Game

Weekend update…

Wow, what a weekend for development. I released my first game as Nekoyoubi and my first Android app to boot!

Reed’s Mine

I finished up the initial release of Reed’s Mine and deployed it to the Android Market. It was listed for approximately eight hours before I realized a bug with ladders and caves that could confuse and frustrate people and pulled it.

I’ve since re-released it (v0.2) after fixing the bug and making a few enhancements. It is currently built for Android 2.2 (Froyo) and above, but I will be attempting to let it ride for Android 2.1 (Eclair) this weekend.

Even though I am not using any Froyo specific features, I chose to limit to that version in an attempt to only offer the app to newer (faster) phones in case the Unity Android build was rough. I think things will be fine after some texture optimization this upcoming weekend though.

Apologies for the Unity icon for the app icon on the phone. This is a noted bug that is being resolved by Unity. I think I know a work-around, but I’ve been focusing on the actual game itself more than its publishing thus far.

This upcoming weekend should have some cool changes implemented in Reed’s Mine. For one, I plan to add random dwarves in the mine levels’ generation. They will let you trade some of your resources mined for various items to assist in mining (no spoilers, sorry). Also, I will try to work achievements into the next release, but that may have to come in the next version.

I will attempt to create a build of Reed’s Mine for those of you without Androids as well (probably a web build), but I’m not giving it priority over the features of the real game. Don’t be mad, I just have to make sure I give the people what I sell them. 😉

Click here to check out Reed’s Mine on the Android Market.

Obviously, if you get Reed’s Mine please leave a rating and/or comment, as this is what I hope will get the word out there about it. Also, if you enjoy it, please tell your friends. Thanks much in advance!

Oh, and since I released it, I found that there is actually a real Reed’s Mine! How cool is that?! I promise you that this game has nothing to do with that mine and is, in fact, named after one of our members for his extensive Minecraft mining expeditions.

Check out what another of our members (Blake) made right after the release (and how cool is that?!)…

Weekend update…

Unity Android

I can finally build for Android! Woo! I purchased a license to Unity Android on Thursday, and have been hard at work on my first Andy game ever since. I will probably be writing a stupid amount of games for Android because it’s so damned fun. As of right now though, I don’t even have a sandbox project. I’ve really just been working on Reed’s Mine (my first Android game).

Android development is obviously different than PC, but for the most part, things will build and deploy the same (gawd love Unity). As such, I’m still learning a lot of DOs and DON’Ts to Android development. I will attempt to make it a point to share these as often as I can. 😉

Reed’s Mine

I spent all of this weekend working on Reed’s Mine. Let me explain a little of what it is and what it will be.

Reed’s Mine is an Android-based casual mining game. It’s also my first Android project, but that doesn’t mean it has to suck. One thing that I don’t seem to see enough in mobile games is evolution of the game itself, so I plan to make that a common occurrence. You may only buy it once, but there’s no reason I can think of that I shouldn’t update it to do more than bug fix. I will probably be releasing the initial game earlier than “flawless”, but I plan to improve and expand content and game-play for as long as the game’s idea is stuff fun.

Walk, dig, gather resources, and explore an infinite underground with zero-consequence. There are no enemies (yet; not sure about this one), no traps (same), no death (mostly sure we don’t want this, but we’ll see about enemies). What there are are resources. Lots of them. There’s currently coal, iron, copper, rubies, emeralds, sapphires, and diamonds – with many more already planned.

These resources do nothing special currently, but will at least offer achievements by the initial release. Soon after, they will be able to be exchanged for items or other resources to random dwarves that you will encounter along your journey. After the dwarf content update, I plan to add a simple crafting system that will allow you to upgrade your tools and create various items from your resources.

Joshua Morse has been helping me out on the audio side of things. IMO, he’s already done more impressive work on the project than I have… and I’m writing the damned thing! He’s an amazing artist, and if you don’t know who he is, you need to go check him out at jmflava.com right this instant!

Anyway, I could go on and on about Reed’s Mine, but I want to make sure I can get everything together for the initial release, so I’m trying not get too far ahead of myself.

Terraria…

Terraria (@Terraria_Blue) was release yesterday on Steam. As I understood it, it was the top selling game yesterday as well with a lot of folks, like myself, waiting in line to take a peek. It’s by no means flawless, but I’m not going to say I was disappointed.

What is it?

If you’ve not seen the official trailer, I highly recommend it before you cast judgment simply based on the “type” of game it is. Not that I know anyone as short-sighted as that or anything…

Terraria is a side-scrolling 2D action adventure game with a few very familiar hooks we all know and love.

It’s got co-op and terrain deformation. It’s got building and blocks. It even has pickaxes!

“Ooo! Ooo! Doesn’t that make it Minecraft?!”

No.

This is commonly touted around YouTube and the like from initial impressions as though every indie game that comes out now is going to be a Minecraft clone.

A note on the Minecraft clone, koi: Pixels are square; 3D squares are cubes… get over it. There were thousands of games before Minecraft to use squares – there will be thousands more after.

With that said, if I were to say that Terraria didn’t take a page from Notch’s book I would think myself a liar.

So basically, you get to run around and kill baddies (way more than Minecraft, by the way) with your friends in a 2D platformer with create-able/destructible terrain.

Now for some details.

Worlds

World generation is a bit slow initially, but that’s not a complaint really. The real hassle comes in with loading one of the levels. For the first bit, I’d recommend rolling a Small world just for the settling and load times. There are three variations of world size, but Medium was annoying enough to try and bounce out to from the Small I was serving last night for the gang.

Other than that, the worlds seem to go on forever vertically. You’ll really just be stopped in digging by encountering harder and harder mobs as you go deeper. Horizontally, we’ve found a new biome and something that somewhat appears to be a dungeon or quest, but it’s too difficult for us currently.

Characters

Character creation is comical. You’re a tiny little sprite that you can pick ~20 hair styles on. Then you’re given +/- control on the literal RGB values of various components of your look (hair color, shirt color, pants color, etc…). I created my Twitter avatar (as always) and it worked out fine. Only problem was he has minimum values in place that prevented me from having my black cardigan.

The important part about characters is that they persist. Yes. The characters persist… independent of the worlds they play in. That means that if I play my local toon to get all of these epic items (materials, accessories, weapons, armor, etc…), I can go hop on a buddy’s server and have everything that I left the other world with.

Servers

Playing a co-op game obviously requires a server. It would have been nice if Terraria would have offered a master-server system, but no such luck. Running a server is pretty simple though, and it appears that any world you create can become a server. My only real complaint, and it is a complaint, is that you can only enter an IP into the server (not a host name). Since no one is providing dedicated serving off this game yet, this is a huge pain. I shouldn’t have to memorize everyone’s IP address. Actually, I shouldn’t even have to memorize my own.

tl;dr

Terraria is an awesome, creative, cooperative, 2D adventure. It currently runs ~$10, and is worth every penny. It has some growing to do, but it’s exactly one day after an indie game release, so what do you expect?

Buy it.

That is all.