The Interesting Sale

I’m going to try something different. Starting tonight, when B1T DR0P is updated (It’s started!), the paid version will be on sale for 50% off (the free version will still be free of course). So what’s interesting about this? The length of the sale will be determined by the number of purchases.

A single purchase will extend the sale by 4 hours, and so the total length of the sale will be:

24 hours + (purchases * 4 hours) + (the time Google Play takes to return to the pre-sale price)

At the end of the sale, I will give full statistics on the number of purchases, when they occurred, and anything else that seems interesting. This will give you a look into the success (or lack of success) of a niche game from a small developer.

Do you want more? Alright, here’s a deal: If B1T DR0P makes 20 or more sales at the discounted price, another game of mine (Avoider) will be made free. Forever. For you. For your friends. For everyone who wants to play it.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

#1GAM Mega Midmortem

What’s a “midmortem” you ask? It’s like a postmortem, but in the middle of a project. In this case, the ‘project’ is all of One Game A Month.

Is the year really halfway done already? It’s gone quickly! In the past 6 months, I’ve learned a lot, and done a lot, and I’d like to share some of that with you. First though, I’d like to thank everyone who has been a part of 1GAM, even if you think you haven’t done much. I’d also like to thank McFunkypants for all his hard work organizing the ideas and setting this whole thing up. He’s done a great job! Another big thank you goes to singmajesty for what is possibly the best support ever given for a tool.

You probably came here for something game-related, so that’s what I’m going to give you! At the end of this post, I’ll talk about what this challenge means to me and how well I feel I’ve done. For now, here are mini-postmortems for each of the twelve games I’ve made in the first half of the year:

Mr Wizard VS The World

Mr Wizard is similar to the battles in Pokemon games. It’s an arena fighter in which you don’t have direct control over your fighters. This game was originally made for Ludum Dare, with an improved edition being sold. I’m pretty happy with the idea, but the fighting is a bit too random, I think.

A Game Appears

My second January game was a remake of a game I had started a few years ago. It’s a simple simon clone (a ‘follow the leader’ game), but made to feel somewhat like an old RPG battle. This game was kinda rushed, and so isn’t very polished.

Power Defense

A cool name for a not-so-great game. I really liked the idea, rhythm tower defense, but the execution of the idea failed. It’s not exactly tower defense in it’s current state, and there are only three ‘songs’ to play. I think this could become a good game, but a lot would need to be changed.

Conquest of the Free

Conquest is a dual-stick shooter, set in a matrix-like world. A friend of mine did some voice acting, and I think that especially is great. The game itself is rather difficult, but there is a cheat code system. Enter a code on the title screen, and a sound will play if it’s correct. Overall, I’m quite proud of this game, even if the randomness is somewhat unfair at times.

POINT

This was another idea I really liked. In POINT, your score and your life are tied together. in fact, your score *is* your life. Balancing this so that it wasn’t too hard at the beginning and wasn’t too easy later was a challenge. I think I succeeded at that. However, with some polish, it could be really good.

Domino Dungeons

This isn’t a videogame. Are you amazed? Speaking of mazes, that’s how DD looks after a few minutes of play. It’s a roguelike made entirely of dominoes. I’m planning to eventually make a physical version for sale, but for now, you can print and play. Currently, the endgame isn’t great, and there are a few balancing issues.

Meat Meets Potatoes

This is another Ludum Dare game. I didn’t have a lot of time that weekend, but I managed to put together something interesting. MMP is a two-button platformer. It isn’t polished, and sometimes jumping is a little glitchy, and impossible gaps sometimes appear. Minus the bugs, it should be entertaining enough to provide motivation to get the true ending.

2POINT0

Remember I said POINT would be great if polished a bit more? This is it. Yes, the name is a pun. This is a ‘remake’, or version 2.0, of POINT. This is one of the games I’m most proud of. the graphics aren’t exactly a great imitation of arcade games, and it does get a little repetitive at times. There are four bosses, new enemies, and an overall great level of polish. It feels very much like an arcade game, in almost every way. (Wait on the title screen to see what I mean)

Story Of My Life

This is a short WarioWare-like game that I made for my highschool graduation ceremony. Play through some pieces of my life, ten seconds at a time. Just for the record: every event in that game actually happened. I like the general design of this game, but it could have been longer if i didn’t run out of time.

