Mynia's Dreamporium [prototype]

edited in Projects
Hi all,
I am new :)
I started toying with HTML5 games last year so I am very much a noob to game development. It's just a hobby at the moment and I am learning the more I experiment.

I work for a corporate on the technical aspects web and mobile applications and have been an part time artist for many years. I don't get a lot of time to play but messing around with games has me hooked!

Anyway this is something that I am working on, it's still in it's infancy let me know what you think:

The idea is a cross platform mobile game, based around a simple space invaders shooter, which will get more strategic/questlike later.
Thanked by 1hanli


  • *Stunned Silence*

    Is this your artwork? It's definitely on the art side of game art and it reminds me of Terry Gilliam's work.
  • Welcome!

    I love the artwork, wow - it's very quirky, interesting and reminds me a lot of Incredipede :) :


    It also made me think of this game that was at Amaze joburg last year, called Mirage:


    Both the above games have very distinct visual styles that are complemented by their quirky and unique gameplay. I think the direction you're heading mechanically is acceptable, but it might be cool to experiment with some different mechanics to match the quirky art style you've created.

    Perhaps you can try something where instead of destroying those falling enemies, you have to 'keep an eye on them'. Players must rotate the eyeball to watch enemies and stop them from falling, but pretty soon you become overwhelmed trying to watch so many enemies - that might be a natural introduction to the other strategic mechanics you've got planned :)

    Also, I like the rhyming narrative style, it complements the visuals very subtly.

    Please post any progress back here! :)
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  • yep thnx, I've been doing surreal artwork for all my live. This medium gives my art interaction, I know it's too left-field to be commercial :)
  • I know it's too left-field to be commercial
    Well not necessarily, Incredipede was quite well received critically and commercially on Steam, if I'm not mistaken :). Also, Machinarium, which is pretty surrealist (I think :/ ) was also very critically acclaimed:


    Don't put your art style down as non-commercial is all I'm saying - plenty of games with surrealist art have done well :). That is, unless you deliberately want your games to be personal or non-commercial :).
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    I agree with @Bensonance, there could be commercial value in your art style, especially in the indie scene. I would definitely play an adventure game in that style! Also check out Botanicula, its by the same developers as Michinarium (Amanita Design).

    Thanked by 1Bensonance
  • Wow those games look amazing, its like playing a game inside an art work, very inspirational! I am thinking ways of making it a more interesting experience gameplay to suit the visuals I really like Bensonance's ideas. I am toying with characters at the moment. This is my little fish... Still quite primitive but his getting there with a personality...
  • I did some more work on a sub-game. I decided to break my game up into multiple mini games re-using characters and scenes. It's still early stages...

    Please give feedback, thnx
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    Your artwork is beautiful...
    I love the goopy black goop that grows over the eyeball flower.

    I just wanted to post another art-full game (Proteus) that did very well critically, and quite well commercially too. (Although of course your artwork is in a very different style).

    Just a thought about your gameplay for your minigame(s) ... (It's a bit critical, I hope that's okay, it's just one opinion)

    It seems to me that most of the surreal games in recent years have found success in pensive puzzle / exploration gameplay. Certainly the ones that have been linked here (Incredipede, Mirage, Machinerium, Botanicula etc) are all quite leisurely, reflective and exploratory.

    So I guess what I'm getting at is that the arcady gameplay in mgabulas-quest and Mynia's Dreamporium don't feel like a perfect fit for the audio design and the imagery...

    That said... maybe the two minigames (the paratrooper shooting in Dreamporium and the catch-everything gameplay of mgabulas-quest) aren't a fair indication... Because if you have a lot of these minigames and each one has a different type of gameplay then each mini-game would feel like a bit of a puzzle as the player tries to discover what the goal is.

