Hello! I'm Tom. I designed a game called Gunpoint, about rewiring things and punching people, and now I'm working on a new one called Heat Signature, about sneaking aboard randomly generated spaceships. Here's some more info on all the games I've worked on, here's the podcast I do, here are the videos I make on YouTube, here are some of the articles I wrote for PC Gamer, and here are two short stories I wrote for the Machine of Death collections.
My game about swinging through randomly generated spaces has spilled out from a game jam entry, to a four-day game, to a week-long game. This is a series of three video blogs talking about interesting things that happened in its design.
Here’s my previous video showing the game itself.
Update: it actually took five weeks, but now it’s done and out and on Steam and free and half a million people played it! More info on the tag.
RetiredSphinx: Nice! I reckon I'm one of the testers, then, so here's my feedback:
I do enjoy the grappling hook mechanic, but it took me a while to figure out what I wanted to do with it. I felt that the amount of momentum you could gain from pressing left or right wasn't enough to get the speed I wanted, because I was more fixated on having the grappling hook on one block, and trying to build my momentum to swing to the next block, rather than swinging to another block TO give myself more momentum. I was also kinda bummed that I couldn't tweak these parameters until they felt right.
What I ended up doing instead was to increase my retract speed REALLY high. This allowed me to quickly and easily build up tons of vertical speed, which, if timed right, I could release and fling myself at utterly ludicrous speeds upwards and some other direction. To me this felt more inherently "fun". Then, of course, came the problem that the red bars you're supposed to get are far too small to hit at this speed, so I set some values negative so they grow every frame rather than shrinking. While this, of course, took out any form of difficulty from the game whatsoever, it made the extremely "difficult" levels incredibly fun to play. A single launch would propel you across the top of the entire level, and you'd quickly end up with negative points because of integer overflow.
Interestingly enough, I never felt like hitting a block or wall was a "lose" condition; being stuck without speed for me was far more infuriating than hitting something. If you have enough speed, you're bouncing off walls like a rubber ball, and hitting things is part of the fun. This is probably also why I made hitting things increase the points bars more.
Anyway, I could tell that I wasn't quite "getting" this game per se, but I thought it may be interesting to see my take on it. It definitely was a fun little physics toy that kept me entertained for a little while.
Fortuitae: Hi Tom, this sounds really interesting. I would love to see a video of what the latest version looks like, with the music etc.
Max: I regret this more
Max: Apologies for that last one, thought it was an account registry. This looks fun, I remember fondly judging Worms players by the precision of their hook skills.
The underwater hookery is a nice new angle too, it looks like it's more than the normal play field inverted though, do you move slower through the water? If so, maybe your multiplier builds higher down there but it's more crowded and difficult to maneuver. If there was a time limit to narrow the scoring window, that would be a nice risk reward choice if say you're coming up shy of a new high score
DevLog Watch: Gastropoda, Gangster Tactics, M.I.N.T. | Rock, Paper, Shotgun: […] game Floating Point began as a Ludum Dare entry but has grown into something more. He’s made a three-part video series about the design decisions he made along the […]