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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsCoin Crypt - lootmancing roguelike/cardgame, now on Early Access!
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Author Topic: Coin Crypt - lootmancing roguelike/cardgame, now on Early Access!  (Read 10463 times)
Banov
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« on: July 14, 2013, 08:31:51 PM »


Website / Early Access

Devlog / Twitter


This is what I'm working on right now. PC/Mac/Linux game about being a lootmancer battling your way to the bottom of an ancient tomb. You collect coins from treasure chests and defeated enemies, but you also use the coins to battle, and once you use a coin it's gone forever. The game actually plays more like a card game, but fast-paced and fit into a sort of roguelike-like-like structure.

It's probably easier to explain if you just play it.  Wink

I'm absolutely looking for feedback and ideas. I've never made a game like this, and I feel like there's a lot of good ideas that could come from the community. Please let me know what you think!

« Last Edit: November 19, 2013, 10:25:04 AM by Banov » Logged

Andrew Brophy
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« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2013, 09:04:58 PM »

aww yeah! downloading.
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thatbrod
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« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2013, 02:05:04 PM »

It's amazing Shocked

random thoughts:
I got hit with some kinda of upside down heart thing and I had no idea how to get rid of it, so I figure some more detailed messages or descriptions of things like that could get in

I think you should guarantee a fighting coin gets in your hand every time, or make it more obvious when one isn't so that I can know i should switch hands or something, cuz I died a lot just trying to figure out what coins i was holding atm

I like that the game is fast paced but it's hard to be when reading is necessary for the coin details, I think you should try to make more visual-oriented cues on what coins do so players can react quicker and have a better chance at winning

random control thoughts:
right click should be same as back button in menus

random bug:
I tried scrolling w/ the mouse scroll to view coins and I got this error:
Code:
___________________________________________
############################################################################################
FATAL ERROR in
action number 1
of Draw Event
for object oControl:

DoDiv :: Divide by zero
 at gml_Script_gui_mouse_in_region (line -1) - <unknown source line>
############################################################################################
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
stack frame is
gml_Script_gui_mouse_in_region (line 0)
called from - gml_Object_oControl_Draw_64 (line -1) - <unknown source line>
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diegzumillo
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« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2013, 03:08:47 PM »

I liked it! I have a few comments:

I like the graphics. Although they can get a little claustrophobic eventually, I like minimalism.

Holding the mouse button continuously doesn't seem healthy for my mouse or finger. Maybe some other control scheme?

About the gameplay mechanics. I think it's missing something, I played for a while, thought "this is nice", but I didn't keep playing. There was nothing drawing me back in. A story and a sense of progression could help, it's something to keep the player curious about what's deeper and makes him want to explore. also, upgrades and character progression could probably get me addicted to this. It could allow the player to upgrade after dying, which allows him to go even deeper the next run.
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nobody
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« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2013, 05:30:59 PM »

This is so good!

I'm surprised at how compelling I find this, even without much in place to push you to play further beyond a level-score and a collection-completion rate. I have so much else I should be doing, but I'm finding myself playing this more and more instead.

I agree with diegzumillo, above, that it could use an alternate control scheme. I'd probably still be playing right now (instead of writing up these notes) if my wrist hadn't started hurting a bit. There doesn't seem to be any reason not to allow WASD or arrow keys in addition to the mouse-only control, right?

I also think there are a few not-quite-perfectly-fair situations that can crop up, particularly getting hit with a Sap toward the end of a fight, clicking on one of the two counteracting coins in response, but having it not take effect because the opponent has run out of coins or HP before its timer completes. If I had to pick, I think I'd rather have attack coins clicked on just before a fight ends be wasted after the bell than have healing/etc. coins not take effect, assuming the behavior needs to be symmetric.

I admit I haven't really delved into the deck-building aspect much, maybe because I haven't played many deck-building games. (The one exception is when forced to do so by a situation like that from the previous paragraph; so in this sense I see how you could argue the current end-of-fight ruleset encourages a wider set of player behaviors.)

I might as well point out: One little issue with the deck-building screen is that it's really difficult to tell the difference between a coin-type that's fully available and one that's fully held in reserve, since both end up as a single solid color.

