Posts Tagged ‘horror’
I didn’t really want to post a blog on my game until it was ready, because it’s very difficult to communicate what it is just through screenshots. I thought it best to wait until people could actually play it.
Obscure is a minimalist horror exploration game. You are trapped in a pitch black complex, and must find your way out with what little light you have available. A monster is stalking you, and the only way to escape him is to close your eyes and run. Sanctuary is available to the south east, but getting there through the labyrinth will be difficult. You can find its page here.
The graphics are only represented by what your light is blocked by, but each area should be uniquely designed enough that you don’t lose track of where you are or turn around with realising it. This is the first time I’ve made a horror game, and I think it came out really well. It was also the first time I’ve tried a lot of things.
I never actually realised until I was making this game how easy generating collision maps was in Love2d. You can import an image and do a pretty simple loop to build up a 2d array with all the collision data you need. However, using this meant that load times became an issue. With the size of the game I wanted, importing and looping through an image that was the same size as the level (1 pixel = 1 pixel) would take minutes, which is way too long.
I managed to save a bit of time by making the collision map a two colour gif rather than a png, and also made the image much smaller (I then scaled up the array rather than the image), and halved the size of the level (in retrospect, that level was twice as big as it needed to be anyway). This brought it down to about a 10 second loading time on my rubbish old laptop, which seems reasonable to me, and anyone with a slightly more modern machine probably won’t even notice the load.
Because the graphics are so minimal, a lot is represented by the sound (the most important of which is the location of the monster). This is also somewhat new territory for me, but I managed to build up some sounds from the infinite source of foley that is my house to create what I think are pretty convincing effects.
I’ll probably have more reflections on the game when I’m a bit less buzzed from completing it, but I feel very happy with what I managed to create. If nothing else, it’s atmospheric.
So many placeholders. My goal for this evening is to finish the “go” button logic that executes your actions on the characters and rooms each night, dress up the placeholders a bit, and get a story put together that can evoke some horror from the player. That’s probably enough to submit for this, though not enough to satisfy me. I might keep polishing it for a while after the mini-LD with an eye toward this month’s Experimental Gameplay and Super Friendship Club.
I was able to formalize the story module format last night. Everything’s in CSV spreadsheets; characters, rooms, story fragments, story-specific game configuration… This lets me almost completely separate content from logic, and should let a person build a story module without learning/modifying the code.
Screen shot below. That’s the basic interface once you’ve started a story. Clicking a room gives you a menu where you can “lock in” an experience type for the night (e.g. noises, dreams, physical manifestations). Once the actions are locked in, the “Begin” button will start the night. You’ll get accounts of the night’s goings-on from the characters the next morning, which will help you understand the story you’re trying to tell them.
Still going on the Mini-LD. It’s my first time, so I figure I’ll get the blatant cheating out of the way now; it’s been more than 48 hours on the wall clock. I probably only have 12 hours of dev time so far, so I’m running with that. =)
The premise is that the player is a location that has experienced something wrong. My sample case is a house which experienced a tragedy. Some folk have chosen to spend the night at the house, and it’s your job (as the house) to communicate the tragedy to the occupants through metaphysical actions. Your basic set of actions can produce different outcomes based on the person and the part of the house they occupy. The player learns the story through the experiences of the visitors.
Here’s my entry for mini-LD#5.
It’s a cover of GBGames LD#11 entry, ‘minimalist’; turned evil. I like to think of it as a minimalist survival horror.
There is a gameplay video here … but it leaves off the surprise ending, so you still have to play the game :).
The goal is to complete 25 levels an achieve the highest score possible.