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[Devlog] Rise to the Top, Cinnaroll!

A topic by adanteallegro created Jan 07, 2017 Views: 873 Replies: 29
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The Bakeoff Olympics are a big deal! One pastry citizen, Cinnaroll, is striving to get the gold in the track event! However, her last coach is taking a sabbatical, and she can't manage her time very well. She needs a new coach, and that's you!

Rise to the Top, Cinnaroll! is a strategy/time management game that I'm hoping will be similar to games like Princess Maker 2 and Long Live the Queen. The biggest difference, obviously, is that instead of scheduling classes and jobs for girls to become princesses (and also hopefully not die during the process, haha), you're a personal trainer for an upcoming athlete so that she can win the gold in the Bakeoff Olympics! Will you be able to manage Cinnaroll's time well for her to achieve her lifelong dream, or will you fall short? Worse yet, will you be unable to manage her time at all, forcing Cinnaroll to fire you and look for a more competent coach? It all depends on you, coach!

Game Engine:

Gamemaker Studio (I wanna learn how to code!)

Meet Cinnaroll:

Cinnaroll is one tough cookie – er, cinnamon roll! She's got moxie and snark and isn't afraid to show it, but she also has a good heart. Don't be fooled by the tactless way she speaks, she's really looking forward to training with you!

Cinnaroll is an old character I created a few years ago, but I decided to recycle the character and use her here!

Minimum Viable Product:

My main goal is to just get SOMETHING out there and done with. So, for a game like this, I'm thinking that this must be the minimum that has to be done:

  • Simple buttons that will raise and lower certain variables
  • A test that if a variable is over a specific amount, then the player wins the test
  • If a variable is down for a specific amount of time, then the player loses

Basically, from what I can gather so far, this will be a game that's focused around variables and adding/subtracting from them. I'm hoping that I didn't miss anything, but if you have an idea on what else needs to be here for the minimum viable product, then please let me know! ...only if you want to, though, I'm not your mom, I can't tell you what to do.

What I'd like to add:

Just to make the game more interesting, once I can get the minimum viable products in place, I'll work on these next. Obviously, don't expect all of these ideas to come in – I haven't even begun to think about coding these in yet at the time of writing this! I'll add more, though, if I come up with any more ideas.

  • A calendar system – the Bakeoff Olympics is a few months away! Spend your time wisely!
  • Multiple sport choices – choose which sport in the Bakeoff Olympics you want Cinnaroll to participate in. Each sport has a different set of stats that you must have a high variable at!
  • Good reputation variable? – A variable that the higher it is, the nicer townsfolk and the competition are to Cinnaroll.
  • An intro cutscene – something that shows Cinnaroll dragging you into making you be her coach. A skip intro button will also be implemented here!
  • The ability to talk with Cinnaroll - depending on how she's feeling and what her highest stats are, she'll have something different to say.

I definitely don't want to make the scope on this too high – I have a tendency to make things that are too ambitious for me. I'm just gonna focus first on making sure the core mechanics work before I put on any bells and whistles.

Thanks for reading this very long intro post! I'm hoping that I'll be able to post up what I did today tonight. I'm pretty excited to really dive into this!


omg this concept is so charming and fleshed out! this is such a solid pitch for a game also--even if you don't have time to implement all of these features it's a solid vision for where your game is going to go. best of luck!


Hehehe, thank you so much! I'm so glad that you like the concept of it. I definitely want to give a crack at putting in all of these features into the game, no matter how long it takes! At the very least, it'll be a good learning experience, I think.


Day 1

Today was mostly spent testing things. I created a few variables and placeholder buttons just to see if I knew what I was doing.

Obviously this isn't what the game's going to look like in the final. I just wanted to see if I could manipulate variables the way I wanted to. Increase vitality increases that variable by 1, Decrease vitality decreases it by 1. The Lift Weights button increases strength by 1, but decreases vitality by 2. The little test vitality was just to see if I could code in comparing the current vitality score to another number. I know this is all probably real easy stuff, but I'm super proud of myself for being able to figure that out! I also added a losing condition if the vitality number goes down low enough:

If the vitality variable goes down enough, Cinnaroll just ups and leaves you! I think in the final game, there should be a few warnings to let the player know that they're getting close to losing the game instead of just cutting them directly to the game over room. I guess that can be solved with a switch...? I'll play around with it.

