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Pandaqi

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A member registered Nov 20, 2016 · View creator page →

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Thanks!

And yes, I tried to make the game playable without jumping as well, as I noticed during testing that it takes people some time to get used to it. (I also tried other aiming methods, such as “hold the button and you rotate, release to make the jump”, but they were just too slow.)

Thanks a lot for playing! I’d be interested to hear you expand on your gripes with presentation and tutorial. (As the game was made for a game jam, lack of polish is mostly a lack of time.)

In puzzle games like these, creating a perfect tutorial is crucial to me!

Thanks for playing and uploading a video! Very interesting to actually see how others approach the game and what could be improved.

Thanks a lot! And, well, no (critical) feedback is also feedback :)

Haha, well, having fun is what games are all about, right? :p

Thanks for playing!

Hmm, that’s weird, I’ll look into that. Did you play the web version or downloaded version? On what browser/platform?

And yes, the menu will surely be changed, as more people stumbled over it :)

Thanks! And wow … that’s so smart, never thought of that :p Way smarter than assigning unique buttons to everything, and once you’re on game over you don’t need the arrow keys for anything else, so your idea would work perfectly. I will surely implement that when I update it!

Thanks!

Yes, someone else also mentioned that starting the game with the whole world being visible/accessible … is a bit confusing. And some mechanics (especially inverting) should get more time or an extra tip/tutorial. Will fix that in an update!

Again, thanks for playing!

Thanks a lot!

And I agree. I plan to update the game later, and then you’ll just start with the intro levels only, no chance of moving into a random level at the start :)

(I chose to do it this way because I didn’t want to prevent players from continuing if they couldn’t solve a particularly hard level. But seeing that you can just ask endless hints … this wasn’t actually a problem.)

Thanks for playing! Could you perhaps explain what you found confusing or how you would improve it? That would help immensely with improving this game :)

Wow, thanks a lot for investing that much time in my game! Great to hear you enjoyed it.

This is my first 3D game in a looong time, and in my haste I saw no great way to do a grid, so I agree the grid visual is unpolished.

And others agree with you that the font is indeed suboptimal. I do plan on polishing the game and adding some final worlds, and I will experiment overhauling all text with less curvy fonts then :p (While trying to maintain that magicy, swishy feel.)

As with most things, puzzle design is just practice.

Earlier this year, I released a huge puzzle game (Square Ogre). Even though I can now see the flaws in it, working on a big puzzle game for several months taught me all sorts of things:

  • Not too many levels per world (overwhelming)
  • Everything can be broken into smaller chunks (so do it)
  • Build all mechanics/ideas first and then keep the best ones in the best order (instead of trying to do everything right the first time)
  • If it takes too long to explain your core rule, it’s too complicated. (As you said, I think the core rules for this game are … on the edge of the maximum complexity.)

Additionally, I use a simulation to help me out. It can spit out randomly generated puzzles, following strict requirements I set. I use that as a starting point for inspiration and difficulty curve. (Because actual random puzzles are usually quite ugly and either obvious (1-2 moves) or impossible.)

If you’re really interested, I always write these way too detailed devlogs about my projects: Devlog (on Pandaqi Blog)

Again, thanks for the feedback!

Thanks! And you mentioned exactly the two things I’d change if I had more time.

In level 3, you are taught that “going counterclockwise winds up something in reverse”. (So a grayed-out bunny, when wound up counterclockwise, would invert as they are now wound up “-1”.)

This is a major rule with major implications, so I think it should indeed get more time to sink in with players (and perhaps a few more tutorial images).

When I chose the font, I happened to be on a screen with a really good resolution. Playing the game on my old laptop, I can see where the illegibility comes from.

Lesson for the future: don’t pick fonts when you’re on an amazing screen :p

Thanks! And yes, I’ve learned over the years to reserve 1 or 2 days just for the gamepage (and a (very) basic trailer). It really makes a difference!

