At long last I was finally able to make a game for HEJ, as I was still working on another project. February’s theme was MIRROR and I came up with an idea of a metroidvania-like game, in the footsteps of Sacred Armour of Antiriad with a pinch of Krull (an old sci-fi fantasy movie). I also wanted to limit myself a bit, so I looked up Shovel Knight’s Nintendo-like color palette, and used mostly those colors, though I changed some, especially for the background (and I plan to come up and use my own palette). I also recently purchased recently a bunch of music loops from Humble Bundle composed by Andrew Sitkov, to use in my game jam and prototype projects.
The game is about a warrior, fused in a set of armor, who wakes up in a dungeon and wants to finish his original quest. I wrote a little story, but I didn’t have time to make a comic book like intro, so I just wrote it on the game’s itch.io page. In the game you try to find the pieces of the Chromatic Shield, which lie scattered throughout the castle of the Nameless Evil. All shield parts do something different, and you can change these like you switch between weapons. I managed to make two of them in one month, but I have ideas for more. You can tilt the shield, and the white one reflects projectiles, the orange one captures one and shoots it out on the next shield use. I made an energy (HP) upgrade platform, switches, doors, some very simple enemy types. I built two levels, the first one is ok as a first level, but the second, even after nerfing it, is still a bit hard. It’s not impossible to make it through with small damage taken, but you still have to know the layout of the maps.
Technically, I wanted to revisit the idea of using persistent rooms which would keep a room as it was left behind, and not reset it to its original setup as it does normally. I used them in Ghouly Scares, but they don’t work too nicely. That was why there was no New Game in the options, as there is no working way to reset the rooms (they cannot be deleted, and even stepping in a room and setting its persistent value false, it still messes up things, for example my particles went crazy). So, I remade the room system, copied all the first level stuff in one big room, the second level to another. I made boxes, they represent the individual rooms in a level. The camera clamps to these, they also manage effects and projectiles so they won’t spawn if the player isn’t present. I also made some invisible objects near the sides of the rooms, and those take over the character and move it to the next room. I struggled for a bit with the boss fight, but finally I managed to build an interesting one. The only problem is, it doesn’t fit on one screen, so I may remake it at a later stage. For now, this is a nice little prototype / demo, I am quite proud of it.
As per usual, Gábor Urbán hosted a live stream on TwitchTv with all the other games. This month we had five cool games, ranging from 3 day game jam games to an FPS puzzler with big, fully built 3D environments. Interestingly, a youtuber somehow found my game and played it through, gave me some nice feedback. Though it was still the buggy version (the door before the boss closed because it was hit by a fireball after opening another door) FullThrough managed to beat the two maps nicely. I also got kind words from another YouTube channel called 5mg, and the game was featured in RafGamer’s Top 5 Indie Games of this week on itch.io. Also, I’m a member of 1up Indie’s discord channel, and he has a room for hobby games that people create. I posted this game there, and 1up Indie made a video review about the game. Thank you for those, feedback is always appreciated. 🙂 Visit 1up Indie’s YouTube channel.
All in all, though this project was hard to make in one month, it was still worth the time. It became a potential prototype for a future project. I will continue my “secret project”, and alongside I may make some (hopefully much smaller in scale) game for this month’s theme: GLITCH. I also should upgrade to the new GM 2.3, I still haven’t dared to make that move yet, the “secret project” is too much to move it through, but I also see already that I may have to do that anyway… we’ll see. 🙂