Ahh level design. It's a subject that makes you excited and want to cry at the very same time. When you've got everything done in your game except for the levels it feels scary. Sometimes enough to make you procrastinate. I should know, I'm a professional procrastinator. I should get a certificate or something!
The key thing with level design is to make it challenging but not frustrating to the players. It's not easy though. I've made something like 10-15 level based games each with say 20-40 levels. That's around 300 levels in total, give or take 50. It's insanity to even think that I've made that many over time. Even though I've had so much practice I still fall into the old guilty traps every single time. I make levels too frustrating or difficult. It's why the The Unfair Platformer was so great for me because all I had to do was design levels like an asshole and people loved it. Do that in a normal game however is bad :P
First of your first levels are always the easiest to make as you can introduce each new type of feature in your game and make that the focus of the level. After that is when it starts to get tricky. A general goal is to make the puzzle seem obvious to solve but they need to work out how. This gives people a sense of reward when they work out a goal from start to finish. If you make it so they need to guess too much they will feel they are doing something too random.
Stuck for level ideas? Try these tips
- Base an entire level on a particular feature
- Put the start and end close together and make them do a full circle of everything to get back
- Make them use a specific game feature in each area so it becomes more useful as time goes on
- Make the last level really hard, and the first level really easy. Then work in between for a difficulty curve.
- Make a big object in the middle the level focus's on that interacts with everything
- Get friends to have a go making a level, maybe make a level editor.
- Play level based games in the same genre to get ideas.
- Drink 99 cups of coffee till life seems like a level and draw it (just kidding... or am I)
- Filler levels can expand on earlier levels with adding in more enemies on the same puzzle
These are some general tips to pump out some levels. The more you make and the more games you play you'll start to see general patterns in game design on what levels are used often. It's when you're past the first 10 levels you really can show how smart you are as a game designer to come up with intricate traps that really make them think without pushing them to anger. It's not easy. What may seem easy to you, will be hard to someone else as they haven't made the game from scratch like you so it won't come naturally so be careful and have a lot of people test the game.
Good luck, level design is a science as much as an art. So experiment with lots of ideas.
I've gone through a lot of different types of friendships over the years now. Every time things got bad I was always surprised who was still there at the end of it. Were always told all them cliche things like when things get bad you find out who your real friends are. I never really thought much of this until it happened to me. It's weird how some people you had known since school will take off and ditch you in a second where some people I had only known a few months stuck by my side.
It's all part of growing up, we learn who matters and who never really did. Sometimes no matter how nice someone acts to your face and says they'll always be there doesn't really mean anything until it's put to the test. Then theirs the fact that if you are to blame yourself, can you blame them? can you blame someone for going away if you are to blame? it's a tricky subject. Though this deserved a topic in articles for me cause it's been a topic of my life for a long time. I blame myself a lot and I try not too, it's hard and it eats you away.
Ironically when you make friends with people into drugs, you always are under the impression that they are just using you for the drug, and as soon as money and the drug dries up they will ditch you. Sometimes this is true, but it's not actually as true as the stereotype would suggest. These people have usually come from broken families or a tough upbringing and will stick through bad times more with you because they understand what it is like from living them more often and they can be more forgiving after a fight. Where on the flipside you take a person who's been your friend since school and never has done a bad thing in his life, they were one of the people to abuse me to my face and leave overnight. these people don't know how to deal with problems so they just cut them out their life instead of putting in effort to solve them. It's interesting and sad to look back on. I always miss everyone I've ever had a friendship with in some way or another though even if they end up turning out to be a selfish asshole underneath.
I like to think I'm weird in the fact I have different things in common with lots of types of people. So even though a certain few people I may not see as often as other people, I still feel closer to them then some others because of the fact we have shared something deeper or bonding at a certain time. Leaving high school I thought I had it worked out what a friend is, they are someone you hang out with, play games and talk to regularly. This ends up being far from the truth. A friend is someone that ends up showing you that they really do enjoy your company, opinions and thoughts over time by showing it. Who you can see eye to eye together even when you disagree on a subject. Someone you harbor no jealousy or ill-feelings for when they are not around you.
It's been almost one year since I changed my life and lost a lot of my old so called "friends" and gained a lot of closer ones by opening up all this stuff to the people around me. By doing so we end up going through stuff together, instead of just sharing your failures or success with them, you actually grow and challenge things together. You are tolerant of there shortcomings or bad signs just as they are of you. It doesn't matter if it's friend, family or partner. A relationship is a relationship in the end. It always hurts when that person is no longer part of your life. Better to have a few good friends then lots of fake friends.