Another thing I need to do is to actually code in where each of the buttons are going to go, instead of just dragging and dropping them into the room. I'm thinking of having the buttons on the left hand side, with Cinnaroll on the right? And, of course, there's going to be a background. I made the Train and the Stats buttons that when you click on them, a pop up menu appears and tells you what you want to train or what each stat is. I can't decide whether or not to put the little training montages as a pop up menu or a separate room, but in either case, I need to improve on it and learn more about timelines.

There's. There's not supposed to be two placeholder Cinnarolls here. I was trying to make it so that there's a little exercising Cinnaroll, which is then replaced by a successful looking Cinnaroll, but now there's just two of them. I'm not sure if I want to go down the route of putting in the training montage in a separate room...maybe putting it in the same room as the other menus would work just as well? What do you think?

Oh, and finally, I drew some much nicer buttons to use instead of the placeholders. Considering how many pictures I've put up on this one post, I'll wait until tomorrow to show you the buttons.

In any case, my goals for tomorrow:

- Decide whether or not the training montage should be in the same room as the menus or in another room. If the latter, figure out how to add in variables from multiple rooms!

- Draw background for main menu

- Try to implement a time limit variable - the player only has X amount of days/months/whatever until the big day!

- More variables for different trainings!


The concept art for this is adorable. I hope Cinnaroll can get the gold!


Thank you! I really hope she gets the gold, too! I'll try to make it so that it's a bit of a challenge, but still do-able!


Ahhhh! I love this! Can't wait to see what you do next!


Hehehe, thank you! I'm pretty excited to work more on this, myself!

This game hits on my interests: sassy baked goods. Luv it.


Hehe, thank you! Pastries and sass are always a winning combination.


Day 2

Today, the first thing I did was make some buttons and a background. Now I have a fully fleshed out main menu for the game!

Right now only the 'Set Schedule' and the 'Stats' buttons work, since I'm still working on those at the moment. What I'd also like to do in the future is have it so Cinnaroll's expression changes every so often, depending on how she's feeling. That'll have to come much later, though. The 'Set Schedule' and 'Stats' menus are still a bit...lacking. I still have the placeholders, sooooo...

...yeeeeeah, I'll be working on those next. There are actually a couple of bugs I ran into while working on this so far. One is that whenever I put in new variables and set them up just I like I did for my vitality and strength variables, it doesn't seem to work. For example, if you can kind of see if from the last image, under strength, I added in an endurance variable. Even though I coded in that it should go up every so often, it doesn't go up at all! I need to try and figure out what's wrong with it.

Another thing I had trouble with is how to change the audio. Between the main menu and the training room I have two different songs. Whenever the player goes to the training room and then back, the main menu music doesn't start playing again! It's odd. I just thought of maybe only playing the tracks in the main menu and use only sound effects for the training screen, so that might be a good workaround...

Regardless, I also spent tonight on working out the different training regimens Cinnaroll can go through!

I apologize for the size, I didn't think it'd be this big! I just cobbled together some very rough sketches of the different trainers that'll help Cinnaroll. They'll be put in at first as static images, but if I have enough time, they'll be all animated too!

Anyway, who knows how much I'll actually get done tomorrow. I have to get back to work plus it'll be a Monday, so who knows how I'll feel. In any case, here's what's on my to-do list.

- Fix the endurance bug (as well as implement in the other variables!)

- Fix the music problem

- Add final day specs - the player shouldn't have to go back to the main menu when the final day approaches! Maybe the training room will kick the player into the final day, the day of the marathon...?

- Make a textbox image (although I might also just use the draw tool inside of Game Maker Studio for this...)

- Make buttons for the different trainings!

- Make some music using only the most high quality software money can buy.

your software choice for music making won me over


Warioware DIY, man. Such a good game. Seriously, I find it a lot easier for me to write music in the record player than by other means. Plus, you can make songs with nothing but baby voices and pigs oinking. That's a plus!


The game story is really creative and concept art is cute ! Wish Cinnamon the best for the Olympics !


Thank you so much! Cinnaroll's gonna try her best!


it's cool to see how the mechanics are being implemented already! if you get the chance it might be helpful to make a moodboard or pinterest or just a folder of imgs with UI that you found really intuitive or similar to the type of game you want to make! you might have some fun sketching UI layouts or designs out.

either way these concepts are sooo cute i'm loving seeing how this is coming along.


Oh, that's an excellent idea! I was making a few sketches earlier this morning on how I could improve on the menu - I think making a pinterest board with different UIs will help out immensely!

Thanks so much, I'm glad to see that you like how it's coming along! I really hope I can finish this in time, the thought of other people playing a game I made really excites me!