Haha loved the texts before each level :)

Would’ve been nice if you could just hold a button and it would keep moving in that direction. But overall a solid 5 minutes of entertainment, as promised.

Thanks in advance to anyone willing to try out my game :) If you did leave a rating, any feedback about it is certainly welcome as well!

Is your game set to “Published” (instead of Draft or Private)? I think that’s necessary for it to show up, though I’m not sure.

Really nice, both gameplay and aesthetics! The overcharging platforms are a simple way to immediately make the game interesting.

Although I must say I was puzzled why I was dying or what I was supposed to do for a moment, because my screen wasn't tall enough to fit the game, so I missed some of the UI :p

Also, the jump in difficulty from level 7 to 8 (I think) is a bit harsh, and eventually caused me to stop playing. But I'm generally terrible at things that need quick precise inputs, so take that with a grain of salt.

Hello!

What started as a project to teach children about the importance of "taking care of your eyes", turned into a huge puzzle game with sight as the main mechanic.

It's called Square Ogre and available now for $3.99: Square Ogre



Even though the game has 500 puzzles (across many worlds), it's very easy to learn: each turn, you move the Ogre one step in any direction, and your goal is always to reach the exit. The core loop never changes, but there will be new rules, mechanics and ideas coming your way all the time!

It's playable by anyone, though mainly geared towards children or family with its theme and setup.

I also don't recommend trying to power through all puzzles in one sitting: this is a game you can fire up once in a while, solve a world, and then take a break when you get stuck on the harder ones ;)

I'm very proud of this game, its ideas and its message, so I hope you give it a try :)

(Where does the name come from? The word "Ogre" sounds a lot like the word for "eyes" in Dutch, my native language, so the game is basically a pun on the expression "square eyes".)

Have fun,

Pandaqi

Thanks for playing and feedback! Yeah I completely understand. When I let others player the game (just after the jam deadline unfortunately), I noticed people sometimes being confused as to why they lost the first few times. I should probably add some audiovisual cues when you're losing and some text explaining _why_ you lost.

And yes, I usually add controller support to my multiplayer games, but for a jam game I thought keyboard would be more universally playable. (As it turns out, not everyone has multiple USB-controllers just lying around like me :p)

Haha yes after submitting I realized I never explained the word gates: you can only open it if your character has that complete word. I saw my playtesters figuring it out quickly, so I never even put so much as a hint about it in the game :p

And that's a very cool idea (getting more moves by spelling words), thanks! I might just add that in a future version :)

Thanks for playing! And yes, if I had more time, I wanted to make a system where you just couldn't move too far away from each other. (Or maybe even a splitscreen, although I doubt how well that would work with the vibe and mechanics of the game.)

Thanks for playing! And yeah, I really love Godot for making Jam games, it's just so fast to make prototypes and try out ideas :) 

Thanks for playing! And also thanks a lot for the detailed feedback, will surely improve those points once the jam is over. (I had many more player actions planned and some mechanics to keep the 2nd player busy as well, but ran out of time!)

Thanks a lot! Sorry to hear about your performance issues :( Any idea what might have caused that? On what machine/OS were you playing the game? 

Thanks a lot!

Well, it's partly part of the original design, and partly not :p I wanted to provide some "3d illusions" and have some mystery as to what's in the level and where, but currently there is too much of that "mystery" and I agree that it's sometimes hard to tell what's going on. I've been thinking a lot about possible solutions, so I'll surely be fixing that, just didn't have time to do so before the jam deadline!

An undo system is also a very good idea.

In case you want to know: there are currently 13 levels, but I plan on turning this game into a full feature project, in which case it will probably end up having like 20-30 levels :)

Thanks again for the kind words and the great feedback!

Interesting mechanical idea (you can only move when jumping), and the game looks kinda cute!

