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I stumbled upon this project and found the premise to be very interesting, so I downloaded the game and gave it a whirl.
The visuals are really nice, and I was impressed with the frame count and smoothness of all the character animations. The controls are definitely a little bit complicated and take some time to get used to, but they still handle well enough.
I feel like the game's mechanics are in an awkward spot in this current state, though. The waiting period between swapping characters feels like it simultaneously takes too long and is too accessible. I didn't have any success with swapping between characters in the middle of combat and instead found that poking the regular enemies with Sword two times before running away was the most effective strategy. For the boss, I simply used Shield's dodge to get behind it and summoned Sword with the shift key to get some damage in from a safe distance; the energy bar regenerates quickly enough that I can just switch to Sword and run away before I can switch back to Shield. These strategies felt kind of like exploits and seemed to undermine the main idea of switching between characters on the fly.
Overall, I would consider this project to have a really promising concept that is in need of some additional balancing and polishing work alongside more content. Well done!
Hey, the art isn't that bad for something you had to rush out; I actually like the intro and ending frames, and your character's design is simple and nice. The game is definitely difficult and I only really got through by mashing the jump key and barely being able to make jumps I probably shouldn't have been able to. Good job on finishing a jam submission and good luck with your report!
This game is fun and had more interesting mechanics than I was expecting. I also really like the addition of a minimap in the bottom left, as the screen is too zoomed-in to see the full level otherwise. Nice work!
Thanks for playing! I'm glad you enjoyed this.
The player character is aligned to a 16x16 grid, and all movement inputs and state changes are ignored until she realigns with the grid. I accomplished this by having the input keys simply adjust variables and do little else; a block of code that is run whenever Sue is aligned with the grid contains all the movement and state-changing behavior.
This isn't bad at all for a first game. Everything works and the game seems to be bug-free, which is impressive enough. Even though the sprites aren't animated, I still like the pixel art quite a bit. Congrats on finishing your first game!
The concept for the game is interesting. The puzzles aren't that complicated, which is good, because the game feels very difficult in other ways. I did have to restart the game once because I ran out of light, and the left end of the exam maze was downright cruel (I must have missed the blue switch somewhere along the way). Overall, this is a pretty fun experience since it's such a short game. Nice work!
This prototype has a lot of potential! The amount of care and effort you've put into this game really shows, especially in the details of the wonderful pixel art on display. The current gameplay is fluid, but it would strongly benefit from some additional features. I'm looking forward to seeing what directions the game takes with future updates!
My main criticism is that the protagonist has extremely slippery controls. The jump height is so high and the gravity is so low that I can just fly past the level and have no idea what I'm missing on the ground. The great character speed and inertia also make more precise platforming challenges a real hassle, and I struggled to land on the thin tree branches without the help of the vertical slashes. I feel like the game would be more enjoyable if the protagonist's controls are adjusted to be tighter with higher gravity or if the level design is adjusted to better reflect the protagonist's capabilities.
There seems to be a glitch whenever a match is made. If the match is vertical, the gem below the match disappears, and if the match is horizontal, the gem to the right of the match disappears.
I just played the version with updated graphics. The game does look nice, with the very detailed blob monster definitely being the high point! The accompanying music does well to add to the fast-paced and tense atmosphere of the gameplay. It's still a fun little game that takes a single mechanic and runs with it, and it ends soon enough so that the game doesn't overstay its welcome.
My main criticism is that it can become somewhat difficult to control yourself when you're around the bottom of the screen, as it's tricky to quickly position the mouse underneath your character without clicking out of the game window and losing focus. I did run out of fuel and fail an attempt at the final section when my momentum would have carried me to the end, but that's just a minor nitpick, really, considering that the fuel also doubles as your life meter.
Hey, thanks for trying this out!
While you have the wand pulled out, you can choose which direction you want to face and use it in. I ended up making a few quality-of-life changes already, so in the next version, you'll be able to press X to reset the current level while paused.
I really enjoyed this! The sprites are beautifully animated, and the excellent, upbeat soundtrack really complements the gameplay. The barrel mechanics took a little getting used to, but they were very fun to put into action once I learned them. Well done!