I think that's it for now. I'm excited to see where you go with this!
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Banov
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« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2013, 05:49:48 PM »

I got hit with some kinda of upside down heart thing and I had no idea how to get rid of it, so I figure some more detailed messages or descriptions of things like that could get in
That's an example of a status effect--there are lots in the game, and they're sort of the third major type of attack next to dealing damage and healing (or at least that's how I'm trying to build them now). There are certain coins that remove them, but for the most part you just have to live with them and work around them, there's mostly no direct action you can take to remove them. But there's lots of ways you can deal with them--the damage from the upside down heart, for example, can be soaked up by a shield coin, or counteracted with one of the rightside-up green hearts. Anyway. I'll add some information on the status effect on mouseover--thanks!

Quote
I think you should guarantee a fighting coin gets in your hand every time, or make it more obvious when one isn't so that I can know i should switch hands or something, cuz I died a lot just trying to figure out what coins i was holding atm

I like that the game is fast paced but it's hard to be when reading is necessary for the coin details, I think you should try to make more visual-oriented cues on what coins do so players can react quicker and have a better chance at winning
Yeah, I'm entirely sure how to deal with this. Part of me wants to replace key text with pictoral elements, so instead of "deals 10 damage" you'd see a starburst and the number 10. But that might also create more readability issues rather than less. I think if you play enough you'll start to learn what each coin does, and get sort of engrossed in the "language" of the game and not need to read descriptions so much. But I think I could also do more to create a visual language for that. Just, the exact nature of what should be currently eludes me. Will keep pondering.

Holding the mouse button continuously doesn't seem healthy for my mouse or finger. Maybe some other control scheme?
I've been building the game for touch, so a lot of elements are sort of archaic... this included. Making keyboard-optional control would be an easy addition.

Quote
About the gameplay mechanics. I think it's missing something, I played for a while, thought "this is nice", but I didn't keep playing. There was nothing drawing me back in. A story and a sense of progression could help, it's something to keep the player curious about what's deeper and makes him want to explore. also, upgrades and character progression could probably get me addicted to this. It could allow the player to upgrade after dying, which allows him to go even deeper the next run.
This is definitely one of the most important questions to me right now. I plan to include a listing of every coin in the game, so you can see empty slots for coins you haven't yet found, and work in lots of secrets and coins that are exclusive to certain events. More worlds with a defined ending level are also a definite plan here. I'd like to do player upgrades, but the precise nature of those eludes me at the moment.

I thought about giving you options for your starting deck of coins, but that wouldn't really have an impact on the game past the first level. I could also make characters to select with different attributes, binding of isaac style. Run speed, coin cast speed, hand re-draw speed, health, hand size, etc are all things which can already be upgraded in the game, but could also make for interesting variations. I just don't want to steal too directly from BoI. I liked Spelunky's shortcuts too, but, again, I'd also like to find my own voice for this. Permanent character upgrades I don't like, since that creates a straight and narrow linear progression--I definitely like the "upgrades" really being more like "options." It's just what those options ought to be that I'm not settled on yet.

Quote from: nobody
If I had to pick, I think I'd rather have attack coins clicked on just before a fight ends be wasted after the bell than have healing/etc. coins not take effect, assuming the behavior needs to be symmetric.
Interesting idea! I think this would make you a lot more careful about what you do at the end of a fight, but that tension may also feel pretty good... I'll try it out and see.

Quote
I admit I haven't really delved into the deck-building aspect much, maybe because I haven't played many deck-building games. (The one exception is when forced to do so by a situation like that from the previous paragraph; so in this sense I see how you could argue the current end-of-fight ruleset encourages a wider set of player behaviors.)
The "deck-building" I feel is currently the weakest piece of the pie right now... I think it needs a big adjustment in some way. A friend once suggested forcing the player to choose from a pool whenever you defeat an enemy or open a chest instead of automatically getting everything, which is interesting, but I don't think I like interrupting the flow of the game for something like that.

What I'm thinking about doing is making shops a lot more frequent, and add in more opportunities and ways for the player to spend and throw away coins so that you sort of build your deck out of deconstruction. For example, a statue that heals you 5 HP for every $10 you give it, or something. Forcing the player to give away coins makes them make choices about which ones are valuable to them, and I think that could help put an emphasis on deck makeup.
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poe
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« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2013, 06:25:13 PM »

Been playing this and loving every minute of it
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Banov
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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2013, 06:28:59 PM »

I just updated the builds. Keyboard movement is in, as are a few bugfixes and a new song on the title screen. I also made the game slightly easier by making common enemies act a little slower, and shops are more common (trying to test out my hypothesis on deckbuilding by deconstruction).

