Pombs stuff n stuff

edited in Projects
Hello people, I've put the X1L prototype I showed at the last meet up on hold, some interesting events happened with that, which I'll share later.. while that's happening I've started on a new prototype I'm calling runner - placeholder name - after
Evan's talk, with the suggestion of making many prototypes and then choosing one to flesh out more when you have many to choose from, seemed a pretty awesome Idea. So my journey in making many (10) prototypes has begun. This I hope will also serve as a learning experience since I have limited programming experience ( read I'm an animator ).
The first prototype up is inspired by Cabalt / Robot Unicorn, except instead of jump on key down I have key down to power jump height, jump on release. I've also since added a (buggy) double jump. Seemed to get well received at work when I added an animated character and 8 bit sounds, seems the people don't like silent cube 'n capsule games I thou... blah blah blah
Here's a link to the download page, where I'm hoping to document my progress in my game dev attempts.


( please remember code experience is at noob levels, for now.)

256 x 256 - 16K


  • I can certainly see that you're coming from an animation background as the character, animation and presentation is brilliant. It feels like the beginnings of a cool modern Mario adaption :).

    It's a nice little prototype to start with, but there are a couple of things I will say: it took me a few minutes to figure out how the jump function actually worked, you perhaps need to have some sort of meter to the side to indicate to the player that a jump is 'charging' and also show how high the avatar will jump. So a full meter when released will jump higher than a half filled meter (I'm not even sure if this is how your system works currently - if not, see if it works or not!)

    The only other small thing would be where the player can jump, @Dipso wrote a great article on 11 tips for platformers over at [url ="http://devmag.org.za/2011/01/18/11-tips-for-making-a-fun-platformer/"] Dev.Mag[/url]. The fourth point he makes is about allowing the player to jump slightly past the end of an object, like so:


    These two items would add a little more playability to your prototype. After you've done that, maybe it would be cool if the guy got quicker and quicker throughout the level, to add increasing difficulty to the platforming.

    Just my thoughts though, take it or leave it :).
  • That jumping a little after the platform is a great idea thanks!
    ...it would be cool if the guy got quicker and quicker throughout the level
    It actually does do that, i think it's just a little slow at them moment, forgot to add that to the features... :S

    The jump/charge bar was the next Item on my list of things to do, and will be done!
    Thanks for the link!
  • I had another few playthroughs quickly and it does indeed gradually increase speed, so apologies, but yes it could happen at a swifter rate :).

    One other thing I noticed was that the character can hit a wall flat on, but it retains its horizontal speed. Meaning it can just keep going in certain areas once it has fallen down a bit :). Also, it would be cool if the avatar had just a small circular shadow underneath it, so as to give some perspective.

    In total though, it really is quite a good first prototype :).
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    Ha, I kept missing platforms and going "Ffffffff -- yay double jump!" :D

    I also like that initial coin that's super high up. It makes me want to do weird and outlandish things to see if there are indeed other hidden coins here and there, and whether you've placed them behind the foreground blocks (which would be cool, and totally unfair unless the block itself had a visual indicator you could aim for?).

    I did find it really frustrating sometimes releasing the key and not having him jump. And then I'd wildly bash the key wondering if my key'd broken, or Unity didn't have focus, or what. So yeah, having some kind of charge-up indicator (aside from the meter, it could be sound, could be an effect on the character) would serve an additional purpose of having the game tell me, "Yes, sir! I hereby acknowledge that I have received your input."

    Nice work! :)
  • @Bensonance the retain horizontal speed thing is a problem... I didn't like that, I'm thinking i'll just reset the speed back to the start speed or maybe even just reduce by half when colliding with those walls.
    Character blob shadow, going on the list!

    @Elyaradine totally didn't think of having the coins hidden behind the foreground objects, but it's definitely getting it's way into v.2 also pretty impressed that you found that first hidden coin :) v.2 has only 1 hidden coin, but I think it's a cool feature to have hidden things, you clarified that it has the effect I was going after.
    [quote = @Elyaradine] then I'd wildly bash the key wondering if my key'd broken [/quote]
    hahahaha yeah man, that's the bugginess of my jump logic happening right there.....

    thanks guys.
  • edited
    Love his animations, he could roll when he hits the ground maybe?

    For the charge feedback maybe you could try blend a leaning forward animation onto the run, make it look like the guy is cletching up ready to jump. A charge bar is also good of course.

    Nice work!
  • I noticed the music stops playing once it reaches the end. You can easily set it to loop in unity.
  • edited
    Good suggestions guys! Got them on my to do list.
    Until then, I've made another runner, this time running into Z depth.

    Anyway don't get your hopes up:

    The achievement made with yRunner
    - I learnt simple use of PlayerPrefs.
    - Got better camera control, as suggested by @dislekcia to have the camera push back away from the character to help with the sense of speed. This works awesomely!

    problems in this prototype:
    Again It's hard to judge z-depth in these games, suggestions I've received from work are to put a horizontal striped texture on the ground or castle like edging (what's it called, the blocky things that runs around a turret on a castle?) anyway some of that goodness running the length of the yellow lines, thoughts are that the consistency of them rushing past will help you judge distance between objects better.

    My names for these prototypes are pretty lame, but right now I'm actually just trying to learn what code looks like, how to spell... and what makes a game fun for me.
    And so far I'm learning, definitely got the hang of for loops and if else statements :)

    Anyhow let the rapid prototyping continue!
  • @Pomb said:
    what's that shit called, the blocky shit that runs around a turret on a castle?
    Crenelations :)
  • edited
    In light of the recent comments about not having any artists post any images, here's me, posting some... images that is, because I'm supposed to be an artist.... or something. So beware, this thread might be highly polluted with pictures.

    After having so much fun playing bro force, and being reminded how appealing pixel art can be, I thought I'd give it a go. I've found that making pixel art is pretty darn hard, and I'd argue that It takes longer and is harder to make, just because pixel precision is needed to make it look really good. To be honest I started losing concentration so my precision ain't so hot, got some lines that aren't supposed to be, but I'm happy with the time spent result achieved ratio.

    image image
  • I have this complete urge to squeeee, and go it looks kewt :3

    But in order to preserve my masculinity I'm going to go with: It's looking great, and I really want to play a game with the blue guy in it. Does he have a name?
  • blockboy?
    and hopefully my runner prototype will transform into a platformer featuring blockboy.
    Not too sure why he's wearing Ryu fighting gloves... but thank you.
  • That looks awesome! :D
  • edited
    Inspired by the talented people I get to work around, I came home and sculpted this head in Sculptris, which is a really cool free, easy to use sculpting program.

  • Wow looks great, will check out the 3D software when I get to it :) Easy? 3D? I can't believe that :P

    BTW the runner prototype doesn't run for me (pun unintended), it's telling me it's not compatible with my Windows version (32 or 64).
  • @Pomb: That's great! :D I love the shape of his ears, and the awesome angular planes there and around his mouth. If I were to change anything, I'd look at the shape of his skull at the top (especially in the front view), where the flattened top doesn't seem to fit the smooth, flowing curves in the rest of his design; and the shape of his jaw on the side under the ear, where it feels a bit formless and lumpy, especially compared to the awesome planes you've set up elsewhere.

    @Tuism: Sculptris is about as easy-to-use as 3D apps can get! :D
  • @Tuism: Thanks dude. I find 3d easier than drawing or painting just because I have better control over the forms. I guess this differs from person to person, but in terms of Sculptris being an easy program to use, it's super simplistic, it has minimal buttons with a whole lot of control. What I like about it over Zbrush is that the mesh resolution is localised to the details, this is done dynamically, which is awesome. In zbrush you subdivide the mesh and it happens everywhere, so areas that are flat have the same mesh resolution as some other intricate parts, basically wasting polygons. It's not a big deal if you have a computer that can handle meshes of 4million polys in zbrush, but mine suffers on 2million...I know, I need a new compy.
    As for the runner prototype, it's a 64 bit build. From now on I'm going to build for 32, I don't see the difference in my simple prototypes.

    @Elyaradine: Thank you, all valid points. Something I'm noticing with my sculpts is that those are the areas that suffer the most, so my next sculpt I'll dig for reference!

  • After seeing the newly released Darksiders art, I couldn't help but start some fan art. The top heavy, small head, boulder shoulders design gets me in the heart every time. LOVE IT.
    This is what I have blocked out so far:
    I wanted to try screen grab often so I can document the progression, just forget sometimes because it's so fun!


  • edited
    I'm not sure what version of this prototype I showed a few meet ups back, but here's the latest version I've got so far with the torch like light update:
    Download Project X1L v6 PC
    Download Project X1L v6 OSX
    I had implemented a dynamic camera that changes in distance based off of the characters velocity, but found that it made it even harder to judge distance, so it got scraped.

