Interesting, but could use some tweaks.
As a whole, this screams "engine test" to me. The game was fun as a small time-killer, but it wasn't an entirely satisfying experience. From the very beginning, the game's pacing was too slow. I would have liked to not do the chore for the man, and just have to kill a rat or find a coin to get a weapon. It's just more engaging.
From a graphical standpoint, the game was done very well. I was reminded of the original Pokemon games, so you won a ton of points with me for that. The monochromatic style was nice, refreshing even, but some of the designs were too plain. Maybe a couple more kinds of trees?
Overall, the game was decent, but it could have been a lot more fun. The combat system needs to be fleshed out a little more, for a real classic RPG experience.
Review Request Club
Thank you for your review!
Hell, I laughed.
Ostriches are animals that bother me. They're these giant, flightless, and kind of stupid birds that can't fly. They seem like the perfect protagonist for an oddball game, and it was a good choice for this production.
The art across the entire game was really excellent. The animation cycles for the ostrich were fluid, and I didn't see any choking across the other animations of the game. The ice walls didn't look fantastic, but they did the job. Conversely, the candy canes, while being hilarious, were very well-drawn, and fit the game well.
Precise controls are essential in a game like this. I'm happy to report that the response time was lightning fast, and I didn't have any "OH MY GOD THIS GAME IS CHEATING" moments. It made the game a lot of fun to replay.
This game should have had much more success than it got, but it's plagued by a couple of annoying traits. Certainly, getting stuck in a level where you can't jump or escape is bothersome. I almost ragequit after it happened a couple times in a row.
The game looks really cool. I'm generally pretty critical on pixel art, but you pulled it off artfully. The game looks polished; there's not much excess, and I have to compliment you on color choice; it helped the mood a little.
I think if you go back and have a look at level design, you'll end up with a much better product. I love the concept of the game, and the general design is almost admirable, but the end-result just falls a bit flat.
Plagued by excess.
This could have been another Mario Kart. This could have been classic. All the elements are there: interesting, adorable graphics, unique, pick-up-and-play style, and challenging gameplay. However, it's far from the allure of Mario Kart. I gave this game an hour and a half of my time, and I'm sure I'll give it more, but playing it is a bittersweet experience. For every joyous triumph I manage in gameplay, there seem to be multitudes of painful stylistic choices to slog through.
There's simply too much going on in the game at once. For something that's paced so fast, the game requires an amount of skill and practice to a degree where the game is an exercise, and no longer fun. I still haven't gotten a gold star on the first boss challenge. It's because no matter how fast I might be going, a bullet catches me, or a mine flies out of seemingly nowhere at a speed that I simply cannot avoid.
An absolutely unwieldy amount happens on screen during a race. There are fairly noticeable patterns in some areas, but that doesn't make them manageable. Between the apples that flip you upside down, throwing you into a mine if you're not spot on, and the portals that really don't do much at all other than disorient the player, the player is forced through the level like a confused sheep in a slaughterhouse, not knowing what pain could possibly be next.
Don't get me wrong, the game is fun in many spots, like the mine avoidance challenges, but the whole presentation just doesn't seem to care enough for the player. This may sound strange, but the dimensions of the game aren't big enough. A lot more reaction time is required for any reasonable amount of casual enjoyable gaming, so it needs to be wider. Regarding that, I found the flipping ability to be meaningless; not even once was I able to use that to my advantage (but that's just me, so I didn't take any points for that). I may have this game pegged wrong, but I don't think it's strictly for hardcore players, and there should be just a few more concessions to casual gaming.
The enemies shooting you in the back are rage-inducing. Please, please, please put some kind of indicator showing where the projectiles are coming from. They're on screen for no more than a second before they've blown up in the player's face or just gone. Avoiding that and the mines while going a million kilometers an hour while simultaneously trying to catch rings and balance the effects of the portals and apples is nearly impossible. Catching keys on the first go around, even by chance, is completely out of the question.
Excess is really what kills the game. The portals put me over the edge. Constantly, I was asking "Why are those even there? They're completely useless!" and while they might not be completely useless, they're just another distraction in an area where the player could do with some rings or just a couple seconds of slightly more relaxed coasting.
Another mechanic I didn't understand was the start boost. This game shouldn't put the beginning of the race (which can sometimes determine who wins or loses) solely into reflexes. Keep the boost if it's really integral, but don't start a loss at zero; it's just depressing to start of a race so slow as the enemy cruises along uninhibited.
The Medals and custom levels are a nice touch, though. They do add some replay value. Collecting keys is kind of cool, but it takes a lot of dedication, and I don't know if it matches the payoff.
