Dev Blog | Brandav

Moderator: samw3

User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Sun Jul 06, 2014 11:07 pm

This will be my second speedgame, and this year I'll be making a top-down shooter/puzzle game called Spark. It has a simple but slightly cryptic storyline involving the main character who finds a weapon called the Spark. He uses its power to transport himself between worlds/dimensions with the ultimate goal of saving/restoring a soul. I'm basing the game off of Ephesians 6:12, and I'm using Construct 2 again to build the game. I'll be doing all the artwork myself and probably music. Since it's a top-down game, the artwork isn't too difficult. I'll probably post some of it later.
User avatar
samw3
Site Admin
Posts: 1239
Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2007 2:00 pm
Location: Toccoa, GA
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby samw3 » Sun Jul 06, 2014 11:24 pm

Sounds cool! Looking forward to it!

God Bless!

Sam
User avatar
Berryijmker
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 3:12 am
Location: Holland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby Berryijmker » Mon Jul 07, 2014 1:13 am

Nice Brandav, stumbling blocks was very nice and got played a lot. Can't wait to see what you make this year :)
User avatar
bugala
Posts: 1279
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:43 pm
Location: Finland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby bugala » Mon Jul 07, 2014 1:34 am

Ah, so it was brandav who made the stumbling blocks.

No wonder i got mixed with you. I have been thinking you and brandav both as the same guy.
User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:07 pm

Making progress! I'm basically solving one problem after another. Construct 2 can be difficult sometimes, because things have to be done a certain way. If I was doing regular programming, I'd be able to solve some of these issues much more easily. But Construct 2 already has so many built-in tools that I'm ultimately saving more time by using it. This is also a different type of game than my first one, so I have to approach development in Construct 2 in a different way.

Regardless, I think most of the major core game logic is done with, so I can now focus on more of the game design which I really enjoy. Hopefully no more big roadblocks, because there is still so much to do!

Two more things.

Everyone's artwork is so amazing that I'll basically have to do everything else perfectly to have a chance!

Also, Beware of feature creep!!
User avatar
Berryijmker
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 3:12 am
Location: Holland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby Berryijmker » Fri Jul 11, 2014 12:12 am

I recognize what you're saying about construct2, but just like you say, in the end it saves a lot of time :)
User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Fri Jul 11, 2014 9:47 am

Something awaits in the darkness... MUAHAHAHA!! lol

Image
User avatar
ExevaloN
Posts: 173
Joined: Sat Jan 02, 2010 7:12 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby ExevaloN » Fri Jul 11, 2014 11:37 am

brandav wrote:Something awaits in the darkness... MUAHAHAHA!! lol

Image


A sleeping dragon lying in wait to devour our hero?
One thought opens a thousand eyes. One sun brings a thousand dawns.
—Lightbringer creed
User avatar
bugala
Posts: 1279
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:43 pm
Location: Finland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby bugala » Fri Jul 11, 2014 2:35 pm

brandav wrote:Something awaits in the darkness... MUAHAHAHA!! lol

Image


A previous years hide and seek champion?
User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Fri Jul 11, 2014 4:52 pm

ExevaloN wrote:A sleeping dragon lying in wait to devour our hero?


What easier way to add epicness to a game than with a dragon?!
User avatar
ExevaloN
Posts: 173
Joined: Sat Jan 02, 2010 7:12 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby ExevaloN » Fri Jul 11, 2014 7:39 pm

brandav wrote:
ExevaloN wrote:A sleeping dragon lying in wait to devour our hero?


What easier way to add epicness to a game than with a dragon?!


Touché!
One thought opens a thousand eyes. One sun brings a thousand dawns.
—Lightbringer creed
achild
Posts: 308
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:42 am
Location: McKees Rocks, PA

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby achild » Sat Jul 12, 2014 11:19 am

bugala wrote:A previous years hide and seek champion?

LOL

Very nicely done dragon - definitely feels epicer (more epic?). Can't wait to see his place in the game!
User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:14 pm

I'm basically done with the gameplay portion of the game, but I still need to do a thorough pass through it in search of bugs. (Please work with me Construct 2! lol) Sometimes bugs at the end of development can be the hairiest to sort out since everything is interconnected. All it takes is one bug and :o my time is gone lol.

I still need to add music/sound effects which could take some time to find the right song(s) to go with the game. If I can't find anything good, then I'll probably just make my own in either famitracker or garage band.

I also need to add a title screen, probably some additional ui elements, and a simple save feature.

I'm pretty pleased with the results so far, lets hope its all downhill from here.
User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:23 pm

meant to post the title screen image before I submitted the game, but here it is anyway.
Image

here are my download links:

windows

mac

linux
User avatar
bugala
Posts: 1279
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:43 pm
Location: Finland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby bugala » Sun Jul 27, 2014 1:46 am

This game is good example on how a game can be good, even its appearance might be a bit minimalistic.

First one thing, not actually a complaint, since I think its constructs fault. But when i tried the webversion, it was bit slow, not too slow, but slow enough that I rather chose to play exe. Exe worked fine as long as i didnt use fullscreen, except, every now and then it paused for many a second. Perhaps even 15 seconds at worse. That was of course very annoying. I guess about 10 year old win XP machine just aint build for Construct 2, regardless how low power game you make with it.

