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    Ludum Dare 24

    August 24th-27th 2012 :: Theme: Evolution

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    Papillon - ChevyRay - 48 Hour Compo Entry

    Felicity is being haunted. She must explore the depths in order to find the power she needs to face an increasingly powerful and menacing foe.

    -32 rooms to explore!
    -4 special powers to discover!
    -5 menacing bosses to overcome!
    -5 exclamation points!!!!!

    Sorry for lack of sound! I ran out of time. :(

    Libraries
    =========
    - FlashPunk
    - TweenLite

    Software
    ========
    - FlashDevelop
    - Photoshop

    View ChevyRay's journal. | View all entries by ChevyRay

    Ratings

    #14Overall4.01
    #19Graphics4.35
    #45Mood3.65
    #47Fun3.65
    #298Humor2.27
    #411Innovation2.76
    #436Theme2.73
    #618Audio1.09
    #1080Coolness14%

    Comments

    WITS says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 2:23am

    Other than the lack of sound, it's awesome! Would you consider adding sound in after judging?

    AndyBrown says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 2:24am

    Amazing entry Chevy! I can't even fathom how it is possible to get so much done in 48 hours. The boss sequence where you had to dash through the beams was so hard (I seem to have issues dashing? Sometimes it just won't dash for me) - Although I was playing the old version from your twitter and the game crashed on me right after that, I'll have to play again with the right version! :D

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 2:27am

    Yeah the current version will resume from wherever you go to whenever you reload, so it saves your progress. Also those dumb bugs don't exist anymore.

    Yeah I'm thinking of putting in sound as soon as I find somebody to do it. :)

    Aug 27, 2012 @ 2:51am

    I liked it, but I couldn't get past the laser beam boss!
    I tried for 15 minutes straight but the dash move just doesn't work sometimes! Will probably try again later. Great job dude!

    danlthemanl says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 2:56am

    Very good graphics and bosses and obstacles!

    VDZ says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:07am

    First of all, it's quite impressive how much you've managed to do in just 48 hours. There is a lot of content in the game, and the number of different gameplay elements is also surprising for a Ludum Dare entry. (And it has FIVE freaking bosses.)

    However...there's a very good reason why Ludum Dare entries are never as big in scale as this game. The 'finishing touches' are more than just nice extras. The problems with this game are all minor, but all those minor problems (utter lack of sound, control issues, occasional dull moments, wildly varying difficulty) combine for a frustrating play experience.

    Gameplay-wise, it's a strange mix of sheer fun, utter boredom and pure frustration. Though there are very interesting parts in the game (notably the bosses, the first times you use the reflect ability and the butterfly backtracking), they are surrounded by dull platforming/backtracking parts with either no challenge or only the kind of 'challenge' that feels lame (fireballs appearing out of nowhere as you land, stray bullets requiring you to stop every second or have a small chance of suddenly dying), worsened by unresponsive controls (like the time gap after landing when you can't jump or dash for a moment).
    A very significant source of frustration (to the point where it felt like a chore to continue playing and I strongly considered quitting (if I were only a random player and not judging the game for LD I'd have quit at that point)) was the unresponsive dash ability during the laser boss. While the boss is awesome the first couple of times, it quickly grows beyond frustrating as you die over and over again due to your character not dashing despite having clearly double-tapped the arrow key - which instantly kills you at the boss's later stages. This single element causes all the enjoyment being had to come screeching to a halt.
    Another issue is the varying difficulty: it happens multiple times that a challenge later in the game is easier than challenges all the way at the start of the game, making the "challenges" more "chore" than "challenge". This is accentuated by the utterly underwhelming final boss fight, which I managed to complete on my first try with more ease than any of the other bosses.

    Graphics-wise, this game is amazing. Everything looks all polished and shiny, all the animations are ridiculously smooth even compared to non-LD games, and the level art gives off a nice atmosphere (which really, really should have been accompanied by background music to truly make it atmospheric).

    I am not entirely sure what this game has to do with the theme at all, though. If you manage to give a convincing explanation I might be able to give some more points, but right now the proper score seems to be 'utterly and completely unrelated to the theme'.

    As a developer, I love this game. You really did some amazing things for a 48-hour contest, and there's tons of potential in there. But as a gamer, I don't care about potential that's not realized. This game feels unfinished and has major flaws, making it simply not very fun to play.

    gamblore says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:10am

    As Felicity gains new powers, you have to discover the way to use the power. Jumping higher is automatic but shows the white aura to alert the player that something is special here after picking up the power. This helps the player learn to try and discover other abilities without having to explicitly tell them this. This is brilliant game design.

    The visuals are lovely. I especially loved the lava pits. You can see the seams of the level tiles because of the missing inside corner tiles but that just stems from trying to get it done in 48 hours. The tileset is lovely.

    I found Boss 4 to be much harder than Boss 5.

