So, it's been another Ludum Dare - and the theme this time was Evolution. I made the game in Construct 2, an HTML5 Game maker... and, it's rather good. Some odd quirks (as most game making tools have) but very, very user friendly which is nice.
Downside? (And this is to my own stupidity...) You need somewhere to host an HTML5 game (derp), and the Scirra Arcade has an evaluation period for submissions, which just wont do when I need to submit.
So, introducing www.mimicwing.com - my new site! I'll soon move over all the content from here to there, but for now, you can play Intelligent Designer there, the game I made, in 48 hours, for Ludum Dare 24.
Just a little heads up about a teeny weeny little thing called the IGF Pirate Kart.
300 Games. 100 developers. Submitted, together, to the Indepedant Games Festival. Tip of the Tongue (the original, 48-hour jam version) is one of those games, and - like many of the other wonderful games included in the kart - has had some great feedback so far!
Check out the Pirate Kart here: http://www.piratekart.com/
So, just a small update here. I was awarded second place (and a lovelly little silver medal sprite) for the Innovation category in the Ludum Dare #21 Games Making Competition for my game 'Tip of the Tongue'.
Check it out here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-21/?uid=5374
I certainly didn't expect to rank at all, but I now have even more drive to work on it outside the competition & expand on the ideas I already played with - apparently the playerbase approve! :)
So, just a few minutes ago, I submitted my entry for Ludum Dare 21. For those that don't know, Ludum Dare is a 48-Hour Solo Game Making competition (give it a google) with a different theme each time. This was my first time competing, and the theme was 'Escape.'
I've got a Ludum Dare 21 page up in the navigation bar (look up!) I'll roll it into the Games Section at some point, but do go check it out! It's not particuarly long, though it can be quite difficult (because there wasn't any time to balance :P)
I'll work on it some more though, I think, outside of the competition - I really like the concept. I just need to make it playable ;)
So that's that, University is done, I got a First - woop :)
A particular pride-and-joy: the eleven of us got a First for Project Blend! (That thing I've been blogging about on here for like ever... no?...ok. Archives. Read. Go.)
You can either head over to the Games section and read a little more about it, and check it out, or go straight to the Project Blend website hosted by UELGames to play the game and read the design documentation if you wish.
We all worked so hard, so please, whoever you are - prospective employer, mum, someone's uncle, randoms from the interwebz or aliens, please: Check out Project Blend.
So as Project Blend comes to an end, this will likely be the last blog post. Bar typing up any loose ends at the last moment. Since Easter, a big part of my responsibility as Design Coordinator was to write the Finalised Level Design & Walkthrough for the operational document. In addition to this: detailing changes made to the core combat mechanics. All of this is included in the operational document, and the individual files: FinalisedLevelDesign, WalkthroughActual, and Attack Structure Revised can be found in the dropbox. As these documents are quite long, I won’t post all of it here but, rather, give some examples.
First up then, the Finalised Level Design for level 5; punctual, to the point, and including key objects. The first point of call was to make a Key for the diagrams (especially as we missed this off the original design document – DOH!)
Next, it was important to explain and demonstrate that the following diagrams split Level 5 of Project Blend into 12 constituent parts. Progression is numerically consecutive, except for Part 05, which is located vertically above Part 04. The player can jump from 05, to 06, but cannot jump back up again. In addition, the player can move from 04to 06 and vice versa despite the fact they are not numerically consecutive.
And finally, a couple of examples of parts of the finalised design. Again, these can all be found in the operational document, and inside the ProjectBlend dropbox.
The next thing to make, then, was the walkthrough for level five! Unlike the finalised design, this is a little more fleshed out, a little more 'chatty', instructional, and tries to get a little closer to how the player should be feeling, or feeling like they are acting at certain scenarios. It also uses actual screenshots from the game. It is, in essence, the realisation of the level design.
Finally, a little separated from level design and walkthrough, was explaining the changes, and issues related, to combat mechanics. There were three main sections. To some extent, these have been detailed elsewhere in this blog, but hey-ho.
Jab Directions Originally, Logan was able to attack in any direction; however this caused graphical issues as he was able to attack through the floor. During testing, this appeared to be fairly confusing. As such, Logan’s available directions are now locked so that he can’t attack downwards and, therefore, through the floor. The downside to this is that he is no longer able to attack down whilst jumping over enemies.
Jabbing in Stealth Mode It was never set in stone that Logan wouldn’t be able to jab attack in stealth mode, though the initial idea ran with this as fact. During testing, there was some call for him to be able to jab attack in stealth mode. At the same time, however, Stealth and Combat modes are somewhat difficult to distinguish between. No final decision has been made and, for the original prototype, the initial design will be adhered. However:
The argument for Jabbing in stealth: The player shouldn’t be restricted, even though they should be using stealth kills they should have the choice so that when they do a stealth kill they feel like they are making a tactical decision, are empowered, and have a better experience overall. This is what our testers are asking for, even if it’s not helpful for them.
The argument against Jabbing in stealth: The player is intended to kill Elites with stealth kills, not fight them one-on-one. We need to distinguish Stealth and Combat mode from each other, and giving players a jab attack in stealth homogenises the two modes. In addition, using a jab attack over a stealth kill is only ever detrimental to the player. They might want the choice, but guiding them to use stealth when they are supposed to is more important.
Offsetting Stealth Kills Originally, Logan could not change lanes when charging a stealth kill, and could offset it to other lanes – jumping to that lane and killing enemies within it. In practice, this was clunky, extremely restrictive and, at worst, felt broken. As such, the decision was made to let Logan change lanes even when charging. This increased mobility made Logan a little too powerful, however. As such, when charging a Stealth Kill, Logan’s speed is reduced.
And that's that. For now, at least, there's only a few days until hand-in but if anything screems to be seen by the world; it'll be shared here.
As a notice to my tutors; personal reflection will be e-mailed.