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A jam entry

The Golden PearlView game page »

A short Gameboy inspired game about exploration and puzzle solving.
Submitted by The Mighty Palm with 6 days, 13 hours before the deadline

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Visit The Golden Pearl's game page

Results

Ranked 10th with 20 votes

CriteriaRankVotes
People's Choice Vote#1020

Judge feedback

Judge feedback is anonymous and shown in a random order.

  • 27/80

    Certain areas are progression blocks that corrupt your saves or block progress for that save, forcing a restart. (I made regular backups so I was able to finish the hour using those). Having the flute as a quick item was actually pretty annoying, especially in battle. The witch counting green potions was also annoying (as you can get both, but you have to get the green potion second). Why was it that the flute was a quick item, but the potions were not? The block puzzle can sometimes freeze the game if you move them rapidly while moving yourself.

    Why do I have text input right at the start with no information on what exactly I’m naming? You shouldn’t go through other people’s cabinets, but it is ok to break their stuff… How do these people have so many jars anyways? And why is there no run? Why are there two empty spaces in the options menu? Falling from the bridge forces a game over as it respawns you one space down instead of backwards depending on position.  Why is my game save corrupt already? Why is there an autosave?

    Why am I swimming on land? Rose area is broken, the ladder teleports you out immediately. One of the text lore items forces you to take damage and potentially die as it sends you above the ladder upon exit instead of below. Semi-permanent save menu grayscale if you touch a certain area in the map after leaving your house (appears to fix itself upon giving the lore npc a text item-if you have any left). 

    Entering certain areas can result in game breaking progression blocks that corrupt your save or otherwise prevents you from progressing if you saved after entering and meet certain conditions. The witch counts your green potions as potions, forcing you to drink it even if you are at full health to get the red potion, but the reverse is not true.

    On top of all the progression blocks, the title intro plays every time without letting you skip it. This is just frustrating.

    In the end, there were more bugs than there were areas. And I visited basically... all of the areas except for those that were literally impossible to reach due to bugs. Yes, that includes that one area that is effectively impossible to enter without finding clues that are behind bugged areas, making it impossible to finish the game in one run. Even the acorn quest is bugged due to using = instead of >=.  In the end, there were more bugs than there were areas and that is ONLY counting gamebreaking bugs-several of which area close to the start such as the swimming on land, several of which you might only encounter late into the game such as in certain temples, forcing you to restart all the way at the beginning after finishing over 90% of the game.

    I can barely walk a few minutes without the game breaking. I can't even remember the game itself, all I remember is being plagued with bugs, especially ones that teleport you to incorrect locations.

  • This game was a lot of fun, although compromised by some bugs. Obviously you had a good understanding about what was so fun about the Zelda games on Game Boy because I felt sucked into this game in a similar way. There was one key difference, though, in that you go through the whole game without a sword, unable to damage most enemies until you get the blessed arrow. That was an interesting touch although it may frustrate some players. The story was surprisingly ambiguous by the end, not sure what to make of that. There were some pretty major bugs, the most serious one during the frog heart boss. I found that if I moved up at all, I could no longer move down to where I had been. So I had to beat that whole boss just using the middle two cannon things.  It also seemed like the frog princess collection puzzle was bugged too. Everything looked fantastic and the music and effects sounded very authentic.  Score would have been higher but bugs resulted in a deduction.

    Score: 61/80

  • PRESENTATION

    Graphics are custom made in 8-bit style. The maps are good for the style it was going for.

    Writing is well done, with no errors that I could recall. The plot is pretty much staging for the game itself. The dialogue is decent and some characters stand out a little, though most NPCs are very similar in tone and the way they talk.

    Sound was well used where it was used. Nothing exciting but nothing that jarred. Music was the same - it fit where it was used and nothing seemed out of place.

    GAMEPLAY
    Gameplay consisted of typical action adventure rpg fare - walking around, interacting with the environment using tools.

    You can get various tools in order to interact with the environment - from bombs to blow up rocks and walls, arrows to shoot enemies and targets, swimming fins to get past water blocks and swim.

    There were various puzzles - some easier, some harder. They were a good balance and used the existing mechanics to add more depth.

    When you died you loaded back up via the one save slot you had.

    I ran in to a bug with water to the north of your home where you could drown since it was tagged as a water tile instead of the grass tile that it was.

    ENGAGEMENT
    I found the game a lot of fun and it held my interest for a fair amount of time. I did get stuck in the first temple, though, and found that annoying as I couldn't figure out where to get the key or turn the coloured switches on/off. It took me a while to get the bombs to go to that temple as I was too busy exploring the world map itself instead. Fun game though!

