Posts Tagged ‘feedback’
Thanks to all the great constructive feedback I’ve received from you, I decided to make a postcompo version of my game.
It mostly adresses the default controls and tries to fix some of the collision bugs.
If you’ve already played and rated the original entry, give it a go at:
Voting is over, Results are out, and it is time for some introspection. LD25 was a really, really good LD for me, so take a sit and let me tell you all about it… whether you want it or not! Mwahah!
After two pretty terrible LDs I knew, when I put the keyboard down, that this time it had been different. I had a pretty decent idea from the get go. And even if I had troubles with parts of the execution, I was able to sneak in a lot more polish than in previous LDs. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Here are the scores (LD22 positions are multiplied from 891 to 1400 entries).
|Overall||#344 (2.95)||#524 (2.81)||#504 (2.73)||#142 (3.42)||Theme||#765 (2.25)||#231 (3.41)||#209 (3.32)||#24 (4.13)||Fun||#285 (2.78)||#674 (2.36)||#553 (2.45)||#200 (3.19)|
|Innovation||#329 (2.80)||#451 (2.89)||#253 (3.14)||#220 (3.17)|
|Graphics||#482 (2.73)||#563 (2.64)||#677 (2.05)||#263 (3.19)|
|Audio||#490 (2.31)||#246 (2.94)||N/A||#194 (2.94)||Humor||#395 (2.10)||#307 (2.49)||#142 (2.89)||#161 (3.14)||Mood||#738 (1.95)||#492 (2.60)||#562 (2.25)||#205 (3.09)|
I’m pretty happy about theme. This high score means that I was able to pass the image of my game to the players. There were quite a few “reverse-x” games in this LD — but the thing about reverse-games is that, for you to feel like the villain of the original game, the reverse game must be as close to the original as possible. This was one of my design guidelines – score, gameplay, graphics, whenever I was able, I tried to mimic the original Pacman.
Graphics and Audio are as expected. Not super high, but higher than my previous entries. I feel more confident with my toolchain, and I’m happy with the result. It is worth noting that although Audio was my lowest score, it was not my lowest placement. This shows how audio making is one of the largest barriers in this competition.
I was expecting Fun to be a bit lower, since many people complained about the controls, and the AI frankly sucked. But I guess when people “like” the game, all the scores go a bit higher together. That also goes for humor – I have no idea why I got a 3.14 score, since I did not include anything humorous in my game.
I would love if anyone who voted in my game could comment on the “mood” score. I usually rate mood based on the “consistent feel” of the game (which mine wasn’t quite there), and the “not done by my nephew” factor (does not feel TOO amateurish – decent opening, transitions, desktop behavior, etc).
LD23 and LD24 were two failures for me. In both cases I had quite pretentious ideas that didn’t live to their full potential. So even before the theme was decided I decided that I would go with a simple action game, probably a shooter. As the LD approached, the idea of making a QiX game was growing in me.
When the theme was announced, I quickly decided to make a “reverse-classical-game”, and sat down to think which classical games would be a)realistic to make and b)fun to play. Pacman and QiX were at the top of my shortlist. In the end, I decided to go with Pacman because since QiX is a really old game, I was afraid many people wouldn’t “get” it.
Making the game
This is the fourth time that I make a game using the JAVA + SLICK2D combo. Even though I hadn’t programmed in a while, I was still familiar enough with the basic API, which helped. I’m starting to feel some limitations on the SLICK2D library though. If I did this for a living, I would probably start to look for a new library about now, but I want to get a bit better at short game jams before worrying about that. I would probably get more bang for my book by learning how to properly compose simple songs, or getting a more consistent graphics style.
Development was pretty straight. I managed to add some bells and whistles such as transitions, pauses, high scores, etc. I wasted a LOT of time on the Pacman AI. My BASIC idea about how the Pacman AI should work was wrong, and instead of realizing that I should redo it from scratch, I tried many different small adjustments to it. All in all I lost a lot of time here that could have been spent on other things.
Another thing that was bad in the development is that I couldn’t get people to playtest my entry. Playtest is SUPER important. Many of the comments from the reviewers mentioned that it was hard keeping track of which ghost was selected with which number. Many simple solutions were suggested. This is the kind of stuff that a little play testing by someone other than me would have caught quite quickly.