Geps Hen

This was the first game I made as part of a team. I’ve already done a full postmortem, so I’ll keep this short. It could have been more polished, especially the bosses, but the style and design is fun.

Master of the Galaxy

This is a two-player space arena fighting game. Try to trick your opponent and land three shots. this is mostly a prototype lacking polish. I’m expanding this game to be released on the Ouya, with more types of weapons, and designed to keep the action flowing a lot more.

B1T DR0P

This is a binary Tetris game for Android devices. Bits drop from above, and you need to put them into line to form a given number. (in decimal or hexadecimal!) There is also a paid version here, if you like it. I’m quite happy with the art style and general design of this game. Converting binary is actually very fun when made into a game!

Well, that’s it. That’s every game I’ve made this year. I hope you find at least one that you like, and I’d appreciate any feedback you have for any of them. 1GAM has been fun, and it’s only half over! I’m definitely going to try to continue this pace for the rest of the year. If you are doing the one game a month challenge, good luck to you! If not, it’s never too late to join!

Posted in gamejams, games | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Geps Hen Postmortem

A game postmortem is a great thing to write about. A game postmortem about my first time doing a collaboration is even better. That’s what happened in May’s 1GAMCRUNCH.

Team Geps Hen is made up of three people: Charlie, Sara, and myself. This postmortem will be from my perspective. Everything I say here is my own opinion. I’m sure the rest of the team feel differently about some parts of the game. Here we go.

First, what went right. Our idea was pretty good I think. A MegaMan-like platformer about a chicken who is a god and is saving farm animals from a farmer. A good mix of uniqueness and humor. It gave us a great place to start, and I started with the level loading code. That’s right, before levels were even being designed, I was writing the code to parse the levels. Past experience with game jams has taught me what to prioritize in various types of games.

Once the basic level loading was done (I didn’t know everything that we would add, and so couldn’t write it all immediately),  I began the platforming engine. This is a point I’d like to stress went extremely well by the end. Using knowledge of previous platformers I’d made, I quickly got the code into a non-working mess. After taking a step back, I managed to write the best platforming code I had ever written in my life. It’s smooth, it works, and the code itself isn’t even that bad to look at. There is actually one thing that isn’t ‘correct’, but I don’t think anyone has run into a problem from that yet. 😉

All that code was written in the first few hours, before I slept. Actually, most of the code went pretty well. On the topic of sleep, that was another thing that went right. I got only slightly less than my normal amounts of sleep that weekend. I believe this helped a lot, especially toward the end.

One more thing that really went right: the art. Yes, I said this postmortem would be about my work and my points of view, but the art is just that good. Sara did an amazing job, and seeing the art in the game was a huge motivator.

Now for what went wrong. First, a minor issue: I didn’t have the whole weekend to spend working on the game. This might have helped in a way, by giving me more ‘sanity breaks’, but I keep thinking about what could have been done with just a little more time.

Back to the code. I had some huge problems getting the art displayed correctly in the game at first, but with a long break, and destroyed desire to do thing the ‘right way’, I managed to eventually get it working. However, I was worried for a long time that all the hard work on the art might have been wasted!

As for features, well…we had to cut a lot out. This always happens in game jams it seems. The bosses especially were simplified. Due to not getting finalized ideas for the story and boss attacks, the bosses were added in the last hour or two of the jam. Definitely last minute.

Microphone input works, but it’s…interesting. It’s only able to take the volume of the input, so it’s fairly limited. In the game’s current state, microphone controls are not recommended unless you want much more of a challenge.

I’m sure I’m forgetting some things about that weekend, so to make up for it, here’s a few bonus paragraphs about topics that weren’t exactly right or wrong.

