Does the itch.io version come with a steam code?
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So! Mickio here, writing a post on the creation of our hit game Basilisk. this has been my first video game project as a game designer and while my two cousins had done games before, this was their first one to make from beginning to end as they always feature creep'd their projects into oblivion. On top of that they weren't ultra familiar with Unity when it comes to 2d projects so lets just say that we didn't start this project with professionalism and confidence.
The first step for me and for the game was to pick a cart. I always gravitate towards fantasy wether I want to or not but as I scanned these awesome pieces of art one of them jumped at me not only through its aesthetics but also the game idea that jumped into my mind almost immediately after looking at it.
This beautiful piece of clay art by Philip Summers really piqued my interest. The large snake-like basilisk reminded me of many older arcade games such as Donkey Kong or Sinistar where the marquee character was normally the antagonist. The basilisk also then reminded me of Snake, the classic game of being bored with a crappy phone. The idea then came to me of making a game where you goal was not to collect fruits as the snake but instead to kill said snake before he became too big to handle. The fact the protagonist would be a lady was also a nice plus as most of my works were either pretty damn neutral or a bit too man-centric due to premade assets not having a lot of girl characters or simply a creative choice.
Once I showed it to the cousins and they agreed on the concept and the idea of making a snake AI excited Kevin, I jumped on a pile of paper to begin writing and drawing down the design document, bible of mechanics for any project. My goal was to create a score attack arcade-y game similar to other masterworks of the genre such as Annalynn and Cook-out! with Toadette. Two games which were big influences throughout the process in terms of recreating an early arcade feel in modern times with modern techniques. This is the original and first of like 4 pages of documentation i ended up writing.
As you can see its a bit chaotic but while things changed such as the spawn rate of peasants, houses and mountains amongst other things, this was the basic gist of the game and it still is right now. You might notice how obtuse the move and spawn rates of things is with a ton of different gradations. While this was firstly to make sure there was a feel of constant progress to each level, this was also inspired by a lot of Namco and Konami games from that era such as Tower of Druaga (also a big inspiration) and Xevious which had arcane and obtuse mechanics you would never know outside of looking at dip switches through a magnifying glass but were open for young me to read and tinker with as a child when playing the ds collections of namco and konami games which allowed me to really delve into how old arcade games worked design and tech wise.
One inspiration that also definitively snuck its way in there without me noticing was the Trogdor "arcade" game by the brother chaps. From the NPCs being called peasants to the way they come out of cottages and are eaten by the big bad lizard, it was a concept I think could have really used expansion and I do hope to have made it justice here.
After that we got to work on actually making the damn thing. While my cousins were programming I worked on well...everything else ahah! First priority for me was the art needed for the game. I dug through tons of asset packs I had gotten from the bundle for racial justice or somesuch along with making some custom art here and there such as the grid and Basilisk along with modifying sprites like the protagonist which originally looked more like princess peach than a brave adventurer. Sadly the sprite was too small and my skills not good enough to really do it justice but oh well.
I tried adding feet but couln't make it look good enough. Soon enough we had actual game mechanics going on and after tweaking some numbers and making a big list of remaining tasks to keep the team motivated i jumped on looking for music and SFX to add to the game. We didn't really have the time for me to bust out the synthesizer and make sound effects but we got some real nice ones along with some songs that....kinda fit? That era of arcade games we were shooting for had really nice sprites but mostly nonexistant bloopy music which I couldn't find that I liked but the one we found was really friggin great so it worked either way. The only sounds I made from scratch was the digitized voices which me and Derick thought would be hilarious for the game to have horribly bitcrunched voices and I think it was. I just recorded myself being an idiot in audacity and did some tricks until it sounded terrible enough to be convincing and short enough to not be utterly annoying, only a little bit ;).
It took us about two weekends and some work in-between to finish the project to a point we thought was good enough. We would have continued polishing it (along with adding a multiplayer mode where one player controls the Basilisk!) but we ran out of time as the month nearly ended (before a time extension happened!) and the cousins were moving back near Montreal to continue their studies as they were only here for summer break. If we were to keep working on it and make a deluxe version, i'd love to port it on steam and maybe make a few bucks on it but I doubt that will happen realistically for a long long while.
