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September 21, 2014, 12:09:46 PM
TIGSource ForumsCommunityCompetitionsOld CompetitionsAdult/Educational CompoMr. Jones' Dream [not NSFW] [FINISHED!]
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Author Topic: Mr. Jones' Dream [not NSFW] [FINISHED!]  (Read 25235 times)
Theta
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« on: July 03, 2009, 09:02:03 AM »

It's finished!

Mr. Jones' Dream
---------------------------





Overview:
Mr. Jones' Dream is about the adult themes presented in this Calvin and Hobbes comic strip.  In the game (a relatively short platform/exploration/adventure game with interesting puzzles and a bit of combat), you play as the businessman Mr. Jones, who is tired of his adult life.  Following an abrupt layoff (times are tough), he goes home, falls asleep, and has a vivid dream that both parallels and contrasts his waking life.

The dream's atmosphere changes gradually (kind of like "Eversion"), and Mr. Jones' own form changes as well.  The game features a variety of themes often present in adult life, including greedy capitalism, pity, violence, religion, and sex (though it is presented in a purely biological sense).  Many of these themes are approached with parody and humor.  In the end, the grey drab of Mr. Jones' adult life can be fought with only one thing:  creativity.

All controls are explained both in-game and in the README.


Screenshots:
Click on the small images to see full-scale images.




More Screenshots:
Title Menu
Grey Area
Adult


Note:
  * The "puzzles" (in a way, the whole game is one big puzzle) can get tricky at times - I encourage people to post hints, though the use of "Spoiler" warnings is at your own discretion.  I can give hints, too.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2009, 04:05:49 AM by Theta » Logged

Theta
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« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2009, 07:38:37 AM »

I have uploaded an early demo release.  Sorry, but there is no audio yet.
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« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2009, 01:27:58 PM »

nice! plays smoothly and i really liked all the different platforming elements...

just wanted to know more about what's going to happen when the green money monsterum gets freed... Smiley
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Theta
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« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2009, 02:19:04 PM »

Glad you liked it!  There will be many elements to come, including original puzzles and possibly a gun (it won't be used much, though - I don't really want this game to focus much on combat).

just wanted to know more about what's going to happen when the green money monsterum gets freed... Smiley

It will run back and forth over a large, green hilly area outside - you will constantly have to watch out for it as you explore this area.
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Alec S.
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« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2009, 10:17:11 PM »

Pretty nice so far!

Also, just thought you should know that if you hold down right to walk, then hold down left while still walking, you'll start to moonwalk.  Although, this is less of a bug and more of a feature.   Wink  However, the walk animation as a whole doesn't seem to match up with the movement of the character.  It should probably be faster or else it looks like the character is sliding everywhere.
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« Reply #5 on: July 06, 2009, 11:57:10 PM »

Is cool. Only problem as I see it is that the controls are a bit a slippery and the camera is a bit too zoomed in, you lose sight of the ground when jumping. Maybe the camera could be a bit slower than the character Y-wise or something, so that you during a jump always can see the level on which you was standing before jumping. Like it is now jumping from platform to platform is a bit annoying because the platforms dissapear beneath you and you have to guess where to land.

Keep it up, I especially like the "None of this gold is for you" room, very dreamlike!
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mirosurabu
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« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2009, 01:26:02 AM »

Oh, I like the jump animation, he looks like an idiot. Smiley

The game did immerse me but I had one problem and it's the air deceleration (inertia).
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Theta
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« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2009, 04:32:02 AM »

Quote
Also, just thought you should know that if you hold down right to walk, then hold down left while still walking, you'll start to moonwalk.
This is my Michael Jackson tribute.  Smiley  No, actually - I will try to fix this.

Quote
Maybe the camera could be a bit slower than the character Y-wise or something, so that you during a jump always can see the level on which you was standing before jumping.
I will try this - it seems like it would make the camera "float" around, which would help with the "dreamlike" atmosphere.

Quote
Only problem as I see it is that the controls are a bit a slippery
Quote
I had one problem and it's the air deceleration (inertia).
I can very easily adjust this stuff.

