#GameDev one liner

posted on 15 January 14 by bmfs

“If we can’t prototype a game in 2 days we scrap it because polishing can take 6 months”
@tha_rami #GameDev

Status update

posted on 12 April 10 by jrrt

Hello, we have been a little silent for the past month, but we haven’t been resting. These past few weeks were filled with game jam awesomeness.

First off, we joined up at Vasco’s place (our friendly musician for color fusion) for a private game jam. And what have we done there you ask? We have made a prototype game starring the first king of Portugal.

We wanted to do something different, so we started to go through portuguese history and legends for inspiration. Eventually, we went with the birth of our country, heavily inspired by this video. The actual result can be seen here.

After this little adventure, along came the molyjam. We packed our things and went to Lisbon for this awesome event! We did not know what to expect, especially with the wacky themes, but eventually it all worked out. We teamed up with a graphic artist and with a guy that went to the jam to learn how game making worked. In the end, this was the result.

The mechanics could have worked a little better, but at least we tried something different. All in all I think it was a great experience, especially the part of meeting new people that are also interested in making games.

Speaking of game jams, the 23rd Ludum Dare is right around the corner and we are looking forward to participate 😀

In the meantime, we are working on the next color fusion update so, expect news soon 🙂

Game Analytics

posted on 12 March 10 by bmfs

Playtesting sessions can give us valuable information and help us tune our game. And the ones we conducted were no exception. However there are valuable aspects which your test players can’t give you simply because they aren’t aware of them. Some gameplay patterns only emerge when you have higher number of players, which usually only happens after releasing the game.

Two weeks have passed from the initial release of ColorFusion and some significant gameplay data is starting arrive (Thanks to our Russian Friends).

The collected data show us a drop in players in every level, which we think is normal. But in level 7 we see a bigger drop, and we also notice the average time to solve that same level rises a bit. On level 10 and 11 we experience a even bigger drop in players and even bigger rise in the average time.

This drastic changes should indicate that something is wrong in our level progression. Too many users are getting stuck in this levels and they won’t progress. This demands some action and we are working on it!

CF Analytics

This is a simple example of what metrics you can get from your game and used them to improve the experience you deliver. You can use services like Google Analytics and Playtomic or you can build your own service. Tracking player actions in your game can help you improve your level progression, find out issues you never thought you had.

On the importance of writing

posted on 12 March 9 by jrrt

Over the last weeks, we have been thinking of where to go with Color Fusion. This is no longer the wild “what is this game going to be?” thing, but a sincere try to improve the game to the best of our ability. So, we need to understand exactly what we are trying to improve, and what plan we are going to follow to achieve it.

When taking these decisions, writing down our conclusions (or lack thereof) helps us, as the indie “jacks of all trades” we have to be, not to lose focus on our goals while we are doing  our tasks. It helps us in not having to re-think where we want to go with the visual effects after we are finished writing tutorial code. It helps us in not forgetting what aspects of gameplay we want to refine after we finish making adjustments in our level editor. Well, you get the idea.

In certain circumstances we may not even know the correct decision, but writing down the possibilities might be a great help. Doing this might even help us understand the problem better, and help us down the road when we are making play-testing or analyzing “real-world” data.

Of course, I also think that what is written should not be treated as something carved in stone but rather as a guide. Just because your current roadmap tells you to do something in a specific way, it doesn’t mean you cannot deviate from the initial plan if it fits or makes the game better. After all, your gut feeling and judgement capabilities are very important tools when making games.

Color Factory: a short introduction

posted on 11 February 8 by admin

It is finally time to reveal what we have been working on. The name is color factory:

It is a puzzle based game, where the player must combine beams of colored light and make them reach the level targets in the correct color.

The initial idea was to make some kind of chain reaction game, and we wanted to do some level based gameplay. But we also wanted to do something with a new mechanic, so we changed the initial concept accordingly.

As of now, we have ways to reflect, divide, colorize and filter beams of light, all at our disposal to make some mind boggling puzzles! Stay tuned!

A week later

posted on 11 January 6 by admin

This post should have been written a week ago since it was when we released Thumb Riders.

It is a fast paced game where you must avoid hitting the obstacles.

Although quite simplistic, it was a nice way to start fiddling with games on android.

Feel free to download it in the Android market.