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Steve's feedback

A topic by stevedelong created 311 days ago Views: 105 Replies: 7
Viewing posts 1 to 6

Hey Zac,

Great work! I'm not sure how many features you're trying to add from this point on, but I'd say as long as it's as bug-free as can be (I didn't encounter any bugs over the course of a couple of playthroughs) you could totally release it and periodically update it, with the caveat below. I'm not sure if you were going to make an effort to get it on Steam too, but if so then it absolutely could measure up there as well.

The one major thing which I assume will be included but wasn't totally sure was music. I know you might have to farm it out and pay some $$ if you can't compose it yourself (I couldn't either) but I think it would be totally worth it to round out the game (I might be a little biased since music is one of my favorite parts of video games). I'm not too familiar with free open source music, but there is a website called mobygratis.com where Moby (yes, that Moby) offers open source tracks completely free of charge. Most of them are chill/ambient so they wouldn't necessarily fit here, but if you use the "tempo" search field you can find more up-tempo options that could fit the frenetic mood of Bombfest.

Right off the bat, I found it interesting to be playing on my girlfriend's desktop PC (which I am temporarily using while my old PC has become a large paperweight and my new one ships in the mail). I had to tweak the graphics down quite a bit to get rid of lag (1360x768 res, medium quality), but I think that's to be expected – her computer is a bit of a potato. This probably isn't an issue because of that, but here are her system specs anyway, in case you were wondering:

Windows 7

8 GB RAM

Graphics card: AT Radeon HD 4200

Processor: AMD Athlon II X2 B28 Processor 3.40 GHz

To be honest, playing one-player wasn't as fun as multiplayer, but there's really no way around that – this is a multiplayer game at heart. I will try playing with my girlfriend when she's available (she's a pretty casual gamer, so I think she'll have an interesting perspective).

To be able to have a "practice round" in the welcome screen is a huge plus – even having played before I found myself a bit rusty (especially against an AI that knows what it's doing rather than against other human newbies). I appreciated being able to get practice throws in so that I could perfect my timing before starting. Otherwise I could see new players getting quickly frustrated after being dominated by the AI. The "post-it" gameplay directions are clear and concise.

At times it felt just a bit frustrating trying to pick up a bomb, since it seems like you have to be fully facing it to do so. Maybe there could be a bit more leeway – if you are facing the bomb at a bit of an indirect angle, you can still pick it up.

Some other things…

  • The level design is great, and I can't really think of anything that I would change about it.
  • The AI felt like it was the right level of difficulty. I won a narrow victory in my first playthrough, but got shellacked the second time around, so it's not too easy.
  • This is a minor thing, but: when you select Credits from the menu, the part that says "Player 1" at the top of the paper lingers, so it looks like "Player 1" was a dev on the game.

In terms of new features, I'm not sure what else I could suggest that would ACTUALLY add to the enjoyment of the game, since I think you already have more than a solid foundation. If I'm inspired to think of anything I'll let you know, but beware feature creep (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feature_creep) – I think the beauty of the game lies in its simplicity and being easy for new players to quickly pick it up. One exception to this rule might be special bomb types – it looks like you have six right now, which is more than enough, but since I can never get enough weapons (mwahaha) here are some suggestions for additional ones if you're looking for them:

  • "Walker Bomb"
    • Gotta be careful not to infringe on IP, but these would essentially be homages to the bob-ombs from Mario. They'll walk in circles until you pick them up. I don't think they should walk in circles after you throw them, since it would remove incentive for the player to use them since they would hit their target less often.
  • "Basebomb"
    • Looks like a baseball. A little bit smaller than other bombs, but flies farther and faster when you throw it. It might have a smaller blast radius to balance out its advantages.
  • "Bouncy Bomb"
    • Has a tie-dye or rainbow look, or something similar to the colorful designs you usually see on bouncy balls. Bounces two or three times before immediately exploding on the next bounce.
  • "Bombageddon"
    • Looks like a warhead cone with a nuclear symbol on it. Has a huge blast. I know the "Big Bomb" kind of already covers this territory, but I think it's kind of fun when an "oh s--t" trump card that's rarely seen falls into your lap, like the blue shell from Mario Kart.

That's all for now. Keep up the good work!

-Steve

Developer

Thanks for all the feedback, and from all the different angles! I really appreciate the time you've taken to address all different aspects of the game.

  • Music: It's in the works! I'm working with a composer that I'll be meeting with again next week. We're writing some unique music from scratch, and I'm really excited with what we've got so far!
  • Potato computer: I'm glad to hear that you got a good framerate from the Medium setting. Right now I run it on Low on my Surface for game nights, so it's encouraging to know that the in-between settings are getting used.
  • Practice round: This was one of the highest priority changes for modern Bombfest, and you've nailed down why! I'm glad it's serving its purpose as a safe place to learn and master the controls.
  • Feature creep: I appreciate the reminder, and I need it daily. I think I'm locking down the number of special bombs to 6, and the number of levels to 12. That said, I'm going to be replace a few of the current ones for higher quality/more interesting options.
  • Special bomb ideas: Fantastic suggestions!
    • I spent like 10 minutes planning out a Bob-omb homage this morning after reading this! The idea I had was a little too involved to explain or program, but I'm saving that plan for later. A little bomb that moves around on its own would be incredibly interesting to play with!
    • I like your Basebomb idea. When I made the Bread Bomb, I was going for a similar concept with a smaller blast radius but easier to hit other players with. I've been toying around with an idea closer to your Basebomb, but I haven't been able to sort it out well enough to bring it into fruition.
    • The Bouncy Bomb is a good idea, too! I loved those swirly-textured bouncy balls as a kid. In making the rubberband-covered bom bin the current version, I was inspired by those as well as the Bowling bomb from Crash Team Racing for a long-distance bomb. The idea eventually got split into the Ice Bomb and the Bouncy Bomb currently in the game. That in mind, I might just have to add some swirls to the current Bouncy Bomb...
    • A bomb like Bombageddon sounds like a game-changer. I have the Big Bomb, but I plan in replacing it. It's plain, utilitarian, and usually feels unfair. I think something closer to your idea would be more fun. Here's what I imagine: A miniature warhead that, when thrown, boosts itself high into the air. After some travel time, it swoops down and explodes on impact in a huge blast radius. It would remain in the air long enough to give players time to run away, if they can, which would help balance how dangerous it is. I think that sort of huge, area denial would be an awesome mechanic to try out!
I look forward to more input on the game! Let me know what you think about my notes on your bomb ideas, too. The ones I have planned and in the game are far from perfect, and I could use all the refining I can get on the bombs and the bomb roster.

Not sure how I missed that you already have a Bouncy Bomb - my bad! I like the rubber band design just as well. The warhead flying high into the air sounds cool - maybe it could be accompanied by a timer with a nuclear symbol?

Developer

I'm glad you like the rubber bands! I was going to make an entire rubber band ball but I got really bored of modeling those rubber bands.

I'm thinking that the area under the bomb will be painted with a bug nuclear symbol before it falls! Also, one on the bomb would be great, too.

I've started work on the warhead, and it's coming along okay. Having some trouble getting rotations right, but initial tests are fantastic and it should be ready for the next beta!

Cool!

Developer

Whatcha think?

Bingo - the swirl really sells it!

Developer

Thank you! The swirling was unintended, but I'm glad it looks good! There's a few bugs still, but it'll be ready soon!