I added this game to my Favorites because I want to see how it progresses. There's an untold amount to improve on, but there's a very pretty little something right now. Strip away the fat; you've already got the bows tied on and it doesn't need to look any better. I'll be very excited to see an update.
How can I not respond to such a detailed, constructive review. Overall I totally agree with you. All the faults you pointed out relate back to poor consideration of level design. Although I wasn't the designer (and not being entirely sure how differently Sebastien will respond), I believe excessive apples and portals are for showing off how fast the game engine can run. Your feedback made me realise the game is fine in terms of graphics and tech, yet something is missing - we forgot to centre the experience around the player.
I like your idea having an indicator for boss weapons, or even what obstacles are approaching ahead. Perhaps in the future if it ever happens, we may release an improved sequel with those features.
Thanks for the review. It was a pleasure to read.
Unique, but incredibly rough.
When I saw how the game is laid out, I thought to myself "How is this going to be any fun?" To my great surprise, this solo pong mechanic is actually a decent spin on one of the oldest video games around. Kind of sad that I'm playing pong by myself, but that's beside the point.
This game is riddled with odd stylistic choices. Why did you choose to have an "Are you ready?" screen. I get it, you might have thought it was funny, but it just comes off as a little unprofessional. Work those kinds of jokes into other parts of the game, like maybe the ball turns into an Angry Faic (from the BBS) if you replay when you lose.
Green text also looked kind of odd on the red background. It clashed too much and was generally unappealing. Consider putting the text in a colored box with a low Alpha value; it'll improve contrast and readability.
You have a very interesting concept. Work on presentation a lot more and have your friends take a look at it before you submit. Then you'll have a winner on your hands.
"Try again... DAMN IT! Again..."
There are a lot of similarities to Meat Boy in this game, and that's a huge compliment. The platforming is intense. At some points, the challenge made me just stop, open up a new tab, browse some news, and come back. I couldn't just sit through and take it.
You hit an artful balance between diabolical difficulty and smoothness in gaming. The near-instant respawning method is brilliant. I can't tell you how much "Game Over" screens bother me. The only thing annoying about this game is how often I died, and that's intentional on the creators' part. Excellent job in that aspect.
I did take issue with some of the visual details. The fonts present after a level ends that detail score and stuff were too vanilla. It screamed "Arial" to me, and it just doesn't meet the level of professionalism that the rest of the game glowed with. Consider a more pixelated font.
Also, I know you were probably working with file size constraints, but another musical track wouldn't have killed you. What is playing works very well with the mood, however. Fortifying the game with just one more track really would have created an engrossing experience.
Other than that, the game was a blast. I'm going to try to see if I can make any more progress now.
Just a couple steps from a classic.
Damn, is this game cool. I've never seen anything like it. With the advent of motion gaming, it's nice to see that the PC is at least getting a small taste of the action. I never thought I'd be able to look down a virtual hallway and shoot targets by just moving around with my mouse. Amazing, seriously!
There are just a couple concerns I have with this game, but they all have a common denominator: the game isn't involving enough. Surely, this wasn't meant to be the ultimate project for this engine, but more of a test. It's no secret that it passed with flying colors, but with a couple tweaks you'd have an insanely addictive game on your hands.
Music, music, music. In my opinion, there are few things that make or break a game like music. If it's obnoxious, nobody will want to play, but if it complements the game, then that's when the package is complete. Consider some slick electronic sounding music, which I think would work really well here. Add moving targets as a late-game challenge. Prominently feature them once the player has gotten proficient with the game.
Maybe even provide a scoring table. I'd love to compete with friends in this game. I'm sure we'd be posting Facebook updates saying who has usurped the other as holder of the high score. 3D gaming so accessible is something that writes press for itself, and you could really drive traffic by marketing to the Facebook addicted teen crowd.
This game is built on one of the coolest innovations I've seen in a while. Screw Kinect; I'm playing with this today.
Thank you. I will you should look for the next update and it should have all you asked for.
Please watch the language used in your comments. Thank you.
Weak and bugged.
There's really not much of a game here; it looks more like an engine. To give it more of an interactive feel, give the player something to do. The score doesn't really do anything but flicker back and forth, so there's no real goal. I literally moved my ship beyond where the meteors could hit it and parked there, which would make the game way too easy if it really worked.
What you need to do is create an atmosphere. Why are there meteors in front of a brick wall? Set it in space or some kind of apocalyptic area where a meteor shower is ending humanity (or whatever). Throw some fire on the boulders; randomize their speed more. They need to present more of a challenge to the player. It's not unusual in this game to just wait in the exact same spot with nothing hitting you.