The first thing that caught my attention, was the funny way of movement. Especially in first level where you were simply going through a maze, it made a big difference that moving was bit car game like when you were at speed and turning those corners. Had it been simply going 4 different directions, I think I would have even felt bit frustrated at that moment thinking "Really? Is this what you planning to have your game like?", but the movement of bit of circle made it actually little bit fun finding your way on that first maze.

And at next level, I was happy to notice this game was not going to be maze based game, but there were new, and even interesting stuff coming.

I liked the idea of altering between light and dark world, and I liked how much different kinds of stuff you had put in this game.

I have so far said on almost every speedgame review i have this year done, that they were all suitably long games, since they didnt have enough meat on them, to be any longer. But this one is exception. This did have enough meat on its bone to having been even longer.

Actually, when the dragon came for the first time I remember I felt extremely disappointed since I thought it was going to end, and it felt such a promising game already. But good i was wrong in it ending, and good i was right, in my expectation of it being promising.

I mainly liked the level designs, here were only two levels that I would have hoped having been done differently. The first level which was maze. It felt too much like you didnt really have any ideas, so lets just make a maze. Mazes are frustrating for players, or at least thats how i feel. And it was even too big a maze. 1/4th sized maze had been fine for first level, but this made me fear there was crappy game coming, which it luckily wasnt.

Another level of frustration was that big level where you had to shoot and run before darkness/light altered, and there were these moving platfors and in the end those cannons.

That levels design was otherwise actually good and nice, but problem was that everytime you would die, you would have to start from beginning. And oh and woe the frustration i went through there dieing several times before reaching the end. Especially when i failed moving out of the last moving platform, that was one of those times had i been playing this as a kid, i would have kicked my tv with both legs!

Ohterwise I was happy for every levels design and felt they were interesting and fun, and there was a lot of variation in them.

Although I liked the dragon appearing more than once, and I also very much liked that you had a sort of trick to beat him, it was however disappointing, that you had to kill him the same way each time, and there was really no difference in difficulty between the first and last one. Except that the first one that was supposed to be easiest, was actually the hardest, since you had to figure out that trick still.

Your picks on music were quite good. They were able to make such a strange mood to that game. Cant really describe it, just that it worked and made the game more interesting. Sound FX felt complete in game as well.

I also very much liked that it was both possible to shoot those cannons away, as well you had this ability to regenerate energy in time, making it possible that if one of the cannon levels was hard, you could shoot them and wait till you had enough energy again to move forward in peace.

That there were books and people you could talk and that were taking story forward, and you even got more powerful weapon, made a big difference to the game from feeling like old pacman type of simple game to feeling like modern, story driven game.

Throughout the whole game, I felt interested in playing and was waiting to see what happens next. Only exception that big level of frustration there at one point which made me feel more like "Why does this game even have to exist!", but only because of frustration of starting from beginning, not because of the level design otherwise, since had i not been so frustrated, i would have enjoyed that levels design too.

The message part was sort of interesting.

First of all, I couldnt figure out for sure which verse you used for your game, i can just guess that it was the "but our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities of darkness" thing.

One thing that was interesting in yoiur approach to that message was, that you would understand it, until the very end. Even I knew there at least should be some message, and there were those books to read, I was stil lwondering if you actually have a message in this game at all, or do you perhaps just have some very strange idea about something, since I cant find the message.

But when the end game, ah. the light came to darkness and revealed me the whole thing. Very suitable. I even liked how the game mechanics themselves partially played part in that thing. That the fireball things were actually Holy Ghost fire/guidance, something like that. And that while you are the one evangelizing, you cant do it yourself, but you have to use Spirit of God to achieve your goal.

Also when you were speaking of chosen one, and at end it is revealed, there are many chosen ones, and that the task wasnt ultimate save the world, but actually, save this one first person, who even says there are more. Brilliant. SImply brialliant. I very much liked how you only fuigured out the message hanging out the whole game there only at the very end. That you yourself was going in darkness as well, until in the end you got the light to understand what have been happening even befoer in the game.

And message was very good one too. That every sould is same as saving whole world, and there is not just one sould to be saved, and not just one chosen one, but many.

I really liked that. I also liked that non christian could easily play this game and like it, and only be exposed to the truth at the very end of game making him face that even he saw it all, he still didnt see them. "That they shall hear by hearing, and still not understand".

Only thing is that im not quite sure if you had some meaning between that going back and forth between dark and light world, or was it just necessary mechanism? I mean, I understand holy ghost gives light, but why also sometimes the darkness?

All in all. graphisc maybe not superb, but they are clear, nice, and they do their job. Musics work quite good actually, sound fx seems complete, level designs are good, except for those two before mentioned levels with the points i mentioned, there is lot of variation, even enough to having supported even longer game, I enjoyed the slight circle movement way,s story goes nicely forward, and presentation of the message was excellent, especially when you are given light to all the events at past only at end of game. I liked how Big Boss waws beaten with sort of trick, although unfortunately, same way each time, making it no harder from previous ones.
User avatar
brandav
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby brandav » Sun Jul 27, 2014 7:57 pm

Thanks for the thorough review as usual bugala. I agree that the last level was a bit too difficult. I let my brother play it, and he mentioned how frustrating that level was too. You're also right about the maze level. It was the first level I thought of before I started getting really creative with the light and dark worlds. If I continued to build the game, I'd probably remove the maze levels and create more light/dark switching levels. Those were actually pretty fun to create too.

