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General => Paul's Projects => Topic started by: Paul on January 01, 2013, 10:43:09 PM

Title: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 01, 2013, 10:43:09 PM
I'm toying with the idea of developing a game from the ground up for the OUYA.  This would not be the usual dime-a-dozen Android app -- it would be designed to be a console game from the start, with a specific controller in mind.

What I want to do is a side-scroller game like Super Mario Bros DS (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srpkwSB8SnY), with medium- to low- poly 3D characters on a 2D side-view map.  This lends itself really well to embedded systems like the OUYA, as it reduces the total number of polys that must be rendered, resulting in smoother, faster frame-rates.

I want the style to be similar to Mario Bros (stomping, jumping, and hitting things).  It would be fast-paced, points-based, collectible lives, and no life-meters (one hit kills the player).  There would be no inventory, and only a couple items which would be beneficial to the player in some way (along a similar vein to the mushrooms, fire flowers, and stars in Mario Bros).  There would also not/ not be a huge variety of enemies -- instead, difficulty as the game progresses would mainly come from more complex maps and strategically-placed enemies.

With all these similarities to Mario Bros, I actually do not want the game to be a clone or spoof of Mario Bros at all.  I want a unique story, unique characters, unique items, and unique maps.  Definitely do not want to use brick blocks, question blocks, coins, stars, mushrooms, or turtles, anywhere in the game.  The main character will look nothing like Mario -- no mustache and definitely no overalls and cap!  So similar to Mario Bros in game-play, but a new, unique game.

What I'd like to do is get together a team to create the game.  Everyone involved will receive a fair, negotiated compensation for their work.  The marketing strategy will be to make the first level free, and a one-time purchase unlocks the rest of the game.  The game will be designed for the OUYA, but I will also make an Android port to sell on Google Play, in order to have a wider customer-base.  Once a beta of the first level is complete, I will run a kickstarter, and the money pledged from the campaign will be evenly divided between the members of the team, after KS/ Amazon's cut and taxes.

The team will consist of the following roles:

1) Me:  I would write the game engine, UI, and special effects (lighting, smoke, fire, bolts of magic, etc).
2) Melinda (my wife):  Although she is talented at doing 3D models, her style is more impressionistic and not really what I'm envisioning for this game.  So instead she will be responsible for animations and help with special effects, but will not create most of the models.
3) A 3D modeler:  Will create the characters and enemies, and export them to .3ds format.  May also assist Melinda with the animations, if there is something unique in mind for a particular character.
4) A 2D graphics artist and map designer:  This may be the same person as #3, depending on skill-set.  Would be responsible for all the 2D components - background layers, blocks, items, etc, as well as taking the lead in designing the maps/ levels.
5) A musician and sound-effects specialist:  Would be responsible for composing the music for the levels, and either recording or locating royalty-free sound effects appropriate for the game.

The story and goal for the game and the main character will be community-driven (hoping to get some good ideas from folks that we can discuss and build on here)

If anyone is interest in taking on one or more of the above roles, please put together a sample or two and post it here for consideration, and PM me to talk about what you'd expect as fair compensation for your work if you are chosen.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 02, 2013, 10:08:38 AM
I offer myself as 3d modeler (I can do textures too) and I can also contribuite with graphics, i can do all these as long there's ideas. Also since I'm learning music at conservatory I could try doing audio. Currently I'm on my phone so I don't have any samples on it so i'll update the post with something later. Can there be more than 1 person in the different roles?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 02, 2013, 10:13:28 AM
Sure - just want to make sure everyone who contributes is compensated fairly for their work, which may be difficult without knowing up front whether the game will be popular or just a big flop.  It will be easier for me financially to promise a fair compensation for folks if there are fewer contributers, but of course then the project will take longer to complete as well.  Hoping to hit a nice balance.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on January 02, 2013, 12:16:23 PM
I could only contribute in 2d graphics or at least level editing. Not sure if previous contributions I've sent long time ago apply.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 02, 2013, 12:23:01 PM
Not sure if previous contributions I've sent long time ago apply.
Absolutely, you'd be great!  Shoot me a PM to discuss compensation for your work.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 02, 2013, 07:38:58 PM
Paul since I have to go on a trip for the remaining days of the week, I didn't have time to make a sample. You can visit vincentmrl.com to see my papercrafts (they're made from 3d models so it's a decent sample at least). They may look simple but that's because i never had that many ideas (note that some are extracted from games, the Moo was simplified so you see I know how to reduce poly too). Also you can check my deviantart ( vincentmrl.deviantart.com) to see some 2d graphics samples.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 16, 2013, 02:00:02 PM
I'm definitely interested. You say impressionistic isn't what you're aiming for - what kind of visual style do you have in mind? Something like New Super Mario Bros.? I have plenty of ideas for characters and stories, but I'd like to get an idea of the atmosphere you're trying to create with this project.

Being that you develop an N64 emulator and that you chose NSMB as your example, is it safe to assume you'd like something reminiscent of the golden age of Nintendo? Colorful, Japanese influences, etc.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 16, 2013, 03:08:29 PM
Being that you develop an N64 emulator and that you chose NSMB as your example, is it safe to assume you'd like something reminiscent of the golden age of Nintendo? Colorful, Japanese influences, etc.

