Phew! I barely made this third monthly update in time! I don't have a new screenshot to show this time, but wanted to show the new MHGames logo I made a while back. The old one was quite badly dated and needed some refreshment, I made something simpler and cleaner looking.
We've been expanding our closed Alpha-group quite a lot on both Android and iOS (if you want to try the game, drop me a note!). The initial feedback has been great, even though not many people have finished the game, so we haven't really received any definitive data on the difficulty level of the game. If you're part of the testing group, reading this and feeling a stab in your heart, you need to play more! Okay I'm (partly) kidding, of course.
Speaking of difficulty level: we developed a gut feeling that the Water-levels were actually easier than the Swamp-levels, so we've switched things around: Water-level pack is now II, and the Swamp is III. Not that they need to be exactly in difficulty order (as that varies per person), but I think they're better this way.
Again, in no particular order, here are the things still need to be done. I added couple of things that I had forgotton earlier.
Not going to do a full list on things I have done since the last update, but here is a brief summary. I've done the social gaming integrations (meaning achievements, leaderboards on both platforms), statistics are now gathered, did the above mentioned eye movements for polish, and our sole In-App-Purchase (ad-removal on Android) works. I've also cleaned up and optimized the code, getting rid of the old and nasty prototype parts. So yay me! Solid progress, even though I have been playing quite a bit of Earth Defense Force 4.1!
See you in a month, maybe?
Well look at that, I made a second post in the series of Oddhop status updates, just like I sort-of-promised! For comparison, check out the earlier post here. But first some exciting news: currently Oddhop is about to start private Alpha-testing very soon! It is a small step for humanity, but a big one for us: before only a handful of folks have tried or even seen the game.
In addition to Alpha-testing, I set up a page for the game (Oddhop). Check it out for more information! I've also been preparing the Oddhop Press Kit, which will be posted soon. UPDATE: The Alpha-testing has begun, and the Press Kit is now available!
As customary, here's a brand new screenshot and then we'll dive right in just what the hell is going on with the game as of late!
Again, in no particular order, here are the things still need to be done. As you can see, the list is much shorter than it was last time! Personally I'm happy with the progress made in the last month, I've put in as much hours as I possibly could.
Here's a reminder what was in my TODO list before, and now is looong gone!
That's it for the February update! See you possibly in March!
To kickstart the new year, I thought a status update type of post is in order, to document what's going on with Oddhop and what still remains to be done. We shall see if I can make this a monthly occurence — no promises — but I will try. Before we start, you can have a new pre-alpha screenshot from the game! Enjoy!
Alright, here is a partial (I've left out some minor things that are not of any interest) and tidied up list of things that still needs to be done with the game. These are not in any particular order, mind you.
So what's done then? Well believe it or not more things are already than not done, even though writing my TODO list out like that was slightly frightening.. (It certainly didn't look as bad when in more condensed format, shit! ) For example all important graphics have been drawn, backgrounds are done, most of the visual effects have been done. Of course at the polish phase I will probably go over and add more effects and stuff, but still.
When Teemu and I started talking about doing another game together some years back, we eventually decided to do something quick and simple first, instead of a bigger project. So here we are: working on the game since February 2014, so almost two years now. Not full-time though, and there were periods of month or two where I barely worked on the game, but still. "Quick and simple", hah! Believe me I'm going to be very happy when the game is finished and released, no matter how well / poorly it does! To any aspiring game developers reading: do not underestimate the time it takes to make even a small game! So start small, and finish it! That's the most important and hardest part, finishing a game. Anyways, I better get back to work. See you around!
Just a quick post. I made a tiny teaser trailer for our upcoming, original Android/iOS puzzle game Oddhop! Enjoy! I'm guesstimating the game will be released in the first half of 2016, hopefully in the first quarter, even. Do give the video a thumbs up if you enjoy it and/or are looking forward to hearing more about the game! Comments are also most welcome, as always. What's shown is pre-alpha footage so there will be some graphics changes and tweaks, but at least it's something. Oh, and we're still keeping most of the actual gameplay under wraps, so patience is a virtue!
