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October 20, 2019, 12:42:18 PM

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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperPlaytestingBounce Back ~ A Boomerang Roguelite / Zelda Homage for JS13k
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Author Topic: Bounce Back ~ A Boomerang Roguelite / Zelda Homage for JS13k  (Read 653 times)
FrankForce
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« on: September 13, 2019, 12:10:55 AM »

When life gets you down, it's never too late to...



A boomerang roguelite / Zelda Homage for JS13k.

Link to game

Controls
  • WASD = Move
  • Mouse = Aim
  • Click = Throw
  • Space = Dash




Hi, I've been working really hard on this game for the past few weeks for js13k. I just released it today. Would love to get some feedback. Is it worth developing into a full game?

Hints
  • Boosting protects you from damage.
  • Buy items to help you survive.
  • You don't lose money when you die!
  • There are only 10 levels.
  • Lost boomerangs show up big on the map.
  • Enemies are also slowed by sand.
  • Yellow boomerang can grab pickups.
  • Blue boomerang does double damage.
  • Win to unlock speed run mode.


« Last Edit: September 17, 2019, 08:59:57 AM by FrankForce » Logged
Siavellez
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« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2019, 02:03:24 AM »

This is actually a lot of fun.
Great work on the sprites, I like the jumping enemy and the main character.
The gameplay concept is fun and the mechanics or good.
I like how the shopkeeper is vulnerable to die.
I think you should just turn down the difficulty a bit!
Maybe change the portal sprite images because they don't seem to fit with everything else visually. However, it's up to you.
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IdanG
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« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2019, 03:15:38 AM »

Very fun game, polished and stable. I would suggest toning down the difficulty level or maybe add more hearts under the plants. Also maybe adding a visual indicator when the dash is active again.
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FrankForce
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« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2019, 06:44:35 AM »

Wow, thanks for the feedback! Keep it coming, I have the rest of the day to make tweaks.

IdanG - Thanks for the feedback. There is both an audio and visual indicator for the dash. There is a white outline around the player that appears when dash is charging. Do you have another suggestion?

Siavellez - You are the 3rd person that mentioned the portal not matching... I actually did this on purpose! Maybe I will change it though but it seemed cool to me that the portal would look different. I did try a pixel art portal and it looked super plain.

I will think about the difficulty. It would be helpful to know what is the difficult or challenging parts for you so I can tweak them directly.
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IdanG
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« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2019, 11:07:31 AM »

You're right about the dash indicators, I didn't notice. I thought the sound came from an enemy.
The difficult part for me was the number and speed of the enemies combined with the rarity of hearts to increase health.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2019, 11:14:50 AM by IdanG » Logged
michaelplzno
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« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2019, 11:28:06 AM »

First impression: loved the full screen zoom in opening. Then the boomerang sound made me smile.

The shadows were a nice touch, made it possible to see the depth well enough.

My big problem is that the boomerang is too slow. It fits with the Sound design, and the trippy portals at the end, but the combat seemed a bit like slow motion.

Good work!

Edit: I died in level 2. Also I liked that the rocks were rang-able, and that sometimes you had to pick up the boomerang.
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FrankForce
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« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2019, 11:59:42 AM »

michaelplzno - Thanks for the feedback! A few others mentioned before that it seemed a bit slow so I did speed things up about 10% since then.

Were you remembering to use the dash move on space-bar and avoid sand pits?

The player's velocity also gets added to the boomerang's initial velocity when thrown, so that can help you throw it much faster, especially if you throw it while dashing. There is an upgraded boomerang that goes a bit faster/farther.
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Siavellez
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« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2019, 09:46:38 PM »

Siavellez - You are the 3rd person that mentioned the portal not matching... I actually did this on purpose! Maybe I will change it though but it seemed cool to me that the portal would look different. I did try a pixel art portal and it looked super plain.

I will think about the difficulty. It would be helpful to know what is the difficult or challenging parts for you so I can tweak them directly.

So I played your game again today.
A few great things I noticed this time around:
- The portal slowly sucks you in if you stand close to it.
- The enemy with the shield, pretty cool character and also concept of the guy being able to block attacks only from certain angles.
- I must have glitched last time and skipped from level 1 to 5! Might want to check this event possibility glitch.