    Some more examples of surreal games that have been critically and commercially successful:

    Hiversaires... which is flipping cool and just images and exploration and great sound on IOS:

    Waking Mars... it's not very surreal, but it has strange plant-life which I think you might appreciate... and I think your style is well suited to... it did fantastically well critically and very well commercially on IOS:

    Braid is of course known more for its amazing gameplay than its surreal visuals... but it does have mildly surreal visuals:

    Unfinished Swan, it's very techy, but it's cool:

    And Flower (which also has a lot of tech behind it, but maybe helps illustrate what I meant about pensive gameplay):

    Also, I'd just like to say welcome.

  • @Blackshipsfillthesky thanks so much for checking it out! @Bensonance said the same thing and I agree :) The visual audio style does not fit with the gameplay I feel it too, its like rock drums and classical pianos.

    My intention is to go mobile HTML5 to be cross platform in my plugging around with mobile games you have to be smart about images and phone memories. Which is in direct opposition of my hi def graphics. So introducing new objects for exploratory variety is not a substanable option. I also read up that mobile games should be intuitive and quick to grasp. Which put me into arcade gameplay.

    So yeah after a couple of months making them I play them and realise; "shit, this is really boring... its not a Dreamporium or a Quest." Lol you can imagine my disappointment. Oh well I have much to learn :)

    But yeah I will carry on thinking about gameplay it will be awesome to come up with an idea of something quite unique relaxing and dreamlike. Like stepping out into anouther world of intrigue which the user woukd do for escapism rather than stressful shooting things. Perhaps you produce something creative, building things.... or producing art... I am just brainstorming. Does anyone have good examples of this?

    Anyway thanks for the example games they were all mind blowing. "Flower" was my favourite so whimsical and strange.

  • This might not be a helpful suggestion at all... But the black growing goop made me think a kind of puzzle/growing gameplay might work for your style (which was also why I posted the video for Waking Mars).

    Eyemaze have done some interesting experiments in this vein:

    This is a pretty old flash game (which has horrible music, also by Eyemaze)... but it had an interesting puzzle/crafting mechanic (if you play it a few times you should see what I mean):

    Though while the Eyemaze games are certainly curious, I'm not certain they were successful commercially. Of course, I'm not sure if that's a consideration.

    Another game which might give you something to think about, which DID do very well commercially, but isn't as interesting, is Doodle God

    I only link Doodle God, because it has a very simple core mechanic.. you select two things and sometimes something cool happens (which in turn gives you more options). And Doodle God is also about selecting things in a particular order (like the Grow games).

    I don't think you can do exactly this with your surreal imagery... I guess I'm just suggesting that maybe there's something worth exploring in this direction?

    I'm also just brainstorming, there's infinite possibilities you could try. I don't know if the you-select-things-in-a-particular-order-and-some-interaction-happens-and-the-whole-thing-gets-more-complicated is a good direction for you at all, but maybe it's worth considering.

  • @BlackShipsFilltheSky Thanks for this!
    I've done a lot of thinking, and I have scrapped this game. The eyemaze games are pretty strange and interesting. The transform game was very Monty Python but animation heavy it seemed a bit of a interesting novelty but not hours of fun. I liked the concept of Doodlegod but its just chains of formulas.

    I started thinking more of games without any objective. So it's more of a social art tool than a game but something in those lines. I was thinking of creating 2 tools; one a landscape builder where 'players' can assemble landscape components to make pieces of landscapes which all which all fit together making a seamless world, where they can place trees, rocks, islands, dunes ect.

    The the second is tool is a manner where users can fly through the landscapes on airships, collect materials which will be random pollution eg cans and bottles and discarded objects and used these materials to pack into sculptures at designated spots. While exploring the other sculptures that 'players' have done, could build in a rating / monetary system to reward creations. So the game will have 3 spins; cleaning rubbish, rewarding creativity and being creative.

    Something like that, that's the concept, I am busy doing some prototyping at the moment... There is a lot of technical complexity as with multi-player word games as in security, performance and infrastructure.

    Anyway this is my dream I am quite excited about it :)
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