Hello everybody, and welcome to this week's game dev log on Negative World, the game where jumps are limited. Is it polished yet? I hope it is. Let’s get into it.
Got intro 1 finished, it starts with a zoom in shot and eventually stops on the protagonists of the game. Keeping the pixel at consistent sizes while zooming in is a zen like, time consuming process. The only new part is the zoom in, the zoom out I’ve had for awhile now. The cutscene is just meant to establish the setting and give players something to expect as the game progresses. Moving on to polish.
Big lesson number one. Get, get, get, GEEEET controller support in as soon as development starts. It’ll be merciful on the code architecture. Let an asset do the work instead of wrestling with the input manager, since controller mapping for Windows and Mac are different, yet Linux is the same as window and I’m off topic a bit. Point is the controller support beast has been slain for now (knock on wood). Moving on to big lesson number two this week.
Don’t expect players to figure out how the game works (especially if there’s no text or dialogue). When showing the game to the public for the first time, most played it like a speedrunning platformer, didn't notice the jump icons above the players head, leading to confusion when the math platforms came into play. So level 1-1, 1-2, and 1-3 have been overhauled. Try saying the sentence 3 times as fast. They introduce and make the unnoticed noticed. 1-1 is just a ascending stair level to show that numbers are decreasing as the player climbs up. 1-2 requires you to learn the math platforms. First part teaches that you can jump through the platform (some people confused on if it was a death spike or not). The player can’t move on until they get how the division works, and can’t just speedrun through it. And 1-3 is just an iteration on the math elements just so that the player knows.
Reset the icons back to numbers to be more consistent. This was a tough backtrack to consider. People who did figure out the limited jumping mechanic loved the icons, but to be consistent that would require the platforms have said icons. And for levels like 2-7 (get image) it runs the risk of information overload. So now they’re now numbers. Works just as well.
Small fixes (mostly physics) like not having the player sticking to wall, the greater and less than signs are replaced their equal to counterparts. stopping the player triggering sfx while the cutscenes are playing because the game is still happening as the cutscenes are playing, making the player invulnerable so that the player doesn’t kill themselves as the cutscene’s playing.
With all of that, I think it’s ready for SXSW. Thank you IGDA for hosting Negative World. It’ll be at the IGDA booth on the 15th and 16th 1:45 pm to 4pm. If you make, feel free to say hi. That’ll be it for this week, as usual let me know if you have any questions or feedback. Take care of yourselves and have a good week.