    THEME
    The theme of the game was pretty much exploration and collection of McGuffins. You needed set items in order to access the areas to the items you needed to get so the mechanics made sense and focused on that aspect quite well. The theme was also represented in dialogue but only as a way to frame the quest.

    62/80

  • Theme 

    Best the three dungeons and find the Golden Pearl. Inspired by Zelda.

    Gameplay 

    Extremely buggy.

    • Drown on land when going north at the beginning.
    • Fell on a hole then spawn on a wall in one cave.
    • Throw a grass on the floor, before it hits the floor completely, you’ll see a gem, but if you open the menu on this exact moment and close it out, the gem disappears.
    • Boar hits me despite not being hit!
    • Save corruption on certain parts.
    • Flute when fixed crashes the game.
    • Why can't I kill enemies until I finish the game and then finally my arrows can? Why can't my bombs stun enemies but it can hurt me? It doesn't make sense!
    • There were a lot more that I can't bother to list them all. I felt like a beta tester rather than playing a game.

    There’s also some stuff I didn’t like:

    • Depends a lot on RNG. For example, the fire boss.
    • Random cracks can kill you.
    • Blocks can only be pushed on certain direction?

    Presentation 

    It’s solid. Just the way it conveys information is a bit irritating. For example, I didn’t know about the map until 30 minutes in the game roaming mindlessly around until a sign on the town tells me I can. I also didn’t get bombs 30 minutes in so I made 0 progress on dungeons. I honestly think just starting on the town would’ve been a ton easier and would do the game favors. You won’t even know you can pick up a bomb you already dropped until someone tells you (not the game).

    Engagement

    Lots of game stopping bugs on the intro that I seriously didn’t want to play this game out of frustration. I also kept saving just to make sure I don’t have to redo something or accidentally kill my progress again.

    Total – 35/80

Team Members
The Mighty Palm.

Engine
Rpg Maker Vx Ace

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Comments

Beautiful game. Looks a lot like Legend of Zelda.

(Edited 1 time)

This was wonderful. All of the nostalgia of growing up with these kinds of games just came rushing back and I was really enjoying the entire experience. Especially the Zeldaesque pot/plant throwing! :D I think the story was perfect for what it was. Simple, to the point, and made room to emphasize the gameplay itself over the rest. Well done, all in all. Many glitches encountered, most of which have already been covered, but honestly, when one considers the short time frame you had in which to work, it makes this all the more impressive. Kudos! You got my vote. :)

(+1)

As others have said, this is a great game! I enjoyed my time with it, but unfortunately I just encountered a game-breaking bug:

In the Fire Temple boss room, if you beat the boss then exit the way you came, the last door no longer leads to the ring room. Instead it leads to a room on the other side of the dungeon. Similarly, if you leave the ring room the way you came, it takes you elsewhere in the dungeon. Doing either of these things means you can never get to the ring room, which presumably means you can't beat the game. My guess would be there's a second copy of the boss room with no boss in it, and that one has the wrong transfer event?

Leaving the temple doesn't fix the issue. Exiting the game doesn't fix it either. This is a problem, as I exited to write this comment forgetting that the game auto-saves and has only one slot. On a related note, is the single save slot a necessity or stylistic choice? I'd prefer multiple, personally. Good game and I may start over another time, but obviously the glitch is a bummer.

Developer(+1)

that IS a bummer and I'll look into it after the contest has ended. Although it shouldn't have overwritten you yet. The way autosave works is that it saves every time you enter or exit a dungeon, house, or cave (it also saves after getting a ring). So if you quit right after beating the boss, then you quit the game, you should be at the beginning of the dungeon as that'd be where you last autosaved. Assuming you didnt leave the dungeon. 
Single slot save was the only way to get auto save to work. Although now I'm seeing that multiple save slots might have been possible but only slot 1 would be auto-save. Might patch that in post contest also. As always thank you for telling me this, and thank you for playing my game!

(+2)

Wrote up an overview for this game, was a good time!

(+1)

Thanks for making this game, it's fun and intuitive! You've done an amazing job here in so little time! :D

(Edited 1 time) (+1)

If you tap the wall in the upper left of the first area, the screen goes grayscale, and if you save, there's no getting color back without reinstalling. Please fix this!

Edit: also, in the cave on G6, if you blow up the rock, leave, and come back, you can't push the block. :(

(+1)

This is great! Getting so many Link's Awakening vibes. It feels very polished and I love all the little things that there are to discover (blacksmith, frog, etc). Nicely done!

(+1)

It's a REALLY REALLY great game and it's amazing you've made it in just a month! :D (i have a feeling this game will win the IGMC~)

the music sounds great to me. and graphics are wonderful, too!

though, there are few glitches (I'll not mention them here because I don't properly remember them; so if I found or recalled any I'll let you know) (they're probably happening due to something wrong in the events/but it's okay! it happens) 

One bug is currently annoying me, I've collected more than 20 Magic Seeds - but the Frog (the princess) says you don't have enough seeds :/ can you please check on it?

