Wall of text warning, theories and pics discussed. Much talk, wow.
I'm back after some silence.
Having a lot of fun actually too, learning lots, experimenting lots. Got a couple pages of level ideas written down. I am enjoying this project quite a bit.
So, what's new. Well most of what I've been working on isn't really visual. A lot of menu stuff, some minor art additions (with even more placement art).
Here's a good comparison of the difference in speed I am trying to achieve. I got two levels, one requires more patience while the other is 'oh god move as fast as you can why aren't you moving faster!?' type levels.
Like I said, lot's of little things added. I have slightly changed the screen transition from a sudden shift to a very quick scroll. I found the original was kind of jarring, but a slow transition would mess with your reaction time. Also, screen shake has been added. There is a very slight one when you hit a regular wall, but a more noticeable one upon breaking something or getting a speed star at the end of the level. I found just this little bit of shake removes some of the static feeling the levels can give, plus I do enjoy a good screen shake.
There is also minor improvements to the menu, but it is largely unfinished. The level select system is made, but that's about it. Also, I have added a sort of special item (think of the bandages a la Super Meat Boy), where you can unlock secrets if enough of them are collected (downloadable stuff, maybe a secret character, more game modes, who knows)
Now, for some theory talk. Since this is primarily aimed as a mobile game, one of the things I keep trying to focus on is simplicity. While I don't want this game to feel overly complicated, I do want it to stay fresh feeling and intuitive. For the title menu, I have been throwing around the idea of having a 'Quick Resume' button which starts the game at the level where you left off. I like the idea, but I am not sure where to go to when the game is completed? It'd be great for the first playthrough, but after that it gets kind of hazey.
As I mentioned earlier, there are lots of little ideas I have been playing with. I prefer to introduce a few concepts and types of gameplay in each world (Worlds are broken into 9 short levels), and like to expand upon them in the subsequent worlds. Most of these things so far involve stuff that kills you. Recently I have also been tossing the ideas of methods to temporarily change how the movement is handled. The ideas I have been shooting are:
Mini-portals: Takes you a short distance through a wall or through hazards
Stick pads: Instead of bouncing off the wall, the player treats that wall as though it were the floor. The next jump fixes this.
Gravity switch: Switches gravity until another button is pressed. I am less sure about this one.
Launchers: Deflects the player in a specific direction, normally to somewhere the player cannot reach. Or to death, that can happen to.
Light switches: Makes the world go dark. This would more likely happen at the start of a level. There would also be lamps to guide the player. Less sure of this one too.
So, trying to keep it simple and fresh seem to be quite the task. I know lot's of games have pulled it off. Find out what works and what doesn't is half the fun Â
Well on that note, I will also announce some good news! Since I suck at making music and sounds, I have partnered with a duo who will do it for me! It's the lovely gentlemen over at fatbardmusic.com So, as a result you guys may get to her some sweet jams in the near future. Huzzah!
So, as always feel free to comment / critique / tell me about your week (I'm serious, everyone needs to vent) / or just say whatever. I'm open.
Cheers, thanks for stopping by!