Also with the portal, it's not too bad, you should keep the sprite images because of the fact you do appreciate it yourself as the developer.

With the difficulty, there isn't one component or one enemy that stands out. I think that the difficulty from levels 2-5 is pretty high considering they are meant to be the first half of your game, taking away 1 (non-major) enemy from each level is a simple suggestion to turning down the difficulty appropriately.

Hope this helps : )
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FrankForce
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« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2019, 10:01:39 PM »

Hey Siavellez, thanks for your feedback!

I scaled back the number of enemies 30% from what it was at in my original post based on feedback from you and others. I think part of the fun comes from fighting with multiple different enemies interacting with the terrain, so I don't want to lose that aspect.

One thing I may do in future releases is slightly increase the chance of heart drops. Right now for coins to hearts it is an 7 to 1 ratio. I think changing it to 6/1 would make a noticeable difference for players without making the game any easier otherwise.

Right now I don't want to change any game play until after the judging is all done, but I am taking notes on feedback for an enhanced version. I will also add xbox 360 controller support tomorrow!
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Siavellez
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« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2019, 10:03:44 PM »

That is a good scale back percentage. Yes it is fun to fight and see multiple different enemies. Do increase the heart drop rate to 6/1.
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FrankForce
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« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2019, 10:00:12 AM »

JS13k is over! I am working on updates for the post compo version and promotional stuff.



Here's a gif I made to demonstrate the procedural level generator. This shows some variations on the last level in the game before the final boss battle...



I did my first official speed run of my game last night and got 22 minutes, 16 seconds. It's kind of long for a jam game but not meant to be played through all at once except when speed running. I think I could get the time to under 15 minutes but I'd rather someone else do it. Wink



I also made this cute tiny animated avatar...


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jbarrios
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« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2019, 07:16:12 AM »

Hey FrankForce,

I played your game.  I recorded it and my thoughts:


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FrankForce
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« Reply #12 on: September 16, 2019, 09:13:21 AM »

jbarrios - Thank you for playing and sharing your feedback! You missed one extremely important mechanic in the game. You can press spacebar to dash! This is my fault because I had to cut the in game instructions to make it fit in the 13k limit.

Dash has many uses...
- lets you move much faster
- lets you smash through rocks and bushes
- not slowed while on sand
- take no damage from enemies
- you can pick up your boomerang and items while dashing
- if you throw your boomerang while dashing it will go farther

If you decide to play again, the game will save your coins and let you warp to your highest level reached. Thanks again, this kind of thing really helps!

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JobLeonard
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« Reply #13 on: September 16, 2019, 12:36:17 PM »

Just finished, great game! Impressive that you managed to squeeze this into 1k

I wonder if it would be more fun if boomerangs could pick up boomerangs that have stalled.
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FrankForce
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« Reply #14 on: September 16, 2019, 01:20:27 PM »

JobLeonard - Thank you! It is actually 13k. I did think about the recursive boomerang pickup concept. I didn't actually try it but thinking it through in my head it seemed to easy.

I do plan to make an extended version with more weapons and being able to select them easier so maybe that could be a good type of boomerang!

What would we call a boomerang that's special skill is to pick up other boomerangs?
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #15 on: September 16, 2019, 01:44:28 PM »

Booboomerang? I dunno... if you make a boomerang that explodes it could be a kaboomerang though :p
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FrankForce
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« Reply #16 on: September 25, 2019, 01:42:25 PM »

Howdy everyone! I just finished writing the postmortem for my game. It is long but there are a lot of pictures. Check it out...

Bounce Back Postmortem: A Zelda Style Boomerang Game for #JS13k

Also, I made a short gameplay video. Still working on the trailer!






Here's a comparison between the main character and the reference from Link's Awakening...



I also made an hd version of the title sequence.



Good luck with your games everyone, and have a nice day!

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JobLeonard
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« Reply #17 on: October 06, 2019, 04:14:09 AM »

Congrats on making second place!

https://2019.js13kgames.com/#winners
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FrankForce
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« Reply #18 on: October 06, 2019, 08:10:39 AM »

JobLeonard: Thank you!

My game got second place!!

I am working on an extended version now. I will post here when it is ready for feedback!
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #19 on: October 06, 2019, 08:38:31 AM »

Looking forward to it!  Grin
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