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  Vampire Runner - Gemserk  (Read 29584 times)
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Offline ruben01

Senior Devvie

Medals: 4
Projects: 3

« Posted 2011-11-17 20:53:05 »

Hi guys, during the last Ludum Dare 21 arielsan made the game Vampire Runner as shown here we made some minor improvements to the game and at some point some people we know that are artists wanted to see how would one of our games work with their art on the android market.

We focused a lot on adding nice artwork and polish to the game, but we are having some trouble finding a fun and engaging gameplay.

The basic idea of the game, is that you are a vampire running for your life and there are some obstacles in your way, that you have to pass by transforming into a bat like mist.
You transform by touching the screen or clicking with your mouse, and there is an energy bar that is spent while you are transformed into mist, once it is empty you don't go through stuff anymore and the energy bar recharges while on normal vampire mode.

Play on PC - HERE

Play on Android - here

The latest iteration of our game before this remake is available on the android market here, in that version the game didn't have a max speed and the level generation was mostly a periodic generation of a wall with a random wall width. Some people liked the game and still play it but it failed to keep a big number of people playing.

The biggest issue we see with our game right now is one of mechanics and level generation, right now the game is really simple to play, and the mechanics are not copied from other similar games but the issue is that the gameplay is repetitive and either too easy, or it gets impossible at some point.
We are really open to any idea about the level generation, changing the mechanic, etc if you think it would make the game more fun.

We would love any feedback about the graphics, style, gameplay, or anything else you want to comment.

Hope you like it

EDITED: android version points to market release now

Offline Mads

JGO Ninja

Medals: 26
Projects: 3
Exp: 10 years

One for all!

« Reply #1 - Posted 2011-11-18 01:25:53 »

Love the new graphics. Its amazing how much nicer it is, just because of that

Offline ra4king

JGO Kernel

Medals: 508
Projects: 3
Exp: 5 years

I'm the King!

« Reply #2 - Posted 2011-11-18 03:26:36 »

Really fun and playable. Great job Smiley

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Offline loom_weaver

JGO Coder

Medals: 17

« Reply #3 - Posted 2011-11-18 04:23:30 »

Worked great on my MacBook.

What I liked:
  • Soundtrack
  • Parallax background
  • Cute animations

One area of improvement is that the game seems too one-dimensional.  Perhaps keep your vampire in humanoid form and left-click turns it into a ghost, right-click turns it into a bat.  Then you need to dodge both solid walls and fly over water traps.

Well done, and nice job!
Offline fruitmaze

Senior Devvie

Medals: 3
Projects: 2

« Reply #4 - Posted 2011-11-18 16:37:34 »

I could not run it. I see the Java 6... loading screen and then nothing happens. I use Windows 7 Enterprise.
Offline Damocles
« Reply #5 - Posted 2011-11-18 17:30:17 »

Its an entertaining game.
Good visuals.

Right now there is an "ON"(pressed) task (been the bat to pass the "walls")
You should add an "OFF" task (beeing the vampire)
For example to bite a pesants or avoid other ghosts.

The OFF task should be in small gaps betwen the off task
When the OFF Task (beeing the vampire) is too long (like a second), the vampire is just walking normally.

Also play with rythms. So that the player has to learn and then repeat a sequence (first slow to show, than fast to repeat)
Offline Mads

JGO Ninja

Medals: 26
Projects: 3
Exp: 10 years

One for all!

« Reply #6 - Posted 2011-11-18 20:57:40 »

I'd like to add that I was playing using my galaxy tab 10.1, for your records.
It seems like you're having stuff on the menu button in android, even though nothing happens when you click it. On honeycomb, I get the extra-options button showing itself in the game, even though nothing happens when I tap it.
It may be a libgdx thing though, just thought I would let you know.

Offline ruben01

Senior Devvie

Medals: 4
Projects: 3

« Reply #7 - Posted 2011-11-18 21:57:38 »

Thanks all of you for the feedback, we are really glad that you liked the game.

At this moment we are really happy with the aesthetic of the game, but are really having some trouble with the gameplay.

What we are trying right now is:
  • Adding different kinds of walls (obstacles), and you need to match the kind of wall with the right power to go through it
  • Changing the gameplay to one where you are always flying and you have to avoid crashing with the different obstacles, this is obviously a completely different game, but our current prototype feels "fun" and we feel with that gameplay there are a lot of opportunities to add interesting stuff, like power ups, score multipliers, etc

Keep the feedback coming

Offline DoubleBarrel

Senior Newbie

« Reply #8 - Posted 2011-11-19 17:23:47 »

Pretty Nice Smiley

And Java Goes On
Offline dishmoth
« Reply #9 - Posted 2011-11-21 20:43:14 »

First off, I've got to say that the overall presentation is fantastic (although it did seem to fade-to-black rather often when transitioning between menus).

As you say though, the gameplay becomes very dull very quickly.