Day 3

As I expected, I wasn't able to get a whole lot of stuff done because my day was busy with work and errands. Still, I was able to make some pretty good strides!

First off, I don't know how this happened, but MS Paint on the PC won't save print screens anymore, so you'll just have to take my camera picture instead. In any case, the set schedule menu is now a lot cleaner. Tomorrow I will make better looking buttons for this!

Other than that, I did a lot of behind the scenes work. I made a ton of different training rooms, one for each training regimen, as well as duplicated many objects for each room. What I'd like for the training rooms is to have a different background with a different animation playing - hopefully with the little trainer teachers implemented and such.

I also got started with making some music in the Warioware DIY game! It's been slow going, but hey, I don't really compose music, so.

Tomorrow I won't be able to get to the PC at all; it's my husband's day off and I know he'll be using the computer for pretty much the entire day. So, I'll be devoting tomorrow and Wednesday solely on making the different graphics! Here's what I want to accomplish for Tuesday and Wednesday:

- Make Cinnaroll sprites for basic training

- Make training teacher sprites (static for now, but if I can do them animated, then hey, that's cool)

- Make buttons for the different training regimens

- Continue to experiment and make music

- Make a textbox

- Possibly make more expressions for Cinnaroll for the main menu?

- Possibly make little cutscene pictures for both the intro and the day of the marathon? (for the marathon, I need to do pictures for Cinnaroll clearing an obstacle, barely clearing an obstacle and failing the obstacle)


Day 4

Today was solely focused on making graphics and music for the game, because I wasn't able to get onto the PC to code anything! The very first thing I did was make better buttons for each of the training regimens. I won't show you all of them because it'd be redundant, but here's one of them:

I also made static images of the trainer teachers as well! They're kind of hastily put together, but if I have time later on, I'll improve on them:

Oh! I also made a little sprite sheet for Cinnaroll as well. I actually did this yesterday, BUT. Here you go:

This is the sprites I'll use for now for training. I was heavily inspired by the little work and study scenes from Princess Maker 2, where you just see your daughter do all of these different tasks in a cute pixelated style. I'd like to make different sprites for the different training regimens, but if I can't, then I'll just use these. It's pretty much like icing on the cake - nice, but not necessary.

Since each training regimen is in their own room, I figured I'd make them each unique by having different tiled backgrounds and portraits. So, I cobbled together one for the beginning of the meditation training.

I'd like to make little portraits like these for each of the trainers. In a best case scenario, I'd like to make three for each trainer - one to serve as an introduction to the training, one that pops up if Cinnaroll succeeds in her training and one that pops up if Cinnaroll fails her training. ...what did I just get myself into. Okay, first priority: just have the introduction pictures done! The rest is just icing on the cake!

Other than that, I worked on some more music! I now have music done for the intro scene, as well as a couple of songs for the main section of the game.

Wednesday is going to be another crazy day for me, I'm not entirely sure how much I can get done. Let's's my top priorities to get done tomorrow:

- Make some sketches of the final day portion of the game.

- Make some sketches of the intro scene.

- Make portraits of the teacher trainers for the training regimen.

- Make music for the final day!


Day 5

Alas and alack, I really wasn't able to do much of anything today. After work I pretty much jumpstarted right into doing errands and appointments and all that fun stuff. I was able to crank out some pictures for the final portion of the game, like so:

So, I'm thinking that for the final day, the day of the marathon, there will be four unique obstacles that correlate to a different portion of Cinnaroll's stats - the climbing wall for strength, hurdles for jumping, a river for swimming and the home stretch for agility. I think that I'm gonna put down some switches or if statements that run through how many points are in each attribute - if the player passes, then Cinnaroll goes through the obstacle with flying colors. If not, she'll totally lose it and lose her place. So, in order for her to win the gold, Cinnaroll needs to overcome all four obstacles!

Tomorrow I have time again for coding, so that's just what I'll do! My goals for tomorrow are:

- Implement in the new graphics I made the past few days into the game.

- Work on the final day, with the different if statements and such.

- Possibly work on the intro?

- More music! More!!

Basically tomorrow is marathon day, hip hip hooray!


Day 6

BAH. I thought I would've gotten more done today, but my coding time got cut short. At the very least, I got done with another music track and I implemented a text system! I pretty much got it off of a Youtube tutorial, but hey! Whatever works, right?

