Blue Karma Retrospective

ShaunGame DevelopmentLeave a Comment

New Vale City

What have I learned?

There are a lot of things I learned whilst developing a Point and Click adventure game wth Actionscript 3 and Starling. First of all, it was great to get a feel for the development process of building one. My biggest regret is taking on such a graphic intensive game. Point and Click adventures are known for their new locations, animation and toggable, interactive items.

How long did you work on it?

I spent a good part of 2 years working on designing this game. Working on this independently is a huge undertaking. I did the art, animation, programming, puzzles, story, game flow. Far too much for one person to do. These things are usually done in a team.

What went wrong?

  • Memory Issues

    Always keep an eye on memory and dispose of any assets that is not required. This made it impossible for me to port this to mobile when I made use of the Adobe Air wrapper. At one point I was up to 200MB!

  • Define scope

    Set a MVP (Minimum Viable Product) for a game idea, and stick to it. My mind would constantly think: 'Oh, why don't I add this feature?' and I spent far too long on it than I should've done.

  • Get Help

    Don't try and do this all on your own. The reality is, other people can be better at certain aspects of game design. Find friends who share the same passion for game development.

  • Replay Value

    I chose a genre that -- once played -- is not going to be played again. With mobile games, you should try and use as little assets as possible, but has the potential to be replayed over and over. Something I am doing as we speak.

What went right?

  • I built a game!

    A level, with a story, and an end goal. A great personal achievement as I was a big fan of Point and Click games.

  • Achievements & Leaderboards

    I baked in 25 Medals to unlock. It is so cool to see a leaderboard with how everyone has done. It shows that people are playing it to the very end. I did one for both score and time trial.

  • Learned from mistakes

    Now I know what to do, how to plan my game, how to unit test things so that I know they work. Design pattern strategies, more readable -- and maintainable -- code.

  • Asset Optimisation

    I know how to organise my assets into spritesheets, and use grunt to automate the whole process without having to resize different targets (Desktop, Tablet and Mobile).

Did gamers enjoy it?

I uploaded it to Newgrounds originally. It was always my focus to get on the homepage from a very young age. The first version was slated quite badly. Mainly due to game mechanics. Interacting with objects, you had to click the location you wanted the player to be, and the player had to be colliding with the interactive object before it could be examined/actioned/spoke to. This angered many people, so I instantly removed that restriction.

Once I uploaded the new version with better game mechanics, I got some good reviews and an average rating of 3.7 out of 5. Which is the best I’ve ever achieved. The game can be played here:

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