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Hello all and welcome to our first run of weekly devlogs that will help share some insight into how Mage Drops is being developed and how the game experience is evolving around player feedback.

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Devlog: The Road to Easy Mode

Hello all and welcome to our first run of weekly devlogs that will help share some insight into how Mage Drops is being developed and how the game experience is evolving around player feedback.

As with most things that are still a work-in-progress, the ideas, inspirations, and features that we discuss in these devlogs may or may not make it into the final product.

First up for discussion is the implementation of an Easy and Tourist Mode for Mage Drops.

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Since Mage Drops appeared in Early Access on both Steam and Itch, feedback has fairly consistently identified strong level design, beautiful environments and a steep if not sheer difficulty curve.

Difficulty and a rich diversity of challenges formed by obstacles and evolving abilities is a core feature to the identity of Mage Drops. That said, we want Mage Drops and its story (more on that in future weeks) to be accessible to a wide range of players, not just the S-Rank Super Meat Boy masochists!

Players should be able to clear levels at their own pace to enjoy the full magical journey of Mage Drops and then return to earlier levels to develop their skills and aim for higher rewards. However, it is important that we manage that difficulty tuning so Mage Drops doesn’t become an extended tutorial-like experience that lacks in challenge and loses the thrill of overcoming said challenge.

To this end, we have already added additional checkpoints to some of our longer levels to ensure a bad shot doesn’t mean losing all your hard-earned progress.

We have also calmed down the aggressive rising water levels that occur in World 3: Ruins World, though the challenge is still very present.

That said we believe there is still space to develop a more accessible option for players to enjoy Mage Drops so we are hard at work on developing a true Easy Mode to be selected from the main menu screen, as well as a Tourist Mode for even more accessibility.

Easy Mode:

  • Additional paths and traversal elements per level (more clouds, bounce pads etc.)
  • Additional checkpoints
  • Additional health recovery tokens

Tourist Mode would be an option for players who don’t want to be distracted from the story and gameplay. In this mode there would be no stroke counts or rankings at all and would have the Easy Mode level layouts.

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We don’t have an ETA yet on when Easy Mode and Tourist Mode will go live but we are hard at work on getting the balance right, so Mage Drops remains an engaging, skill-developing experience regardless of your game mode preference.

Mage Drops currently has 5 unique Worlds on offer to players with over 60 challenging levels to enjoy. If you have any feedback or questions, be sure to drop by our official Discord found via the link below:

Orchid of Redemption Discord: Discord.gg

Mage Drops is available now in Early Access on Steam and Itch or Wishlist for our (tentative) late 2021 launch:

Steam: Bit.ly

Itch: Bit.ly

Next devlog we’ll take a look at how we’re using the mystical art of procedurally generated level design to help evolve the future levels of Mage Drops!

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Until next time,

Orchid of Redemption.

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