    I discovered one defect where if Felicity caused a block to fall, that was over a transition pit, Felicity would then stand on the block that is at the bottom, just off the screen. You could not initiate the down room transition any more. Not a big issue as I could jump out of that pit at that one point.

    I enjoyed playing this. Great job.

    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:10am

    Neat platformer! Love the movement and graphics. The face-trick with the boss is genius :)

    VDZ says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:11am

    Now, on a lighter note, you need someone for audio? Sound effects aren't really my specialty (i.e. I'm not better than the average Joe at that) but if you need music, I could try to see if I can make something interesting. What kind of music were you imagining for the game?
    (If you're interested, you can hear examples of my music at http://tindeck.com/users/VDZ.)

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:22am

    VDZ: yeah i tried to attempt too much, now i'm utterly disappointed in the lack of audio and the difficulty level.

    pretty bummed, but at least i got an end screen in there, too bad it bored you so bad.

    wanted to do something more ambitious than my typical shittyass game

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:25am

    NOTE: boss 5 is too easy because of a code screwup, he doesn't do half of his epic attacks :( anybody who plays the game after now will get the epic hard version.

    coreyvacate says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:31am

    Amazing entry, Chevy! The game flowed very well and had quite a few difficult spots! Excellent artwork too! Would love to see what you could do with another 48 hours! :-)

    VDZ says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:33am

    @ChevyRay: It's good to be ambitious. Try to discover where your limits are, and try to push your abilities as close to the limit as possible.

    Last LD I also made an impressive but unfun game (http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-23/?action=preview&uid=7284, it was a persistent world online multiplayer building game). It really helped me discover my limits, and this LD I made something that I'm actually satisfied with (http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-24/?action=preview&uid=7284) (though I did go slightly over my limits, leading to some last-minute additions, a lack of interesting TRAITs (I had much more interesting ones planned) and no direct multiplayer).

    That's one of the things that makes LD so awesome. If you're ambitious, you learn things you wouldn't otherwise learn, and that allows you to make something significantly more awesome next time.

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 4:01am

    VDZ: Ah, okay...

    K1NET1K says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 4:32am

    Superb

    L says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 4:42am

    My positive comments have already been addressed upstream so here are a pair of small negatives:

    I won't be so cruel as to say it has "nothing to do with the theme", but it would be nice if the bosses felt a bit more like natural continuations of each other (one case being Boss 2 -> Boss 3)

    What is often missed in Metroidvania type indie games, and in this game, is a feeling of coherence and place to the environment. This can be as simple as keeping all the fire-based obstacles separate from the technology-based obstacles, or by varying the types of platforming - knobbly floors and falling blocks in one area, boxy cavities and lasers in the other. It is, after all, a genre of exploration, and what is exploration but a change of scenery?

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 4:53am

    Yup, for sure.

    kato9 says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 5:02am

    Great game - wonderful use of a wide array of game mechanics, and nicely polished animations. I did find it a bit too difficult, I suppose my request would be that instead of insta-death, the game could have a 3-heart system of something like that. Since it's a Metroidvania perhaps health power ups scattered along the way? Anyway, great work!

    superjoebob says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 6:11am

    Great boss design, lost count of how many times the double tap dash move killed me on the final boss though. Pretty fun though, the gameplay kept me engaged right through to the end.

    jijaweb says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 6:38am

    Best game so far. ! Good job.

    Orni says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 9:28am

    I'm amazed - I won't say more

    TinyHat says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 9:42am

    Couldn't beat the final boss, I had perf issues and the dash sometimes didn't work (wrong timing probably ^^)

    ttrkaya says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 9:45am

    I'm amazed by your development speed, mastery in code and graphics.

    But the game needs more innovation.

    amidos2006 says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 10:51am

    Amazing Metroidvania game :)

    Mach60KAS says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 1:19pm

    Bosses 4 and 5 just made me want to punch my screen. The laser attacks in particular caught me out whenever the flash-step didn't register. Just getting that out of the way first...

    However I loved the game as a whole - the graphics were superb, and I thought the concept of an evolving boss monster was pretty awesome. The selection of powers overall was well thought out, although I really disliked backtracking everywhere only to find I was still missing a butterfly or something.

    Still, fantastic for 48 hours!

    Pixelulsar says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 3:55pm

    Great game! I had a lot of fun, and loved the look of the bosses face.

    cacciatc says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 6:07pm

    +1 Boss facial expressions.

    ratboy2713 says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 7:05pm

    I assume she got her super powers from her cast that could magically change from one arm to the other.

    Awesome artwork. I loved the evolution of the boss. The dash was hard to operate in a precise way, but I eventually got it. Really wish there was a simple somber melody in the background. All in all a great job.

