Well, it's certainly a broad theme :P
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Thank you very much, that's awesome to hear!
Yeah I definitely think I'll carry on with this at some point, got a bunch of ideas I didn't get chance to explore in this Jam.
Thanks for the heads-up on the crash too, I'll look into it asap.
Hello there Jammers!
With less than a day left for everyone to get their ratings in *wink wink nudge nudge* I thought I'd write a small thing on my entry, Backpackalypse, and how I'd evolve it if I carried on (which is something I'm considering).
Aside from the obvious polish, bug fixing, additional content and balancing (the games kind of impossible right now, oops) here's some of the features I'd consider implementing/expanding:
Right now the game has a couple of faux-narrative elements in it, mainly in the form of each mission having a randomly selected description string "There's bandits, get em!" etc.
This text doesn't actually have any wider bearing on the game. It would be great if the player could experience quest-lines and consequences by interacting with different missions.
Clumsy example: A person knocks at your door asking you to save their family from bandits, you go and do that, gaining the family as survivors, but then the surviving bandits come back to haunt you in a later mission etc.
FLESHED OUT SQUAD MEMBERS
Initially I wanted more personality for the squad members (i.e. not just a single counter) but that got cut pretty quickly for time reasons.
It'd be awesome if the game took some light X-Com inspiration and gave you squad members with some form of identity to recognize and get attached to. Even if this was just a randomly generated name string and image I think it would add a lot.
I also considered the idea of the squad members having their own stats, special abilities, proficiencies, progression routes and maybe even different bags.
VISUAL BATTLE SIMULATIONS
Currently the games battle simulation is completely invisible to the player up until they see the 'Alive' or 'Killed' message on the mission roundup screen. This is super underwhelming and means that the player never gets to see the fruits of their labors, how their equipment choices actually affected the game in what should be the most exciting part of the day cycle.
I'm not 100% sure what I'd do here, and there is something to be said for having the action implied rather than fully revealed, but I think some sort of animation sequence in which the squad members fight their way through the Neon Horde could be exciting, satisfying as well as showing off the world outside/enemies which is something I regret Backpackalypse doesn't really do.
MORE UNIQUE ITEM TYPES
One of my key design pillars for this game was that I wanted the player to have a difficult choice about what they put in their bag, similar to the feeling I had with Resident Evil 4 "Hmm do I take this shotgun ammo, or this tasty, tasty sea bass".
I'd want to put in more items with unique effects (and shapes) to create more of a meaningful choices, for instance, every item now mostly just goes towards winning the mission, but I'd also like to implement some sort off utility item which changes the outcome of a successful mission, i.e. 'Get more Food' etc. There'd probably be room for narrative items too.
Those are my initial high level ideas, it'd be great to get additional thoughts on the matter, any ideas or criticisms are welcome!
This jams been super fun and it's been awesome to play all the entries, hopefully it happens next year too!
One final thing to throw out there; as some might be able to tell from the window size I picked, Backpackalypse is aimed at mobile devices. I was going to include an APK alongside the EXE but I noticed a weird interaction that kind of breaks the APK version.
In my game, each item which you place in the bag is an active object set to Drag and Drop movement, to get one of these items out of the bag, you click/tap the corresponding icon in the inventory and it creates the active object for said item.
On PC, it has no trouble creating the object then snapping to the mouse, on the APK however, the object is created but you have to initiate a new click/tap to actually pick it up. I'm sure there's a million solutions to it, just wanted to throw it out there and see if there was any thoughts.
Really creepy and weird (in a good way!). Reminded me a bit of Hugo's Horrific Adventure in style and gamepaly. Felt like a game you'd hear about in a Creepy Pasta, "I got bought this weird old adventure game but when I started playing...things got weird." Love it :)