Keep an eye out for more info in the coming months. I also have to apologize for the shoddy video quality; I had to crop in heavily due to Oddhop being a game played in portrait while the video is obviously in landscape. For the launch trailer I clearly have to try a different approach. I will probably code the trailer and render it to an image sequence, then encode the video from the images. Oh well, time to worry about that later.
The teaser music is a royalty-free track courtesy of Kevin MacLeod (see the video description for details), and as such doesn't have anything to do with the game, just to let you know. We're hoping to have some original music in the game.
This is the second part in my "old & abandoned games" series of posts. Read the first part about our old sci-fi shooter Badlands here. Onwards, then!
The game was in development during 2005, if my memory serves me correctly. Another game we were making with my friend Teemu. It used C++, Ogre graphics engine and was supposed to be something Cannon Fodder-esque action in a fantasy/fairytale setting. You know, big mushrooms and so forth. We didn't get very far in this project, though, so what's left is actually just the engine work and no game.
What killed the project, then? The usual reason: lack of proper graphics. I'm not a very good 3d modeler (observe the test character below), and especially the rigging/animating is very time-consuming for me. We got one guy do a nice troll model for us (not pictured unfortunately), but that was just one model with one animation. We would have needed much more. Hugely over ambitious project, to say the least!
There was some neat tech that I was happy with though: I made a custom terrain lighting system for dynamic lights that worked quite well, and also a heightmap + shadow map generator. It wasn't completely automatic, I remember having a separate texture for the shorelines (the foamish part in the water), but the shadows were baked in automagically. And for once I got a nice 3rd person camera system implemented, you could adjust it freely and it didn't go underneath the terrain. Happy times! There were also some rudimentary physics, that were based on 2D physics with some nasty hacks for 3D usage. That was quite a shitty system and a proper physics engine should have been utilized. And now that I think about it, I faintly remember experimenting with some 3rd party physics engine so I guess I was about to make it better. A* (surprise!) was used for pathfinding, the navigation system preferred flat terrain and paths, and avoided steep slopes.
After this project was canceled, I had some Ogre experience so we wanted to use it for something. Something simpler. That project eventually became Those Funny Funguloids!, so it was not all in vain.
This one is definitely from early 2005. I made this with another friend as designer, but project quickly fell through. Guess it was due to lack of motivation. But see? I, too, have dabbled in pixel art in my day! Actually I have several pixel artish games — ranging from ancient QBasic 16x16 pixel tile games to more modern takes — none of which have been finished.
For tech, I used C++ and Allegro framework. I made this nifty little tile-engine with scripting support (probably using Lua, can't remember) along with an editor that allowed placing triggers etc. to the levels. There also was beginnings of a conversation system, but I think that was not completed.
Another game we started with Teemu. It was supposed to be an adventure game similar to this old game Ween: The Prophecy, i.e. the player was not visible but manipulated objects in scene, solving puzzles in a single location until moving to another location with new puzzles. Another overly ambitious project! I'm not sure if Teemu had more than one room designed (probably), but I only got this one room implemented and it's not actually all of the puzzles either. So there's gameplay for about 10 seconds if you know what to do.
I think there was supposed to be painting covering the hole in the wall, but I don't recall what was the purpose of the hole. Behind the bookshelf were an entrance to another room (basement, I think), but it was not implemented. The idea was to melt the (plastic) key in the mold using the fireplace embers, but I'm not sure where the key was to be used. Maybe in a different room? Anyways, click on the picture below for a GIF animation showing how the game was played.
There was not much tech behind this, since it was a short lived project. But I used SDL as the base framework instead of Allegro this time. I remember it was tedious doing the puzzles, because I had the bright idea of doing EVERYTHING in code! That's right, all the room logic and setup was handled in code, which makes no sense. Even the polygon outlines for the clickable areas were set in code, point by point. Insanity! I honestly don't know why I didn't do an editor, because I had written level editors for several games before this one, so it's not like I didn't know how to do it.. Main takeaway: don't do that! At the very least do the setup in script and have the game hot-reload it, instead of doing it in code and recompiling + restarting.
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That's it for now. There are a few potential games / engine experiments I could tell about in further posts, so let me know in the comments if you'd like to read more stuff like this. Bye!