use of the theme! Thanks for sharing! -CC

Dec 9, 2014 @ 5:09pm

Really nice graphics, nice idea but it's hard to understand.

Dec 9, 2014 @ 7:00pm

The feel of the game is very nice, but I feel like the gameplay needs a bit more depth.

Dec 9, 2014 @ 7:13pm

Cute!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 11:17pm

Could people please tell me what specifically they are having trouble understanding? This is the first game I've developed simple enough for my non-gamer Mum and her friend to understand and be able to play, though I showed them how to play myself as I hadn't written the guide at that time.


@Virtually competent, Happy to hear you were still able to enjoy your time with the entry and use of the theme though:)

@HappyTransportGames, glad you like them :). What part of the gameplay are you having trouble understanding?

@BoxedMeatRevolution thank you :)! I had wanted more depth but regrettably became very sick just as the competition started and lost almost a day when it was at its worst so I almost didn't enter but pulled back the design a bit so I could still hopefully enter something fun even if it was smaller in scale.

@BusinessClient thank you :)!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 11:50pm

Made more adjustments to the feeding area of the guide to detail each step needed more clearly, hopefully this helps :).

Dec 10, 2014 @ 2:21am

This was cute, nice job (:

eerongal says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 3:22am

Nice graphics, but there doesnt seem to be much to it.

slarrimer says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 3:29am

I like the character design and background art a lot. It's rather fun to toss a ball back and forth with that little creature.

Croze says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 3:30am

Understanding how to play was pretty tedious, but once I learned how to play it's a pretty neat game. Brings me back to my tomagotchi days...

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 3:57am

@Elemental Zeal Games Studios-
Thank you very much :) glad you enjoyed it.

@eerongal-
Regrettably I became very sick as the game jam started so I lost a full day and had no time available to take off work but I still wanted to try and submit something fun even if it was a limited experience, glad you enjoyed the visual style at least though.

@slarrimer-
Thank you very much ^^! For the first time I even had to basically drag my Mum away after asking her to try it out because she too was having a lot of fun with it and it wasn't as complex as other game experiences, I'm really glad you enjoyed your time with it :).

@Croze-
Sorry to hear that, I tried to have just brief instructions originally but that led people to confusion so I decided it was better to hopefully provide people with everything they needed to know. Happy to hear you enjoyed your time with it afterwards though :). Yeah any pet caring game also reminds me of having a tomagotchi a long time ago, though I always personally felt the gameplay experience was very limited and wasn't really fun moment to moment, though I realize that's pretty subjective depending on the games you like to play. Regardless if you felt that way hopefully it was a fun experience for you playing it :). I had wanted to make a lengthier experience of taking care of the creature long-term but lost a large period of development time so had to compress the experience to this.

Dec 10, 2014 @ 6:00am

I like the graphics but it is not in the rating...The gameplay seems a little simple

Jaenis says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 6:04am

Nice graphics, quite hard to play (didn't just get how to aim return shot). Feeding was fun :)

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 6:31am

@Team Flashlight-
Thank you :). The art used was concept art made for another game before the gamejam period, so as suggested in the rules I opted out of voting for that category.

@Jaenis-
Glad you enjoyed the graphics and feeding :). I adjusted the guide to clarify that you need to release the target on the underside of the ball to return it (releasing on top side works also but not as strong a hit), hopefully that helps you also have fun with that if you check back :).

deyteris_team says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 2:50pm

The game character is so cute.

RadStar says ...
Dec 10, 2014 @ 9:23pm

Beautiful art and nice use of the theme, congrats!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 11, 2014 @ 12:45am

@deyteris_team-
Thank you :).

@RadStar-
Thank you very much :D, glad you liked how it turned out :)!

estebanm says ...
Dec 11, 2014 @ 8:35pm

Amazing art and the concept is very good. The gameplay takes some time to understand

Code Medicine says ...
Dec 12, 2014 @ 1:43am

The art style is truly great. I love the hand-painted look. I love the idea and it makes good use of the theme. I was struggling with the controls, I felt like they could use some more work. But good and unique entry!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 12, 2014 @ 2:38pm

@estebanm-
Thank you :). I wanted to create more dynamic feeling gameplay so regrettably it can indeed end up feeling like it has a learning curve which I've discovered people may seem awkward about when it seems to present itself as a very simple project.

@Code Medicine-
Thank you very much :)! Sorry to hear but glad it was still an overall positive experience for you ^^.


----
P.S.
Have sound and music ready now to add after the voting is completed :).

Code Medicine says ...
Dec 13, 2014 @ 2:47am

Neat idea! I especially love the artwork here, and there seems to be a good amount of the mechanic playable. A few things I can recommend to improve it - Sound effects and music are crucial, I was really missing them here. The pacing seemed a bit slow, and although I saw that the volleyball play was pretty intuitive it just seemed a little too simple for me. I also didn't see much variation in the food you could feed him, and he seemed to hate everything until the game dropped it on the ground, then he would eat it. There were also some drawing issues where the food would render in front of the character. All in all a very solid entry. I really like the direction you are heading and would love to give it a shot if you fleshed it out further. Keep up the good work!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 13, 2014 @ 12:29pm

@Code Medicine-
Thank you :D. Yeah I wanted to get sound in but for the Ludum Dare release I prioritized trying to make it a fun wholesome experience for what mechanics I could get in, sound and music though are already prepared now for a post-voting build :).
It's very hard to satisfy everyone's distinction of simple/hard in regards to the volleyball. I tried to make it simple for this project so it was hopefully accessible for more people and quick to learn, but reading through the comments it can be seen that there are people who thoroughly enjoyed it, those who feel it was hard and those who feel it was easy. With a small scale audience not inherently knowing what to expect it can be hard to satisfy expectations for something like that.
For the food I intentionally chose to only have 3, because of how he gets familiar with food over time and becomes more willing to accept them. I didn't want players to lose to random chance and get different fruit every single time and the creature throwing them all away-wanted to increase the chance of consecutively getting same food while there still being variation.
For the rendering of food, that was an area I had to leave as it was because I was really crunching for time and it wasn't consistent nor was it something that impacted gameplay, though I've just now adjusted it so it should be smoother for the post-voting build also :).
Thank you very much for the honest constructive feedback and kind words :)!!

snickersnacks says ...
Dec 27, 2014 @ 7:42am

Looks great, concept is awesome but hitting the ball back was a bit wonky. It didn't seem to always work if I hit the ball back with the red ring. Some munchy sound effects when it eats the ball would have made me smile!

SwiftIllusion says ...
Dec 28, 2014 @ 3:21am

@snickersnacks-
Thank you :).
With the red ring, you may have held it a bit too long-which is indicated with a burst of red x marks-in which case the ball wouldn't be hit.
There's munchy sound effects for when he eats the ball ready for the post-jam release :), regrettably didn't have time to add them before submission.

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