Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!

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OldSoulCyborg
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PostLoot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Wed Mar 18, 2015 10:11 pm

I'm looking for some feedback on a game I've been making for the past few months. It's sort of a blend of some of my favorite 2D platformers; N, Super Meat Boy, other games of a similar nature.

I spent weeks tweaking the controls to the point where I'm not sure what needs improving, so any feedback that you might have for the controls specifically would be very welcome.

Download v. 0.1
Download v. 0.1.1
Download v. 0.1.2
Download v. 0.1.2b
(Windows only for now)

Image

Image

Image



Image

Currently the game only has keyboard controls, but they're very simple:
Left and right arrow keys to move.
Z to jump.

You can hit Esc at the Chapter select screen to access the menu where you can rebind the controls to your liking and make the game fullscreen.

Aside from the controls I'm also looking for feedback on the overall structure of the game (the way the levels are split up into chapters, the number of levels per chapter, that sort of thing).
I'm open to feedback for any part of the game though, especially if it's something you feel strongly about.

Last edited by OldSoulCyborg on Sun Apr 12, 2015 7:52 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Octoroc
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Octoroc » Wed Mar 18, 2015 10:40 pm

Well done for making something. What did you make it with?

I'll try and check it out tomorrow.

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OldSoulCyborg
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Wed Mar 18, 2015 10:46 pm

I'm making it in GameMaker.

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Dig Dug
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Dig Dug » Thu Mar 19, 2015 12:52 am

Damn, looks a hell of a lot better than my GameMaker project. How long have you been working on it?

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OldSoulCyborg
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Thu Mar 19, 2015 8:03 am

I've been working on it since September of last year, but I based it on a game I started and abandoned a few years ago.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Starquake » Thu Mar 19, 2015 12:52 pm

Great work OldSoul, The screens and video looks good and the character movement looks quick and flowing to me :)

It seems a simple thing, but as you well know it really isn't easy to get game controls flowing right and the balance and progression of the gameplay working.

I think a good gauge is if someone doesn't notice the controls they are using - they are just "playing" the game (if you know what I mean). If a player has to look at what they are pressing or keep having to remember what key presses or sequences to use then the controls aren't tuned right.

I think that's really important especially in the type of game your are developing.

One minor thing on your status display, I think this might look a little cleaner: (it's just a design choice though, you may disagree with me)

...for Loot and Score, put leading zeros on the number (a bit like this)...
https://nintendo8bit.files.wordpress.com/2012/10/mario1.jpg

...for lives, it would be nice if you could display your little character up there next to the amount of lives e.g. <image> x 2


** Having said all that, unfortunately I can't *play test* the game as I use a macbook not PC - if I get a chance of using a PC I'll try and download it though.

Good look with it and keep the passion through the development parts that feel like drudgery!

Maker of Hyper Sentinel published by Huey Games
http://www.hypersentinel.com

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OldSoulCyborg
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Thu Mar 19, 2015 5:58 pm

Now that's feedback. Thank you!
Shame you can't play it (although... what about Wine? Or is that Linux only?) I'd like to make a version for Mac, but I sadly don't have ready access to a Mac.

I'll try out leading zeroes for Loot and Score, see if I like it.
And do you mean an image of the character instead of the 'Lives' text? Yeah, that's probably a good idea.


The thing you said about controls is 100% correct. Sounds like you're talking from experience.

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Rog
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Rog » Thu Mar 19, 2015 6:26 pm

Apart from obvious technical stuff, that isn't any concern for a test game, I was impressed for a first game. The jumping felt a little too instant to me though. When walljumping I would expect a slightly larger window to switch directions

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Starquake » Thu Mar 19, 2015 7:43 pm

OldSoulCyborg wrote:Now that's feedback. Thank you!
Shame you can't play it (although... what about Wine? Or is that Linux only?) I'd like to make a version for Mac, but I sadly don't have ready access to a Mac.

I'll try out leading zeroes for Loot and Score, see if I like it.
And do you mean an image of the character instead of the 'Lives' text? Yeah, that's probably a good idea.


The thing you said about controls is 100% correct. Sounds like you're talking from experience.


Yep try dropping 'Lives' and replace with an image (obviously will have to be scaled up a little to fit the right size). If it doesn't look right, then drop the colon after the word Lives - so it is consistent with Loot and Score which don't have one.

Yeah I'm a developer by profession and used to write some video games many years ago (Atari ST). I'm actually writing my first iOS game at the moment. I'll unveil it here on GRcade it the next month or so. Feel free to follow me on my twitter account below, which I've just recently set up, if you're interested in following a fellow indie game dev and coder.

Maker of Hyper Sentinel published by Huey Games
http://www.hypersentinel.com

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Thu Mar 19, 2015 7:54 pm

When walljumping I would expect a slightly larger window to switch directions


The opposite is actually something I worked very hard to achieve (being able to effect a lot of change on your direction while in the air).

It facilitates a lot of core aspects of the game that rely on the ridiculous amount of air control it grants you.
I'm too close to the game though to really see its faults (especially in the controls), and if it feels "off" to people then I probably have to tweak them.

It may also be - and I feel like I go through this with a lot of games that I play, especially platformers - that you just need to adjust to the specific nuances of the controls.
But for now I've tweaked the controls a bit. You now have 8 frames after jumping from a wall during which the controls are a little less tight. It's not a huge change, but there's just too much of the game invested in the air control for me to be comfortable making it a big change.

Last edited by OldSoulCyborg on Fri Mar 20, 2015 12:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Andrew Mills » Thu Mar 19, 2015 8:31 pm

Try walljumping in Super Metroid. The 'reaction frames' available on that are pretty much perfect.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Thu Mar 19, 2015 9:14 pm

Andrew Mills wrote:Try walljumping in Super Metroid. The 'reaction frames' available on that are pretty much perfect.


