TAG Jam #6 – Results

by , under General

Hi guys! I found some time and decided to playtest/write a resumé.

First of all I found it really interesting that there are not that many multiplayer games (just one) and that one also tried to make a game without an objective. I’m really happy that all of you tried to make something different 🙂

Clouds:

This is exactly what I meant! Games like this. I think this one fits what I had in mind best. Many exploration games (like they were made here and playground-games) kind of have an objective in a sense that you want to do something. This one though is a game where you are finished the second you start playing, but you choose to keep on going. Like a scenery or a photograph, but dynamic and interactive. The music (which is really good by the way!) changes are a little abruptly and is disrupting the mood in my opinion, which is super important to avoid in a game like yours. All in all it’s, sadly, just not very much and even if you decide to keep on playing, it loses it’s appeal fairly soon.
Technically: Maybe you could have spent some time investigating how to visualize rain nicely. Even rain drops with different speeds would have been a little more realistic. So it would have if you paid more attention on the tiling of the rain texture. I also don’t like that the rain clouds get repelled and move away with constant speed. Maybe only repulsion would’ve looked nicer – not entirely sure.

You Only Need One:

First of all the title really reminds me of the last Ludum Dare theme (You Only Get One). At first I was a little confused since no one told me how to control the game! This is something that you should pay attention to. After figuring out to use the arrow keys though I must say that I really liked the setting and it really awakened my interest. The pacing of finding out what’s happening in the beginning is really good in my opinion! I like using the word “odd” as an inspiration and am generally delighted by the setting. It’s continually more interesting! I don’t like though that the game actually has an objective. You want to get to the end, because you know there is one. It’s just not explicitly stated. The suspense curve really takes it’s time to bottom out. The last part is not very rewarding considering the growing platforming-difficulty.
Technically: I’m not sure how easy it is to do this in flash, but I would have liked it if the speech bubbles faded out. Also the music loops very strangely and starts again when you just forgot about it. Constantly playing music would have improved the experience, I guess.

Go Figure:

I really like the name! It’s a nice thing to play around, but loses it’s appeal rather quickly. It’s more of a toy than a real “game”. I don’t want to be mean, but just because a game doesn’t have a game, it should still be enjoyable! That was part of the challenge. Something where it’s all about the experience and the mood. At least that’s what I had in mind and because it’s just me, I should probably not criticize your game for it!

Revel:

I really like the mood and the music and the graphics! Atmosphere-wise you did a really, really good job. The location is intriguing and the character as well (4 arms, when I first jumped! Very cool moment). Execution-wise this is probably the best game (it has to be mentioned though that you are a significant amount of people) and fits the Outsider theme very well. I really like that the game doesn’t stop to give you something to explore. What I don’t like is that it eventually does and not in a very elegant fashion. I probably just got stuck, because I didn’t know that to do, but that’s not just my fault. I collected the two artifacts (which I think is a little silly of you to write directly on them :D) and found the little cave below the starting room which you can’t see much in. I’m actually pretty sure I’m stuck, but I don’t know that to do. So I’m not really sure if it’s really without an objective, since having a goal and being able to finish still kind of qualifies as one. Also I think the game would have benefited a lot from parallax effects in the background!

Uphero:

(At least I hope that it’s called that way). The first 4 times I started the game the player apprently spawned in the level geometry, which really confused me and made me restart the game until it did not. After I’ve seen him and played the game I of course realized that I could set him free by deleting the blocks. And when I saw him I was happy to find such a cute little guy. He’s awesome. And the music is too. It’s not less groovy than you said (which is uber). I generally don’t like that you just took an already existing game and tried to clone it. In general this is not a bad thing, and it doesn’t make the game worse, but is a minus point when it comes to winning (which is probably understandable). The sun and the clouds look just a nice as the alien, but I don’t really like that it’s so easy to place blocks. I think that Minecraft and Terraria make building things rewarding, because it’s work. It’s just too easy to do something. Also I struggle with rather low FPS once I move. When moving the FPS really fluctuate quite a bit, which is really disruptive.

PS: Sorry for pointing out the positive stuff at the beginning and the negative stuff at the end. I don’t want to rewrite it, but don’t think that I disliked any single one of your games! All of them were a pleasure to play! I’m really happy that five people took their time on a weekend to participate in a game jam I had the pleasure to host! Thank you all for participating! I hope you had a lot of fun and learned equally as much!

To cut to the chase, the winner is:
Revel!

After playing all your games I didn’t find it easy to decide which is the best, but I think that it’s actually just the one which yielded the most enjoyable experience during the time playing (even though there a some things to criticize, as with all the games), which was your team’s, Charles! Congratulations!

  1. anothera

    Hey guys I am Leon Fresh – http://www.leonfresh.com – designer for the backgrounds of the winning game Revel.
    Just wanted to say that my favourite game by far was the “You only need one”. The art direction and the storytelling was mindblowing, I am totally shocked that it didn’t win!
    But keep up the great work guys, you rock!

    Reply

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