The ending time for the jam was 7pm in my time zone. Or at least, that’s what I thought. Fortunately, the actual deadline was later than I had thought and not earlier. We had until midnight. I immediately felt better (I learned about the real deadline at around 3-4pm). Even with the ‘extended’ time limit, we worked until the last second. I was exhausted. My teammates will confirm that I had given up correcting typos in the irc for the last several hours. I was tired and there still wasn’t time for that. We were all exhausted.

I felt the level design was okay at best. Not great, not terrible. Certainly not Mega Man type hard. (unless you’re playing with the microphone!)

As for the collaboration itself, it went well enough. We had irc and twitter to communicate. We talked a lot. We offered suggestions and feedback constantly. We got a game done.

Well, I guess that’s about it. I’m sure there’s more to talk about, but I leave it up to my team members to talk about anything else, if they want to. Collaborating was fun, and I’ll definitely try to do it again! Thanks for reading this postmortem, and please check out the game here!

Posted in gamejams | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Things and stuff

So…It’s been awhile, hasn’t it?

Yes. It has. Sorry about that. to make up for it, I’ll be posting some great stuff here, including a postmortem for my first ever game collaboration, in the next few days. I’ll do a ‘midmortem’ about 1GAM in general towards the end of the month as well. I’ve also finished a new version of my Android game, Avoider. Expect that to go live within the next hour or two.

That’s all for today. more tomorrow.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

My Next Game

I’m already excited for my next #1GAM game! Can i tell you about it? Alright, I will.

It will be for several consoles, and able to be played across all of them at the same time. Which consoles? The WiiU, PS4, the new Xbox (I don’t think I’m allowed to share the name yet), the Dreamcast, original Famicom (sorry NES owners!), and the most powerful console of all: the Atari 2600.

It will feature not quite photo-realistic graphics, supporting (literally) infinite colors and sounds. What will the gameplay be like? Don’t worry about it. Gameplay is only there to keep you addicted to the game, whereas we all know that games should be about the graphics and effects like lens flares. Games should be full of hour long cut scenes that make you cry and then throw ten thousand zombies at you so you forget about crying until the next cutscene.

Does all of this sound too good to be true? It gets better. A game this fantastic must have a fantastic price to match, right? Wrong! I’m entirely embracing the f2p model. What does this mean? It’s free to play! Your payments are welcome, but paying nothing at all will get you access to the full game! (or at the very least, eht tsrif enecstuc) Did you like that parenthetical statement? that’s a preview of an alien language in the game.

Well, I need to get back to my limo. My secret sponsor is sometimes impatient. Who is it? That’s a secret!

Posted in games | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Domino Dungeons Prerelease

It’s finally here! This is not a joke! Domino Dungeons is finally here! Sort of. This is actually a pre-release version of the rules. I’m looking for any and all feedback/constructive criticism, so let me know what you love/hate about the game, and the rules themselves!

Enough talk. You probably want a link. Here it is, waiting for you and possibly one friend to play it. (EDIT: Version is now .92)

Are you still here? I guess I should explain a little more. Domino Dungeons is a physical roguelike game made using dominoes. It keeps the randomness and difficulty of a roguelike, and brings things to a whole new dimension: “The Real World”.

“Dominoes, you say?” you might be asking. “How much fun could it be?” Well, these aren’t normal dominoes- “Then why do you expect people to have these dominoes to be able to play your game!?” I don’t. Included in the rulebook printable pieces are provided for playing. Use these if you don’t have the right dominoes (I expect no one else does). “But those pieces will be made of paper! I want dominoes!” Well, you could always suggest some way for me to provide a physical edition of this game. That was one of my goals in the beginning. If you know of any board game publishers who owe you a favor, or even just have a lot of wood and paint, please let me know!

Now play the game already! That’s what it’s there for! (And don’t forget to give feedback!)

Posted in games | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

7DRL Day 2

Well, 48 hours are gone. Things are not looking good. By that I mean that I’m really no farther than I was 24 hours ago. If I actually had all 168 hours to make this game, things would be easier. Unfortunately, life often gets in the way. I’m not dropping out though. I intend to finish 7DRL, either with success or with failure.

Posted in gamejams | Tagged | Leave a comment