This is a second part to an article that was getting a bit too long! The first part can be read here. As stated in the previous article, feedback is an essential part of making a good game! Without feedback, a game designer is blind to the problems of the game they are creating. Here are some more of the problems that were found by play testers within the first demo of the game:
Issue 12: Eggs blocked the warning sign indicating when the falling block/crushers were going to fall, meaning the player had no real way of safely passing under them.
Solution: Eggs are not placed below crushers as they would logically be crushed too if they are on the same plane as the player. This would mean that eggs would be destroyed under crushers, meaning the player would not have to collect these eggs, removing the point of having them in the level in the first place!
Issue 13: Camera shake is too intense when crushers hit ground.
Solution: Camera shake intensity is divided by a number to make the intensity lower for each crusher. This is indicated below by the divide by 4 node.
Issue 14: The play tester discovered that the F key can zoom the player camera in and out. This allows the player to see an opening and jump out of the level.
Solution: Zoom key removed as it not needed at this moment. The level was also patched up at this point to not allow the player to escape.
Issue 15: The conveyor belt mechanic was unfair as there was no visual indication that the player will move on their own in this area, especially combined with crushers.
Solution: conveyor belt removed from the level, to be re-added later when visual representation has been added and introduced in a non-hostile environment to show the player how it works. Below is the area the conveyor belt would be.
Issue 16: The pattern that the crushers fall changes in the conveyor belt area, possibly due to syncing issues. This would make getting past areas with multiple crushers a lot more difficult!
Solution: A time up variable was added so that each crusher would sync better. This solution may need more experimentation to get the best results.
Issue 17: Tutorial messages can be triggered by boxes. This can be quite irritating when trying to move boxes around near one.
Solution: Collision changed on tutorial messages so they are only activated the player. The left tick option blow is ignore, and the middle box is overlap (for events).
Issue 18: Eggs can be collected with boxes, this means that out of reach eggs can easily be collected as boxes can moved to anywhere on screen. This removes a lot of challenge.
Solution: Like with issue 17, collision on eggs was set to ignore boxes.
Issue 19: Level was not very challenging.
Solution: Enemies were added to the level, along with a bottomless pit. The player must also jump on an enemy to get to try and reach an egg!
Issue 20: If player walks straight off of a ladder onto ground, they will be unable to jump as the game still thinks they are flying (how ladders work in the game to allow pressing up and down to control player height).
Solution: A small jump was added so the player always falls slightly when coming off a ladder to prevent this. This is shown in the video above for level 7.
Issue 21: Water extent (collision volume) was visible during gameplay.
Solution: The box was set to hide on play.
Issue 22: Enemies can be destroyed with boxes, but also damages the player.
Solution: Only player can destroy enemies now using a tag and branch.
Boss Room 1
Issue 23: The boss lasts too long.
Solution: The number of phases or attacks the boss does has been reduced by two. This makes the fight last around a minute, rather than a minute and a half.
Overall, it was fun fixing the issues presented as it forced me to look at my game in new ways and try to overcome new challenges with its design. There are some problems remaining that I cannot do much about at the moment. One example is that I am unsure of a way to limit where the player can place boxes, meaning they can be placed outside of the level or even in walls.
Even these solutions seem ok for now, however for some I feel I will alter to improve the game even more! The main one I'm thinking of is the sync issue on crushers. I need to make this sync delay as small as possible.
The newest version of the demo can be found here.