Archive for July, 2009

BIGJam, Game 1 of 8: Airplane Adventures

DON’T CRASH

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BIGJam Begins

BIGJam begins tomorrow morning! I’ll be posting updates and stuff here when I get a chance. Expect lots of stupid throwaway minigames over the next few days!

(I’m still trying to get my framework in order, but ‘s cool, I can sleep on the plane)

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100 Untitled Rooms

Making really great progress on VVVVVV – I’m now at the point where all the *basic* content is done. I think I could probably just about manage to finish this up by next week before BIGJam, but I’ve no intention of doing that! I don’t want to rush this.

Here’s a new screenshot of the last room I worked on, with prototype enemies – I’ve officially cleared 100 rooms now – naming them is quite a hassle…

BIGJam is in roughly one week! I have a bunch of stuff to prepare – I need to get my frameworks in order, need to practice some MMF coding, I wanna make a start on a game for the TIGSource contest, and there’s another Mini Ludum Dare this weekend… so I think I’m gonna put VVVVVV to one side for a week or two.

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When it’s done

I’m sorry the site’s been so quiet lately – I’ve been frantically trying to finish up VVVVVV! Honestly, I can’t believe how big it’s gotten. This was supposed to be a throwaway one week thing. Been over a month now. I got a little carried away once I actually started designing levels! I’ve got nearly a hundred rooms created so far, and paper sketches for quite a lot more.

The last week or so has been really productive, and the end is in sight! As for exactly when? I’ve no idea. I want to be more or less finished before BIGJam (in two weeks!), but I never seem to manage to meet my self imposed deadlines. VVVVVV will be finished when it’s done!

I know I haven’t said a lot about it on the blog yet; I didn’t think it was going to get so big. Maybe it’s time I talked a bit about it.

The entire game is designed around one really simple mechanic, which you might have seen in the Bytejacker preview: Zero gravity jumping. Whenever you jump, you take off into the air and don’t stop until you hit a ceiling. Then you can walk around a bit, and jump back down.

The basic idea just came out of wanting to take this one idea and explore it a bit; any time I’ve seen gravity switching in platformers it’s always a powerup, or a switch, or some kind of mechanism for solving puzzles. In VVVVVV, it’s not a gimmick; it’s the basic mechanic – every single jump reverses your gravity. It’s the starting point.

That’s pretty much all it is, actually – which is why I wasn’t expecting it to grow into such a big project. I’m making an effort to keep the game focused on the level design – there is a basic plot in the game, but that’s not what I’m interested in here. Anyone expecting another storytelling experiment like Judith or Pathways is gonna be pretty disappointed!

The game is set in a big open world, with lots to explore. As well as that, the game has a number of smaller, linear levels set in this – the idea is that they contain gameplay elements not found anywhere else. As a result, you can tackle these “dungeons” in any order you find them in.

I’ve been working with Souleye for the game’s soundtrack! I’m biased, I’m sure, but I think his music is fantastic – I’ve had the song he wrote for the game on a loop ever since he sent it to me – it’s been very motivating 🙂

I’m dying to finish this up and finally let people play it! I’ll try to post more frequently from now on! 🙂

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More VVVVVV stuff

Now retitled “VVVVVV” at the last minute and at great expense!

From here on out, I’m not working on anything else until this game is finished.

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