I was hoping to really implement in the different test variables for the marathon today, but it took me so long to wrestle with the text system that I wasn't able to do anything about it today...but hey! I've gotten the system down for not only the final day, but for the training rooms as well! Now I can implement that into the intro with ease! Hopefully!

To make up for lost time, I'm hoping to do a ton of coding when I get back from work tomorrow. Fingers crossed! Here's what I want to accomplish tomorrow:

- FOR SURE implement in the if statements and such for the final day!

- Work on the introduction

- Make music for the final day

- If I can, draw more trainer portraits and intro/final day pictures

Sorry for no pictures today! I'll try to make up for it tomorrow.


Day 7

halfway to go I have to get through this brick wall

So, today was spent coding. I first off coded in an intro and a result text screen for the different trainings, like so:

Don't worry about the sprite placements afterwards, I'll fix those up in no time. I just need to draw some portraits of the other trainers and it'll be good!

I also started to try and code the final day. What I want to do for the final day is have it broken down into different checks. The game will check if the player has a high enough stat of something, and if they do, they pass the check. The string coding for this is a bit wonky, however, and I don't know why. It just...keeps repeating the same string out of nowhere. See?

I'm going to give another shot at it tomorrow, but if I still can't figure out what to do, I'm gonna ask for some help. I feel like this is probably an easy fix but I don't know how to fix it...

At the very least, I've gotten progress done with the training rooms, so there's a silver lining. Still, I really wish I didn't feel so burnt out just from trying to fix a simple check. What can you do?

Here's what I want to do tomorrow:

- Buy an aux cord so I can record my music onto the computer, finally!

- Work on the text bug for the final day

- Draw trainer portraits

Anything else done tomorrow is just cake!


Day 8

I worked on a lot of things today! One thing I did was buy an aux cord so I could record my music I made on Warioware DIY to the computer, the sound turned out a lot better than I thought it would! I also found a little workaround for the string variable problem I had yesterday - it's clunky, but it works. As always, if I have time, I'll make it...less clunky.

I also started to sketch out some pictures for an introduction cutscene. Right now, I only have the sketches uploaded just in case I can't get to finishing them all, but at least the introduction room doesn't look so bare anymore.

Oh, I also adjusted the positions of most of the buttons and sprites so they look much more uniform!

Aaaah, it looks so much better...ignore the little Cinnaroll on the top right, that's just for testing out the final day. Mini-Cinnaroll won't be there when I upload the game. I really feel like the game is coming together nicely! I'm trying to focus on the things I've done so far, rather than focus on things that I should've done. Well, let's see, what should I do tomorrow...I should:

- Make the remainder trainer portraits

- Make backgrounds for the trainer rooms

- Compile the final day together

- Improve on the game over scene

Once again, everything else that gets done tomorrow is just cake!


Day 9

Another day mostly spent coding! One huge thing I did was draw the remainder trainer portraits and drew individual backgrounds for each of the training regimens. Now all of the training rooms are totally unique!

I also streamlined the final day aspect of the game and made different rooms for the different endings you can get. There are four different endings: one for getting gold, silver, bronze or getting last place. It all depends on how high Cinnaroll's different stats are and if they can pass a test variable! I also redid the game over screen so that there's a little cutscene instead of just a static picture of Cinnaroll up and leaving. However, it's a bit buggy, so I'm going to need to improve on that...

Oh, also! I want to show you guys the intro cutscene I have so far. Obviously, I still need to ink and color these, but I still wanted to put them up here.

Looks like the majority of what I need to do now are primarily more writing and art based, and not so much coding based. So, I guess that sets things up for tomorrow nicely. Because I'll be going back to work, once again, who knows how much time I'll actually have, but here's what I would like to get done soon:

- Write scripts for the different endings

- Draw little framed backgrounds for each of the training regimens, a la Princess Maker 2

- Draw different statuses of Cinnaroll, depending on how low her vitality is (I'd like to at least do an exhausted picture, just to show the player that hey, you're pushing her too hard!)

- Start drawing the different results of the final day marathon

- If I can code anything, work on the talk button


Day 10

Woah, it's getting to the double digits now!

Today I had a very, very long day at work. So much so that I didn't have any time to code today! However, in the wee hours of the morning and in the evening after work, I was able to do several things. First, I made a couple of extra sprites for Cinnaroll when she's exhausted:

This sad little Cinnaroll will show up if her vitality stat goes down a certain number. This is just to show the player, 'Hey! You're wearing her down too much! Raise up her vitality soon or you'll get a game over!'. Just giving them a visual warning before they're kicked into a game over scenario.