I miss all the people I shared different moments of my life with. I always have those memories and will remember them as the person that taught me this, or helped me with that, or simply shared that moment of my life with. People under-estimate the amount of impact we have on someones life just by being there. I wish I knew these things earlier in my life and I might not have lost so many, I may have changed myself in fact to be a better friend myself. Unfortunately these are the life lessons we all learn. You can only learn from them and move on and try be a better person from then on.
I value every friendship I have these days. I am a little more jaded and less open as I'm more scared of being hurt. It's happened a lot and I sometimes wish I was an asshole so I could just forget it and move on, however I'm someone with a big heart that misses everyone I ever knew. Even if they ended up wronging me and I can't talk to them again. I'll still always live with a little regret that things could not have been different. That is where my depressions stems from that fact I don't let go very easily. Things linger in my heart a long time. Like how my ex moved on to a new boyfriend before I had even gotten over it. I wonder how she could forget 3 years so easy very often, but they say girls are quicker to move on because they are more emotionally mature and think different to guys after a breakup.
All in all take this as a small lesson to not only value all your friendships but also be careful on not thinking that life can change in a heartbeat. Sometimes the closest people to you aren't who you think. I myself have friends now closer to me then any family ever could be. Some might say this is sad, but I don't. Family to me seem to get this notion that they are automatically awarded respect, but when things got tough for me, my family bailed on me and ditched me. Nowhere to be seen in fact. Where as I had some close friends help me through it. That was a big eye opener of my life. Some people are closer to family than friends and that's great. However I just am not one of those people as I was kicked out of home when I had nowhere to go by my own mother at one stage. That stuff stays with you forever.
I'm just like you, we all have past things we need to let go of or else they will consume us and drive us to stressful early deaths due to trying to cover them up with alcohol and drugs. Letting go is not easy however, in fact it's the hardest thing I've ever had to do. It's the only way forward though. Accept things for what they are and move on or you'll relive the past everyday of your life and be stuck in groundhog day. I know, because I've lived it for a long time. Forgive everyone that wrongs you, just don't forget their names.
Ironically I have a lot of online friends that are pretty close to me as well. Talking to someone online is another different format, it's almost like they like you more because there is no responsibility of hanging out with you. Sad but true, also it's easier to open up over chat then it is in person. Some of my biggest fans I have for my games have never met me, sadly I wonder if this is because I am different in person or because they share more in common with me then my non game maker friends. Either way it's great to have online and offline friends. They both offer different things.
My opinion isn't fact, learn from my views but make up your own mind.
Hey guys, released my new game Heli vs Tower! A game where you see how far you can make it. Always liked that style of game. Also wanted to do something with helicopters going pew pew. It's a little simple. I think I might have to start expanding on these ideas now with upgrade systems. You can also eject out the helicopter to take over new helicopters to survive longer.
I think it turned out alright, a nice little time waster to see how far you get. Time will tell anyways as I watch the scores and reviews of it. I've been trying to get more into action games lately rather then comedy.
I've been making good progress and making more stuff lately, finally getting back into the swing of things after my long break and bad times through life. Getting on my feet and releasing new stuff again! it feels good. Feels like progress!
Every game is a new lesson to teach me new things about what works, what doesn't. Art and Programming lessons. Design ideas and what the general public likes. So I'm always happy when a new game is released. An exciting day! :)
My next game I'm gonna raise the bar and try a sidescroller shooter with destructible ground like I used in Draw-Play and Heaven and Hell. So stay tuned for that baby.
Also to the right is the Eggys Games facebook page to like! please give it a like for other random updates.
Since I've been making new games again and my quality is slowly getting better it was time to remove some of my older games from my website. These games had glitches, bad graphics and just looked like tests. I deleted the following games -
Pier and the Big Black Hole
Run Run Shoot
All these games pretty much looked like test games as practice when I first started so it was time to move on. I was torn between deleting Fur Ball and Hyper Square however fur ball is in my main logo so that one can remain for now, and I always like the premise behind Hyper Square. These 2 can remain down the bottom. These games I deleted are still playable on my Newgrounds/Kongregate account however if you're curious on my older stuff for the people curious to how bad I was before practicing :P But it's time to keep my collection here my stuff that reflects my main good quality work. Plus by deleting these it allows me to perhaps remake the idea later on as a much better playable game.
Moving on moving on!