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A jam submission

GeomanceRLView game page

Submitted by jzhang113 — 4 hours, 40 minutes before the deadline

Play game

GeomanceRL's itch.io page

Results

CriteriaRankScore*Raw Score
Fun#113.3333.333
Innovation#133.3333.333
Roguelikeness#233.6673.667
Scope#263.0003.000
Completeness#273.3333.333
Overall#283.2783.278
Aesthetics#503.0003.000

Ranked from 3 ratings. Score is adjusted from raw score by the median number of ratings per game in the jam.

Judge feedback

Judge feedback is anonymous and shown in a random order.

  • Excellent concept, let down somewhat by presentation - definitely could benefit from a tileset to improve and clarify visuals better; maybe for a post 7DRL version?  I definitely enjoyed mowing down enemies with spells over the usual roguelike melee combat. 

  • Completeness:

    Game looks like finished product. I didn't encounter any bug, mechanics is polished.

    Aesthetics:

    GeomanceRL uses nice font for drawing map and entities, and developer has nice sense of color. There is even simple movement animation - but it doesn't blend well with map scrolling, to be honest. The only real problem is that in UI instead of spell names there are abbreviations. Not the big deal, since it's easy to figure out how every spell works.

    Fun:

    GeomanceRL is great example that it is possible to make good, captiving game based on one, relatively simple mechanics. In GRL player is, well, geomancer. A mage that draws mana from earth. It's the core of the game - every tile has own color and value, and every spell needs different amount of specific "color". Simple enough play fast, and deep enough to make more tactical approach meaningful.

    Innovation:

    Mechanics described in previous paragraph is truly innovative.

    Roguelikeness:

    True roguelike with innovative mechanics? Why not!

    Scope:

    Well, I thought about giving 4 stars here, because I feel that developer chose perfect scope for this jam... But it's still small game, so it wouldn't be that fair. So, "3", but I'm impressed.

  • I think the basic mechanic at the heart of Geomance has a lot of potential. I also think that many parts of the presentation of this version of the game were very thoughtfully done: the keys are clear and easy, the mechanic is focused, the colors are legible, etc. There were some parts, however, that I felt held me back from having a great time with the game. First, I found the game pretty difficult – I couldn’t find any way to heal damage, which meant that every mistake added up quickly. This was compounded by the fact that with such short line of sight and so many enemies that can move quick or shoot from range, you can very easily take a step or a teleport with no enemies visible and immediately take damage.

    I also think that the number of the mana tiles was too high. Because many of the numbers are so high, and because you draw from 9 tiles, I rarely had to pay proactive attention to which tiles were where. Instead, I would just cast whichever spell happened to match my position. I think if you made the value of every tile “1” (which would also allow you to change the numbers to simpler shapes) then you could get a better balance of having to plan out which position you want to be in to use which spells. In fact, I could see a version of this where everything was tightened up, levels that were half the size, with you really carefully planning out turns based on puzzling out your path through the tiles.

    I didn’t make it terribly far in the game – I think level 3 or 4 was my furthest run, but I do wonder how much a sense of progression you would get only having the same 6 spells the whole time. A system that allowed them to vary more (or introduced new colors on later floors) could be a cool way to extend the game. 

    Oh and I love the Jetstream spell. <3

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Comments

Really cool core idea. I think this one has lots of potential as a mechanic.