I did have a lot of trouble playing, however. Some feedback:

  • I couldn't press two keys at the same time. So if I jumped and didn't immediately let go of the jump button, I couldn't move. I don't know if this was a design choice (made on purpose), but it just meant I had to sometimes try four or five times before I could jump + move.
  • Additionally, if I just held the "A" or "D" key as I fell down, I could move without having to jump. As soon as it touched the platform, it would keep sliding.
  • It wasn't clear that keys made you jump higher. I tried for ten minutes to grab the key in the bottom left corner on level 1, asking myself: "Am I doing something wrong? I just cannot get the key!" I was about to give up, until I realized there was another key I could grab, which made me jump higher.
  • On that same note: once you fall down on level 1, you just cannot do anything anymore. You don't have enough jump height to grab a single key.
  • Talking about that ... I didn't find the use in rotating? Maybe I'm just stupid, but I couldn't figure out how to use it. You also rotate extremely slowly, which didn't feel right (can't say exactly why).
  • If you are rotated, however, the hitbox/body of the player doesn't align anymore. When upside down, my head kept sinking into platforms for a good amount of pixels :p
  • Minor stuff: maybe rename "About" to "Tutorial" or "Instructions". And when I started level 2, I started too high ("above the actual level"), which meant I was falling through black darkness for a second or so.

I hope you don't find this feedback too harsh, just trying to help :) You're on the right track, just needs some finetuning. Keep making games with interesting mechanics :)

Nice graphics, solid gameplay! Unfortunately wasn't able to make it to wave 10, but I did get close!

Some feedback:

  • Sometimes I pressed on those blocks to place a priest ... and the click didn't register. Usually it would work after two or three clicks. (I played on Windows 10.)
  • I kept saving points so I could buy the heavy priest ... but it never really paid off for me. Maybe make the heavy priest a bit more powerful?
  • Maybe show the game explanation whenever you start a new game, instead of only when you pause the game. Now I was completely confused for a moment :p
  • Additionally, the in-game explanation gives nice descriptions of the priests like "quick, insightful, steady and wise" (for the range priest) ... but that doesn't really tell me what they do or what effects they have. So the first few rounds I was just blindly placing things to see what would happen.
  • (I know, I know, the explanation is on the game page. But I think it's always smart to have it in-game as well, for those idiots that don't read the complete game page first ... like me.)

Nevertheless, looks and plays really well, especially for a game jam game! You could easily use it as a solid base to turn this into a nice tower defense game, if you want.

(And I'm always happy to see Love2D get some love :) )

Thank you! But that's very strange ... that level has never failed in all my testing. 

What it might be, though, is that there's a detail I might not have explained well enough: you need at least one block of (vertical) distance to actually "fall" on top of the other player. Otherwise, you just stand/walk on top of the other player. Does that help? I would love for you to be able to get past level 2 :)

Thank you so much, what an amazing and detailed feedback :)

I also thought about switching the controls to always be on the "right" side, but it would probably be very confusing, especially if players are really close to each other ... The controls would swap continuously as players switch sides! Can still give it a try, though.

Yes! Not being able to see when something is in front of something is also my major issue. Your idea about painting blocks depending on the layer also crossed my mind: I think it's possible to make that look good with some shader magic, so I will try that once the game jam is over. Moving the camera isn't possible unfortunately, because the game is completely 2D and there is no camera :p

Haha I do agree the connection to the theme is a loose one. Leaps and bounds => players must take a LEAP of faith, and they are BOUNDED by what the other player can see.

Again, thanks a lot for this response, seriously made my day.

Thanks a lot! And yes, that is a known bug: on some devices, sometimes, you suddenly turn twice. It has frustrated me for days, but I just cannot find the source of the issue. Hopefully one day soon I will solve it :)

The graphics look polished and fun!

Movement feels nice, quick and responsive. Except that there's something off (I can't put my finger on it) that makes certain jumps a little imprecise and sometimes too difficult ... could just be my lack of skill.