There's still a lot of ideas here I've yet to try out yet. But do keep 'em coming! Smiley
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poe
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« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2013, 06:42:15 PM »

Maybe consider getting this moved to devlogs since you seem to be updating it? Devlogs gets a lot more love than feedback too Smiley
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nobody
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« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2013, 05:02:22 PM »

I played a bunch more this morning, and may have sort of broken the current state of the game, either by playing too well or by lucking into enough momentum to hit upon what feels like unloseable encounter/level after unloseable encounter/level. Which probably just means I've reached the point at which more content/novelty is needed to support further play? (I left the game running with the computer in sleep mode; I'd guess I'm at at least level 10 or so, and it's felt a bit same-y since level 5? I'd previously never made it past 3.)

But some thoughts separate from that:

As I mentioned before, worrying about health/status at the start of a new fight is the only time I've been really tempted to manage the deck-building. I'm not sure if this is something to bother addressing, but when deck-building for that purpose it becomes a bit tedious to go through and tidy things up whenever new coins come in from a chest or opponent. Maybe a slight indication of which coin-types have just received new numbers? Or the ability to mark an entire coin-type as in-reserve, thus causing new coins of that type to be automatically Saved as well? Or a way to make choices based on larger categories, like, for example, choosing to Save all offense coins and Unsave all Health-restoring coins before going in and manually adding some offensive coins back into the mix?

Obviously adding anything along these lines means trading higher interface complexity for streamlined player activity, so take this with a grain of salt.

On the other hand, at least for my tastes it would probably take some sort of streamlining for me to enjoy playing with the deck-building aspect. As it stands, I find myself not wanting to bother (even, occasionally, when doing so would be clearly beneficial) because it's such a slower, more fiddly activity compared to the rest of the game's pace.

(This holds true for the shop-purchase screens as well: I'm probably missing some telltale signs, but I'm finding it really difficult at a glance to see which coins are actually going to be traded in. Again, being able to make broad choices like "prioritize paying with gold coins and, after that, status coins" might be a boon. Or, from the other side, the ability to quickly zero out the automatically chosen coins so you can choose one-by-one, knowing exactly which you've added. [I confess I haven't rigorously tested: if you raise the amount of one coin-type as chosen payment, does it currently automatically lower another so you're not overpaying?])

I think that covers everything for now. These notes probably contain nothing you don't already know, but I'm enamored enough with the game that I felt it was worth typing these out, however sketchily.
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nobody
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« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2013, 05:26:51 PM »

Oh, one more small thing: I've encountered situations where navigating with the WASD keys has meant not being able to make it through a one-square-wide passage, I believe only ever the sort in which a room's inner chamber and outer wall forms a narrow corner to go around. (Is that at all clear?)

It hasn't happened particularly commonly, and switching momentarily to the mouse has always let me clear the route.
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Banov
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« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2013, 05:37:28 PM »

Updated the game again. There's a lot more done with visual cues for the coin types and effects, plus a few bugfixes, shops are more common, other small small tweaks.

---------------
Maybe consider getting this moved to devlogs since you seem to be updating it? Devlogs gets a lot more love than feedback too Smiley
Yeah, that might be in order...

[deck-building and shop stuff]
Somebody on the public Google doc actually worked out an optimum play method using the save feature that renders the game trivial, so, as I've said before, the deckbuilding definitely needs a major overhaul. My plan right now is two pronged.

1) Increase opportunity to spend coins (shops and other environmental interactables)

2) (more importantly) Take out the ability to "save" coins and change the loot system to incorporate deck options. With my next update what I want to try implementing is having it so that when you open a chest, you get a screen much like a spoil screen, and you have to choose a limited number of coins to take from a possible pool. So you can direct your deck in certain ways--focus on healing, or attacking, etc--but you don't have absolute control over your deck. This would integrate the deckbuilding in a way that every player would have to acknowledge (though I'll also have an auto-fill like the shop).

There are a lot of things that I think I won't know about until I implement this. One thing I'm nervous about is that without the ability to save coins, it will be too easy to get into a situation with being low on HP and having to rely on a random first hand to save you from a dangerous enemy. I may end up doing some tinkering behind the scenes, making healing coins easier to draw when your HP is low. However i play it, I do think this aspect of the game needs a dramatic overhaul of some variety and this is the best idea I have for now.

In the shop, the default coin view shows you how many of each coin is being spent (x0 means none are being used) and the coins are also color-coded, sort of, filling from the bottom as more are used. I thought it's pretty clear?