In addition to changing the background, change the dynamic of the game. Have the background scroll along and add different obstacles. I'm sure there are a couple sublime space backgrounds available in the Art Portal; definitely look around and then see if the artist will let you use it.
Add to that atmosphere with some background music. The Audio Portal's a massive resource. I think some thumping, fast-paced techno would work very well for a piece like this. Also maybe randomize your sound effects. Not every boulder explosion should sound the same, but that's really a secondary concern.
Also, I'm sure you've heard enough about glitches, but I'll just list the ones that bothered me the most. When I shot stuff, sometimes pieces of it stayed on screen. At one point, there was this thing that looked like a card surrounded by black dots that just stayed on the screen when a boulder collided with my ship. That's a serious problem. You can't have clutter in a game where you need to avoid obstacles that fly around everywhere.
Take the advice that the rest of the Review Request Club and I gave you, and you'll be well on your way to making a game that stands up to other side-scrollers and avoidance games. However, to really make an impression, you'll need to innovate. Think about something that's never been done; don't be afraid to try to make a game you once thought impossible.
Argh. My head's going to explode.
This game is infuriating. Seriously. I'm not a huge fan of games like this, but I have to give you a lot of credit for putting it all together so nicely. The whole package screams of polish. Representative of the unorganized, scattered thinking that this game requires, the static background is very fitting; The chilled music as the theme works really well with the mood.
Gameplay, however, is a different story. Like I said, this kind of game is really not my bag. I gave the games a shot, and I was stumped or plain beaten by all of them. I won't dock any points from you for my ineptitude as a player though; that'd be a dick move. What I'm docking you for is a lack of expanse in the game. You were inspired by OCD+; in that, I think you should have tried to surpass it. A ton of games, maybe even a lot of interactivity between them, as in one flowing into another or finding a code in one that makes another a lot easier-- just spitballing here.
Three games just wasn't enough variety for me, even though I sucked at all of them. It felt like you didn't take enough artistic risks. I give you the most credit for "Radio," though, because the design was ingenious. "0111..." was no creative stretch to make, I'm sure, but it suited the game because it was incredibly frustrating. "Trap Trap" was kind of nuts. I was really lost for a while, but that's just a sign you did well.
All in all, there's a ton of room for you to improve. Sit down and think about how to confuse people, but give them just enough to get by. Give the game to some of your buddies beforehand and see if they can figure the new tasks out without help. If they can't tone it down; if they do it too quickly, take it up a notch until they really have to work at it, because that's the kind of experience one tries to achieve in a game like this.
You scored major points for style and presentation; which I really couldn't improve on. There were a couple grammatical mistakes, but probably nothing that would bother most people. I doubt the average audience member would even notice. PM me if you want to discuss it. Really, the only thing that you could improve on is the quality of the gaming experience. Make the viewer say "Wow!" Make them feel that their hard spent time working on the game was well worth it. Make them want to come back. When you do that, you're going to have a blockbuster of a game.
Expansive, Involving, and Cute!
Wow. RPGs have become so commonplace in the gaming world; Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Pokemon, Zelda, ad finitum. How you managed to come up with an honestly fresh look at the genre is beyond my understanding, but I'm seriously pleased that you did.
Upon first looking at the game, I smiled. There's something to be said about the bright, bubbly graphics in days of hyper-realism and gore. Don't get me wrong, I bought Modern Warfare 2 for just those reasons, but this game, a polar opposite of the bestsellers, looked just as great to me as the blades on MW2's AC-130.
Is the game childish? I don't think so. Sure, it recalls a certain style of platforming with steady, predictable progression, and the learning curve isn't much to handle, but that works well. THe game is fun! It's great to be able to play a game over and over, working on the same challenges, just because it's not entirely frustrating.
In that, I think you struck the perfect balance between difficulty and style. The uber-cute voice acting just would not have stuck in other Flash games. Honestly, I haven't heard sound effects like that since I was playing Reader Rabbit games on my PC 12 years ago. It was an excellent artistic decision to move in that direction, a happier, more carefree type.
The gameplay is still absolutely solid. The boss fights were challenging, but never too evil; the puzzles likewise took a bit of thinking but were satisfying to finish. It shows that you put two years of work into this game. There's a depth and polish to it that you just don't see in professional projects pushed out in a month. Your hard work really payed off. I can't criticize a single element of the game, so I award you ten stars.
For that review you get a response!
Thanks a lot, some days I wonder whether anyone really appreciates the little details and extra polish that separates this from the flood of money-grubbing quickly produced games out there.
Makes me feel good to know that SOMEONE "got" it...I hope you enjoy the sequel as much...just have to wait...another...2....years....
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