So we have a month left to go for Beta. Are we gonna make it?????
No, not really.
But it’s not too bad. The Grid view is ready; that’s a very important 30% of the gameplay done. Sushil made a pretty smooth and intuitive mechanic to place the “Bridges”. I’m calling it that in place of “Placeable Tiles” because of, well, obvious reasons. Tap on the screen to place the tile and it flies into place from the stack at the bottom, and tap it again to remove it. I’ve gone through two iterations of the art for the tiles, and the new one looks pretty OK for a Beta build.
This is the first level; the shape of a question mark was not intentional, in case anyone was wondering.
The awesome news is that we have a new team member; S is a programmer whom I worked with briefly while he was doing the Diploma program at Backstage Pass.
He’s got a full time job but takes out a few hours after work every day to work on PumP. It’s awesome as he has three years of experience with Unity and is a great guy to work with.
I’ve been creating the game world and putting together levels, besides lots else. I realize with some trepidation that this is quite an ambitious project; because of the fact that the budget for the game production is $0, I will have to make pretty much all the art. To this end, I have started making and integrating quite a few environment assets.
The idea is to figure out how it looks in-game; it’s going to be a circular process for making and integrating the art. Make it, put it in, see how it looks, and change the gameplay to suit the art and make art that suits the gameplay.
Here are a few assets:
Also, I have here a mockup of the puzzle phase of the game; I call it the “Grid View”. I had put it together in Photoshop to kinda get an idea of what the view would look like.
Initially, the idea was to just have one lane per block/cell, that was placed like a cross in the middle. That does not show here, but there’s only one egg per cell and it’s in the middle. I was pretty proud of this mockup; took me a day or more of hand-painting. I’m not much of an artist, but I really love to paint assets digitally.
At some point, this changed at A’s advice to a cell with a “Hash” pattern of paths, like this later mockup of a level:
THE PRIME COLLECTIBLE, A.K.A THE KEY!!
It’s at this point that I have now introduced a new element into the gameplay; the ‘Prime collectible’. It’s an object that needs to be picked up before the player can complete the level. The eggs are optional; the player would get a reward for picking them all up, but she could progress to the next level even if she missed one. I’m aiming to introduce some serious replay ability into the game; this device is geared towards that.
The reason for introducing the prime collectible is that I realized the player would happily go straight to the end block/objective without picking up a single egg and achieve the time objective. I had to introduce an element that she would HAVE to run around the grid to collect; now I had to place it wisely in a position with some separation from the end block.