I'm glad you like them! I enjoy working with the limitations of small color palettes. The game is built in GameMaker Studio 1.4, which handles the low-level implementation, but aside from that, I did all of the programming work myself with the built-in programming language, GML.
I finally got back to this and finished the game! The difficulty definitely ramped up with the final few levels, and the final boss was very well done. This is a very fun experience that I would be happy to recommend to others who enjoy these sorts of games. I did run into just a few issues that I didn't catch in my last run, so here they are, if you're interested:
- Level 1-2 has three chests but only displays two in the info box (opening both chests at the same time seems to count as one, because the right chest was back to being unopened when I returned to this level later).
- Level 1-5 also has three chests but only displays two in the info box.
- The bloody rightward arrow in the bottom path of 1-5 has collision as if it was a solid object.
- I wasn't able to find any chests in 3-2. Maybe they're just really well-hidden?
- I'm not sure if this is unintended, but getting one of the yellow stones for the mana booster upgrade and dying in the level causes it to respawn but still add to your total (I happened to notice that the one I picked up in the first world didn't respawn when I revisited the level).
I played through some more of your game and got stuck at 3-3. It's very fun and I am enjoying the variety of content in the later areas, but I seem to be encountering bugs more frequently.
Here's a list of bugs I encountered along the way:
- The collision box for ladders is a bit wider than it should be; this is apparent in 2-1 where you can jump off the side of the ladder to get into the secret path the wrong way.
- You get stuck inside a wall if you walk past the exit in 2-5.
- The second boss still does damage during its death animation. I died to this because I was in the middle of the screen.
- When you open the menu on a screen with grappling points, you can see arcs display on top of the menu.
- There is no option to set a custom control for grappling.
- I found two treasure chests in 3-1 despite the level info saying that there is only one chest in the level.
- There is a treasure chest in 3-3 that requires you to grapple across a lava pit that cannot be opened.
- A little ways past the locked door in 3-3 is a screen that appears to be impossible because of a single block being in the way of a jump that must be made at the bottom of the screen.
- After purchasing the health upgrade, I would die even though I still had half a heart of life remaining.
This is a really nice and simple platformer! Well done on your first public release!
I made it through the first area before foolishly clicking "Quit Game" in the pull-up menu while looking for an option to return to the hub, causing the game to lock up. I'm assuming this was intended to be a downloadable game at some point?
The default control scheme is a little unintuitive, so the ability to configure custom controls in the menu is highly appreciated. I also think arrow key movement controls suit this game better due to the large amount of other keys that need to be used during gameplay.
I did notice a few bugs while I was playing. The final chain in 1-4 will cause the screen to scroll upward and get you stuck in the ceiling if you climb it all the way. The eyeball enemies would also sometimes be moonwalking when I entered the screens containing them from different directions.
This is quite an interesting idea, despite its simplicity. There's a lot you can do when you take advantage of user input; it's something I would like to explore further when developing more games in the future.
The theme of the game really resonates with me, too. I still struggle with many internal conflicts - condemning who I used to be, cherry-picking flaws about who I am, and feeling pessimistic about who I see myself becoming. Of course, that sort of mindset won't get anyone anywhere. I'm still learning that it's okay not to be perfect and that I need to cooperate instead of compete with myself for every change I wish to make. Self Reflection definitely does have a thing or two to teach with its message.
Anyways, I'm glad that you were able to build something good out of the bad! It's inspiring to see the wonderful art that is borne from suffering. Good luck with the game jam!
Thanks! It's been a lot of fun to work on this project, and I'm glad you enjoy it. The little perfectionist inside me spent lots of time searching for bugs and adjusting little details to try and create my dream experience. Even still, I think the game is pretty mean in some places with tricky enemy formations and sudden boss attacks; I'm learning what I can from this project and will strive for a better difficulty balance in my upcoming games.
I'll be pushing out one last update for this game sometime in the future, as an original soundtrack and a potential sound effect overhaul are currently in the works. I'm really looking forward to adding the music and having a full video game experience!