Thanks and congrats on making such a wonderful game!

Developer

Just a heads up, the audio on some tracks are a bit loud (Like the Overworld...). I now realise it's not because of a personal preference but because I forgot to set the default BGM level to 80 instead of 100 in the games settings. Too late to fix it now, but you can turn it down from the systems option in the pause menu. Normally I'm against this sort of telling you how to play the game thing but I'll make the exception for the sake of your ears.

(+1)

Love this game!

Found a little glitch that locks down my computer. Can't do anything when I fall in these places. It just plays the music and shows this screen, with no access to the menu. (This screen, minus the purple boxes. I tried to replicate it to make sure it wasn't just me.)


 I think it's because my regen spot would be on top of the rocks, since all the other holes regen fine. Love this entry, great job!

Developer(+1)

Geez how thorough were you in your bug hunt? You found a bug in just those three specific spaces? Thanks for telling me bout this. Can't fix it for another month and it's kind of off to the side but thanks nonetheless! Great work detective princess

yeah...I just die a lot lol

Oh man, I wish I read this comment before I played, I ended up falling into the same thing. +A+

(+2)

Wonderful work, i'm simply AMAZED to see how this game can bring back Game Boy Color age. This is what i call a good work!

(Edited 3 times) (+1)

I'm really enjoying this, takes me back to the good ole classic Zelda games! Got about 5 hours invested into it so far but am completely stuck with the fire temple. Can't figure out how to reach or use the block switches? I've completed the other 2 temples and got those rings. I also have 12 hearts so far,  but I'm missing 1 cat, 2 seeds, and 1 book in the sidequests. I hope I haven't hit a game breaker (with the switches)  :/ Anyway, thanks for an awesome throw back! Haven't had this much fun with an old school Zelda type in a while!

P.S. A possible bug/glitch. When I was trying to traverse the cracked floor room  in the earth temple (trial and error?) I feel into the mountain area. When I pulled up the map it still showed the earth temple map instead of the overworld map. I went back to the temple and after several more tries (falling back to the mountain area a few times). I completed it.  Not sure if that's intentional. I also still have an earth key even though I completed the temple. Sorry, not complaining by any means! Awesome game! Just want to help if it is a bug/glitch :)

Developer(+1)

I'm gonna look into those cracks. As for the fire temple, you can pick up and throw your bombs to reach those switches. Dunno if it said that in the description of the item or maybe I completely forgot to mention it ingame, but there is a screenshot on the games page that shows the player carrying a bomb... 

Anyway I'll try and see if I can fix those problems in time

(+1)

Thanks, a duh moment for sure. I should have thought to pick up the bomb. Anyway, I finished it and got what I guess is the bad ending. As I said before awesome game you definitely get my vote! I have 2 questions though. Is there a clue for the 6 moveable rocks screen? Also I found a tombstone under a tree that  said 23 is number 1, what does that mean?  

Developer(+1)

I don't really want to say, since those two things might actually be connected in a way... but that's only half the riddle. It's the one somewhat cryptic secret I have and it's special. Keep on exploring and maybe you'll be the first to figure it out!

(+2)

Super cool game I am going to put more time into it after I try out a few other submissions. I like the style.

(+3)

This is awesome for a game made in RPG Maker! I didn't think the engine could do this! Well done, I am playing and loving the game right now! :D

(Edited 1 time) (+1)

This game is really nice! I loved it! It's look like an old zelda game and it's really awesome. However, It just crashed when I was in the village and head up down. You should fix it!

Developer

Hey this is very important infor and thank you so much, but can you please be more specific? What were you doing EXACTLY when the crash happened, and was there an error message or did the game just exit out, what happened? Can you replicate the crash or did it only happen once? anything you can tell me will allow me to fix it much sooner

(+1)

I just went down and it said that it stopped. Between the house.

Developer(+1)

Thank you so much. The issue has been fixed, and the game will be re-uploaded with this error resolved later.

Hello GalaxyNewsRadio, I was just wondering. Why are you so rude to every person you review. So far, this is the only game you said something good about. Have you ever made a game! Also, how can you write a review on a game you only play less than 20 minutes on. just saying, also you do not speak proper English and do not appreciate all the hard work some people have put into these games.

-Labyor

I might not talk good enought for you, but I say proper advice for people to fix. If you're not happy, then just don't read my comments.

(+1)

This was a really cool experience! I had to turn the music off because it was giving me a major headache - but the game itself was really fun!

Developer(+2)

Thank you! Sorry the music wasn't suited to your ears, but now I'm glad I added the option to turn it off!