Hey everyone! So you're probably wondering why I've started back on the development Blog? Well, after I concluded my development series, I thought that there really wasn't much else I could show you until the release of the game. I had all of the character controls, pick-ups, and main mechanics working, all aesthetics had been added, and all initial features had been implemented. The only thing that I needed to add was music and sounds, and all I needed to refine was the traps themselves. Everything else had been completed... Or so I thought.
After countless hours of testing the game, playing it, getting others to play it and so on, I noticed something was missing. It wasn't as fun as I hoped it would be. It felt as if the simplicity of the game wasn't enough to warrant retention. Yes, there were medals and achievements to obtain while playing, but it didn't seem like that was enough. Also, it still felt the game was lacking "juiciness", hence why I'm putting the 'developer' hat back on.
I learn't quite a bit after releasing my first game. Firstly, don't rush game development. Secondly, don't roll out fundamental game play AFTER the game has been released. With this in mind, I decided to postpone the release until the game is at a point where it feels "fun". Now you're probably thinking that the GDD should have accommodated for these changes, and designs. Well it did to a certain point. It wasn't until the game was at it's initial end when I noticed it was still lacking something. So with that I decided to do some further research.
Initially, the game was designed to be simple and only have a few mechanics (similar to the popular game 'Flappy Bird'). The problem; simplicity wasn't enough. So rather than using 'Flappy Bird' as my main point of reference, I went on exploring more design ideas. Researching games such as fruit Ninja, Jet-Pack Joyride, Subway Surfer, and others. These games gave me some idea on what else I could do in order to make the game feel more "full".
Since reviewing these games, I noticed a common ground with them; collectibles. Collectibles are an amazing way to keep player retention, and to help player development and progression. So I decided to incorporate the same idea. These pick-ups will allow the player to purchase new character skins, arenas, and even take a chance at obtaining even more powerful items such as double coins next run, power ups, and more!
With Power-ups in mind, I have added a new one; Indomitable. This power-up is unlike the rest. This one allows the player to become not only invincible, but be able to destroy any obstacle in their way. This power-up is also available after the game ends through using collectibles.
I plan to incorporate a few more elements within the game before release, but since starting back at work, I'm afraid I won't have as much time to work on the game as I would like. But I will try to keep you all updated as often as I can!
Until next time,
Thanks for reading.
Hey everyone, and welcome back to final installment of the Juicy Development Blog! This is sadly the last week of these blog posts, since... well, I've basically finished development (besides the audio and some minor tweaks). Yes, yes, I know, it's a sad day indeed... But, don't fret! The closed beta is approaching quickly! If you are interested in joining a number of cool beta tester, and interested in trying out the game early, then hit me up! I'm happy to bring more testers on board for this. I'm hopefully looking at around mid January to start the pre-launch for the game, so keep an eye out for more details!
In case you are wondering what I had done this week, then wonder no further! I FINALLY cleaned up the medal animations and positions as I promised. I had also started implementing sound effects to the game (still got a bit to go). I've still yet to implement the social media buttons, and I'm thinking of adding a "share now" button during the game over page... last minute? yes... bad idea? probably.... still going to do it? yes. Unfortunately, I've still yet to tweak the game-play a little bit more. This, I think, will take a while to flesh out, even during beta.
Besides, that though, nothing much has changed. Again, if you do have some suggestions, definitely let me know, either send through a message below, message me on twitter, or Instagram, or even email me at JuicyBeetleGames@gmail.com.
Now, you probably thought I didn't have a video this week right?.. Well, I do! Below is the finale video of Just Survive: Arena. I hope you enjoyed this as much as I have!
Thank you to everyone who has been following me through this amazing journey! I hope for future game devs, you will be here as well!
Until next we speak!
Thank for reading!
Hey everyone, and welcome to another exciting week of Juicy Development! It's been yet another full on week of engagement for not just the game, but for everything else that's been going on around me. I've picked up a bit more contract work over the Christmas break, so development has been a little slower than normal. But, nevertheless, I've still managed to work on a bit during the downtime.
So the main focus this week was to refine the game play. Previously it seemed to exponentially get harder and harder, which didn't really give each mechanic enough time to impact the player (it felt like it went from 0 to extreme too soon). So, most of my time went into refining, and testing... And testing some more... And refining some more... Having some food of course, and then finally some more testing. The current build seems to be in a better place, but there is still a bit more refinement needed, so hopefully this next week I will be focusing purely on that.
The 'pause' actions and menus are working correctly, which I'm happy about. I've also added my 'Juicy Beetle Games' pre-loader to the initial launch of the game, so I can also scratch that off my list of things to do. And I've also added a little 'hand' icon to help new players understand how to start playing the game.