Thanks for all your comments!
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Theta
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« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2009, 06:17:46 PM »

The game is continuing to progress well.  I might release another demo soon if I can think of a good stopping point, unless people don't mind areas that just end before a void.

Underground, there is a little platform-shooter mini-game, in which you shoot robots for points, which are used to win prizes, two of which are necessary to progress in the game.  You have to find weapons to use in the mini-game, though (they aren't right near the battle arena).

There are also a few more logic puzzles, plus a puzzle that kind of encompasses the entire map.

I might choose to change the title.  Though the dream becomes somewhat absurd, but not in the sense that the adjective "absurdist" is usually used (i.e. when applied to literature).  Rather, I would like to reinforce the themes of the game:  this is a dream that breaks from Mr. Jones' dull, adult life.

Possible title changes:

"Mr. Jones' Adult Dream"
"Mr. Jones' Adulthood Dream" (kind of a tongue-twister)
"Mr. Jones' Adulthood Fantasy" (This would add an interesting irony)

Or, perhaps drop the "Mr. Jones" (his name is introduced in the game, anyway)

"An Adulthood Fantasy"
"An Adulthood Dream"
"An Adult's Dream" (this ones really hit the nail on the head, as far as the game's themes go, and seem to make them more universal)

Or, maybe cut out the adjective, and leave the "Mr. Jones" in:

"Mr. Jones' Dream"  (This might be enough - I feel as though the title "Mr." combined with the common English name "Jones" implies a sort of bland, adulthood, and the dream is destined to break away from this)


What do you all think?
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« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2009, 09:00:06 PM »

I really liked the demo! it's like one of my older ideas: manipulating enemies to do stuff for you. Will we see more of that?
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Theta
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« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2009, 04:17:08 AM »

I really liked the demo! it's like one of my older ideas: manipulating enemies to do stuff for you. Will we see more of that?
There might be one more puzzle like that.  I've been working on a part where you release a giant "Fertilizer" (i.e. a giant sperm cell) and guide it (by holding a vial of acid) toward a giant egg, which you must fertilize (in order to turn into a bird later).  When you hold the acid, the Fertilizer will move towards you.  I might make the Fertilizer kill you if it touches you, so you have to grab the acid, and then run quickly to the egg, and then get on the other side of it, so that the egg absorbs the Fertilizer.  Otherwise, the Fertilizer won't kill you, but still just follow you around when you have the acid.

If the Fertilizer will be an enemy, then it will probably be considerably slower then you.  I don't want this puzzle to be too frantic.

Glad you liked the demo so far.  As for the title - at this point I'm torn between "An Adult's Dream" and "Mr. Jones' Dream."
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Alevice
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« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2009, 06:14:58 AM »

I have no dreams like that!

Anywya, I really like the idea behind the "adult" elements. If pulled right, this might be one of my favorites just because of the concept.
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Theta
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« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2009, 07:04:46 PM »

Anywya, I really like the idea behind the "adult" elements. If pulled right, this might be one of my favorites just because of the concept.
The "adult" elements are subtle and symbolic.  For example:

Filing cabinets:  I feel these are the epitome of the bureaucracy of a bleak adulthood.  Countless adult lives are undoubtedly filled with invoices, tax forms, and other stuff to file.

Gears:  Mr. Jones sees the walls of his dream-office (and some other areas of the game) dotted with intermeshing gears.  They are a symbol of the intermeshing components of his bureaucratic adulthood.  From the beginning of the dream, Mr. Jones acts in a rebellious way (jumping about the dream-office, standing on filing cabinets).  This behavior does not conform to the clockwork behavior of the gears; thus they become objects of death immediately.

Money:  I believe this one is self-explanatory.

Still to be released are:
Clockwork Robots:  These are along the same lines as the gears, however at this point in the dream Mr. Jones is able to fight back.

There are also a few pseudo-suggestive comments and subtle imagery that may cause the game to venture into the mainstream "adult" realm of this competition.  These elements are there for a reason - they reinforce my own interpretation of this "adult" theme.  Sexual themes, just like the adult's working life, can be interpreted in this mechanical manner (Just take a look at Marcel Duchamp's The Bride Stripped Bare By Her Bachelors Even (The Large Glass)).  For example:  the egg and Fertilizer - that is just simple biology; with nothing creative or imaginative. 