Anyway, I hope you enjoy the game and have lots of comments to leave below so I know what I need to improve in my future designs. I mainly do board and card games so this was a first for me as a designer so i'd love to hear some feedback! I am free for new projects now and im quite happy to have participated in that one, though. With this subtle advertising for me done, I wish everyone a good game jam and a nice day!
No problems. Im a designer myself and I know from experience that releasing something and not getting an ounce of feedback without browbeating people is very real and very very frustrating so I had no choice but to comment once i saw this was your first project. I do wanna mention though that i already followed ya folks on twitter beforehand and your DMs are not, in fact, open.
So with your last project being more of an adventure module or small setting, its pretty obvious what the music is for, its kind of like the OST of a video game or movie but how does the album fit with this project this time? An RPG can encompass many many more situations and moods and is a lot less tightly directed even if the other one was more a setting book.
This game is alright. Making big combos is fun but the gameplay of it dosent emphasizes this since you want to do small explosions on the bottom in the same place to break blocks and reach higher levels. The sound effect of placing down is good but such rythmic setup really could use actual music instead of ambiance. There's nothing telling you when the blocks you have are gonna fall down on their own and it gets faster as you increase level (as it should) so you never can know how much time you have to place blocks. While the animations are nice the hammer hitting blocks feels really slow and with the ambiance it feels like a slow game but im not sure that was the intent. Its also lacking in diversity a lot. Now tetris is a classic and has no diversity of mechanics (disregarding sequels with bombs and stuff) and this one does have different levels of blocks and such that needs more explosions to break but your still doing the same thing. You explode blocks to get rid of them to get more space to explode more of the bottom blocks. You get more points from making huge daisy chains of blocks but whats the point when it dosent advance you in any way? You dont increase in levels or difficulty by doing so as far as the game tells you, so why bother?
I dont want to lambast a small team's first project but as a big BIG fan of "shit falls down" puzzle games, it pains me to see this one fall short like that.
Its certainly got a lot of effort poured into it and it shows but i find it really heavy-handed to me with its topics. Kinda feels like being blundgeonned over the head by whatever topics the dev wanted to talk about to a point where its borderline absurd and it kinda feels like a joke more than it trying to be realistic.
Yo! Im a game designer with a focus on card and board games as well as roguelikes. Im a big fan of dungeon crawlers and I have made ambiance music for a while now so im willing to help out and do one or both as needed. You can contact me or on discord at Mickio#7085
Reading this was like the breakfast club of the internet. While I was never into the MFGG community I can respect such an old and venerable website as that one. There is a legacy to many cultures on the internet and to me it feels like these places and these legends as you put it are just as culturally significant as any other legends and cultures from countries or groups of people. It happenned much faster and as such it is less engrained in people but I think it is still here and it is still very legitimate. Its like everywhere you can see these micronations all stuck together, always with some overlap but never too much.
I just hope that it will all be archived and saved for future generations, just like ancient history, these things can easily be forgotten and lost, leaving us with only witnesses and speculation as to what these ancient times and traditions were.
Hey there, devs! I have been playing a lot of this game so far (since i love deckbuilding games and dice rolling games) and I must say that so far this game has been quite the blast! So many mechanics are introduced and mixed together to make the most builds possible with such a simple premise and ruleset and some very elegant answers were found to make the game very snappy and fun. for example the issue that you cannot customize 4 dice as you can customize a deck of cards and the whole game being made around this issue by making games quicker and giving you a literal stream of potential upgrades to your dice. It does make the game more "mobile-y" and less full-fledged like slay the spire and its ilk but since it is fashioned around board games in a vein similar to One Deck Dungeon.
I do think some things could have been done differently to make it more rpg-y such as events and other out-of-combat things but you would lose from the hyper-distilled gameplay you have so far of picking a handful of relics, a class, buying shit and busting heads until the death of you or the boss ensues. After all, Card Quest is very similar in that it is a continuous beatdown extravaganza though this one does include different paths you can take with different but similarly themed enemies. You dont know their special abilities but you can see things like their health, armor and position and such allowing you to make a call on which batch of assholes you think you can take on better. I make the comparison since its structure of picking a theme beforehand and then going into smackdown central until death ensues is similar. Also like card quest this feels like a game where the complexity and fun comes from the variety and complexity of enemies you have to face being wrangled by the RNG of what you have at your disposal.
