Tear Those Waves Apart!

Well the deadline has arrived and I’ve submitted Legends of the Swell! You can download and play the current build for Windows and Mac OS X.





As with most of my jam endeavors, I plan to carry on working on this until it both looks and feels a lot better. This game seems to be another step in the right direction of me actually making fun games (y’know, the one thing they should probably be). Maybe it’s having clocked up hundreds of hours of gameplay, but wave ramping, jumping, spinning, Ā and dodging jet skis feels good!

That being said, a competition submission would be nothing without it’s share of bugs and broken mechanics. There’s still a lot to do to make the movement feel right. At the moment, the result of ramping off the crest of a wave is entirely unpredictable. Sometimes you slip over it anticlimactically and lose the wave, other times you rocket into a wild looping spin. Incidentally, this looks pretty awesome but it doesn’t feel intended, which takes some control away from the player.

I also need to modify the wave movement logic. There are still situations where waves magically collapse, sometimes followed by a sneaky tidal wave. I also want to see if I can add a breaking/barrel shape to the wave.

Any and all feedback is appreciated! If any real surfers want to lynch me for brutalizing the realism of the sport, feel free to do so. But while you are, let me know what the game needs to feel more like surfing šŸ˜€

Legends update

The deadline for the makegamessa 2-button competition is rapidly approaching. Here is an update of the game’s progress:

I’ve mainly been working on the wave shape and getting the movement to feel right. This has turned out to be quite a challenge, so I’ve been left with less time to implement things like obstacles and character animations for tricks. However, it seems that most of the fun comes from just cruising around on waves, trying to reach the powerups, so a slew of environmental features might not be necessary after all.

Radical bra! Legends of the Swell

Silhouette has been really well-received since Rezzed, but while it marinates I’ve been working on a new prototype for theĀ makegamessaĀ month-long game dev competition. This time round, the idea is to make a game that only has two usable buttons, which provides its own set of wonderful and maddening challenges!

We’re encouraged not to limit ourselves to game ideas that we think would be totally suited to two-button input, but rather to explore what other game genres would be like with only two buttons. This would include games that are traditionally suited to having many inputs, like sports games, beat ’em ups, and strategy games.

With that in mind, I started making a surfing game! I’m tentatively calling it “Legends of the Swell”, but that may change. Here is the current state of the game:

The left arrow turns the surfer left, and right right, while holding down both builds up a jump. There will also be powerups floating above the crest of the wave. So, the gameplay will have the player trying to navigate the wave shape and build momentum, grab powerups, and perform tricks.

At the moment, my challenge is trying to come up with a novel but fun way to perform tricks given the two button constraints. It’ll probably involve a system of combining left, right and hold moves together to form combos, and maybe even being able to create custom tricks.

The competition ends of the 9th of August, so I’ll post a build soon!

Rezzed aftermath and a new Silhouette

Phew! Well, despite not being able to attend, Rezzed looked like a whirlwind of fun and Worms-based madness from over here! I spent a lot of it on Twitter watching from my otherwise dormant account, and cheesy as it is to say, I was very much wrapped up in the buzz from afar. The games on show looked like a huge amount of fun to play, and the developer sessions provided some incredible insight into the thought processes behind some very clever game developers.

Silhouette was well received too which made me very happy. The game even got a positive little writeup in The Guardian! It seems there was some amazing stuff on display. In fact, the sentiment from this article and a number of other commenters is that the PC indie scene is going in a very good direction, which is really exciting.

I’ve released the version of Silhouette that was playable at Rezzed, which you can play and download here. I’ve also added a map editor for the game, which you can use to make your own creepy, impossible-to-navigate mansions. As always, feedback is welcome.

So a big thanks to the organizers of Rezzed! It was a realĀ privilegeĀ to have the game played by loads of people at such an awesome event. I’m proud to be part of a collective that produces video games in which you can perform “surgery” on someone with the blunt edge of a clipboard, in virtual reality.

It begins!

Rezzed has officially begun! Silhouette is in the Leftfield Collection, so go out there and murder your friends!

We had a bit of a shaky start with the setup of the game but everything is running smoothly now, which is fantastic. One of the frequent bits of advice indie game developers receive is to try to be present at any expos where their game is being exhibited. I would’ve loved to of course, but being an indie dev, I have an intimiate relationship with the bottom of the barrel.

Obviously the main reason to be present is to be able to see people playing your game, giving feedback, and (hopefully) having a good time. However, with the hiccups we had when setting up, I can find another reason: It’s bloody terrifying not being there in person to nurse your build to a working state!

Anyway… relief. The Leftfield Collection has an exclusive build of Silhouette, which I will modify slightly and upload to the game’s portal. I’ll also add the map editor a little later. If you happen to be at Rezzed, send me any feedback, comments and photos of the event!

Silhouette is going to Rezzed

In some very exciting news, Silhouette has been chosen to be part of the Leftfield Collection at the Rezzed game show, held in Birmingham in June!

The game will be shown along side some really fantastic titles in a huge variety of genres. For the full line up, check out the official announcement:

Rezzed also includes awesome AAA games on show, as well as developer sessions, and a number of other great gaming treats. Sadly, I won’t be able to make it due to being thousands of miles away, but I look forward to getting some feedback about the game.