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  Ooze - Android 2D Jumper  (Read 4999 times)
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Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Posted 2015-08-19 19:33:41 »

Hey fellow game developers, I'm finishing up a game and would like some criticism before I post in the Showcase section. (This is my second fully developed game.)




A few things I would like to hear about:
  • Are the game mechanics easily understandable/learnable? I wanted to minimize the amount of text that is displayed; with that in mind, I'm hoping the game is self explainable.
  • How does the gameplay feel? Too difficult or too easy? This is meant to be a competitive game. (there is an obstacle that requires an accurate jump to bypass, should this be nerfed? Does it ruin the gameplay?)
  • Does the game perform well on your device? Are you experiencing lag in certain situations?
  • Are the game menus easy to understand and navigate? (As I've mentioned before, I want to minimize text... so I'm trying to use symbols for buttons rather than specifically saying what the button does... 'Play', 'Restart', ect..)

Thoughts on the interstitial ad:
   An interstitial ad currently displays on the 'game over' screen after 1 minute of actual gameplay time when the user clicks the retry button, but I'm displeased with how I'm showing the interstitial. It literally jumps pops into your face (which may cause accidental clicks which I absolutely want to prevent)... how should displaying an ad be handled? Would you mind sharing your own experience with displaying ads?

----

Here are some extra screen shots of the gameplay. All of the visual art was created by me, as well as the music. Some of the sound fx were created by me, while others were stock sounds that i edited.



Well, that's about it. There may be a lot of questions for such a simple game, but I'm just trying to progress as a game developer. Anyways, I would love to hear your feedback!
Offline Riven
Administrator

« JGO Overlord »


Medals: 1313
Projects: 4
Exp: 16 years


Hand over your head.


« Reply #1 - Posted 2015-08-19 19:42:32 »

The moment I try to 'become a beta tester' Google's webserver produces a nice Internal Server Error. Clueless

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Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Reply #2 - Posted 2015-08-19 20:29:05 »

The moment I try to 'become a beta tester' Google's webserver produces a nice Internal Server Error. Clueless

Could that possibly be something going wrong on my end? I've sent the link to a few friends and they claim it's working... but those are the same friends that don't own an android. lol  Tongue
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Offline DavidBVal
« Reply #3 - Posted 2015-08-19 20:32:34 »

The moment I try to 'become a beta tester' Google's webserver produces a nice Internal Server Error. Clueless

Could that possibly be something going wrong on my end? I've sent the link to a few friends and they claim it's working... but those are the same friends that don't own an android. lol  Tongue

I am getting Google Play errors as well for the last few hours, and I can't update my game, so probably it's not your fault.

Also, your game certainly catches the eye. Smiley

Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Reply #4 - Posted 2015-08-20 00:36:56 »

I just pushed a new update which fixes the problems I had with sounds. As of right now, I think the game is bug-free! ... but we all know how that goes lol.  persecutioncomplex

@DavidBVal - Thanks! That's super encouraging.  Smiley
Offline J0
« Reply #5 - Posted 2015-08-20 10:51:58 »

Hi buddy! Smiley

Just tested your game, runs smoothly for me. About the gameplay, well... the game seems fair, except for that one obstacle down - up - down (I guess that was the one you were referring to in your question). I mean, I never managed to get past it Undecided Maybe you should add a little more space to land in between the two 'down' tiles. The menus are easily understandable imo. About that add... Maybe you could make it pop before the replay screen? Like, you die, you see and close the add, then you can restart. Or you could replace it with an add-banner (not sure if that is its name) that shows either on the main menu, or on the replay screen every two or three times.

Other than that, cool game Wink Keep the good stuff up!

J0

Offline VaTTeRGeR
« Reply #6 - Posted 2015-08-20 13:14:38 »

I really like the graphics and especially the jello effects, the gameplay is quite challenging but a bit invariant.
Maybe you could add the ability to steer how far you jump by how long you press the screen, but it could also make it too easy.
The menu buttons look good but they are a bit too small and lack contrast.
Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Reply #7 - Posted 2015-08-20 14:03:42 »

Hi buddy! Smiley

Just tested your game, runs smoothly for me. About the gameplay, well... the game seems fair, except for that one obstacle down - up - down (I guess that was the one you were referring to in your question). I mean, I never managed to get past it Undecided Maybe you should add a little more space to land in between the two 'down' tiles. The menus are easily understandable imo. About that add... Maybe you could make it pop before the replay screen? Like, you die, you see and close the add, then you can restart. Or you could replace it with an add-banner (not sure if that is its name) that shows either on the main menu, or on the replay screen every two or three times.

