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A jam submission

Vard The VampireView game page

You're a vampire. You have blood powers. You slowly bleed out because of them. Drink folks to stay alive.
Submitted by Jordan Han (@ThatGuyYouDK) — 43 minutes, 10 seconds before the deadline
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Vard The Vampire's itch.io page

Results

CriteriaRankScore*Raw Score
Volatile#152.5562.923
Cold#171.9512.231
Hot#231.8162.077
Overall#232.0182.308
Dark#241.7492.000

Ranked from 13 ratings. Score is adjusted from raw score by the median number of ratings per game in the jam.

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Comments

(+1)

This game was interesting, to a point where I really wondered what everything did. What states triggered "power ups" if you can even call them that. I would include a bit more input and clarity on this, because it was rather random to me. But the story around it made it all worth it, since at least it was explained that I was a bit of an idiot vampire anyway. ;)

Developer(+1)

Hi there! Apologies for the lack of clarity on how different player states (as I call them) worked, I'll work harder to make that more clear in-game in the future. In the meantime, it's like this:

Magic/Health is greater than 100%: Powered up state! Move faster, but health/magic drains faster as you're kind of in a careless overdrive mode. Would have been a greater attack range too, but game jam time constraints and my poor planning meant I didn't implement that.

Magic/Health is less than 10%: Survival state! Move faster, no longer need to hold attack key, but enemies will still hurt you (also I think I made health/magic drain slightly slower so you have a better chance of coming back from it).

In both states different from the norm, all people/enemies are automatically alerted to you, think you're dangerous, and run away or run towards you.

Hope that clears it up a bit, and I'm glad that you liked the writing! Thanks for playing the game and messing about with my wonderfully spaced-out vampire!

(+1)

Nice entry! I always love it when a game pulls a "Would you kindly..." and guilts you for playing it!

As a prototype this is fun, but I think it could use a little more work to be enjoyable.

1. Movement isn't normalized, so moving diagonally is twice as effective as move in a cardinal direction.

2. Increasing movement speed near death was a nice touch and it would have been nice to see this happen whenever you attempt to feed. This would also have the added benefit of making it easier to hunt down those pesky blood sacks and make the bloodloss when using this ability seem like a fair trade off.

3. Bloodloss in general didn't seem balanced. It never seemed like I gained enough blood from feeding to actually sustain my health (but maybe that was the point?)

4. Having no means of dealing with enemies was some what frustrating and they always seemed to catch up to you unless you moved diagonally (intentional?)

5. Great presentation and writing! This is the strongest part of the game. It's clear you put a lot of effort into it.  Extra kudos for the multiple control options.

Developer(+1)

Hi there! Thank you very much for the feedback! This is genuinely helpful and actionable, and confirms a few of my own thoughts I had while developing it.

For the first point, I wasn't entirely sure how to handle the movement at the beginning of making the prototype, as I hadn't decided quite what "camera angle" I was going to design the art to be on. If I knew in advance that I was going to set it at the isometric angle I did, I would've normalized the movement. Instead, it was placeholder move logic, and after I made and implemented the art... I forgot to change the movement. My fault, that could've been solved if not for my lack of pre-production.

The second through fourth points were - not to try and absolve myself of responsibility - primarily the result of me being the sole developer, and not allowing myself the time I needed to test (or find other testers) for balance. I actually did consider making the player move faster while feeding but moved on to implementing other features, and I questioned the ability of the player to stay alive with the rate of blood draining compared to how much blood was restored from feeding. I knew I wanted the enemies to be difficult to escape from, but didn't quite allow myself the time to make it as fair as I wanted it to be. Essentially, poor planning on my part all around, and I apologise for these issues in the prototype.

I'm very glad you liked the presentation of the game, so thank you very much! I was aiming to make the game a nice cross between the usual brooding moods you often see and my own sense of humour (though I lean heavily into the humour on the game's page). And having multiple control options was important to me; I've still not quite learned how to implement re-configurable controls, so I made a reluctant compromise of just hard-coding a few different button options.

Thanks for your time, and thanks for entertaining my goofy vampire child! I might update the game after rating is over with some improvements and fixes.

(+1)

Glad it was helpful! Thanks for sharing some insight into your process.

Things totally change and with a game jam you gotta make those last minute pivots. My feedback about normalizing the movement had more to do with speed increase when moving in a diagonal direction (a common problem in older FPS games) than it did about moving at 45 degree angles, in an isometric fashion.

No reason to apologize either. It's a game jam. It's impressive enough you managed to get it all done in time and on your own. It's still a major accomplishment :D

For a jam it's a bit much to offer reconfigurable controls, as that level of polish is distracts from all the other super important stuff that needs doing. I think your implementation was a great decision to offer alternative controls for the time available.

Would definitely love to play an improved version. Keep up the good work!

Developer(+1)

No problem whatsoever!

Yeah, I did get what you meant about normalizing the movement and diagonals being faster. The wording of my response wasn't the best, apologies. I basically said to myself "I'll just shove this very basic move logic in here to start prototyping with, even though it bothers me that it has that movement issue thing. I'll come back and improve it when I know when more of the game is done, especially the background art, since that might change how I want the player to move," and completely forgot to go back to it in the end.

And thank you very much! :D I'm proud of what I managed to get done, hindsight's just always 20/20 with ways it could have been better.

You may be right that reconfigurable controls might have been too much for the time available. It was a case of "if it's simple enough to understand and implement, I'll just do it, because accessibility is good." And... everything I found was a bit too complex for me to just throw in on the fly. But I'm glad that the alternative controls were seen as a good alternative!

Thank you again for the kind words! I'll do my best to keep up a good standard for games I make in the future, and improvements I make to this game.

Submitted(+1)

10/10 would plaid shirt and chill again.

Developer

Ayyy, thanks, friendo! Glad you like my strange vampire child and their stellar fashion choices :D

Submitted(+1)

I really like the idea of a vampire that hurts himself when trying to attack others. The whole description on the game page is superb, great humor!

Developer(+1)

Thank you so much! I'm glad you liked the idea and description - writing that description was honestly a blast, so I'm happy my sense of humour came across alright. :D