The dark and light tiles could have been designed with more detail since they were a prominent part of the game. A few environmental graphics could have also added variety to the somewhat bland tile backgrounds. However, I do think the other aspects of the game such as story, gameplay, and game feel compensate a little bit for the lack of graphics. I also put a lot of work into the dragon as well.

I also thought about adding more attacks to the dragon with movement, but anything extra was more time than I had (accounting for bug-fixing as well).

Not sure about the lagging (15 seconds is quite a long time). It works well on my windows vista and seems to work well on mac. But I'm not surprised with Construct 2.

bugala wrote:Only thing is that im not quite sure if you had some meaning between that going back and forth between dark and light world, or was it just necessary mechanism? I mean, I understand holy ghost gives light, but why also sometimes the darkness?


I thought it would be cool to switch between the dark and light worlds (especially as a game mechanic), but notice that the enemies are only in the dark world. I think of the dark world as a spiritual realm and the light world as a physical realm. Since our struggle is not against flesh and blood (in the physical realm) but against the powers of the dark world (in the spiritual realm), the battles only take place in the dark world. Because of this, you can only see and damage enemies (spiritual beings) in the dark world with the power of the Spark (another spiritual being).

You could also think of the Spark/Holy Ghost giving the Chosen One access to and from the dark world/spiritual realm. No, the Holy Ghost is not likely going to literally show you the spiritual realm where the real enemies can be seen, but I was trying to make the point that it is the true battlefield where souls are fought for.
b-o
Posts: 353
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 8:29 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby b-o » Sun Jul 27, 2014 10:13 pm

It reminded me of playing zelda on a SNES. There was one part at the beginning of a map that was a little too difficult, where you shoot, then run around the corner before the color changes and your path disappears. It was a good thing that this difficulty was at the beginning of the level rather than near the end of it.
User avatar
bugala
Posts: 1279
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:43 pm
Location: Finland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby bugala » Sun Jul 27, 2014 11:41 pm

b-o: Yeah, that was pretty tight spot on timing. Almost forgot that.
brandav: Yes, now that light/dark and why switching from dark back to light with that sparkle makes sense. Well thought game.
User avatar
Berryijmker
Posts: 94
Joined: Sat Aug 14, 2010 3:12 am
Location: Holland
Contact:

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby Berryijmker » Thu Jul 31, 2014 2:51 am

Great game Brandav, haven't finished it yet but there are some very interesting and challenging puzzles. I like you let the player figure out them self how to get past some levels.
Bugala really said it well:
This game is good example on how a game can be good, even its appearance might be a bit minimalistic.


I was in the level where you had to use your spark and then quickly move to a safe zone. But I think at the last part I fell.
User avatar
muadib
Posts: 336
Joined: Mon Dec 15, 2008 3:26 pm

Re: Dev Blog | Brandav

Postby muadib » Thu Jul 31, 2014 8:57 am

Here are my notes:
- At the beginning, could use a little more explanation for what I'm trying to do as far as the story goes. Maybe I wasn't paying attention, but I didn't find out I was trying to save someone until the very end.
- It's fun using the crystals go between a light and dark world.
- The text is interesting, but I'm not sure what it's for yet. I keep thinking I need it to solve some puzzle, but maybe it's just flavor text.
- Took me a while to figure out in the level after the dragon that I could shoot backwards to hit the crystal. I didn't think that I could hit things out of my view until I did by accident.
- Timing feels a little too tight in the room with the moving platforms and having to hit crystals out of view. Spent a lot of time and a lot of time clearing obstacles I already cleared because timing wasn't exact. Felt a little frustrated. And then after getting to the ton of turrets after that level and having died and needing to clear all of them again I felt very frustrated. I would've liked a safe area so I could at least recover my nerves before going through the turrets. I think the biggest thing was being punished so hard toward the end of the level for a mistake.
- There were a few times where, even though it looked like I was on the platform, it didn't start moving with me and thus made me fall off.
- I did like how I could just throw a bunch of bullets at the crystals and not have to worry about multiple hits changing it multiple times, that was good.
- I also like how there was a little snapping on the moving platforms to help with the timing a little.
- After I finally cleared that level when the guy said I deserved a reward I was like "I better get a reward!" lol
- And I like the upgraded spark.
- During the last boss there was a 15 sec or so lag. Like mentioned before.
- Like everyone else, I loved the level design. Very clever. I wished there were more levels I could play.
Kris Murray - Aspiring Game Developer
The Reason - Winner of CDN Speedgame 2014 "Best Christian Teaching"
Gates of Mansoul - Project Lead and Lead Programmer

Violinist/Violist
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-98MFIbXfM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pWGLb57zbz8

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron