innomin

innomin #1093

Joined 4 months ago

innomin 12 days ago

Phew, that was a long weekend. I was able to get some decent opponent AI working in the last 12 hours, and adjusted the 8 unique player decks accordingly, so they mostly ramp up in difficulty. Make sure you win games early and get new cards, or the later battles will be much harder to win. And Inga is a little easier to start with than Sly is, but the two players are basically the same otherwise.

Since I had to submit to unranked because I overscoped it this time, I'd really appreciate some comments on the game. I even added a highscore timer and reset system so we could take this duel theme a little bit further! XD Here's some screenshots to pique your interest:

Thank you for another amazing event! I'm going to catch up on some sleep now, but I'll be back for some playing and rating tomorrow.

innomin 14 days ago

This was a tough decision, but I've made the call. it's 7am for me right now, and I'd prefer to be a day late with a better game (and some sleep), instead of trying my luck again on an all-nighter. Who'd have thought that doing the polish phase first was the wrong way to do things? Not I, surely!

The game is shaping up really well, but it'd take me an hour to make gifs, so I'll save that for the end. Characters breathe and have conversations, and they bounce around when they walk, south-park style. You can select between two different player characters, with their own unique starting decks. Each opponent has a custom deck of cards selected from 19 total configurations, and you'll be adding their cards to your own deck as you go. Clearly overscoped, but I still think I'm 10-12 hours away from done, so one more day should do it. Might even have time for decent music and sfx at the end there.

I don't want to blame Godot for this, but there are a lot of gotchas for a first-time user that have eaten up hours of my time. FYI for everyone else, call randomize() in a _ready() function or the code is fully deterministic, and set your Camera's drag values to zero so it actually goes where you tell it to go, and use Buttons for drag and drop functionality by registering the button_down and button_up signals, and make sure all auto-imported graphics are re-imported with filter off, and… well, I think I've made my point. Probably should have looked into some of this a few days prior to the jam, so I know it's mostly my fault. I'm actually impressed with how much has worked well, to be honest. It's just a much bigger system than something like puzzlescript.

innomin 15 days ago

Wow, already 25% done with this jam. I'm doing something strange this time around, because inspiration struck and I wanted to do the art while I was motived. So why not do my polish phase first?

Yes, it's a card battler with AI opponents. And yes, so far all I have on the code side of things is card generation and drag and drop functionality. I really like having all the art I need done, though, so we'll see if this was the right order for me to do things. Definitely going to try for a better graphics score than last time now!

innomin 15 days ago

it's a duel you'll get. I spent all of last night reading up on GDScript, so I know how to write an AI.

for i in [0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8].shuffle(): yield(i)

Cower in fear at my amazing power!

innomin 17 days ago

Last time was a lot of fun, this is a great game jam community! And thank you all so much for the three trophies on Elementary, I was kind of in shock when I saw it got first in gameplay and third overall. Glad you guys enjoyed it!

This time around I'll be trying out Godot for the first time, for a 2D puzzle or card game with nicer graphics, but still cheaper build overhead than Unity. There's still that CPU particle effect rendering issue with web exports and other clunkiness I'll have to work around, but compared to Unity's bugs Godot feels more efficient and stable, especially for 2D work. I'm excited!

Photoshop or GraphicsGale for art.
BFXR and PxTone for audio. (Web version if you're interested in checking it out)

Goals: (very likely a choose-two-of-three scenario…)
Make something fun and puzzle-y again!
Improve my art and audio scores!
Actually sleep!

innomin 3 months ago

TL;DR: It went pretty okay, and I like writing, apparently…

This was my first Alakajam, and I had a lot of fun in the solo division! My experience with the community here has been really good too, people giving and taking constructive feedback, and just being very invested in making and talking about fantastic games.

I joined this site because I'm kind of losing interest in Ludum Dare's whole thing since the website redesign. It's clunky and poorly organized, and makes it difficult for people to jam and rate games. Even though they're getting closer to where the site used to be, I still feel like there are huge gaps in the website's design, and a group of people that refuse to acknowledge the problems exist at all. This place is awesome, and is already everything I want from a game jam site, so I'll definitely be sticking around for more!

But that's enough about that, on to the game I made…

Goals:

My goal with this jam was to get C O N T E N T in, and make as much game as possible. As a programmer, I tend to overscope my designs in weekend gamejams, and though the code turns out pretty solid there's very little gameplay to speak of. I was looking into puzzlescript and pico-8, because they limit how much code you can really add, and to be honest I was hoping to try puzzlescript out once because it felt lightweight and content focused. Two hundred seventy-seven rules later, I'd probably change my opinion on that, but there's no doubt it worked out for me in this jam.

