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Space Pirate (June 2017 demo available)

Bombini

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I have to mention as well (and this is very important) that i did not invent this project to be a succesful project (in regards of revenue). The theme and mechanic is way to niche (or lets say there are too many of those games) and its too much work to do all yourself as you mentioned.  I am still curious how it will turn out when i release it. Thx for your thoughts.


gurigraphics

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Quote
I have to mention as well (and this is very important) that i did not invent this project to be a succesful project (in regards of revenue).

This is perceived, otherwise would have ended the motivation there long time. ^ ^

Anyway, if the profit was a certainty, the motivation and time for it would be even greater.

Bombini

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I added a new feature which allows more fun in leveldesign: conveyor belts!
Also...i rewrote the moving code for the player which allows now custom animations like the one in space.
I dont just add a helmet on top of the actor like before. I can use now an own animation:



Have a great last week before X-Mas!

Bombini

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Added a new mechanic ;)
Working statiions which craft for example robots or whatever i put it:

Bombini

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Hi Space Pirates!

I hope you had a fantastic break and relaxed a bit.
Something really strange happened to me the last days.

The (for me) most complex code and mechanic is the one which controls the "contracts".
To recap: What are contratcs? Mission you can play beside the main story line which will give you ressources:



Now what happened?

I wanted to expand the feature a bit. Right now you can only have an active contract and a contract ready to collect (when done). I wanted to add more states:
  • Empty contract slot
  • Scan for a new contract
  • New contract found OR no new contract found
  • Active Contract
  • Collect Contract reward

The problem was that i did not understand the original code (i wrote months ago) anymore. Even after looking at it over and over again. Wow... never happened to me before. It was a mix of "very complex", "bad documentation" and also that it just worked back then.

I had to rewrite the whole thing ;)
Have a good start into the week!



Justin

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Hopefully it was easier to implement, and done better the second time, since you've already had experience creating the system before. I hate losing code for whatever reason, but I usually take comfort in writing it again and realizing that it's better the second time around.

For Live Support: Join our discord channel and ping me @justin.

Bombini

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Exactly Justin!
The code is now much much shorter, easier to understand and more modular (i can expand it further easily).
This actually made up for it. Those are the best moments even though they start with a lof of annoyances.


merrak

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I've gone through a few rewrite cycles myself, but the results have always been worth the trouble. It would be nice if Stencyl had a few more features for documenting code, such as expandable comment boxes and having some control over the color of blocks (even if just the brightness).

Bombini

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Color of blocks would be awesome!

Bombini

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hi guys,

some thoughts i wanted to share for a long time:
Articles which inspired me while building this game.

I discovered that i did not had too much clue about how to design a good platform or topdown 2d game before digging into Stencyl . While experimenting with my first prototypes and researching i was very surprised how much wrong design decisions can make it into a game like that. Let me sum up some of the most useful inspirations i found which helped me a lot.

1. Game & General design
Diorgo Jonkers from devmag.org.za sums up the basics very well in this article:

1. Keep the user interface simple
2. Make important information easy to see
3. Mind your collision boundaries
4. Make it easy to jump over gaps (in case you use physics)
5. Make it possible to change animation states anytime, anywhere
6. Provide plenty of power-ups and collectables
7. Write generic, but versatile AI
8. Have a story and atmosphere in mind
9. Define scope and time clearly
10. Prototype before finalising theoretical fun
11. Involve everyone in the team in the design



Check out the games.greggman.com blog. The old article Game Design Secrets of the Greggman is a nice checklist for you and acts as an inspiration to push your game design. The focus is on platform and action adventure games.

2. Level design
Radek Koncewicz and who is the Creative Lead of Incubator Games compiled some helpful super-mario-bros-3-level-design-lessons (PartI and PartII). They act as a nice way to understand level design decisions and how players will handle them. There is also a detailed description of the beginning of word 4-2 in Super Mario on auntie pixelante which shows how meachnics can be used in a total different way the player learned it.



Diorgo Jonkers from devmag.org.za compiled a helpful list (how-to-design-levels-for-a-platformer) for level design as well guiding you through the obstacles of level design.

1. Choose a visual theme
2. Make a list
3. Make a rough layout
4. Make rough sketches for the specific items
5. Make a detailed layout
6. Build the initial layout
7. Play the level
8. Decorate the level



Finally take a look at Sequelitis - Mega Man Classic vs. Mega Man X from Egoraptor.
He walks you through one level of Mega Man X and describes how the developers teach the player how to play the game without tutorials and interruptions.

3. Difficulty
I did not aim for difficulty like in Super Meat Boy but it is very interesting to understand the thoughts the design behind this game described in the article 'Why So Hard?' on Gamasutra. McMillen questions the old formula "(Percent chance the player will die) X (Penalty for dying) = Difficulty" and analyses various games and how they handle difficulty.

Rodain Joubert sorts the topic into various rules:
  • You are, without fail, the best at your own games
  • Play nice, and give your player the information they deserve
Remember that while making a game too difficult is possibly one of the quickest ways to drive players away, making it too easy also has its drawbacks.

I found this bosses guide of Metroid : Zero Mission very helpful to get inspiration for designing boss fights.


« Last Edit: January 16, 2017, 06:02:03 am by Bombini »

detted

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Awesome post Bombin(I'm late to the party)i! I really love reading this sort of stuff and I really your game and how it's developed over time :)
Composer • Sound designer • Producer
www.tedwennerstrom.com
@TedWennerstrm

Bombini

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Thanks detted!
You are never too late to a party unless its over or police was there ;)
I am currently working with a writer on all the content.
Cheers!

Bombini

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Hi Space Pirates!

This might be the final pre alpha before i implement the final story and content.
I actually already started with the help of a writer and i will update you as soon as the story and universe is fleshed out.

PC version:


MAC version:


So what is new in this version?
All features i mentioned in the last weeks:

New features:
   + Reworked simple NPC text system allowing dialogues in level
   + I finalize and optimize contract feature
   + Added assembly lines which crafts items to for example robots
   + Rewrote movement code for player: Change motion state for suite in space
   + Added legendary enemies
   + Wall tiles are now split in two groups. Destructable with bombs and not destructable (with steelcore).
   + Hull system implemented. Ship can break apart if certain damage taken.
   + Logs are counted. Finding all logs gives a credit bonus
   + Advanced flamer weapon (burns all organic material and alien slime now)
Fixes:
   + Fixed camera issues in several levels
   + Fixed Doors with trigger
   + Fixed disable alarm console (works properly now)
   + fixed security camera & alarm countdown  (work properly now)
   + Added system sounds to hull system






colburt187

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Hey, played the demo finally, awesome stuff, the movement and the shooting feels great. I found that the boxes that hole the loot blend in with the background, I often didn't realise I had walked into one until the sfx and $ popped up.

I got stuck in some weird contract bug when entering the escape ship of the first big ship you board, maybe you know about that already.

Bombini

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Hi Colburt,
thanks for playing  :D
The contracts are very messed up. It is still a demo.
I am now working on the final content which will be awesome.
Exciting story!

Cheers!