Other than that, cool game Wink Keep the good stuff up!

J0

Ahh.. I see. That obstacle was put inplace to teach the user about 'double-jumping' since, as you said, it's practically impossible to touch the ground between before jumping again. But I was worried that would be a problem since the rest of the game only requires a single jump to get past an obstacle. How do you think I can tell the user about an extra game mechanic while still keeping things minimalistic?

I have one idea, perhaps for new users I could attach a graphic to that obstacle 'Double Jump! ->' and that graphic will always appear until the user successfully passes the obstacle.

To comment on the ad, this is just a tricky problem to solve... I tried that idea in the past (showing right before the restart screen), but that was causing the most amount of accidental clicks due to the fact that you may try to restart the game as soon as you die. Even I brainwashed myself into believing the restart button would always be available right after death, which kept causing accidental clicks for me lol.

About the banner ad... They are currently set up and ready to go, but during my testing, for some reason they are causing a small hitch in framerate when first being shown. Once it's shown, it's fine... until I hide and show it again. (All of this only applies when I'm showing the banner on the restart screen. But as you've pointed out, I can definitely show it on other non-gameplay screens!)

Anyways, thank you so much for taking the time to test my game! You've already jogged my brain on how I can improve things. Cheesy

PS. The difficult jump I was talking about in my first post was the one where there's a single ooze on the ground, and one on the ceiling right above it which created a gap in the center of the screen. I've made sure it's always possible to bypass it, but sometimes the RNG can make this gap pretty tiny and maybe too challenging.
Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Reply #8 - Posted 2015-08-20 14:17:52 »

I really like the graphics and especially the jello effects, the gameplay is quite challenging but a bit invariant.
Maybe you could add the ability to steer how far you jump by how long you press the screen, but it could also make it too easy.
The menu buttons look good but they are a bit too small and lack contrast.

Hey, thanks for the feedback!  Smiley

When you talk about 'steering how far you jump', are you talking about variable jump height? (Pressing the screen for different amounts of time changes the magnitude of your jump). If so, it's currently implemented but toned way down. Or are you talking about variable jump distance (Change how far the character travels horizontally)?

And I will certainly be taking another crack at the GUI buttons before release, because I agree with you... they are a bit lacking as of right now.
Offline VaTTeRGeR
« Reply #9 - Posted 2015-08-20 16:17:27 »

Oh, yes i meant variable height Wink
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Offline bornander
« Reply #10 - Posted 2015-08-24 07:35:48 »

A few things I would like to hear about:
  • Are the game mechanics easily understandable/learnable? I wanted to minimize the amount of text that is displayed; with that in mind, I'm hoping the game is self explainable.
It was easy enough to figure out the mechanics, although I did play it for a bit before realizing that I could double-jump.

  • How does the gameplay feel? Too difficult or too easy? This is meant to be a competitive game. (there is an obstacle that requires an accurate jump to bypass, should this be nerfed? Does it ruin the gameplay?)
I've only played it for a little bit but it does feel pretty hard to traverse the obstacle that is made up of two blobs on the floor and one on the ceiling between them.

Does it ramp up in difficulty as you progress?

  • Does the game perform well on your device? Are you experiencing lag in certain situations?
I tried it on a Samsung Galaxy S5, ran smoothly. I'll try it on some lower end hardware tonight.

  • Are the game menus easy to understand and navigate? (As I've mentioned before, I want to minimize text... so I'm trying to use symbols for buttons rather than specifically saying what the button does... 'Play', 'Restart', ect..)
This was all easily understood.
One weird thing, when the game is paused, I have to hit a pause button to resume it. A play button would have been more intuitive for me.