As for criticisms I think the bag of gold is an item that feels almost essential to have equipped no matter what as it is one of the only way of getting a constant, predictable stream of economy going in order to upgrade dice which can be very difficult sometimes with only two faces with coins on them. This is greatly alleviated by phantom coins and Link spam but i think the problem is not that its too good, but maybe that its too essential atm im not certain.
Also it kind of feels like the elementalist is a bit weak. His whole shtick is that he's the active ability guy however since they are all in limited quantities it feels really bad to have to rely on them. Unlike with every other mechanic there is no way of increasing the amount of active skills using dice (except with very specific captures) Which makes him really not super fun. I havent had great runs with him but i think the problem is less that he's weak but more that since he's all about spamming limited ressources he's not great feeling. Elemental attacks are cool but im not certain it really fixes it in all honesty.
Overall great work you guys and keep up the good work! Hope the game just keeps improving!
There is a board game about customizing dice called "Dice Forge". While i do love this kind of customization-based euro game, the customization seemed frankly too simple even with the expansions. So this game is all i wanted from dice forge and more!
Thanks for replying! If you need some help i'd love to participate in making the sequel a reality. Im not much of a programmer however I am an enterprising artist with my main ability being music. Im also a game designer and am currently working on a board game project and some other things. So if you need/want my help you can contact me more private-like on discord at Mickio#7085
This game is...interesting. It looks halfway between commandable for a genre known to use ASCII and like all of the game was badly exported out of paint.net version 0.7 on windows bandera. Messages print a bajillion of them when trying to open locked doors, Insane amount of blatant typos (defence and sacerfice anyone?), absolutely lifeless voice acting although the fact there is voice acting is impressive. Really the "main character" is the worse offender. I could do a better job for crying out loud! Repetitive and short music thats kinda distracting and dosent fit often, it dosent say what hooch does nor is it clear what it does, The dungeon looks horrible and the art is quite incipid, the way dungeons are generated in prefab rooms connected by 5 doors is a smart but extremeely lazy and and samey way of connecting the prefabs and modifiers are still written in programming text allSmushedTogether
However tha game has a ton of really good ideas executed very well. Honestly this game feels like if it got a bit more development time to go absolutely balls to the walls with its ideas, this game could be absolutely amazing and reach Heroes of Might and Magic III in terms of senseless, awesomely crazy build potentiality.
Magic spells go from mundane to fucking buck-wild with summonning shopkeeps and unkillable skeletons.
the "crafting system" is more like alchemy and goes wild with RNG its great and super creative.
Absolutely mundane and and uninteresting perks as well as ones that are insane and make you think of the possibilities of what you could do with them.
the game completely discourages the normal roguelike tactic of choke points by having enemies teleport or summon enemies in your back.
And it has randomised tiered loot ala diablo along with a gem socketing mechanic which i always love dearly
Its a real damn shame that the game's development seemed to have ended two or so years ago because this is one of those projects that if given the kind of eternal-development-cycle things like Dwarf fortress, Nethack and others have, it would turn into something truly, deeply amazing. That or go the Infra Arcana route and update the game once every two year and update the game in ways so radical the old version feels like a completely different, inferior game.
Yea. feels like the buttons to press are basicly randomly generated to somewhat fit the song's BPM and nothing else. The idea is good but i dont think this kind of execution can work as well as they want it to.
It appears you've gotten down pat the "coffee-break puzzle-RPG with cute graphics and SFX" down pat. First tower of issyos and now this? I think this one's gonna be a pretty good one. My advice for the future of the game would be to try and add more customization for later other than just the placement of those tokens. There's only so much you can do with dice that much is true however the whole point of using the medium of cards is that they come with inherent RNG for the most part. Maybe use D4s and D8s? dunno.
i gotta admit its a lot of very hard to do answers. my thoughts would be that a game like this would use a system similar to that of those open-world LOTR game where you have a whole hierarchy of asshats that fight over each other and occasionally you or civilization. That or maybe something from another roguelike: Dungeonmans. In that game if you die in a dungeon, the guy who killed you gets a fancy name and title and becomes the new guy running the dungeon. If you died in the overworld or something then a new looter camp or dungeon would pop up with your killer chillin there along with the bones of your previous dungeonman.