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TIGSource ForumsCommunityJams & EventsCompetitionsOld CompetitionsCommonplace BookLost in Eldritch [Finished] -- Now with map editor!
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Author Topic: Lost in Eldritch [Finished] -- Now with map editor!  (Read 37512 times)
KniteBlargh
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« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2008, 11:51:31 AM »

Man, this looks so great, but I have the same problem with the white text screens, and not only that, but the colours in general are completely screwed up for me. Like, every colour of the rainbow is speckled all over the place... Cry Do I need to run it as a Windows 95/98 program or something?
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Bob le Moche
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« Reply #21 on: December 02, 2008, 10:43:16 AM »

I'm back, and I just uploaded a version which should have fixed the white screen problem people were having. I also tweaked the jumping puzzle that was a bit too frustrating.

Download: http://jax.sus.mcgill.ca/~jdespl/linkto/Eldritch.zip

Please tell me if you encounter any more bugs!
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Annabelle Kennedy
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« Reply #22 on: December 02, 2008, 11:14:25 AM »

By the way, may I ask what this was made with? The whole "one huge room" thing, I wonder whether MMF2 or GM can handle it, or whether it was hand-coded. And if GM or MMF2  can handle it, how do you do it?

I've coded the whole engine from scratch C++/OpenGL from for this competition.
These screenshots are in-game. I have the game engine and editor done, as well as some tiles, and the main character is fully animated, but I don't have a game yet Sad

with that said...


i really liked this!  the difficult platforming was sort of a gameplay mechanic.. i liked it wish it had sound though! great animations! 
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Bob le Moche
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« Reply #23 on: December 02, 2008, 11:32:22 AM »

A bit more detail about the bug:
The text screens were stored in a single large texture in the video card memory. Apparently that texture was above the maximum size on some cards, so I split it into several smaller ones.
KniteBlargh: Please tell me if your problem with funky colors has been fixed! I'm seriously hoping it's a side effect of the other bug because I have no idea what could cause it...

Increpare: Yes, I had something kind of like your idea that I didn't get time to put in (If I continue to work on this I will definitely add it):
While running the jumping would work as it does now. While standing still holding the jump button would make you charge your jump, a bit like crouching did in mario 2 (but faster and more gradual). If you hold a direction while charging the jump then you'd jump directly in that direction. What do you think? (Melly - Skidding was also on my todo list  Wink)
Another thing I was planning on was climbing on ladders: this would have reduced the necessity of boring vertical zig-zag jumping sessions I think, and allowed me to put more emphasis on horizontal jumps.

cactus: Thanks! I forgot to mention your games, but they were definitely a source of awesome inspiration for me!  

NaYoN: This is all hand-coded in C++/Opengl with GLFW I'm afraid. I have no experience with GM or MMF2, but I used to make games on one of the first versions of "The Games Factory". You could get around the scene size limitations by having the "scene" be only as large as the screen, and the scenery actually be active objects moving across it when the camera would, being created and destroyed at the edges according to a "map" you predefine. Does that make sense in GM/MMF2?
« Last Edit: January 29, 2009, 09:31:59 PM by Bob le Moche » Logged
nayon
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« Reply #24 on: December 02, 2008, 01:00:34 PM »

NaYoN: This is all hand-coded in C++/Opengl with GLFW I'm afraid. I have no experience with GM or MMF2, but I used to make games on one of the first versions of "The Games Factory". You could get around the scene size limitations by having the "scene" be only as large as the screen, and the scenery actually be active objects moving across it when the camera would, being created and destroyed at the edges according to a "map" you predefine. Does that make sense in GM/MMF2?

Well in GM you can make a map as big as you want, however it eats lots of memory if it's too big... Thanks anyway. Awesome game.
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mrfredman
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« Reply #25 on: December 02, 2008, 06:35:24 PM »

I must say this game is incredible. I just want to shower it with compliments. First of all, I love the running animation for the character. The way his sleeves fly in the wind when he jumps is such a subtle elegant touch.

I found myself playing this one on my laptop during a boring class, and I just couldn't stop. At first I couldn't really understand the point and had a hard time getting into it, but the first time I successfully got moving and found the rhythm of jumping and maintaining speed, I was hooked. I was unable to complete the game, but I kept trying to get back into that illusive rhythm. Its a very clever and subtle reward for the player that kept me coming back for more.

I'm going to have another go later and I hope there is some sort of narrative reward for me once I manage to complete the game, but even if not the game mechanic is more than enough to make a fan out of me.

Awesome work.  Beer!
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increpare
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« Reply #26 on: December 02, 2008, 06:53:55 PM »

If you hold a direction while charging the jump then you'd jump directly in that direction. What do you think?
That seems reasonable.  Also being able to pull one's-self up on to higher platforms would get rid of several gripes.

