Reset Co.

Luyren

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  • Posts: 2176

"We at Reset Co. pride ourselves in resetting your home to a clean and tidy state, no matter the damage!"

Nuke, the mischievous cat, is causing chaos in a client's house! Play as Carla, a proud Reset Co. employee, and use her reset power to put things back in order.

I've worked on this game along with koikidd (formelly Strasteo here on the forums). I'll use this thread to talk a bit about the development process, and also invite your feedback here as well. I'm writting this from memory, so it might not be as descriptive as one would like.

Used Resources
https://luyren.itch.io/luyrens-utility-pack
Used the Follow Point behavior to make AI movement, and the Scene Actor Spawner for the smoke effects on the introduction of each stage. Also used the Orbit behavior for the stage complete stars movement.

https://luyren.itch.io/luyrens-miscellaneous-stencyl-behaviors
Used the Time Count behavior for the stage timers, Particles for the stage complete effect and Player Control for player and AI movement.

I used musescore to compose the music, bfxr for one or two sound effects. I recorded some sounds in my house and edited them with audacity for the majority of the others sound effects. Graphics were 99% done by koikidd, I mostly stuck with some recolors.

Concept
During brainstorming, each of us had different ideas:
1- I thought about a simple platformer, get-to-the-goal style, in which you must reach a target time or the stage fails. The concept here is the speedrun reset, so you'd be resetting for the perfect run.
2- koikidd thought about a concept in which you have status conditions, you can reset to a previous status, and the interaction between the player, their current status and objects on the stage would be used to reach a complete stage.

We went with the second idea as the core concept, followed by the idea of resetting a room manually. That concept is fully fledged and included in the game. Objects could be wet, on fire, shocked or dry. Interacting with an object would transfer the status. For example if you are on fire and touch a wet table, the table would get dry. You'd need to set each object to their position and target status to complete a stage.

Story-wise, a custodian job seemed fitting. I have a soft spot for the magical/super natural being treated as everyday stuff, like in some Ghibli movies. koikidd came up with the idea of a cat causing all the mess. We were working on a game previously about a cat that catches flying fishes, but we cancelled it, so that cat lives on here.

Development
On the first days, I focused mainly on the basic actions (picking up stuff and push/pull), the flow of the game (start a stage, stage select and the gameplay loop) and later took 2 days for the soundtrack. We also though about some more stage elements, such as generators to power up moving platforms, and a lamp for dark stages, the latter being in the game code but left unused.

One thing I wanted to make sure was to show the player all the objectives. That's why the intro cutscene plays in all stages: it grabs the screen image at that moment, which can be then viewed on the pause menu, along with a text showing the objectives, to know where exactly to put everything. koikidd made the acctual indicators on each stage, and they also ended up helping a lot, both as guides for the player, and when making the intro and gameplay versions of each stage.

I think by the third or fourth day we noticed that we weren't comming up with ideas for puzzles with the reset status mechanic. So koikidd came up with the concept of resetting the entire room, and objects on their target positions wouldn't be reset. End result is that the entire status thing is included in the game, but left barely used. We also settled on single-screen puzzles.

After that we started designing the stages. We pretty much did half of the levels each, and we did a last rush on sunday to get the game done. I admittedly had some troubles comming up with stages that better used the "reset objects" mechanic. Had we started designing stages earlier with that idea in mind, we'd probably had a better grasp of how to properly utilize it, and we'd probably have more stages as well.

One thing to add: I personally spent all days of the jam from around 10-11am to midnight working on it, with a few breaks along each day, and 2 or 3 days I started at around 5pm. I don't have a job at the moment, nor other obligations, so I was able to put a lot of time into it.

Community Bonus
I did a simplified cutscene system for this game jam, which is used for the intros and start/end stage sequences. I'll document it later this week, and add it as a "free demo" of sorts that you'll be able to download in my cutscene pack page. It's way more limited than my cutscene pack, and its setup is similar but not quite the same, but might be useful for simple cutscenes for your games. Plus, if future jams also have the same rules for pre-made resources, you'll be able to use it.

That's it from me. Comments and feedback are welcome!

« Last Edit: April 06, 2020, 08:22:46 pm by Luyren »
My Stencyl resources are available here: https://luyren.itch.io/
Cutscenes, RPG Elements, Particles, Map System and many more.
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Strasteo

  • Posts: 323
Hey, I just wanted to pop in with some thoughts. I haven't logged into Stencyl in a long time but I am happy to see that the community is still present and making fun games. :)

It was great reconnecting with Luyren and making this game together. I remember when we first started making games using Stencyl and I was much much younger than I am now with no clue how to make games and Luyren was patient enough to work with me.

I think Luyren covered much of the other aspects so I'll just talk about the graphics side which I handled.

I primarily used Graphics Gale and Paint.net for my work on the game. I have a day job where I do similar work, so this did impact a little bit of the quality of the graphics due to time. I went with a more simple look, and a bit rushed near the end on some aspects such as the BG.

The animations actually took the least time, or at least was the most enjoyable for me to do so they felt like they didn't take long. :) The victory spin animation is my favorite animation I think, though the cat is very cute too.

As for the game, I am quite happy with it. I think the design is more straightforward, with some fun puzzles. I often find myself trying to see a different angle and put in twists on what I see as formulaic, but often this leads to complexity and muddles the experience. It's important to have a solid, simple core that is understandable to the player immediately before spinning off into additional concepts. It helps to have a partner who is willing to experiment and entertain ideas while also having a critical eye, and for that, I'm quite grateful to Luyren.

I think that's all from me. Thanks for playing and I hope you enjoy it. :)