I also second feedback already made:

  • The music becomes a bit annoying with many restarts. If you can't solve that, maybe a slightly different soundtrack could soften this issue? Or creating 3 slightly different soundtracks, playing one randomly on a restart?
  • I understand your decision not to use checkpoints - it surely makes the
    game harder and more tense. At the same time, it just made me quit after failing for the nth time halfway through. In general, I've noticed players want to be able to retry a challenge as quickly as possible, instead of redoing something that's not challenging anymore for a few minutes (every time). For me, personally, the game is hard enough as it is :p
  • On some levels, you can't look ahead far enough, which means you're basically jumping blind the first few times you enter the level. (After that, you have somewhat memorized it and can navigate.) This would be fine ... if the game had checkpoints.
  • Feedback on damage (like an animation where the player quickly displays a red color, or something) would also be really helpful.

All in all, great graphics, great controls, solid core game mechanic, and you're able to create a really fun atmosphere where you just want to retry until you succeed! 

Thanks! Do you mean that you couldn't get past level two? Or that you got stuck temporarily, but managed to solve it and progress? (If it's the first case, then I surely need to create a less steep difficulty curve.)

Oh and, I'll play and rate your game as soon as I get home tonight, it's at the top of my list :)

Thanks a lot!

Thanks a lot for the great feedback! I initially slowed down the movements to give the game a more "relaxing feel", but I can totally see how that becomes frustrating. Will surely make it snappier when I update the game. And yes, I too see some potential, so I hope to expand on the game once the jam is over and add more levels/mechanics :)

Very impressive! Initially, the graphics and wall of text can be a bit intimiditing/overwhelming. Maybe just remove the city in the background when you're at the menu?

Once I started the game, everything was quite clear and well balanced: challenging, but doable.

(It did take a few tries to realize the red things gave you coins, but that's probably because my head associates "coins = yellow thingies" and there was a disconnect in my brain :p)

Just to comment on the other comments: I only had slight performance issues on my machine, and I have an old HP laptop, running Windows 10 and Firefox. Maybe that feedback helps with performance optimization?

I think this could become a really immersive game with some polishing! (By which I mean: clearer menus/explanation, varity in visuals and variety in game mechanics.)

Great idea! I'm also trying to give constructive feedback on as many games as I can. Don't know if I have the time for all of them, though :p

Here's my game: https://itch.io/jam/game-off-2019/rate/520355

Really nice mechanics and puzzle execution. The shift in soundtrack (when you shift between platforms) is also nice and well-executed.

Some feedback:

  • I've found a bug: sometimes, when pressing SHIFT, you immediately die and are reset to the last checkpoint.
  • Have you ever heard of "coyote time"? Basically, it means that you still allow a player to jump, even if he's at the edge of the platform (or slightly over the edge). I've failed stages twenty times because I pressed jump when I was near the edge of the platform, but the game thought I was already falling off, so I died.  To be honest, became quite frustrating after a while :p (Another solution would be to make the player walk slower, so there's more room for error when pressing JUMP. Not my preferred solution.)
  • Some sort of menu/way to quit the game would be nice. (Now I had to pull tricks to force quit the game.)
  • One of the first puzzles (the one with the gem up high and the platform that moves upwards) could use a checkpoint halfway, or be slightly less difficult. It was a great puzzle/challenge, but maybe better suited later in the game.

Besides that, great game and great gameplay!

Looks absolutely stunning and sounds great!

Unfortunately, performance is so bad that the game is close to unplayable for me. Also, waiting 30 seconds before being able to restart isn't ideal.

Some more feedback:

  • For someone who's never played a similar game, it took me 7 tries before I understood how you could fly (without dying). Maybe some more explanation in that department? Some small tutorial or overview of controls within the game itself?
  • Or maybe some settings/configuration which allows me to lower the graphics quality, so performance becomes reasonable?
  • The ESCAPE key doesn't work when you're in the game over state.
  • Fighting seems a little fiddly, but that might be because of my performance issues. (Whatever I did, I mostly seemed to miss the eggs, while they seemed to be able to hit me quite well :p)


Hope that criticism wasn't too harsh, I do love the look and idea of the game.