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I thought I'd implement a "Speed Run" mode in to this game. What did that mean? Well in this article I explore the features I thought would be important, show a few screen grabs and a video of the changes in action (UI a little rough around the edges still).

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So here's a thing...

I'm really loving how this game is coming together. The comic book art and tongue in cheek alien conspiracy vibe has been fun.

Now when it comes to puzzle games, you can't help but notice the want for ardent gamers to master a game. Seek perfection in hand/eye co-ordination and show to others their prowess at beating a game in record time. Be it via hidden and discovered logic glitches or just being damn good and practiced at a game.

So, I thought I'd implement a "Speed Run" mode in to this game. What did that mean? The following features would be important:

  • an optional "speed run" mode
  • a database of run timings and scores for current, last and personal best level measure attainment.

Then if selected:

  • Improve the display accuracy of the level timer (display down to milliseconds)
  • Remove all superfluous animation between levels
  • Fixed timing for element removal (once again, time trumps visuals)
  • Record timing, moves and such like to report on.
  • Make sure the stop watch is accurate and starts when the level starts and stops when the last puzzle element is removed. Seems obvious, but it's easy to lose the odd bit of time thanks to a tardy animation or delayed game state change.
  • Present a record of the "speed run" in between levels with a simple "next", "restart" or "quit" option

Now the "slow" or should I say "pretty" inter-level display of level complete animation already presented (and so recorded data for) a kind-of school report. So really, I'm extending that to record the history of such.

Level Intro (Speed Run Mode Off)

(screen shot of level intro when speed run mode is disabled)

Level Complete report card screenshot (Speed run off)(screen shot of inter-level report card when speed run mode is disabled)

It's a simple toggle switch to turn on the "speed run" mode:

Speed run mode toggle switch

(screen shot of scrollable options screen and speed run mode enabled)

The intro and reports cards then change to reflect the new mode (for the hard core, high speed puzzle solvers out there!)

Level intro (Speed run mode on)

(level intro screenshot with speed run mode enabled)

Speed run reporting (between levels)

(level 1 and 2 achievement screenshot with speed run mode enabled)

Here's a video of the new mode in action. First we see the "pretty" display of the level and reporting card. Selection of the "speed run" mode and then a few repeated efforts at a speed run (only 1 level but imagine it could go on for the entire level collection).

Enjoy! (And don't forget to wish list the game!

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