Your other ideas seem quite good.  It's definitely a pretty solid base for adding more stuff to, and I look forward to seeing what directions you take this in.
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atuun
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« Reply #27 on: December 02, 2008, 07:52:32 PM »

This is awesome! Very clever level design (is that an Spoiler? ) and nice pixel work/animation. I'm not really a big fan of jumping puzzles but I thought they were designed very well here. And having the entire map as one scrolling screen really added to the sense of mystery and exploration.

On the momentum/speed thing: the only real issue I had with it was that is you were at a standstill or near standstill you couldn't really get any horizontal distance on your jump. Which is realistic I guess, but it makes 'climbing' over one or two tile objects a bit tedious. Otherwise, I liked how it controlled; I felt it added to the game as well.
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KniteBlargh
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« Reply #28 on: December 02, 2008, 08:00:28 PM »

KniteBlargh: Please tell me if your problem with funky colors has been fixed! I'm seriously hoping it's a side effect of the other bug because I have no idea what could cause it...
It's fixed! Good job. Wink

I'm so glad I got to play this through; wonderful entry. I kind of like the control the way it is, because since the objective of this game is on the simple side, the challenging movement makes it more fun in my opinion, but I'm sure it would still be great fun even if you did change the control a bit. The ending was rather interesting too. All in all, one of my definite favourites for this competition.
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agj
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« Reply #29 on: December 03, 2008, 05:02:48 PM »

I finally got around to playing the finished version of this game. You did a great job with the level design, Bob! The game world is not huge, but every place is very distinct, even though you used a very limited amount of tiles. Spoiler. I disliked the single-block-stairs jumping, because the controls you have here make it painfully slow, so they're a bad match, but loved the parts where I had to keep my momentum in order to tackle several long jumps.

And congrats on the engine, it's incredibly tight.
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Bob le Moche
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« Reply #30 on: December 04, 2008, 08:58:43 PM »

New version up! I wasn't sure how to go about it since the voting hasn't even started yet, I hope it doesn't annoy anybody... I put links up for both versions, so people can judge the game based on the deadline version.

The main change is the addition of sound and music. I think it really makes a difference! I also added a couple fruits to find in new spots, and I changed a few of the most boring/annoying areas. There's also some other added polish.
I was afraid to lengthen the game too much since there's still no save system and I want everyone to be able to finish it.

Thank you for your awesome feedback everyone!
mrfredman: I'm really happy you liked the game so much! I hope the honeymoon wasn't over too quickly...
Atuun: Glad someone recognized it Wink.

I'm so glad I participated in this compo! It forced me to get something done on a deadline, something I usually have a lot of trouble with. And your comments are really motivating me to keep working on this!
I think this is the last version I do of the game as it is now though, unless another bug pops up. I have a few other projects to finish before I can start working on turning this experiment into a proper large-scale game with a more fleshed-out world.
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Fletch
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« Reply #31 on: December 04, 2008, 09:38:39 PM »

Beautiful! I did get a little frustrated playing with the inertia, but only for a moment.

In fact, I would argue that control style is complemented by the animation of the protagonist sprite. It takes him a minute to get up to speed, but he's really bolting. That could be lost if improperly implemented.

I still didn't manage to catch the man-owl, though. Sad

Cheers,
Rob
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DoctorAnus
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« Reply #32 on: December 04, 2008, 09:46:21 PM »

Great, now this game actually feels like a complete package! It is just too bad, as others have noted, that the controls are so cumbersome, because the animation and pixel work are so great and the map layout is engaging enough that I wish I could just navigate freely through this well-drawn world. This is what keeps this game from being as smooth and silky as Knytt, for example.

While on the subject, as opposed to Nifflas' games (which the design of Eldritch reminds me a lot of), I noticed that your game is less focused on exploration and pathfinding proper than on navigating to the end of a path clearly indicated, backtracking to the branching point, and moving on to the next one. This form of linearity is only mildly interesting.

It is also unfortunate that the very thin narrative gets lost in the length of the game (which is diluted by struggling with obstacles...), and that the payoff, though legitimate, doesn't resonate very strongly. The text is very well-written, though.

Finally, I understand the interest of looping music at random points, but why have the clips so short? The ambient music is very good, but you don't give it the chance to keep on haunting the player when it fades away.

In other words, I urge you to keep up the good work on the aesthetic front, and to develop your gameplay techniques and narrative ambitions. Congratulations for a very functional game design and interesting mood piece, and I look forward to your next one.
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Soulliard
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« Reply #33 on: December 05, 2008, 07:02:09 PM »

The graphics are incredible, and the level design is generally solid. If the control was less cumbersome, and it had some nice sound effects, this would be an amazing game for me. As it stands, it's still pretty good.
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mirosurabu
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« Reply #34 on: December 06, 2008, 03:54:31 PM »

I'll second that artwork is great. So are animations. The only things which kept me playing this game were that movement/running mechanic and great atmosphere. Though they didn't keep me very long. The part after long distance jumping, where you had to jump over the pit is the place where I was stuck and ended my play. (Might be because I was rushing to check out other entries.)