Thoughts on the interstitial ad:
   An interstitial ad currently displays on the 'game over' screen after 1 minute of actual gameplay time when the user clicks the retry button, but I'm displeased with how I'm showing the interstitial. It literally jumps pops into your face (which may cause accidental clicks which I absolutely want to prevent)... how should displaying an ad be handled? Would you mind sharing your own experience with displaying ads?
I not a big fan of ads in games but I think that if you're going to use a full screen ad you placed yours in the best place. It appears after I click continue so it does sort of reduce the risk of click-stealing.


General comments;
I would expect my phone's Back-button to take me back to the main menu if I click it when paused.
Sounds and music are good, but I'd prefer it if the music didn't re-start when I die. It's almost disruptive to have the music on when it keeps restarting.
Graphics are cool, font used fit well with the graphical theme of the game.
Is the bottom bar thingie on the splash-screen supposed to be a progressbar? It does not fill for me when I start the game.


Overall I think it looks and feels polished, well done. Keep it up.

Try my Android games: Grapple | Hovercraft | Lala
Offline kingroka123
« Reply #11 - Posted 2015-08-24 21:31:46 »

I got into the beta no problem and I think  this game is really fun and addictive. I think you should add power-ups or something just to make gameplay a bit more exciting. Keep up the good work and good luck!  Pointing
Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Reply #12 - Posted 2015-08-27 23:56:34 »

Wow... shortly after my last post, I've become extremely ill... great timing lol! But nevertheless, I've been checking back to read the new comments, taking notes, and overall just brainstorming.

Anyways, game design has been slightly tweaked. Gameplay is now more focused on timing rather than variable jump height. I found that variable jump height (for this particular situation) felt a bit unpredictable and was way too difficult to control for really accurate jumps. So I've added new obstacles and tweaked others to try and support this new design.

@bornander - Thank you so much for your detailed review! You have certainly helped me improve the non-gameplay elements of the game. (Such as breaking convention with the Back-button and music not being continuous when restarting after death. Also, having to press a pause button to unpause a game. Even though they are non-gameplay details, they still play a massive roll in being a polished game.)

Btw, the 'bottom bar thingy' is a progress bar and I'm absolutely stumped on why it wasn't filling for you. No one else has complained about that yet...  persecutioncomplex

@kingroka123 - Thanks for the encouragement! I've toyed around with the idea of adding powerups, but I want the rules of the game to stay very simple. The user only needs to learn one mechanic and the entire game revolves around that one mechanic.

Anyways, I'm gonna go roll over and die now...  Smiley

PS. The update should be available for D/L. This will probably be one of the last few updates before I publicly release the game. Everything is feeling very polished and the gameplay is exactly what I envisioned before starting this project. I think I will just be tweaking the graphics from this point forward.

PSS. Just wanted to say thanks again for the encouraging words and great constructive criticism!   Grin

Patch notes:

- Game design has been slightly tweaked. (Gameplay is now more focused on timing and variable jump height plays a less important roll.)
- New obstacles added.
- Graphic elements have been tweaked.
- General / subtle improvements to the application itself. (Non-gameplay improvements.)
Offline Any%

Junior Devvie


Medals: 4
Projects: 2



« Reply #13 - Posted 2015-10-06 19:49:28 »

EDIT: I was just informed that testing an in-app-purchase with beta users may not be as straight forward as I thought. If you make a purchase and nothing appears to be happening, please let me know asap. Thanks!

Hey guys, I was hoping I could get some additional feedback for the latest update. I decided to add an in-app-purchase which will unlock the expansion.

DISCLAIMER: You will NOT be charged by making this in-app-purchase! Notice the 'Visa xxx-FAKE' on the purchase screen.

The expansion includes a new character which can survive one extra hit as well as removing all ads from the game. This in-app-purchase can be found two different ways. Either playing the game until the ad itself pops up (one minute of actual game play time), or navigating to the option screen and clicking the spider inside the ooze ball. The second method is very cryptic and I'm considering on moving this new button to the main menu and placing it below the 'play' button.

Besides the newest feature, there have been some tweaks since the last version as well as many bug fixes.

To test and re-test the new in-app-purchase feature, play and PAUSE the game. You won't see any notification at all, but when pausing the game, you will consume the expansion item and it will be available for purchase again.

This new release may be highly prone to bugs and crashes. (I've done extensive testing on my own with success, but I need more people to hunt for bugs.)

Thanks for the help!
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