The way I see it, the game boils down to the simple challenge of timing the mouse click to be as late as you dare before hitting the wall, but the game undermines that challenge because it never really rewards you for a well-timed click.  Click the mouse too early and your energy goes down by more than you'd like (which may eventually lead to your demise, but otherwise isn't really a problem).  Click the mouse too late and you're instantly dead (well, undead, whatever).  I think the challenge would be more satisfying if the game explicitly rewarded you for the accuracy of your timing, maybe by giving you bonus points (with visual feedback: "+10", "+100 Excellent!", etc.) if you time your click really close to the wall.

It's also a bit repetitive that the same game mechanic applies when 'entering' a wall as when 'leaving' it.  Maybe you could change the gameplay while you're inside the wall.  For instance, maybe the "mist" could change back to "vampire" automatically when you leave the wall, in which case you'd be free to use the button to control something else.  For example, while the button is held down, the mist bat rises, and falls when it is released, and so the player can move up and down to collect the coins/birds/maidens/whatever that float past at different heights.

Just throwing out suggestions.  I like that the game is controlled by a single button, but obviously you'd have more options with more buttons.


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Offline arielsan
« Reply #10 - Posted 2011-11-23 13:12:29 »

There is a new version of the game, we added a new type of obstacle, the fire obstacle. So now you will have to transform in the correct mode to avoid each type of obstacle. The new mode is the bat form, it is used to avoid the fire obstacle while the mist mode cant go through, and vice versa with the normal obstacle. Another change is you make more points when you are in normal form, that is not explained in the game, we should give some feedback for that I believe.

We changed a bit the instructions, dunno if they communicate everything that needs to be said, but they look nicer than before.

@dishmoth We like the ideas, we were testing some of them but by enabling multipliers (used to multiply the score when you are no normal form the next time) instead increasing only a fixed amount of points but that way could work too, both options need visual feedback as you said. We like the second idea too but it is a bit more complicated because it implies another decisions like, what happens if I transform to mist mode and there is no obstacle? it is not clear what to do to maintain coherence and it is harder to explain that to the player.

Thanks again everyone for playing.

Offline sproingie

JGO Kernel

Medals: 202

« Reply #11 - Posted 2011-11-24 04:59:48 »

This is just a random brainstorm, but what popped to mind is adding good old jumping and rolling (a crouch to get under obstacles), so what you have is the standard obstacle course plus the wrinkle of transforming.  If the transform were somehow to affect your abilities to jump and crouch, either while in the new form or immediately after the change, then it would add some puzzle-like depth to a complex course, requiring well-timed combinations of jumps and transforms.

Offline Grunnt

JGO Kernel

Medals: 143
Projects: 8
Exp: 5 years

Complex != complicated

« Reply #12 - Posted 2011-11-26 22:03:18 »

Great style indeed, I liked playing it. And indeed, the gameplay still needs a bit of work. @dishmoth has some great ideas.

Some suggestions:
  • give the player more complexity without making things more complicated. For example: the bat goes and flies at the height at which the player touches the screen. Ofcourse, obstacles would be needed at different heights
  • do'nt end the game immediately at the first error -> I got frustrated a bit quick because I was thrown back to the main menu after my first mistake. Perhaps a couple of lives? And ways in which to get extra lives?
  • the dangers could have a bit more personality, e.g. old ladies throuwing garclic Smiley

Offline ruben01

Senior Devvie

Medals: 4
Projects: 3

« Reply #13 - Posted 2011-12-06 19:54:32 »

Thanks for all the feedback, we finally release the 1.0.0 version of this game in the android market

We now have the new graphics
We added a new transformation (bat that flies over fire)
Openfeint integration for scrores on android

The new transformation looks like this:

If you want to to download the app from the market you can do it here or using the QR code from your phone:

The new Openfeint scores allow you to compete globally as well as with your friends.

As always any feedback is appreciated and if you like it please rate it, tell your friends, tweet it, +1 it, like it, etc :-)

Offline kappa
« League of Dukes »

JGO Kernel

Medals: 123
Projects: 15


« Reply #14 - Posted 2011-12-08 15:32:40 »

Very nice, fun, complete and polished.

Offline arielsan
« Reply #15 - Posted 2011-12-08 15:48:15 »

Thanks Cheesy

Offline dishmoth
« Reply #16 - Posted 2011-12-10 15:21:49 »

I finally got around to giving the Android version a try.  It crashed first time I ran it, probably because I declined to use the Openfeint stuff, but it ran fine after that.

Funny thing is, I know it's exactly the same game as I've played on the browser, but it's genuinely a lot more fun playing it on a phone.


Offline ReBirth
« Reply #17 - Posted 2011-12-12 08:01:53 »

Hehe a jar version can be great for me Smiley

Offline TheUzo007

Senior Devvie

Medals: 1
Projects: 4

« Reply #18 - Posted 2011-12-14 13:40:12 »

I tried android version on Samsung I5500 Galaxy 5. It's fun and graphics is nice, but the speed increases too fast in so short time.
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