Positives and Negatives
- I was familiar with Slick2d, and that made a lot of stuff faster. Even if I didn’t know how to do something, I knew where to look.
- I started using Inkscape a lot, which is good for non-pixel drawing (such as the game board).
- “If it is not moving on the screen, it can be drawn on the background”
- I started to get used to mixing sound effects in BFXR, for some cooler results than using single samples.
- Simple fade-out transition: draw a blank square on the screen and mess with transparency
- The simpler your game idea is, the more time you have to refine it!
- I should have written cleaner code. My code was so messy that it was hard to add simple things such as a difficulty progression based on changing pacman’s speed/power length.
- I’m starting to get tired of autotracker’s music. People who have never heard it like it, but it gets old really fast.
- Using Angelfont in a Linux environment is really hard – I will have to find some other library to use/package fonts in my game.
- It seems that java applets are unreliable in Ubuntu. I can’t even play my old java applet entries anymore in any of my ubuntu boxes .
- Not getting anyone to playtest my game was REALLY bad.
- I lost a lot of time banging my head against pacman’s AI, when I should have done something simpler (Greedy search?).
This time I added the title music of my game to the time lapse! It is so much better than a silent timelapse!
Curse of Goats
Finally, a little bit of a rant. I think the goat thing went overboard this LD. I saw too many games where goats were pushed in, without thought. I think this is because the optional theme was put in the announcements this time (unlike kittens in LD22, which was mostly a thing spread through word of blogpost). Since it shared the same space as the official theme, many people might have thought it was also obligatory or something. While I love silliness a lot more than the average people, forced jokes get bad real quick. I suggest that the joke theme is not supported officially in LD26.
Anyway, see you all in LD23!
Links to play:
25 hours into the dare, this is what I have achieved. The game now has a definitely “Pacman-y” look to it, with the new maze tiles. I’ve improved the ghosts’ look a little too. The main difference this time is the power pellet. Pacman can now kill your ghosts, who will become confused and erratic during the duration of the power pellet. The map in this prototype is a test map that should allow you to see the different options (victory, losing, having your ghosts eaten by pacman, etc).
You select ghosts using 1-4, and you move with ASDW or the arrow keys. If anyone could provide feedback regarding the responsiveness of the controls, it would be much appreciated!
Now to dive into some basic AI for Pacman and the ghosts!
Some of you played my game “Lab Lights,” the game I created for the miniLD #36.
Well if you haven’t seen it yet, it’s a difficult puzzle game where you push around batteries, crates, TNT, and magnets with a main goal of lighting up all the lights in each of the 23 levels in order to get to the last room and turn on the generator!
You may play it on my site here:
Here’s the link to the miniLD entry:
So here’s what my feedback was like:
When I put it on Newgrounds, it got daily 3rd best flash submission and later front-paged for a few days! A rush of reviews and comments appeared. Many people loved the difficulty of the puzzles. A few people mentioned how rare it is these days to find good puzzle games this hard. A few people compared it with “Chips Challenge” and “Shove It.” MDeathM (on Newgrounds) says, “All in all, a phenomenally challenging and engaging puzzle game. Thank you for this creation.” These words are very nice and I can only thank Ludum Dare for challenging me to make it.
To my surprise, Ryry67dude (on Newgrounds) made an hour long let’s play of it (and rage-quit at level 17) the day after the release! Here’s his video:
Unfortunately though, not everyone enjoyed the difficulty level of it. Many people got stuck on level 2 or 7. Some players mentioned I fried their brains, heehee!
Since I recognize how hard these puzzles are (I describe it as brutal), I made a full walkthrough of all 23 levels. Here’s the video:
(You should subscribe to me as well )
Lastly, some people said I should make a sequel. I was thinking about it lately, and I think it would be a good idea. I have some new gameplay elements that would be cool to add (Lasers and mirrors, differently sized boxes, teleporters, and boulders). If you have any ideas, I’ll be happy to hear them
Thanks for listening to my rambling, and thank you Ludum Dare for another fun experience! If you want, you can rate and review the game in the comments on this post.