Good game, nevertheless.
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J. Kyle Pittman
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« Reply #35 on: December 07, 2008, 08:53:10 PM »

I think this is my favorite of the CPB entries I've played so far.  Great art and animation, pretty nice level design (reminded me a bit of Metroid for some reason), and a terrific ending.  The starry background and purple/yellow-green environments gave it a really cool, atmospheric alien feel.

I didn't mind the lack of air control so much, but I did think the movement acceleration from a standstill was a little slow.  I got used to it by the end, though, and it was pretty fun in a Sonic the Hedgehog way to build up a lot of speed on those big jumps at the end.
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György Straub
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« Reply #36 on: December 09, 2008, 04:05:20 AM »

this is really mindblowing, I'm seconding everything everybody said (that includes about initial acceleration tho). this game had really inspired me to get back to working on the spatial partitioning system of XRhodes. Shocked  Beer!

EDIT: spoiler self-censored (that SPOILER was a really neat addition). so yeah, top quality work overall.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2008, 04:10:19 AM by !CE-9 » Logged

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« Reply #37 on: December 11, 2008, 12:51:19 PM »

I loved a lot of things, and hated one. Let's start with the one I hated, so we can finish with the ones I loved and leave you in a good mood after reading this.

I hated the controls. Friggin' pissed me off! Angry It takes him almost a second to accelerate, and when you change direction in full speed it takes almost two seconds to stop. Then it takes another second to speed up in the other direction. I think this works OK on tha big open places where you run at full speed and jump over large pits, but in the small caves... You have none at all air control, and the acceleration starts at a speed of 0. This means that when you are standing next to a small obstacle you can't get up on it, because you can't just jump straight up and move in over the platform in the air, and since you stand next to the obstacle you can't accelerate towards it. Therefore you have to move away a bit from the obstacle, get a tiny x-speed and jump to get up on it. And this moving away procedure takes a lot of time, since you need to turn two times in order to do it, not to mention if you fall off a ledge... I think there should be a small amount of speed that you get instantly when you give input in that direction, then you can do the whole acceleration thing from there. I also think he should be able to turn around almost instantly, just look at cave story. The acceleration thing is good, since it gives it a bit of a dream-like feeling, but you need to think about tight platforming in narrow areas too.

That said, this is what I loved:
The main character! The animation, the design, everything. Really smooth animation there Smiley

The sounds. Could maybe use a little ambient sounds, like wind and a hollow ecchoe in the caves, but all the sounds there was was great. The footsteps worked better than in most games.

The environments Shocked
Haven't seen any other game in this compo with such a nightmarish feeling. The stars in the background, the desert, those caves... It has a really alien feel to it. There is a strange feeling, like "what are those places?" When you play games, you often visit a lot of strange locations, but you somehow always know where to place them. You recognice an alien planet, an enchanted forest, a sci-fi city. But this... What the hell is it? Some places have a weak resemblance with buildings, others with natural formations, but you are never sure. The stars in the background and the parallaxing desert was absolutely beautiful. I have never played a game that felt so much like a bad dream.

The colors
Great palette! Really added to the atmosphere.

Now I have to restart this and play it to the end, I shut it down halfways because of character control rage, I didn't want to hurt my computer. But despite that, it's maybe the best game I've played in this compo so far. The goal is also really dreamlike, you don't really know what you have to do but you know it's important. Overall I liked this very much, had very much atmosphere to it.
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JLJac
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« Reply #38 on: December 11, 2008, 11:23:57 PM »

And the end was horrifying! Sent shivers down my spine Smiley
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Bob le Moche
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« Reply #39 on: December 15, 2008, 06:19:51 PM »

So... I did listen to the feedback in this thread and ended up using a more traditional control scheme for the new platformer I started working on:
http://www.retroremakes.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=120&t=12408
 Tongue


Knytt, Metroid and and Sonic are other influences I forgot to mention. In Sonic I really liked the feel of gaining momentum and trying to keep it throughout the level.

JLJac: You don't really have to back off from an obstacle to jump over it, though I did not make this clear at all: if you hold the key before jumping against the obstacle you'll actually end up above it even though you started right against it (I added this in once I found out I wouldn't have time to add ledge climbing). This changes nothing to your argument though and you're still absolutely right.

I think that even if the character did not change his direction of movement instantly, having the sprite change the way it's facing as soon as you press the button would do a lot to make the controls feel more responsive.


I haven't given up on this though, I still think it's possible to make this kind of jumping gameplay work well enough for a nice game with the proper additions and tweaks like those I mentioned earlier in the thread...
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