I would like to note that the "adulthood" of this game represents an exaggerated, bleak adulthood that may be pertinent to some adults' lives, though not to most.  I am sure, however, that most adults (with the exceptions of perhaps the most avant-garde of artists and musicians) have some sort of mundane element in their lives.  One can only hope to escape the mental cage (imposed by this mundane element) with creativity and imagination.  This is why Mr. Jones' dream will conclude with him playing music.  In fact, creative thinking is necessary for the player to proceed through many parts of the game.

Quote
I have no dreams like that!
Nor have I.  In fact, none of the game's elements are based on things that I have personally dreamt about.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2009, 05:00:14 AM by Theta » Logged

adam a
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« Reply #13 on: July 20, 2009, 04:16:07 AM »

I played the demo, it looks great so far. Really nice characterisation, especially the money monster. The little things on the wall are cool too, "None of this gold is for you" was great.

I thought the jumping was a little difficult to get right, I died several times trying to free the monster because I jumped too far and went right over the platform above and he came and got me before I could get out of the way. Also the save points were a bit confusing at first, a little text saying you've saved your progress or something and maybe the tv static isn't necessary just when saving, but I like it as an effect when you die.

Looking forward to more.
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Theta
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« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2009, 04:28:53 AM »

Quote
I played the demo, it looks great so far. Really nice characterisation, especially the money monster. The little things on the wall are cool too, "None of this gold is for you" was great.
Glad you liked these elements - there will be much more of this later in the game.  Those things on the walls are supposed to be megaphones, or speakers of some sort.  I suppose it isn't obvious in that few pixels.

Quote
I thought the jumping was a little difficult to get right, I died several times trying to free the monster because I jumped too far and went right over the platform above and he came and got me before I could get out of the way. Also the save points were a bit confusing at first, a little text saying you've saved your progress or something and maybe the tv static isn't necessary just when saving, but I like it as an effect when you die.

Looking forward to more.
The air and ground friction has been adjusted since the release of this demo. 

As for the saving system - I don't think I have enough time to custom-make a save system.  I am currently using GM's default system, which means that when you load a game, it retains the decaying static from where you originally saved it.  I can't think of any way to not have the static when you originally save the game, but only have it when you load the game.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2009, 05:16:27 AM by Theta » Logged

adam a
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« Reply #15 on: July 21, 2009, 07:45:12 AM »

As for the saving system - I don't think I have enough time to custom-make a save system.  I am currently using GM's default system, which means that when you load a game, it retains the decaying static from where you originally saved it.  I can't think of any way to not have the static when you originally save the game, but only have it when you load the game.

Fair enough, I'm not familiar with GM. I think it was more just it took me a while to work out what was happening so even if some small text came up telling you you'd saved your progress it would make it less confusing when you first play.
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Theta
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« Reply #16 on: July 21, 2009, 08:14:41 AM »

Fair enough, I'm not familiar with GM. I think it was more just it took me a while to work out what was happening so even if some small text came up telling you you'd saved your progress it would make it less confusing when you first play.
I may put in a "Game Saved" text when you save, if it doesn't clutter stuff up.
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Theta
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« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2009, 01:53:25 PM »

Just to let everyone know, I am almost finished the actual story-based aspects of the game.  Now it is time to add all that extra stuff (like sound effects, music, menus, etc.).
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« Reply #18 on: July 22, 2009, 01:56:19 PM »

ENVY  Cry

I look forward to your endeavor.
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I'd write a devlog about my current game, but I'm too busy making it.
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« Reply #19 on: July 24, 2009, 07:45:43 PM »

Well, it's finished now, and I must say I'm pleased with how it turned out.  I will be uploading the game within the next couple of days, after I get everything together and do some final testing.

Some of the later areas of the game:


Outside, with the Pigs on the Wing:


Kicking some robot a**:


The Palace Gate:

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