Entries in game development (348)


113 - ASWG Solitaire Card Game

I sat down and tried out the original concept of my head-to-head wrestling card game and didn't like it. While it's difficult to properly play a head-to-head game by yourself, overall the mechanics just felt kind of boring. I changed things up a bit and started crafting a solitaire experience. Small goals feel like the norm for solitaire games, playing against the randomly distributed cards and doing the best you can with what you got. Losing doesn't feel as a big a deal.

In this game, the deck of cards you play with represent the ebb, flow, move sets, and pacing of the two wrestlers in the match. The five pairs of cards on the top represent the spots you are trying to achieve for the match (every match has five spots). With the five cards in your hand, you are trying to manipulate them to equal the sum of the pair your are currently on.

I'm not doing the best explaining the game rules at the moment, but that's because I'm still working out the kinks of scoring. I will say, however, I've played five games and enjoy it way more than anything else I've built for this series. Perhaps I have a winner or at least a participation award.

108 - ASWG More Stuff

Got some time to spend with a coworker who is also a tabletop enthusiast. He helped me iron out some details and provide some alternative ideas to how to approach my wrestling game.

Instead of players winning spots, they win VPs within the spot. So different spots are worth different VPs. This means even if you win more spots, you may still have fewer VPs.

If you overshoot the goal, then you automatically lose the spot. Who it affects, meaning who takes injury tokens, depends on the spot. So if there is a "Frog Splash" spot, overshooting does damage to the player that overshot (they missed their target by jumping too far). If there is a "Discus Punch", overshooting does damage to the opponent of the player that overshot (hit too hard). The number of injury tokens is calculated by how far the player overshot. I will need to determine an equal number of cards that thematically fit both sides.

Some cards may have a time limit, which means the number of cards to hit the goal. This is definitely an optional requirement, but a big bonus is given to the player that is able to do this. Maybe it comes in the form of extra VPs or an extra card to draw on the next spot or the opponent having one less card to play or something.

107 - ASWG Card Game Progress

Been working on my card game some more. I ditched the time-based action game in favor of one that has players trying to build and execute good matches.

Right now the purpose is for players to each play a card, hoping the sum reaches the goal listed on the "Spot" card and within the number of cards required. Example: the Powerslam Spot requires a total of 12 - 15 within 5 cards. The player who achieves the goal first is the one who wins the Spot.

Players also have to work together to make sure the Spot is successful, regardless of who actually wins it. The match itself has a VP goal. Each successful Spot gives VPs. So even if you win more Spots than your opponent, if the match itself does not reach its VP goal then both players lose. I'm still working this part out.

101 - Wrestling Game Update

I've gone back to the drawing board with my wrestling game. Turns out that "active timer" (a la Dragon's Lair) is not exactly the most fun thing to play at length. I decided to take a stab from the other side of the business and that's the actual "show planning" part.

A match consists of spots and you're trying to win over the crowd. You're actually required to work with your partner to put together the best match you can, instead of just trying to beat your opponent. If a spot requires three "beats" to setup for a spot, such as a frog splash off the top rope, then you and your opponent take turns playing cards (3 cards in this case) that have to meet the threshold needed for the spot. But if you can't hit the threshold within the number of cards, then the spot is missed and the crowd reaction is negative. If you overshoot the threshold by too much, you may get the crowd VPs, but you do damage to the other wrestler or yourself (like being too stiff or actually doing physical injury to your wrestler).

Anyway. This is a completely different game. Going to mess with it some more.

079 - ASWG "Beats"

I left my Switch at home so I could do some personal work over lunch. Instead, my 11:30a meeting ran late and a surprise 12:30p meeting appeared on my calendar. So I had 10 minutes to eat. I did, ultimately, sequester myself for 20 minutes before my 1:30p meeting so I could do some coding.

I was able to code the "beat" mechanic I decided upon. The idea is that once both players lock in their move (strike, grapple, block), the game chooses a number of "beats" a player has to win (3, 5, or 7). These "beats" are the reaction game mechanic pieces. If a player wins the majority, then they get to execute the move they chose in the beginning. This is also where the rock-paper-scissors match-up happens.

I decided it would take a Pokemon-like buff/debuff in that in the example of grapple > block, the grapple would do 1.2x damage. In the example of grapple < strike, the grapple would do 0.8x damage. In the example of grapple == grapple, it would do a straight 1.0x damage. Or, you know, something to that effect.

067 - Training Mode

Training Mode lets you attempt the reaction game five times and gives you an average of your session. I may use this to determine difficulty level or actual training where if you're able to successfully get an average under a certain amount you're given a boost.

057 - Wrestling Game Coded

It's felt like forever, but I opened up the IDE and actually did some coding. All that I was able to put together was the timer kicking off (as if both players had locked in their moves), and then allow for keyboard input (action button). If you press it too early, it'll say as such. If you wait for the right moment (when it says ACTION), then it will measure your timing.

056 - Wrestling Game Flow

Spent some time working on making the action piece look nicer. Time to throw this into some code.

049 - Wrestling Game Flow

As I continue to write down on paper the different ways the wrestling game will work, I realized that the exercise of mapping out the flow would be useful. At the end of the day, the pace of which the game moves incredibly important and something I want to nail down.

The wrestlers stand face to face, probably in Squigglevision, which is where players choose which move to use (grapple, strike, or block). Then the "charging at each other" animation starts. Somewhere between 1.0 seconds to 2.0 seconds (probably?) the "ACTION" prompt appears, which is where the players press their action button as quickly as possible. Once the buttons are locked, the game then shows a few panels in order to showcase the outcome.

How it showcases the outcome is important and something that will probably only be solidified with actual motioned mockups. Does each panel come in one at a time, using the third on the right to see if the move was successful and for which wrestler? Does the game instead show a close up on the left, then the right, and then have an animated center panel showcasing the move? If so, how does a Create-A-Wrestler get animated? I can't possibly animated every single combination for every single move.

I think this is a good place to start though for the actual demo of the game.

046 - Wrestling Game RPS Mechanic

I talked about the RPS mechanic a little bit before, but I've ironed out a few more details. Specifically, how a move with advantage (i.e. block > strike or grapple > block) will always win unless the weaker move beats the move with an advantage through the skill game. This way it's not simply "guessing what the other player will choose", also known as a game mechanic based strictly on luck, but another level based on skill.

In addition to this will be the momentum bar! This adds a third level to the RPS mechanic. The momentum bar is like a mulligan. However, instead of a free stroke it reduces the reaction time on the skill game. For example, if you have 0.3 seconds built up in the momentum bar, whatever your reaction time is, it is reduced by up to 0.3 seconds until it's 0.0 seconds.

What this does, I hope, is that you may just choose to play "Block" the entire match because you're just that much better at the skill game than your opponent. But if you keep playing the same move, your momentum bar never grows and may actually decrease. Your opponent's will also grow, making it easier for them to land a successful attack even if, physically, you were able to beat them on the skill game.