I also worked on little background frames for the different training regimens! This is so the trainer and Cinnaroll aren't just training in a void.

Eh. Crude, but it'll work. If I have time to code tomorrow, I'll implement them in and such.

I was also able to write a few scripts for each of the different endings, as well as preliminary sketches for the different endings!

Now, I'm not sure if I'll have time to code tomorrow. Same as last week, my husband's days off are Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and he really likes to use the PC during his days off. Still, there's plenty to do that doesn't require me to use the PC. What I'd like to accomplish tomorrow are:

- Sketch final day marathon results

- Ink and color the intro pictures

- If I can code tomorrow, implement the exhausted Cinnaroll pictures and the trainer frame pictures into the game

- Work on the talk button some more

- Work on some more music!


Day 11

Slowly but surely, it's getting close to being finished! At least, I believe I'm all done with implementing the core mechanics of the game, all that's left now is to draw some more pictures for the different scenarios and adjust a few things. My husband tested out the game and gave me some helpful feedback, so I'll be able to put those into action soon.

I got the talk button working and made the stats page a bit easier to read!

I think I might redo the main menu just a little bit, if only because I'm not even sure what I'd put in for options. I mean, I'd do turning off the music, I guess, but I'm not 100% sure how to turn the music off and have it stay off. So, I think I'll delete it, unless I can think of any noteworthy options for this short game.

I also implemented little backgrounds for the training regimens, so it doesn't look like the characters are floating in the void!

My husband told me that there should be little unique animations for each training regimen, and I told him that if I had enough time, I'd make some. I really hope I have enough time to do that! There's still a few days left...

I also made some panels for the game over cutscene!

She mad, and rightfully so! If you let her vitality go down to zero, you'll get a very mad and very exhausted Cinnaroll!

Okay, what should get done next...

- Continue sketching marathon result pictures

- Sketch out the four ending pictures

- Revamp the main menu, add some more visuals in there! A potted plant maybe, or a window! Or maybe even both!

- Actually make the marathon music and don't get sidetracked recreating other music

- If possible, make sprites of Cinnaroll doing the different training regimens

- If I have time, clean up some pictures that have coloring outside of the panel frames!


Day 12

Oh geez, it's really down to the wire now! Unfortunetly, I hardly got anything done game-wise today. I think I only had an hour of free time to work on it, and it was spent sketching pictures for the different cutscenes. I was only able to ink and color one picture.

There's Cinnaroll and the other racers! Who will win? Hopefully Cinnaroll, if you coach well enough!

Um...there's not much else to talk about for this day, so.

Look at this bread turtle. That is a nice bread turtle.

Bread turtle loves you and wishes you luck on your game development.

To do hopefully tomorrow: all of the things I said I would yesterday for tomorrow.

- 8T


Day 13

AUGH GEEZ, I thought I'd have more time today to work on this! Ah well. The time that I did spend on this game was simply drawing more pictures for the marathon cutscenes. Like this one, for example!

This is what you see if you didn't raise Cinnaroll's strength up enough to pass the test. Hang in there, Cinna!

Looks like I've gotta really bring the scope down for the remaining things that I'd like to put in. I'd really REALLY like to make different sprite animations for Cinnaroll for the different training regimens, but it looks like I just won't have enough time to do that. In either case, after work tomorrow, I've REALLY gotta get into crunch time for this! Wish me luck!

At least get this stuff done, self:

- Finish coloring marathon result pictures

- Implement all of these into the game

- Balance out the training regimens and the stats they give out/take away least try to make one more song for the game?



24 hours remain

Okay. Today I was able to start creating a couple more tracks that I'd like to use for my game, I drew the remaining pictures I need for the different cutscenes, I slightly revamped the main menu of the game (I pretty much just removed the options button) and did a slight revamp of the training regimens so that they not only give the player extra stats in other areas, but take some stat points away in other areas too. That way, there's more of a challenge to the game, although I hope I didn't make it too any case, I feel like I'm in pretty good shape to submit the game tomorrow! Knock on wood, fingers crossed and all that. feels weird to just submit this without any pictures to show, so let me show you another picture I made today:


Get this done, self:


- Then order a pizza afterwards because I guess I deserve it?


I finished my game!

I really learned a lot while making this, and for my very first game ever, I guess it's not so bad! Let me know what you think of it, if it's too hard or easy or buggy or what have you. I want to be able to balance out the game so that it'll still be fun!

Regardless, thank you very much for looking at my devlog! I had fun!