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A jam submission

CyanimaView game page

RPG with fast paced grid combat set in a simulated virtual world
Submitted by beenbaba — 13 minutes, 6 seconds before the deadline

Play game

Cyanima's itch.io page

Results

CriteriaRankScore*Raw Score
People's Choice Vote#333.8503.850

Ranked from 20 ratings. Score is adjusted from raw score by the median number of ratings per game in the jam.

Team Members
Benjamin Humphrey
Anthony Padilla

Engine
RPG Maker MV

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Comments

Submitted

Game has a very nice aesthetics and sound design. Creates a nice virtual world that I would have a lot of fun exploring.  Combat was the thing I didn't like, the idea of cards made me think of turn based hex based ""something"", but in the end it was a button masher. I did get stuck on second boss with three waves and no health regen. I kinda wish in this demo there was more walking and talking in the (or outside) main room instead of walking around and button mashing monsters.

Overall, good game with great audiovisuals! Just the combat needs a bit more something.

Developer(+1)

Hi Vodun, apologies for the late reply :(

We're glad you liked the game and we completely agree that the battle system in this version of the game is mashy. We've got some awesome ideas to change the dynamics so things are a lot more strategic instead of button mashy.

And yeah, agree on your other point too, we just didn't have time to get anything more into the game within the timeframe so we tried to get what we needed in for it to playable and a somewhat decent experience :D

This game has a lot of promise and is very interesting. It reminds me a lot of Cross Code (which uses the MMORPG idea) and Megaman Network. The aesthetic is really nice and the puzzles are pretty interesting. Though I didn't really understand how to fight for a while (took me a bit to understand how to use the cards properly in battle) and getting a game over crashed the game, it was still a lot of fun and I'm definitely going to play more of it in my own time.

Graphics were great, sound was really good (I was bopping along a fair bit to the music) and the ideas were fresh. I just think everyone should give this game a try for themselves, especially if they like RPGs with a twist.


Developer(+1)

Hi silversatyr!

Thanks for the lets play of our game, we're sorry you encountered a game crashing bug :( we'll add this to our bug fix list and work on it straight away to fix it ready for the version uploaded after the competition. (for reference if you play again, there is a save point before each boss so if you die you won't lose a ton of progress).

We're glad you like the premise and aesthetic, we were hoping to add more to it to stand out more from it's inspirations but we didn't have time.

Also, it could be explained better in the battle tutorial (the whole tutorial we want to move to an in battle segment anyway, but that's for another time) but you can choose cards as soon as the blue bar is filled at the top and you can select multiple cards at a time to use multiple skills between bar charges. This'll make battles a bit more interesting instead of just the basic attack.

Again, thanks for playing :D

Submitted

This game is amazing! I really like the graphic and music! 

5/5 for me!

Developer

Hi Thund! We're glad you enjoyed the game, thanks for the 5 out of 5!

Submitted

Rating the games using the judge categories

Gameplay

Super impressed that you were able to replicate the Battle Network battle system on RPG Maker while adding a few things of your own. It plays really well. Outside of battle however, I felt that the maps were a tad boring. Still really solid overall. With more originality added to the battle system, this could be something amazing!

[16/20]

Presentation

Everything looks gorgeous. I specially like the music. I only have two nitpicks: The battle grid is kind of small. I think it should occupy a bigger part of the screen. Also, the card icons are really small themselves

[17/20] -> Doubled to 34

Engagement

The Battle System is fun like its inspiration, and the maps are compact enough to keep most players interested. Some could be driven away by the length of the second map however. Feels like a major increase in size in comparison to the first one

[14/20]

Potential

Lots of potential for this one, as long as it differentiates itself more from the battle network inspiration. Great work

[17/20]

Total: 81/100 (5 Stars)

Developer (2 edits)

Hi miracleJester!

Thanks for our playing our game, we're happy you enjoyed it and appreciate your feedback!

We definitely agree with the points you raise!

To quote a few:-

We're working on a way to change the battle layout so that the grid takes up most of the screen instead the small part of it in this prototype (we've received this critique from another player as well)

We are definitely working on the battle system to make it more unique from its inspiration. We've got some cool systems we're looking to work in to make it fresh :D

The card icons were, to put it bluntly, an easy way for me to make lots of icons fast :x we definitely want to make them bigger and more distinctive and we also want individual pictures of each card too, similar to MMBN.

I agree with the desert stage being too long too. I definitely think making it smaller would have been better. As for the maps themselves, there are lots of things we want to add to them to make them more interesting, as you can appreciate time was a big factor in this.

