March’s game is coming along slowly. It’s a bit of a weird experiment born out of the stress I had been feeling over the past couple of months.
I’m still very much figuring out what the game as a whole will be, but this month I focused on getting a very basic game loop happening.
Much of my time was otherwise spent learning the ins and outs of Unity 5 and it’s kick arse GUI system. It’s a steep learning curve but a very powerful step up in quality.
I’ll keep at this one for at least next month and see if it can become what I hope. Until then, here are some more screenshots to tease you.
I’ve had a rather busy month. As I mentioned in my January post, I’ve started a new job and unfortunately it has taken up way more of my time than was initially indicated. In fact I’m currently writing this on the train to work…
I’ve only had a couple of days here and there for the whole month to put something together. Nevertheless I did my best to get something out.
The game is a reworking of an older idea I had but couldn’t quite put my finger on. It is really only a teeny proof of concept so it’s not worth releasing into the wild at this stage. The concept is to allow the matching shapes through and destroy the others, mistakes causing a lost life.
Other than that I’ve had little time for much of anything and it really sucks. March should improve somewhat through some changes to my schedule and hopefully getting into a rhythm. I’ve got a cool idea brewing which I’m interested in playing with.
This month has been quite busy for me already.
Earlier this month I spent a week with the Girls Make Games crew as a counsellor for their augural Sydney summer camp.
The week was unbelievably fun and I’m rather disappointed it is over! I got to know two lovely 14 ladies who formed the team ‘Pokewomens’ and made a top down shooter called ‘Winnie Warhead and the Vegetable Invasion.’
Outside of this, I start training for a new job in a few days so I’ve been taking it easy before life gets a little more hectic and spare time more scarce. This month’s game is a tiny Stencyl game called Agile Alien. Stencyl is a neat engine I learnt for the camp and it is quite enjoyable once you get the hang of things. If you want to give game dev a go but never have before checkout Stencyl!
Last year was a bit up and down for me so thankfully 2015 has kicked off in a happy and exiting fashion.
In another cool note I ended #1GAM 2014 at number 3 on the high scores! Here is to another great year of game dev.
This time of the year is rather busy so I decided to stick to something small this month and end the year on a laid back little project. This month I’ve started dusting off some of my old unreal 3/UDK knowledge and learning Unreal 4.
I followed one of the tutorial series over on the Unreal Engine youtube channel which put together a neat little level. Using this as a foundation, I tweaked, expanded and swapped out some elements to create a simple little level.
I’ve barely touched the surface with the blueprint system but managed to add my own set of swinging doors as a first step. It looks to be quite powerful so I’m excited to play around some more!
Nothing too fancy, but a good introduction to the engine.
With this submitted, I’ve managed to complete another year of One Game A Month. I look forward to next year.
The goal for this month was to get something playable out into the world to get some much needed feedback. I’ve managed to put a little proof of concept together, so consider the goal met!
If you’d like to play check it out here. I’m very open to feedback so send it my way. It is still full of bugs and rather lacking but still a good little indicator of the core mechanic.
At this point I have a good idea of where I want the game to go so I will keep prototyping, adding and tweaking.
Notable changes for the month:
- addition of ceiling enemies (not in POC however)
- foundations of a character select screen
- indestructible blocks
- UI tweaks
- beginnings of lives system
- you can now punch the enemies
This month hasn’t been the best for me. I’ve certainly made progress on the game but it’s not the sort that leaves me itching to get back to dev each day. Development is feeling like a chore and my excitement is dwindling.
My issue is that, while I have what I think is a neat mechanic with the mining, I am yet to figure out the game in the broader sense – What is the goal? What makes you want to mine? I can’t see where I want the game to end up.
I’ve reached a point where I need some players to let me know what they think. Hopefully some fresh eyes will help me refocus. It will take a little bit of polishing to get things setup for this, so keep an eye out for something playable early next month.
Anyway enough moping, here is a break down of some of the progress I’ve made this month.
Something was missing with the movement, adding wall jumping seems to have helped a lot. There is still refinement to be done but it certainly makes moving about the world more interesting.
While spawning the grid, the creation code will now also remove sections to form caves. This opens up space to add enemies and other elements, while breaking up the monotony.
I did get an enemy into the game this month and I’m happy with how it turned out. Enemy AI isn’t something I’ve done much of so getting it working was cool! Basically, the enemy will look ahead of itself and will use raycasts to determine whether to turn around or not. So if they reach a wall or the edge of a cliff, they will turn around.
I’ve added a very basic scoring element which will hopefully expand as dev progresses. The player is awarded points for each destroyed block; purple are worth 10, red 20 and blue 50. The idea is to introduce a risk vs reward element – sacrifice some time in order to reach the rarer, more valuable blocks.
I was doodling and ended up polishing up one of my ideas. I’m not sure if I’ll end up using the design in the game (will come down to animating and the game’s overall style) but cool nonetheless.
Earlier in the month I mentioned I was working on a prototype for this month’s game. The game is going really well but a change of circumstances means I’m going to pursue further dev on it in Unity instead of Gamemaker. I’ve been working on switching over these past few days and I’ve already matched what I was able to achieve in a month of work in Gamemaker. Oh Unity how I missed you.
Anyway, back to this month’s game. The end of the month was quickly approaching and while I had made some good progress in the GM prototype, I just wasn’t happy with it and wanted to scratch the itch of releasing something of decent polish. I had been mulling over an idea for probably most of the year but hadn’t figured out a way to implement it in a good way. The idea had been to make a game about Dementia within the context of data corruption.
I spent about a week putting the game together and I’m really happy with how it turned out. It isn’t a long game but I feel it gets my point across with the impact I was hoping for. I shared the game on twitter and it received a really lovely response which has been a wonderful and surprising bonus!
If you’d like to play the game, Forget Me. Not, you can over on itch.io or gamejolt.