I was actually surprised that the theme was Spellcasting after AKJ#1 did Alchemy, it was the choice in the top ten that I never thought would get through. So all lazy brainstorming of the finalists thrown out the window, I tried to figure out a way to make a puzzle game where you picked spells, in a framework that only lets you move a single object called Player around the screen…

What went right:

  • I finished my logic on day one. Two days is not a lot of time, and I set a goal of having all the mechanics and most of the art done by the time I went to sleep on Saturday. Lots of problems were solved, like nicer tilesets that had depth, and that whole player/finger swapping issue, and three of the four spells were fully coded and arted. I made tweaks to everything in day two, but being able to start making levels as soon as I woke up definitely left time for bugfixes and polish. And sound effects and music.

  • I made fifteen puzzle levels in 48 hours! Even though my original goal was to have something like 20 levels, people have been able to play my game for over an hour, and that really means something to me. In day two I was making a new level every hour, from figuring out how to use the mechanics I had already implemented in unexpected ways, to laying out a basic plan, to adding enough spells and details, to brute forcing every solution to make sure there were only one or two ways you could solve it. It was a lot of work to do, and some levels suffered minor issues because of this time crunch, but I'm glad that this is where I ended up spending most of the weekend.

  • I stayed focused and worked all weekend. I started when the timer did, and put a solid fourteen hours in day one. Then I put another twenty in day two. There were times when I wanted to watch some TV, or play a game to relax, but I just kept working through it. That's a first for me in gamejams, and I attribute it to the fact that I saw how far I was getting, and didn't want to lose any momentum.

What went wrong:

Let's address the elephant in the room, the graphics are pretty bad. Puzzlescript limits you to 5x5 pixels per grid space, and I actually spent a good 10 hours of the jam getting things to go from this standard puzzlescript style:

To this slightly more detailed art:

But there wasn't really much I could do beyond that, especially in a weekend. A lot of people on here have convinced me to never work in puzzlescript again, off of this limitation alone.

In a related topic, the font I made for the cutscenes has been particularly singled out as being illegible, which sucks because the whole goal was to make nicer cutscenes with some character instead of centered text on a black screen. I get it, it's not the best, but it really defeats the purpose of cutscenes if people can't even read them…

  • A few people had trouble figuring out what was going on in the puzzles. This is probably art-related too, but it was a shock to me. If you can't understand what the puzzle is because of the visuals, then I've failed as a designer! I think it boils down to two things: the targets are too big, and obscure important background details, and some objects and effects needed longer animations to be more visible. Possibly a third reason is that people's eyes glossed over when they didn't like the art, so they didn't even bother to try planning out a strategy, but I'll give people the benefit of the doubt here and say that they felt this way because I did not take advantage of the space properly myself.

  • I pulled an all-nighter up to the submission deadline. Yeah, I know, it was dumb and pointless and just… why? The other side of motivation and momentum is that sometimes you don't know when to stop yourself. Being self-employed and a bit of an insomniac, I already have a pretty loose relationship with sleep schedules, but I would not recommend that you do this, ever!

Takeaway:

I'm actually pretty happy with the finished product, and I think it holds its own as a full puzzle game experience. I plan to add better music (a 30 second loop doesn't cut it for an hour-long puzzle game) and fix a few art and font issues in the near future, but otherwise I'm calling this project a success and moving on to the next one.

And speaking of that, the 7 Day Roguelike Challenge starts tomorrow… I might adapt this spellcasting design into a roguelike with enemies, and add another concept where you capture enemy attacks into new attack cards for yourself. Pico-8, don't let me down!

innomin 4 months ago

That was a mad dash at the end there, but I'm really happy with how Elementary! came out, especially as my first puzzlescript game ever. 277 rules and over fifty 5x5 objects, it's a beast of a simple puzzle game, and nearly bug-free… just that one bug where wind turns into fire at the screen edges, that I didn't have time to re-logic, so all the levels just have extra thick borders. XD

I'm going to take a nap now, but I'll be rating everybody's games this evening. Here's some gifs:





innomin 4 months ago

hahahaha

innomin 4 months ago

As my first puzzlescript game ever, there's been a bit of a learning curve, but things are going well. The gif exporter is busted for some reason, which is a real shame because all the cross-interactions between elements are fun to watch, but here's a screenshot of some of the spells interacting with each other:

I also got some better portrait artwork and a custom font done for the dialog scenes. It's time to sleep now, but I'll be spending all of tomorrow making puzzle levels!

innomin 4 months ago

I'm excited, all the theme options look good.

Tools depend on what theme gets through, but likely puzzlescript or pico-8 as my goal is to make as many good levels as possible. I'll probably also put a decent amount of time into some quality music while I'm at it, in pico-8 or PxTone.

Is a 48 hour roguelike in the mix? Maybe… but I might hold out a couple weeks for the 7DRLC instead, and take this jam a little easier. The theme will decide all.

High scores

x3 x0 x0
# Game Score Date
The flame of Liotes
by Huliandos
23 March 1st 2019
Magic Refinery
by devharts
116 Orbs March 2nd 2019
Cardslingers
by innomin
11'24"560 June 3rd 2019