Welcome back to this weeks Juicy Development! Apologies for the lack of blog posts lately. I've been super busy at work. Luckily enough, I'll be coming up to my next lot of holidays in the next few weeks, so hopefully I'll be able to get back into the swing of things while on my break.
This time around, I have managed to finish off the two extra levels; Icy Tundra, and Desolate Desert. These two new levels introduce exciting new mechanics which will bring a new spin to the game play.
The Desert level will have a torrent of sand blowing in front of the scene, making it harder to see the landscape before them. I will probably need to make the sandstorm a little more fierce, since at the moment, it doesn't really seem to hinder the vision all that well.
For the Tundra level, in terms of the mechanics, it adds a new 'trap' to the game play which acts as a massive Ice block, pushing the player before it crashes into the wall. This, although doesn't really do much in terms of damage, it can really hinder them when trying to circumnavigate around the environment. Later, I may implement a new mechanic (slippery) which makes it harder for the player to run on the ice. This would free up the ability to use this particular ice block trap in other levels later, but we will see.
The Tundra environment was really fun to draw. Playing around with different ice styles really pushed my creativity further.
With these biomes ready to go, I'll be focusing my attention on the game shop. I've already created a few assets for the shop, but there is still a lot to code in order for the shop to function correctly. I can't wait to show you all what I have done so far with it, and to get your opinion about it!
Besides that though, that basically concludes this weeks Dev Blog. Again, sorry for it being so short. I'm hoping to include a lot more in the future. What did you like, or dislike about these levels so far? Would you like to see more of these? If so, which ones? I would love to hear your comments either at my Twitter, Instagram, and even Facebook, or the comments below!
Until next time,
Thanks for reading!
Welcome everyone to this weeks Dev Blog! It has been a while since I've kept you up to date, and there is a good reason for that. For these last few weeks I've been working away with implementing new character customization. Introducing; Sporadicus the Gladiator, Hop the bunny, Hook the pirate, the Ninja, and the Barbarian!
I'm thinking maybe I'll change up the names a little later, probably even a competition for the community to name these character, but we will see how we go. I plan to implement more later down the track, but I feel as if five is a good number to start with!
I've been working away at implementing a system allowing me to integrate each character with ease. Since redoing the original character, It was quite easy to implement new characters into the game using the same method. Since Spine2D is based on individual assets, I could easily replace the assets of the original character with the newer character assets by redirect the image folder location to the new asset folder, which then Spine2D would automatically update the character with the new assets. Simple!
From creating new characters, to implementing them into the engine, I found it very easy to update. All I needed to do was change the folder location of the player character to the new asset folder within the game engine and it simply replaced it with the new character. It was very important to make sure that the animations did not change names since Spine and Stencyl looks for particular animation name spaces.
Here is the end result of each of the characters. I don't want to show off too much, otherwise I would spoil some of the surprises. Enjoy!
On top of these, I've also managed to design one of the two backgrounds I wish to implement into the game. Each environment will have a specific design mechanic based on the environment chosen. I plan to have two new environments; Desert and a Tundra. The desert will have a sandstorm like effect which can hinder the character vision, making the game-play slightly harder. The tundra will make the character slide around more than usual.
You might be thinking "why have a harder level, when I can just get a higher score using the default level?" Good question! What I'm planning to have are multiple high-score boards so that players at different difficulty levels can compete to challenge each other. Something I'm testing, so this is definitely going to be one for the Beta testers!
Besides these updates, that's basically it! Next Dev Blog I'm hoping to have all backgrounds implemented and showcased as well as the shop system set up. Then it's the final stages! Woooh! I can see the end!
Until next time,
Thanks for reading!
Welcome back to this weeks Dev Blog! This week I have been hard at work replacing the original character with the new Spine Character. I have to admit, it did take some time and tediousness to pull off, but I managed to successfully replace it. So, you're probably wondering why I decided to do this in the first place? Well, firstly, having a lot of sprite sheets doing their thing can really hinder the performance of a game, so instead, this spine character will only be using the one image which then picks which section of the image it will be using in which location and animate them accordingly. Not only does this help with performance, but it also makes it much easier to implement new character designs using the same skeleton, which is the perfect segue into the next thing I have been working on; Sporadicus!
Yes, I have been working on a new custom character to implement into the game, which players will be able to unlock with their new found currency. Sporadicus is a worthy spartan who has been tossed into the arena to do battle... well, to run from battle that is. Later next month I will be showcasing him inside the game running around and doing his thing, so I'm really looking forward to that! I've also been designing some more concept art for other types of characters with the help of the community! Really happy with how much input I have been receiving from the community about these custom character designs, so I'm hoping not to disappoint them... The community that is, not the characters.... I don't think the characters could be disappointed?.. Anyway, below you can see a short clip of each animation for Sporadicus. Enjoy!
...Here are some character concepts I had designed to implement into JSA. Let me know what you think, or if you have any suggestions, or things you would like to see, let me know!
And here are some of the ways in which I approach my character sheets...
Before the next Dev post, I'm hoping to have basically all of the starting characters implemented into the game, and have at least a few new backgrounds designed (I have some exciting mechanics lined up for these backgrounds as well, so stay tuned for that)!
Again, if you have any suggestions, or ideas you would like to see for the characters, please let me know either via comment section below, email, or even sign up to my Instagram, twitter, and/or Facebook! Or if you would just like to chat about game stuff, I'm happy to do that as well!
Until next time!
Thanks for reading.
Welcome to another week of Juicy Development. Throughout the last couple of weeks I've been hard at work refining and polishing up the Indomitable power-up and pick-up system. The pick-up is working quite well now, which i'm happy with, but the button itself still needs a little more refinement. The challenges I faced when designing the button was coming up with the placement of the 'quantity' icon (the little display telling the player how many of these items they have at any given time). Initially I came up with a few design ideas which I still felt were lacking in appeal, so I took it to social media and asked for some professional opinions. The feedback I received was amazing, and really helped to flesh out the design.
After delving into readability, contrast, and style with the community, I ended up with this final design which I'm pretty happy with.
It doesn't obstruct the button, nor does it take up too much real estate on the screen, it's fairly easy to read (the numbers wont be that close together), it supports colourblind players and the design of the tab works well with the values being displayed.
After refining the style of the button, I then needed to incorporate how the button functions. again, it wasn't too hard to do this. In fact, the hardest part of this was to make it 'feel' like a very powerful button (juiciness). I'm still playing around with the animations and effects, but I'm slowly getting there. Below is a snippet of what the button looks like in game and when you receive it from a bonus roll.
On the topic of bonus rolls, I've now incorporated a new bonus event mechanic which allows players the opportunity to spend their coins on bonus loot such as bonus coins, double coins next round, a chance to revive and a chance to receive an indomitable power-up. I'm hoping to include more of these mechanics further down the track, but at the moment, I feel there are a sufficient amount of rewards.
The next step after this is to swap out the current character actor with a 'Spine2D' system using a file called '.json'. Rather than a whole stack of sprite sheets, the .json file holds all the separate parts of the character in one image. It then plugs each part of the character together and animates them in a way which looks like a fully animated character. This will save SO much time and processing that creating new and innovating characters will be a breeze! It will take some time to overwrite the current character system, but I think, with a little elbow grease, I'll be able to get the job done! But for now that's basically it!
Until Next time!
Thanks for reading.
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.