Sorry for the long reply but hope that lets you know that we're definitely on the same page with what you've said (and others). Again, thanks so much for playing and glad you enjoyed it! :D

Submitted

downloaded and looking forward to playing this tonight! 

Developer

Hope you enjoy it :3 there are some bugs tho so hopefully they don't harm the experience too much

Submitted

Well designed and presented game. I'm impressed. ☕

Developer(+1)

Thank you, we appreciate it :D hopefully we can continue development and make it even better

Submitted

What a beautiful game! Getting something packed with this many features into RPG maker must have taken a lot of talent and passion. The art, music, and game mechanics worked well together. I couldn't even be jealous if you win. I had a lot of fun, but the keyboard mechanics of repeatedly smashing the z button was a bit tiresome on my hand. I could see it working better on a gamepad, but having the option to hold down the key instead would be nicer. I appreciated being rewarded for searching the environment on my own through caves, but the set-up of the environment makes it extremely easy to find them all. I understand that might just have been a limitation created by our deadlines.

Best of luck! I'd appreciate any feedback on my entry too (though I'm almost embarrassed when compared to yours).

Developer

Thank you for the positive feedback :D it's very much appreciated!

As for the gun, yes, we also think this but, and there was no way for you to know this as we didn't have time to include this in the game or mention this in the game,  we plan on having different gun types which would have a different ability assigned to them. 

The pistol that you use in the demo for example would have a Power Shot, where you can hold the fire key down to charge up a stronger blast. A different weapon like a shotgun for example, would have a lower rate of fire but a higher damage output and the ability to knockback an enemy. 

As for the environment, yes, very much as you've said the deadline definitely played a part on what we could cram into the fields as exploration. Ideally, we'd very much like to go down a much more Zelda-esque route with this with things such as breakable walls, hidden switches, hidden caves etc which would hopefully make exploration much more rewarding and not so easy. We just didn't have the time :(

Again, thanks for your feedback! We've added your game to our list and we'll be sure to give you some feedback on it when we get to it :D

Submitted (2 edits)

Even though almost the entirety of the battle/deck mechanic is a copy of the systems in the Megaman Battle Network series and the D.CP balance isn't quite there, I still have to applaud the execution and its implementation in RPG Maker. Kudos to you guys. Combined with the slick visuals (and probably the best use of my animation assets in any projects I've seen to date), I wouldn't be surprised if this project wins the contest. 

However, I wasn't able to finish the game. After defeating the boss in the 3rd area (Glacial field), by choosing not to teleport out after collecting the Emblem, it seems like I was locked in the room with no way out. How much more content was there after that?

Developer (1 edit)

Thank you for the feedback Hadecynn, greatly appreciate the postitive feedback :D Yes, most of the battle system at this stage is largely that of megamans battle network as we wanted to get the core foundation in place for the competition but we have many great ideas on how can both extend and improve the system to really make it our own. Also, I'm glad you like the use of your animations in the project, they really are great animations so thank you for making them :)

Concerning the bug you found, apologies for that, we didn't quite have enough time to test everything so that must have slipped through. There wasn't much more content after that at all, just the final boss of the game! If you do go back through and finish it off let us know if you liked the final boss :D

Submitted

Hi beenbaba,

So I went back and finished what I started. I thought the final boss was really interesting; without spoilers I'm just going to say I liked the homing bouncing projectile. 

As I've mentioned in the previous message, this was an incredibly polished prototype and I won't be surprised if Cyanima wins the contest. Having said that, here are some feedback on what I think needs to be expanded upon or addressed:

1. How to make the battles rewarding to motivate players to fight. This is a problem that plagued Battle Network too, which I'm sure you're very familiar with. Due to the fact that each enemy type/encounter only rewards either Gold or a type of Card/Chip and there's no EXP, if the Card isn't a particularly good one, then players have very little reason to engage with enemies, as Gold farming is much more efficient with resetting treasure chests through entering/leaving. I found myself avoiding all blue enemies and trying to squeeze by red enemies by the time I was in the desert map. In Battle Network, they alleviated this a little by having rarer alphabet versions of Chips locked behind better battle performances, so players would want to keep fighting just to get a higher score/drop, but since your system doesn't have the alphabet subsystem, it makes battles even more of a chore to do.

2. The problem above is further compounded by the D.CP cap. I don't quite recall what the starting memory capacities of MMBNs were, but I do know that the game allowed a good deal of deck customization before hitting the memory cap. (I think they even started you out with some additional cards you can already swap with to customize before any battling?)