    FoxFiesta says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 7:35pm

    Graphics are very beautiful and polished, but backtracks are very annoying.

    mitkus says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 7:38pm

    Enjoyed it very much! Obviously, you can find flaws if you start nitpicking, but for 48 hours this is phenomenally good. Best one I played so far out of this LD. Games like these inspire me to keep on improving my own gamedev skills - maybe one day I will be able to make something as good as this in a weekend.

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 7:51pm

    mitkus: thanks! I hope you do! :D I will play it

    Aug 27, 2012 @ 8:15pm

    nice game chevy i'm going with the guy who said it was fun at times, boring at times and graphical! it's a neat game and shows graphics amazingly.

    photex says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 8:37pm

    pretty fun!

    Aug 27, 2012 @ 9:24pm

    Hey man don't be bummed you made a great game! Just needs polishing that you can't do in 48 if you want to get in as much as you have! When you get sounds see what it's like with some Bowser's castle type music, I'll put something together if you like ;p --

    flyingbear says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 11:00pm

    This is an insane amount done by one dude on 48 hours! I'm a sucker for metroidvanias, so I definitely got into this. The expressions on the boss amused me greatly. It took awhile to figure out what the shield did, and once I figured it out tried it on the fireball & the laser, to no avail. boss 4 was really hard for me due to the touchy dash controls. small qualms for an amazing 48 hr entry!

    yetanother says ...
    Aug 27, 2012 @ 11:14pm

    All this works in 48h. It's amazing!

    YopSolo says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 12:49am

    Wow ! 5 stars !

    Jiggawatt says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 11:32am

    Wow, those are some smooth animations. I don't know how easy this sort of art style is to do with your tools, but it doesn't *look* like a 48-hour game at all.

    In addition, it had some neat gameplay, sufficient variation, and a solid take on the theme. Good game.

    Jacic says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 4:29pm

    Very nice game, and quite hard! (but I like that)

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 6:26pm

    Jiggawatt: thanks, I actually have a lot of code "cheats" i use to make animations look smoother and reduce the amount of drawing I have to do, i'll write about those in my post-mortem.

    Jacic: Yeah it's too hard, post-compo version will have LOTS of difficulty tweaks :P didn't have time to playtest a stupid metroidvania game haha.

    Cell says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 6:43pm

    Cool, the graphics had some good and bad sides. :)

    ratking says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 6:45pm

    Truly great animations! Died a little bit too often, but that's just old me being bad at platformers. :)

    BumpkinRich says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 10:23pm

    Very nice. Some people are so good are art is sickens me :)

    Some of the platforming was a bit overly harsh for me. But then maybe I'm a lightweight these days.

    Really missed sound though :( I hope you'll continue and add some in.

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 28, 2012 @ 11:33pm

    Post-compo version will have sound, music, as well as totally fixed difficulty.

    Aug 29, 2012 @ 3:54am

    Can't believe you made an entire Metroidvania in less than 48 hours. Good freakin' job. And there's some really smart and clever level design in there too.

    While sound and music would help IMMENSELY with immersion and atmosphere, it was still quite fun without those things. I did get kind of stuck a couple times and I ended up doing a lot of futile back-tracking before realizing I had just missed something obvious, but that's just how it is with me and Metroidvanias sometimes. Although it's not a huge game, a map might have been a worthwhile addition, or maybe just some more variation in the look of the different areas.

    Anyway, great job over-all. Definitely the best entry I've played so far.

    thewiseguy99 says ...
    Aug 29, 2012 @ 4:33am

    As everyone says, amazing what you did in 48hrs. Really enjoyed playing, although I just couldn't get past the laser boss. Tried for ages. Aaah well. Graphics very impressive. I must admit I didn't find it buggy at all. Just saying... Great job anyways.

    Aug 29, 2012 @ 6:57pm

    Wow, this is an incredible game for such a short time. Love the bosses!

    90sml says ...
    Aug 29, 2012 @ 7:59pm

    This game is even more awesome when i see that we didn't make in 72 hours half the game you did in 48 hours, and we're 4. I was looking forward to playing this game and this is really impressive.

    I may see what i can do with flashpunk in a near future :)

    McFunkypants says ...
    Aug 29, 2012 @ 8:52pm

    Beautiful art! Highly ambitious - enough that some polish would be needed to add to the fun factor. Suggestions to make this a top notch, buyable game: no backtracking ever. Sound, of course. Tutorial signs explaining things to noobs.

    Overall: phenomenal. Beautiful. Smooth. Interesting. Unfinished but FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC regardless.

    VDZ says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 4:42am

    I don't get people's issues with backtracking in general. It's a metroidvania, aren't those all about returning to areas you've visited before to find out you can now do stuff you couldn't do before there? I think backtracking can greatly add to the experience as long as it's about discovering new stuff and not about walking back the linear road you just came from.

