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  Words Getting Dumber 11:17 AM -- Mon June 28, 2010  

I just did something! I did! I did! With luck, you won't be able to tell that I did anything, but more likely, you will discover at midnight tonight that I foolishly messed with Dumbwords without testing it right, and now it'll be ruined tomorrow. What I did was to create a list of questions for it (I have been keeping a list of them for the last... 235 days), and now instead of it having a short little list that I have to manually add onto all the time, it is grabbing a random question from this list each day. It won't repeat any until it uses them all up, so hopefully there are enough there to keep it from seeming repetitive. Ideally, I'll add more to it over time so it doesn't get stale, but it's big enough now that hopefully people won't notice any repetition. In fact, I kind of doubt it'll have any more repetition this way than before, because I often come up with stuff that sounds new and exciting and then I realize I used it before. I figure as long as it's not in the history drop-down list in my browser, it's old enough! Which is exactly how I made this list, when I first started it.

So fingers crossed that you will notice nothing strange about Dumbwords. And that I will no longer have to deal with it bugging me about a low number of questions.

Aside from that, I've been told there shall be Fishy music today (more finger crossing), and IDIOT is moving along, as witnessed below:
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  Idiot Pirates 12:24 PM -- Tue June 22, 2010  

I'm still waiting for music on Robot Wants Fishy, and I'm filling the time with working on the pirate game. It's taking a bit of a turn, because I knew it needed something to add interest, so the first thing I thought of is just what I need to be interested in anything: leveling up! And by "interested in anything", I mean I really don't care what the gameplay is. If it leads to leveling up (with choices of skill points, not just automatic upgrades), I'm playing it. Level me up in Tic-Tac-Toe. But anyway, I was struggling with that concept and I guess it goes something like this:

The game is now vaguely a rogue-like. You adventure from one island to the next, and you encounter items and monsters randomly. The selection is very unlike your typical roguelike, and you have no normal inventory, so it's more like powerups. The things you've already seen are the bulk of it: planks, hearts, shovels, treasure, x2 multiplier. Of course each island is more dangerous than the last, and you will eventually fail (especially since your life drains over time), thus working toward a high score. There will be levels of interest, like Cannon Cove and Monkey Marina, which is slightly inspired by Scarecrow: Heart of Straw. Those will either be at set points, or just come up randomly. I suppose random is always better if it's a roguelike!

Because I wanted a choice of some skills when you leveled, I ran into a control conundrum. There could be a simple "arrow key to cycle through upgrades" situation, but I didn't like it, and I batted some stuff around and was unproductive until I finally just decided to go all out and make it mouse-controlled. So now it's also Crimsonland(etc.)-inspired. You move with arrows and aim with the mouse. That obviously opens up mouse control for clicking on the upgrade you want when you level up, and it also greatly expands the possibilities for leveling up... now I can add powers that you can click on when you want to use them! I haven't actually decided to make any, but it's opened up a basically infinite design space if I want it. It feels a lot more free to me, and I always enjoy aiming with the mouse.

First things first though: I have to get the basic gameplay working! I've also ported this game over to Flashpunk (and then re-ported when Flashpunk released a completely different new version a day later) from Flixel, because Flashpunk suits my style much better. It's getting confusing working with both in different games, but eventually I think I will be moved over completely. Daibaka is definitely going to be a lot easier to deal with in Flashpunk after a very painful porting process. I really felt like I was hacking Flixel to bits just making basic concepts like bullets come out the way I wanted in that game.
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  Robot Wants Stuff 11:43 AM -- Fri June 18, 2010  

Robot Wants Fishy is done! Well, I'm waiting for music, but my work and even testing is done. I can't release it, in part due to the music thing, but also because I have some business stuff I need to do with it. But now feeling so free and easy for a couple of weeks, it's time to get back to work on Infinite Deadly Islands of Terror! If I can remember how that works.

Remember, I am Riding The Wave. As opportunities pop up - and they sure do - I keep getting forcibly sidetracked into things I have to do. But I surely do enjoy these little projects! And they mean I can make games that are free for the players, but I still make money. Really good deal, especially considering that when I do charge for stuff, people just steal it anyway, and I don't have a big enough audience to make a living from the people who do buy it.

Robot Wants News: Robot Wants Ice Cream is next, but I may turn out to not have to make it. It's a nice end to the quadrilogy though, what with a very deep and moving story. I enjoy doing this series, and I really could do 20 more and have fun the whole way (and so many more upgrades Robot could find! He still hasn't gotten a grappling hook!), but it'll be good to move on to different characters. I made Robot Wants Fishy for some fairly complicated reasons, but basically the gist of it is that I made two versions of it - Fishy, and another one skinned with a certain website's characters to put up on their site (the fact that they wanted a skinned version is the whole reason I made the game). Making their character, which is an animated humanoid instead of a wheeled robot, got me realizing how fun it would be to finally be playing something other than a wheeled robot! So I look forward to that. And with all the trailers and news coming from E3, I got a bunch of ideas for things I want to rip off!
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  Willfully Obtuse 10:49 PM -- Fri June 4, 2010  

I feel dirty giving away shots of bosses so often, but it seems like most of this game is bosses! Billions and billions! And look, there's a boss life meter now! It adds such panache to the proceedings. Fingers are crossed to be code-complete by Monday (but not sound-complete by any means, or bugless-complete). Well, gameplay code. Menus and such come during testing.

Also seems like I ought to have done a newsletter by now... or last month, or possibly the month before. I should do it. I can find the time (it might be buried under WoW perchance), but yes, I would like to throw out the classic busy excuse for whatever that's worth. There is very urgent need to complete this game immediately.
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