I didn’t really want to post a blog on my game until it was ready, because it’s very difficult to communicate what it is just through screenshots. I thought it best to wait until people could actually play it.
Obscure is a minimalist horror exploration game. You are trapped in a pitch black complex, and must find your way out with what little light you have available. A monster is stalking you, and the only way to escape him is to close your eyes and run. Sanctuary is available to the south east, but getting there through the labyrinth will be difficult. You can find its page here.
The graphics are only represented by what your light is blocked by, but each area should be uniquely designed enough that you don’t lose track of where you are or turn around with realising it. This is the first time I’ve made a horror game, and I think it came out really well. It was also the first time I’ve tried a lot of things.
I never actually realised until I was making this game how easy generating collision maps was in Love2d. You can import an image and do a pretty simple loop to build up a 2d array with all the collision data you need. However, using this meant that load times became an issue. With the size of the game I wanted, importing and looping through an image that was the same size as the level (1 pixel = 1 pixel) would take minutes, which is way too long.
I managed to save a bit of time by making the collision map a two colour gif rather than a png, and also made the image much smaller (I then scaled up the array rather than the image), and halved the size of the level (in retrospect, that level was twice as big as it needed to be anyway). This brought it down to about a 10 second loading time on my rubbish old laptop, which seems reasonable to me, and anyone with a slightly more modern machine probably won’t even notice the load.
Because the graphics are so minimal, a lot is represented by the sound (the most important of which is the location of the monster). This is also somewhat new territory for me, but I managed to build up some sounds from the infinite source of foley that is my house to create what I think are pretty convincing effects.
I’ll probably have more reflections on the game when I’m a bit less buzzed from completing it, but I feel very happy with what I managed to create. If nothing else, it’s atmospheric.