Quote
h, one more small thing: I've encountered situations where navigating with the WASD keys has meant not being able to make it through a one-square-wide passage, I believe only ever the sort in which a room's inner chamber and outer wall forms a narrow corner to go around. (Is that at all clear?)
SIGH, KEYBOARD CONTROLS ARE DUMB ANYWAY.

Your hitbox doesn't change or anything... the way to clear that is to move diagonally at the corner, I think, and you'll squeeze through. That's basically what you end up doing with the mouse. It's a limitation of WASD that your directional options are pretty limited, and I'm not sure how to correct that, really.
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nobody
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« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2013, 06:08:41 PM »

In the shop, the default coin view shows you how many of each coin is being spent (x0 means none are being used) and the coins are also color-coded, sort of, filling from the bottom as more are used. I thought it's pretty clear?

Oops, totally clear. I think I was just facing some self-induced blindness there, not even looking at those numbers and assuming they were the same count as on the inventory screen. (That most of them are "x0" at any one time makes me feel pretty silly for not having caught on.)
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Banov
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« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2013, 11:40:25 PM »

I just updated the builds with the new loot/deckbuilding mechanics. Check it out, see how you feel about it, maybe!  Grin
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poe
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« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2013, 12:19:37 PM »

I just updated the builds with the new loot/deckbuilding mechanics. Check it out, see how you feel about it, maybe!  Grin

I like the new loot system but I have no idea how the deckbuilding mechanics work anymore.
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« Reply #15 on: July 17, 2013, 12:30:12 PM »

Wow, this sounded like so not my thing but the video is superb. I'll have to make time for it sometime.
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Banov
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« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2013, 01:19:13 PM »

I like the new loot system but I have no idea how the deckbuilding mechanics work anymore.
They're one and the same. You build you deck by selecting your loot. Smiley

I think the game might be easier now, but only because of improved playability I think. Definitely starting to feel the need for more worlds and enemies. I have some more environmental elements I want to put in, but I might hold off on another update till I have a decent chunk of new content.
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poe
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« Reply #17 on: July 17, 2013, 03:13:56 PM »

I like the new loot system but I have no idea how the deckbuilding mechanics work anymore.
They're one and the same. You build you deck by selecting your loot. Smiley

I think the game might be easier now, but only because of improved playability I think. Definitely starting to feel the need for more worlds and enemies. I have some more environmental elements I want to put in, but I might hold off on another update till I have a decent chunk of new content.

Yeah you should totally do updates TF2 style!
I liked the old one better then, since now you have to leave behind precious money / last resorts for life.
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nobody
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« Reply #18 on: July 18, 2013, 03:40:31 AM »

I think I like this new system, though I haven't played enough to feel out its full implications. At a minimum, I'm not bothered at all by the interruption upon reaching each chest; a less patient player can just hit the big green button and clicking above or below the line to add/remove chosen coins is super quick and painless. (I wonder if the purchase screen could have a similar interface? Obviously it presents a lot more coins on-screen to design around, but clicking once to add/remove feels a lot smoother than clicking into a category and then clicking on +/- buttons to do the same.)

On a separate note, this divide-by-zero error popped up upon hitting the purchase button after fiddling with the coin selection interface in the shop:

___________________________________________
############################################################################################
FATAL ERROR in
action number 1
of Draw Event
for object oControl:

DoDiv :: Divide by zero
 at gml_Object_oControl_Draw_64 (line -1) - <unknown source line>
############################################################################################
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Banov
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« Reply #19 on: July 18, 2013, 07:26:53 AM »

@poe the output of every chest is now double what it was before, so you get the same number of coins ultimately; but you get to control the flavor of what coins you get.

(I wonder if the purchase screen could have a similar interface? Obviously it presents a lot more coins on-screen to design around, but clicking once to add/remove feels a lot smoother than clicking into a category and then clicking on +/- buttons to do the same.)
I could split each coin in half vertically, left for - and right for +. But I would like this to also be friendly for phones, and those buttons would probably be too small (and would prevent you from clicking on the coin to get its details, which is the only way to inspect things on touch).

Well... I can always have it adjust based on the OS... I'll squirrel this away for later.  Wink

Quote
_____________________________________
############################################################################################
FATAL ERROR in
action number 1
of Draw Event
for object oControl:

DoDiv :: Divide by zero
 at gml_Object_oControl_Draw_64 (line -1) - <unknown source line>
############################################################################################
Ah yes, line -1... wonderful. I'm glad you got this though, I've seen the game crash on Mac at the same screen and had no idea what the error was. This at least narrows it down.
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