I've still yet to implement the social buttons to the main menu, as well as the controls for sound and music. And I still haven't tweaked the medal transitions which I said I would have done this week, so naughty me! But these implementations wont take too long to do though, so there's no problem there. I've still yet to find and implement music and sound effects, so I will probably start looking for a sound designers within the next few weeks to get that ball rolling as well.
Overall, there's really not much left to do for the game. Mainly polish, sound and music, and a few tweaks here and there, and then we're good to go!
Next week will probably be my last week of Juicy Dev since there really isn't much else to show. I will probably have some final game play before Beta Testing, but that's about it. If you are interested in Beta Testing, then throw a message below!
Until next week,
Thanks for reading!
Hey everyone, and welcome back to another exciting Juicy Dev week! This week I've been hard at work finishing off the Main Menu screen as well as the Credits screen. On top of that, I've also managed to implement a 'pre-loading' screen which helps each screen load and transition correctly. But, before I get into "nitty-gritty" of things, I would like to mention again about all of the helpful feedback I've received, particularly about my UI designs. Yes, I did say this last week, but since then, I have refined the UI EVEN further with the suggestions mentioned. At this stage, I am really happy with how it is looking, and I hope you do as well.
Left is the first refined UI and Right is the Final UI Design
The hardest part of this week was to balance this game's development with other personal commitments. It's been a pretty hectic week with both jobs wrapping up for the year, and with more work coming in over the Christmas break. On top of that, I really wanted to get the UI right, so coming up with designs which thematically made sense, fit the game style, fit the design goals, and had clear readability was a bit of a challenge. However, after all that, everything else seemed to have worked pretty well for me. The buttons implemented nicely, the animations came up better than I expected, the menu screens Illustrations came up nicely, and the 'pre-loading' screen worked quite well.
On the topic of the 'Pre-loader', I wanted to show you what it basically looks like in and out of the game itself. I decided to add a simple animation rather than a loading bar, since, I feel makes it more personal and a little bit more 'thematic'.
Another element I worked on this week was the main menu, although not much of it. I basically tweaked some of the elements in the foreground to obstruct less of the menu UI (Bomb shifted slightly more to the left).
I really enjoyed coming up with a design for the credits screen, and i think it has turned out pretty well considering the time constraint.
Besides these implementations, I don't think I have done much else this week. I know I've still yet to fix the in-game system (such as the reward placement, and the actual game-play), but all in all i'm happy with the progress. I'm hoping next week that I will be able to finish all of the Menu and UI implementations, and hopefully focus on the game itself. Then I need to think about sound.... fun.
Until next week,
Thanks for reading!
Welcome back to another Juicy Development Blog! I'm going to keep it relatively short this week since all I have been working on is the background for the main menu screen, which, took a lot longer than I thought.
I really liked the concept idea I had last week, so I decided to refine it even further. During the development process, I asked for a number of opinions about the layout, composition, and balance of the game menu, and I have to say, I received A LOT of good feedback. The feedback was less directed at the image itself, but more in terms of the UI design. I had a lot of comments about the buttons being hard to read, and that the 'high score' word was very difficult to understand. The placement of the buttons could be adjusted as well, such as a horizontal row, rather than a vertical one. I also had an interesting suggestion to remove the text completely and rely more on icons. This, I think, is a really good idea since icons are a lot more universal than any particular language. Rather than accommodating multiple languages which all read 'start/play/begin', I could use a universal icon such as 'play' (that funny little triangle).
I did get one comment about the readability of the overall composition. Someone suggested to essentially 'reverse' the image since people read from left to right, and since the buttons are the most important, then it would make sense to have them the last thing the player sees. I also found this comment interesting, so I tried a few ways to make this work (reversing the image, changing the characters pose, changing the concept, etc.), but no matter what I did, it still felt disconnected. I wanted the UI to feel as if it was a part of the overall scene, so having the character looking at the main 'bill board' made it feel as though the character was ready for battle, and didn't care about what options the player chose. Don't get me wrong, the suggestion was good, but for what I'm aiming for didn't really suit that particular composition idea.
Below is the initial concept, and the final design (minus the UI and background, which I'm thinking of revisiting soon). If you have any suggestions yourself, I would love to hear them!
This week was less about quantity and more about quality, so apologies for the lack of content. Hopefully next week I'll have the UI done, the medal changes as I mentioned last week, and some video footage. Oh! I'm also keen to show you an idea I have for the credit screen... Well, when I get around to it that is. So stay tuned for that as well!
Until next week,
Thanks for reading!