The walljumping in my game is vastly different to Super Metroid. It's more like Super Meat Boy in that regard.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Tue Mar 24, 2015 12:04 am

New version is up:
Download v. 0.1.1

Unfortunately this version is incompatible with the save file from version 0.1 so if you played that you'll have to start over.

Mostly changes to the chapter selection menu but they're really good ones, I promise. If you felt the game was a little pointless before, a little aimless even, like you didn't know how long until you got where you were going and you didn't even know where you were going, well, that shouldn't be a problem any more.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Slayerx » Tue Mar 24, 2015 6:53 am

I'll give this a try tonight really like what I played of the old build.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by romeo G. Detlev Jr. » Thu Mar 26, 2015 11:16 pm

OldSoulCyborg wrote:New version is up:
Download v. 0.1.1

Unfortunately this version is incompatible with the save file from version 0.1 so if you played that you'll have to start over.

Mostly changes to the chapter selection menu but they're really good ones, I promise. If you felt the game was a little pointless before, a little aimless even, like you didn't know how long until you got where you were going and you didn't even know where you were going, well, that shouldn't be a problem any more.


So I just DL'd this and I can't get it to work. The window opens just fine but it remains on the second screen (the first being the "Made with GameMaker" screen) stating Chapter 1 $0 Total Score: $0 (Extra life for every 10k). The screen can't be made larger, smaller, or maximised/minimised, and the mouse cursor doesn't display on my monitor when I hover over the window. Pressing buttons on my keyboard doesn't seem to do anything save the left and right keys, which just create a beeping noise. Any ideas?

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Thu Mar 26, 2015 11:36 pm

Sorry, should have put some text on screen telling you what key to press to confirm. I did in the OP but it really should be in the game as well. It's Z. Alternatively you could press Esc to find the 'Rebind keys' menu to set the jump/confirm button to whatever you prefer.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Octoroc » Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:39 am

OldSoulCyborg wrote:
Andrew Mills wrote:Try walljumping in Super Metroid. The 'reaction frames' available on that are pretty much perfect.


The walljumping in my game is vastly different to Super Metroid. It's more like Super Meat Boy in that regard.


Sorry for taking so long to get round to this.

I haven't played Super Meat Boy or N so I also found the controls a bit counter intuitive at first- for example I'd expect pressing the direction key towards the wall to slow my descent rather than climb it.

I got used to it though and I rather enjoyed it. If I was to suggest anything, I'd like to slide down walls a little quicker. Obviously there are cosmetic changes that need to be made, but it's a work in progress and nailing the gameplay is where the real craft is. There comes a point where you can become obsessed with tweaking though, watch out for that.

My advice would be to work on jazzing up presentation for a week or so without playing the game, do boring stuff like implementing a full screen mode and then go back to playing it so it seems fresh again. It'll help you stay objective.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by romeo G. Detlev Jr. » Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:53 am

OldSoulCyborg wrote:Sorry, should have put some text on screen telling you what key to press to confirm. I did in the OP but it really should be in the game as well. It's Z. Alternatively you could press Esc to find the 'Rebind keys' menu to set the jump/confirm button to whatever you prefer.


Aye, that made it work! Cheers!

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by OldSoulCyborg » Fri Mar 27, 2015 2:34 pm

One question for the people who've played the game: Have you worked out what the 4 secondary goals in each chapter are?

I don't want to simply tell players what the requirements are, but I also don't want to be too subtle about it because then no one will figure it out.
Or maybe you didn't even realize there were any goals other than beating the chapter with as high a score as possible?

Octoroc wrote:If I was to suggest anything, I'd like to slide down walls a little quicker.

For right now that's kind of impossible because of the low resolution. The speed at which you slide down walls is currently 1 pixel/frame. If I increase that to 2 pixels/frame then it's too fast, and if it's somewhere inbetween it looks janky because some frames you move 1 pixel and some frames you move 2 pixels.
I'm planning to increase the resolution I render the game at up to 1920x1080 (it's currently 640x360) at some point and then I'll be able to play around with stuff like that a lot more, but that's kind of a big change that I'm not quite ready for.

Octoroc wrote:My advice would be to work on jazzing up presentation for a week or so without playing the game, do boring stuff like implementing a full screen mode and then go back to playing it so it seems fresh again. It'll help you stay objective.

There already is a fullscreen mode in the game (Alt+Enter, and also in the options if you press Escape), but I agree that the game needs more and better presentation. Right now I'm struggling to think of what exactly is needed, but I think I just need to fire up Super Meat Boy and some other games and see how everything is laid out in menus and during gameplay, what kind of information is being given to the player that's missing in my game, the feedback, etc. I've just been going by feel this whole time and I'm starting to realize there's a lot of stuff I need to add before it's a "real" game, and I don't know what half of that stuff even is.

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PostRe: Loot Rush, a twitch 2D platformer that I'm making - Need feedback!
by Octoroc » Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:52 pm

Did I find a secret (purple) block or was that a bug?

I notice there are four boxes at the end of each chapter, one always seems to have '1' in it. Is that for collecting everything?

The next two boxes are always blank and the final one has some kind of fraction in it.

It's all rather opaque. I have no idea how well I'm doing. Some kind of level rank (e.g. A-E or stars) would be good. I'd also prefer a summary after each level rather than at the end of the chapter.

Other miscellaneous stuff that may or may not be intentional:
I started one level and left no trail until I picked something up.
The score multiplier doesn't seem to start decaying until I've picked something up.
There seems to be a big difficulty spike in chapter 7.

Oh, and you should be able to select menu items by pressing 'Enter'


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