In Cyanima, however, by starting the player at 100/100 D.CP and having mostly cheap Cards in the default deck, you essentially block players from being able to use any of the new Cards they get via exploring or combat that costs more CP (the $5000 price tag for D.CP+ in the shop didn't help either). This issue continues throughout the game, as the scarce D.CP+ items you get from clearing the map simply can't catch up with the costs and amount of the better cards you get in the same process. In total, I only switched out 3 cards from the default deck from start to finish, which is really a shame because I'm well aware of how fun this customization system is.

3. Elements. So, even though I finished the demo, I'm still not sure what elements are supposed to do in this game. If you were going with MMBN, then I assume the damage dealt is doubled when using an element the enemy is weak against. However, in MMBN they had a very strong visual cue ("!!" spikey speech bubble-thing upon hit, if memory serves correctly) that was missing here. As a result, I couldn't really appreciate the diversity of elemental Cards available in the demo. Between this and the D.CP issue above, even though there were dozens of Cards in theory, in practice I felt that there were only 4 different commands in the game: the pea shooter, Shots, Swords, and Healing.

4. Battle presentation. This is going to be a tough one, but needs addressing nonetheless. In MMBN the 3x6 battle grid took up the whole screen, which made it much easier to see all the things going on and gave players more time to react. In Cyanima, I'm assuming in an effort to minimize the amount of art assets needed, you guys made the battle arena only take up about 1/9 of an already small screen. This made it difficult to appreciate all the information in the battle, such as the enemy HP being obstructed by projectiles or other enemies, or the names of Cards chosen in the bottom-left corner simply not being registered by the brain because all the attention is focused on the center of the screen.

Again, I think you guys did a fantastic job and the game is already pretty amazing, but if you have plans to take the project further regardless of how the contest results turn out, I'd love to see improvements on the points I raised above.

Cheers!
Andy

Developer (2 edits)

Hi Andy,

Thanks for going back and finishing and giving us some new feedback! It's very much appreciated :D If you don't mind, I thought I'd respond to each of your points below a little so you can see where we think we might take each one

1) Rewarding Battles - Yes, we completely agree and was very much something we wanted to address with this prototype but just didn't have time to both implement a system to do this / figure out which one would be the best option. As this aspiring to be 'simulated' MMO, our thinking in terms of the card system is to very much bring in a more RPG element to the actual card system in terms of some sort of card customisation. Whether this be through something like XP gained per card used in battle and then the cards level up or gaining special items that you can then use to upgrade the cards, change attributes of them, increase their attack power, add a status effect etc we're not sure on the exact method we're with you on trying to make battles as rewarding as possible :D

2) D.CP limit - if we're honest, we had very little time to test the balancing of the game, we were both testing, writing code, setting up events and drawing art pretty much right through until the 8am deadline (that's how tight it was :O) so admittedly this just wasn't paid much attention. The same goes for item prices in the shop (most of it was guesswork if we're honest!) and we were well off the mark haha.

3) Elements - Yes, you are correct they function in a similar way to MMBN and yes, this isn't communicated to the player very well (or at all to be honest, again, something we can fix and address but just didn't have the time).

4) Battle presentation - you are right in that this is a little tricky :( we did implement a 2x zoom feature in our code (not available to you unfortunately) but felt that this was too zoomed in and some sort of middle ground would have been better however that's hard to do and maintain pixel perfect scaling for the art. We did feel though that when fullscreen was used this did mitigate the issue somewhat however can appreciate that it's not perfect. 

Hopefully that kind of lets you know where we might be going with this and hopefully some of this would address your issues you have. Again, thanks very much for such detailed feedback, it means a lot :D

Glad you found the final boss interesting. Our programmer worked hard to try and ensure that the battle would be more interesting and different to the norm to try and demonstrate some of the potential we could have for variety in battle :D

TLDR; We agree with all your points and we definitely have some ideas on how we can address them, unfortunately the lack of time hindered us from implementing any of them

Submitted

Glad you found the feedback useful (and thanks again for yours on Abyss of Oblivion).

1. Those all sound like interesting ideas. Intuitively I think giving rewards/powerups that are NOT locked to the card used might be good, as you probably wouldn't want to create a sunk-cost feeling in players that works against experimenting with new cards/setups.

2. Totally understandable. If I'm being honest as well, Floors 11 - 20 in Abyss of Oblivion I've only ran through once or twice as well. lol

3. Totally understandable as well.

4. If I recall, the 3x6 tiles in MMBN were all vanilla-colored tiles with red/blue frames that don't reflect the maps on which the battle occured, right? If you could afford a different set of assets (just one) for battles instead of feeling the need to stick to the map tiles, it might give you more freedom to do what you need to do. Just a thought.