Gamocracy Dev Diary: Week Three

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Gamocracy Dev Diary: Week Three

Gamocracy poster

Greetings (cough) Gamocrats,

Now we are all back from San Francisco. We even managed to get some last minute souvenirs on the plane back… the flu :( It stopped the government of our Gamocracy briefly since it turned out coding from your sickbed is not all it is hyped up to be. Finally, we are all back in the office and hard at work.

Size does matter!

The second issue that we had to wrestle this week (after the flu) was the relative size of our hero on-screen. This is definitely something you want to get right early on or you will have a whole lot work ahead of you.

Choosing the size of the character is all about matching the gameplay. For an RPG or a puzzle type platformer, for instance, the character can usually be quite big since the pace of movement is not as important. For a Super Mario type action platformer, however, the character will have to be quite small.


Lets use the two awesome and quite well known platformers above to show the difference. In the slower paced puzzle centric The Lost Vikings the characters can be quite big since the movement speed is very low. In Super Mario the main character is very small which makes the hero seem like he is running at an incredible speed. It really comes down to the fact that if the character is moving fast the player needs to see more of the map to react; hence he has to be smaller.

For H7 we have been trying out a few sizes in between these two extremes. We finally settled for a size that will fit roughly 8.5 characters on top of each other (the examples above show 5 and 11.5). This will make for some speed in the game but still allow us to add a bit of detail to our hero.

Now we really have to get back to work to make up for all the lying around this week. If we squeeze in an all-nighter we might be able to show some video footage here.

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  • Someone fix the lines that are crossing all the words! It’s messing with the other posts also (though I guess you’re already on it).

    The game looks kinda Mario’ish, but I can’t wait to see more of it when it’s had some more work done on it. However it does look fun :D

    • The graphics (except for character) is just my placeholder programmers art (and some stolen clouds from… ..yes mario). Come back next week for a taste of the first REAL graphics.

      Glad you liked seeing the gameplay, I loved playing it :)

  • When first reading about the detachable head it seemed like an OK idea but now seeing it in action it really is awesome! I feel bad that i didnt vote for that guys idea now! Great work!

  • Yes, great idea. It seems to work very well.

  • Ooh, this is quite interesting indeed, gonna follow this project for sure, and maybe come with some input and suggestions about the design (if you’re still interested that is)

  • Seeing a screenshot from Super Mario Bros on the PlayStation blog is a bit strange.

    I wasn’t aware of this project.

  • Only picked up on this today, great concept. I’m looking forward to voting in some of the other options.

    • If you click on the gamocracy tab at the very bottom of the post, you can catch up on all the diaries so far. We’re really proud to be working with the Bearded Ladies on something so involving as this project.

  • The Facebook voting system doesn’t seem fair. I could see someone with 750 “friends” spamming everyone to vote for their design. That can happen anywhere but within Facebook it’s more likely.

  • Let me thank you for this short video, because it shows us the first moves of the H7 character, and I think it’s gonna be very funny to play this game…

    Well, I have two thoughts about it.
    1) with that size, 8.5, H7 moves are very nice, but it seems that we are not able to see H7’s energy’s arms & legs… Then, maybe it’s a first anim of H7, but in the next videos, if he’ll use his hands as weapons, wouldn’t they be too small for the human eye ???

    2) according to H7 moves, will we be able to make his head go right, then stay or come back by using the pad, or the head will be controlled by some IA ???

    Well, for my first idea, would it be better and then possible to have a way for zooming on and back, in order to see better H7 in some scenes ???

    • I think this is better suited for a discussion on the gamocracy forums, but since its you Tifil i’ll answer here ;).

      1 – Yes, we did initially start with a bigger character for just that reason, however it turned out to big for for the speed we wanted to achieve. The video is kind of crappy and with some added glow effects later on I think we will be able to get some of the energy feel back. In the end we sacrificed looks for gameplay, something that we strongly believe in when making games.

      2 – I’m experimenting with this right now. The problem is that the controls get “cluttered”, but we will see. In the movie im using X to throw and retrieve the head and DOWN to stop it in place. I am considering changing to X for all three (three states so to speak) to save another button (its almost always a good thing).

      We will not add a ZOOM option, but we might consider making “puzzle” stages (minigames) where H7 will be considerably bigger.

      Now back to work on week 4 tifil!!! ;)

    • I love all of these details – this is what we wanted to bring to the blog with this project, to really open up game development and to bare a project from start to finish. This goes to show just how many hundreds of design choices we take for granted when we play our favourite titles.

  • It’s alright that it’s similar to Mario. Mario is one of THE best platformers of all time. Seems to making good progress, but I hope more details will go into the character, seems a bit bland right now.

    • Yes there will be much more work put into the character. This version is a very crude first one. If you ever develop a game, make sure to develop the game before the graphics :)

  • Really interesting but it will be better if:
    1.It will has graphics like in meatboy or smth like that.
    2.Will has good monsters (not red squares :D)
    3.will be totally free!!!!:D
    Keep going it will be cool.

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