    I haven't been working on as much as I would have like too as I'm attempting to learn C# now because of recent events: After taking the game to work for feedback, I was approached by a partner of Triggerfish to turn it into a Zambezia game for tablets and smart phones.
    The game is rather appropriate to the Movie because there is a scene where the Hero undergoes trials in order to become a Hurricane, by flying through hoops, and dodging obstacles racing against other birds (something that may or may not be added to the game). Triggerfish are now also opening a new division called Tiggerfish Labs, The Labs will be
    responsible for publishing casual games, eBooks, and other digital content deeply integrated with our films’ Intellectual Property"
    //according to my googling research.
    We starting with Android first, just because it's the cheaper option and it seems there's less hassle with getting it out to people to play. ie you don't have to pay to be an iOS developer and all the iStore troubles.

    I've got a pretty solid version up and running using the accelerometer for direction control and touch input for increasing flight speed, input also triggers different animations which are blending nicely. I'm currently adding some Juice with UIToolkit ( this is where learning C# comes in ) making scenes fade in and out of each other, and buttons that do juicy animations upon entering the scene and scale on touchUpInisde. Overall I'm pretty happy with the progress I've made in the 2 or so weeks working on that.

    Also want to say thanks to @creative630 for that link to shoebox it makes creating sprite sheets easy and pain free.
    Off to stare at some alien code now, Peace.
  • Juice! Awesome news, glad to hear about the formalised division at Triggerfish. You should post some pictures/diagrams of your paper prototype when you're ready. If you haven't yet you should read what @Blackships said in the recommendations for a mobile platform thread, or talk to him directly about the troubles of publishing on Android.
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    I played the prototype a bit, and found the feedback on the controls extremely frustrating. I could never properly judge whether I was about to hit something or not, and the fact that the orb thing was in the middle of my screen meant I couldn't see whether I was about to pick up one of the cubes or not. I died a LOT, and felt like a dumbass. :sad:
  • @creative630 thanks dude!

    @Elyaradine, the distance judgement is really tough, I think I've become too used to it because I'm able to finish every time now. I totally agree though, it's hard, you do however feel like a BOSS if you get through the tunnel :)
    I'm going to try add somethings that will help distance judgement, like poles, or maybe a ground plane of sorts. As for the feedback on controls I'm not sure what to do there :S Thanks for playing though :D

  • Ye I found the light very useful for judging distance, but I still seriously struggle to get the yellow-cube-points things. Only way I managed to get them other than by luck was to fly just above them and then dive down at the last moment.

    The other thing is the delay on the "You lose" text when you fly through the yellow barrier without rolling, seems to take just long enough that you think you're through and then its like "YOU LOSE"...
  • edited
    Oh, I meant feedback on judging distance. :)

    I think 3D games generally help by having a shadow; at least when you see your shadow you have a better indication of distances. But in your case, I dunno. :/

    [edit] These smiley codes confuse me. :P
  • edited
    CUBES : paper prototype for a game that makes you scratch your brain. It’s part chess in a way that it requires you to think ahead if you want to have optimal moves on the board, and it’s also a bit like sadoku in that you only win if you have the right configuration, in this case the white facing up.
    (the name is WIP)

    The cubes start out with all white facing upwards in the centre of the matrix. They then get scrambled at the start of play, 5 moves for each cube.

    Moving a cube along the gird unit counts as 1 move respectively. As the cube moves it needs to rotate in the direction it moves.

    Moves are limited to x and y although you are able to wrap. When at the top and you roll up, you appear at the bottom in the same column, similarly rolling right on the right side of the board makes you appear in column one of the same row. The object is to get all cubes back to the centre within 20 moves. In certain configurations it’s been done in 12 moves.

    It’s challenging at first, but once you start recognising patterns, you quickly become a master The fun really kicks in when constraints are put in where you, for instance can’t roll right on yellow, or can’t wrap right with blue, or white can only roll down. Maybe even obstructions, eg. block 3,3 is unoccupieable (that’s not a word is it? but I’m totally going to put it in the instructions/ rules)

    Feedback so far has been that there should be symbols on the colors which could extend the game to the colorbind, and even if the game were to be a board game possibly braille for the blind!

    A game that could potentially be played by the blind! now we talking hahaha.

    Other ideas were to make non uniform boards, and 2×1 cubes, which would increase the difficulty of the game.

    Special Thanks to my good friend Jonathan Dowling for helping flesh out the games “design” in the early hours on skype . Prototyping this game in photoshop was epically fun!

    This picture describes the last 3 moves a game might look like:
    I’m so excited about this particular game because of it’s uniqueness, simplistic nature but also just because it’s so vastly different to the other prototypes I’ve made. Puzzle games are rad

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