I’ve said my thoughts on the current ranking system elsewhere so no real need to re-state here, but theres something to me that’s quite a bit worse that could be addressed, and this is more of a community thing really but perhaps there’s some way for LD24 some “encouragement” could be put in place to do it.
Much like LD22 I take the same issue with my comments/feedback…..my comments and feedback are 100% positive (well..99%..someone did bring up that more feedback in the HUD would have been nice ), nobody could really say a bad thing at all.. out of just over 100 ratings 40 of said people posted that they “loved” the audio and thought it was “really really fun!”….and that was about the extent of my feedback. (And not just my game of course, I’m just using it as a easy example as it effects me the most personally, many many others I’ve browsed through are the same, nothing but positive feedback and glowing praise towards the game….then a really low score)
I scored a 3.07 in fun and 2.75 in audio
Now…whatever, those scores arent “bad” by any means, but they don’t reflect the feedback in the least! if 40 people of 100 “loved” those….then I’m looking at probably 20-30 ratings who did not like the gameplay/audio who did not leave feedback.
That sucks…mostly because it’s the feedback from those who didn’t like the game that I care about, I want to hear why they didn’t like it! As much as I appreciate the “I love it!” posts as feedback goes negative feedback is far more helpful. I don’t know if people are just too “polite” to post things they didn’t like or if they are somehow afraid of being “retaliated” against and being given a bad score on their game or what, but, at least to me, I enjoy feedback good and bad…It lets me know which things I tried people liked and which things i tried people didn’t like so I can either explore further into an idea or avoid it in the future. (Especially in something like this where I made a game type I’ve never done before AND tried a few twists from the “norm” in it’s genre)
So, in saying that, I’d like to re-iterate my suggestion I brought up prior to LD23 based on my experiences from LD22….we need some sort of way to allow people to attach an anonymous comment to their vote (well, the site would still know who posted it, just dont show the name) but still leave a way to leave comments in the thread like we can do now (showing our names). Perhaps this would allow more people who don’t want to say anything bad to open up a bit and give honest feedback?
Feedback has to consist of both what worked and what did not work to be effective….just my $0.02
Thank you all who post comments in my entry
Based on the feedback my game that is a one button platformer.
- It’s too hard
- Needs check points
- Needs a better hit box collision
- Needs to control the height of the jump
- One button mechanism doesn’t work when facing enemies
So, I createad a post-compo version that adds:
- A proper hit box in the collision algorithm
- A few optimizations
- Double jump
I think that the game now is a little too easy, but if you want to test the new post-compo version you can do it here.
I’ve made a bunch of improvements to AVOIDAL since the compo and I’d love your feedback!
- Added 1 second of invulnerability if you take damage (this helps a ton!)
- Rebalanced the difficulty curve to make it progress a tad slower
- Mines spawn a tad further in from the edges to help player not get stuck on walls as much
- Reworked How To Play screen to be simpler and clearer
- Changed ‘Energy’ to ‘Health’ in UI
- Fixed some sound volume and playing issues
- Added a nice visual effect of little random twinkling stars in the background
I’m gonna keep listening for feedback and working on this game but I think it is pretty close to me calling it done at this point. Thanks for the great feedback I’ve gotten already to everyone who left me comments on my rating page.
…that the real Advancing Wall of Doom would be the 121 entries to attempt to rate and leave feedback on in 2 weeks!
As I was thinking about how to schedule this into the next two weeks I thought up some rough stats based on how past compo playing/rating has gone:
- You should play and rate 8.6 games per day of the two weeks if you want to hit the deadline.
- If you assume an average handling time per game of 3 minutes you are looking at 6 hours of just getting the games to the point where you are playing them.
- If you assume an average playing time per game of 2 minutes you are looking at 4 hours of total play time to get through all the entries.
- Given the average handling and playing times above you could earmark about 45 minutes of LD time per day for two weeks to finish on time.
Phew.. well, I better get cracking. I must admit I haven’t had much of a chance to play more than a few so far. The rating and feedback is so important though. I know I really appreciate the time people put into playing and leaving thoughts on my game so I try and do the same.
Great compo everyone! I can’t wait to see what everyone created…