    (This game has both 'good' and 'bad' backtracking; there are very obvious parts where you already know exactly where you have to go, what you have to do and how you get there (such as at the beginning where you go in one direction, go back all the way in the other direction, then go back to the original direction again, all linear), but the butterfly collecting makes you explore, trying to find places you weren't able to access before.)

    hamster_mk_4 says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 5:19am

    How do I use the Jagged power to get through the white walls?

    hamster_mk_4 says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 5:34am

    Wow, not only a metroid-vania, but one that has a natural progression with abilities that make sense. This isn't just a good game for a 48 hour contest. This is a good game <period>.

    Ragzouken says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 12:36pm

    Pretty impressive! I found the fireballs really hard to dodge personally. I spent ages figuring out what the power was that killed white walls (after I got it) because I missed the explanation somewhere that it was a dash D:

    It really really wants audio :P

    fr_automatik says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 1:55pm

    Wow .
    If you added sound, it would be _perfect_!

    raarlac says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 4:26pm

    This game is the most polished game I've ever played on a LD. The bean lights, the dash on the edge thing, the fireballs... everything is stunning.
    The difficulty is insane, in a good way. I almost cried of happiness when I defeated boss 4.
    This game makes me wonder why don't we have a "Polish" category yet, instead of this Mood crap.
    Overall, if wasn't the audio, it would be perfect.

    ChevyRay says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 6:01pm

    Lots of insanely generous comments. Thanks dudes :) glad y'all like it.

    raarlac: I agree 100% that a "Polish" category would be awesome and fit Ludum Dare super well (but of course i'm biased, because Polish is the only thing I'm good at)

    cappelnord says ...
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 8:51pm

    48 hours? Killer!

    BrothersT says ...
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 2:50pm

    I thought this was a really great game, but I got too annoyed with it, some flash games have a problem with freezing momentarily and missing your keyboard input. Canabalt is one that I can think of. It kept missing when I pressed jump over the lava, but it became too much when I kept dying on the boss with the laser mouth because it couldn't dash through the laser. I won't mark you down for it or anything because I know it's flash (or flashpunk) being crap. But it's worth looking into.

    BrothersT says ...
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 2:56pm

    Or maybe i'm just unlucky with flash, but my brother's computer has the same problem, and from experience it happens whatever version we have installed.

    Puzzlem00n says ...
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 5:51pm

    I won't beat it, because I got really far, and then my computer shut down due to intense lagging. Normally, this would be fine, because you implemented a save, but my save went out in the room you get the thing that breaks white barriers, right after getting it. So, those white blocks were there, I couldn't get up and around, and the powerup I collected was missing even if I could get up there, and I didn't have its powers. So, basically, my save was corrupt.

    Anyway, I liked what I saw. Those monster bosses were freaky looking. Good job!

    nimblegorilla says ...
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 7:01pm

    Awesome job and I love the style. I agree with others that running back and forth got a little repetitive. It would have been nice to have a map so you can see where each special thing was.

    moonmagic says ...
    Sep 1, 2012 @ 4:25am

    Your powerups are so intuitive; I loved being able to play a mostly silent (in terms of telling me what to do) game. I actually really enjoyed getting the butterflies; the wing effect is very well-done. I wanted to keep playing to see the various boss forms. I think the window of input was a little small for the dash, but it really only got me on the last boss; I had framerate troubles for some reason.

    People talking about judging "as a gamer"; I don't personally understand that. If you make games or have made games, you can't get back to experiencing them as a "pure" gamer; you notice the craft, whether you want to or not. So, high marks for everything except for maybe pacing, and I know you already know how to fix that.

    JaydenB says ...
    Sep 2, 2012 @ 4:25am

    Loved the graphics, just couldn't really 'control' the game or jump high enough to reach other spaces it seemed. probably a power-up I needed to gain.

    samoojamies says ...
    Sep 3, 2012 @ 4:15pm

    Boss battles are great! Not many people remember to add boss battles into their platformer games. Was a bit slow to explore different rooms if you got lost or did not know what to do next. Metroid feeling.

    Gornova says ...
    Sep 6, 2012 @ 8:28am

    I'm amazed how much work and quality you put in ludum dare games, itìs incredible

    ollie says ...
    Sep 9, 2012 @ 9:34am

    Definitely the best entry I've played so far and it'll take some beating. The lack of sound was disappointing but was more than made up for with the amount of content.

    I kept the game open for about a week in a tab in my browser as I couldn't defeat the laser boss and had to keep trying now and then; eventually managed to complete it.

    saint11 says ...
    Sep 14, 2012 @ 10:06pm

    Just plain awesome!

    lekochen says ...
    Sep 17, 2012 @ 12:31am

    Awesome.

    Mikale Erhart says ...
    Sep 25, 2012 @ 2:03pm

    Love it!! The glitchy controls were a little frustrating, but an excellent game overall.

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