Exactly.  Trying to relive my childhood memories, I guess..
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 17, 2013, 03:34:06 PM
We want a Japanese-influenced art style for sure. But if we emulate Japanese game-mechanics (you die and you restart the whole level, limited lives, game overs, etc.) we'll have to make the art style so reminiscent of classic games that people will want to play it just because it reminds them of the games they used to play as kids. We have to do this because by making a game similar to Super Mario Bros., it will be seen as a rip-off unless we put in effort to make it feel like a tribute. And making it a tribute would make this game a novelty, which isn't bad, but we have to be sure that's what we want to go for.

I like this idea you have though about wanting to relive your childhood memories playing video games, because I often feel the same way, and I've always wanted to make a game using this idea. But I think we could make a game that's a lot more meaningful by understanding the implications of this, analyzing how we feel about it, and trying to formulate a story and game around this idea.

Just my 2 cents.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 17, 2013, 03:59:50 PM
The sense of being a rip-off is the main thing I'm trying to avoid.  I want it to be a tribute to the style of game and the era, but not a tribute to Super Mario Bros specifically (this is mainly for copyright reasons, which I've had my fair share of at this point!)

What I want to do is bring in one or two fresh new basic concepts, and build the whole game around that.  For example, consider Super Mario Bros 2, which was criticized by most original Super Mario Bros fans as being a completely different game.  They had taken a couple of new concepts (vertical scrolling and throwing objects), and made a completely unique game out of it (ultimately too unique to be considered a sequel by most people).  Obviously the new enemies also helped make the game unique, but that was only part of it.

In this case, I want to take the basic style of 3D characters in a side-scrolling world with limited lives and game-overs, and use that to make a completely unique game experience that pays tribute to that game style without being a rip-off.

So I guess what I really need are those one or two fresh new ideas, and then start building on the ideas from there.

I thought of one idea (not my best idea, but it should give you the idea of what I'm talking about not being a rip-off of any other game).  Suppose the main character was a glass bowl or pitcher with face, arms, and legs (made to look like a super hero with a cape, for example).  He would start out with no special abilities other than the ability to jump, walk, and run.  One hit from an enemy would shatter him.  He would be able to catch things in his bowl (items rolling off of platforms), and be able to dump them out (to block things, create stepping stones to got over obstacles, drop onto enemies, etc).  He would also be able to fill up with different colored liquids at fountains, which would give him different abilities.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 17, 2013, 04:18:40 PM
That's funny, I'd considered the idea of using an egg for a platformer game because I like the idea of the character being easily breakable. But it would have to be done elegantly to avoid frustrating the player. At this point this just sounds bad. Also, your character is the Kool-Aid man.

My mother would frequently tell me to get off the Super Nintendo and go outside, and this is definitely something people like us can easily relate to. I almost want to make a sidescroller with 8-bit graphics about that kid actually going outside. It says "World 1-1" on the screen, and then for eight entire worlds you literally just walk across the plain, perfectly flat and drab landscape until you eventually return home and resume playing video games. It's intentionally not fun, because as a kids, we knew that going outside wouldn't be nearly as fun as playing video games.

Obviously this wont work for your project, but I wanted to throw out this idea and start thinking about how video games affected us as kids so maybe we can develop it into a story and create a game that's actually fun. And maybe this is an idea that could be somehow worked in there.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 17, 2013, 04:33:09 PM
I almost want to make a sidescroller with 8-bit graphics about that kid actually going outside. It says "World 1-1" on the screen, and then for eight entire worlds you literally just walk across the plain, perfectly flat and drab landscape until you eventually return home and resume playing video games.

That could work as a start-up video.  Basically 8-bit graphics video of a kid getting kicked out of the house, ducking behind a tree, and pulling out his mobile gaming device.  There would be no music during this sequence, with sound effects like the NES for his foot steps.  When he pulls out the device, cut to a retro-style game menu, with low-quality music and everything.

I still want the game itself to be NSMB- quality graphics though, not an NES-quality game.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 17, 2013, 04:58:03 PM
Another great side-scroller that took a unique idea and built a game around it is Kerby 64.  I feel like if we can just think of a good, solid idea like that, development of the concept and game will take off from there.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 17, 2013, 05:09:07 PM
I loved Kirby 64 because it gave you so many resources (which are ironically also your enemies) to experiment with and gain new powers. It was key that you could combine powers, and that there were a lot of different powers.

It really keeps you interested, because each new level you play you can't wait to discover new powers, and then it blows your mind to think about all of the previous powers you could combine it with. That feeling of curiosity and discovery is golden.

I like where we're going with this.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 18, 2013, 04:21:31 AM
The sense of being a rip-off is the main thing I'm trying to avoid.  I want it to be a tribute to the style of game and the era, but not a tribute to Super Mario Bros specifically (this is mainly for copyright reasons, which I've had my fair share of at this point!)

What I want to do is bring in one or two fresh new basic concepts, and build the whole game around that.  For example, consider Super Mario Bros 2, which was criticized by most original Super Mario Bros fans as being a completely different game.  They had taken a couple of new concepts (vertical scrolling and throwing objects), and made a completely unique game out of it (ultimately too unique to be considered a sequel by most people).  Obviously the new enemies also helped make the game unique, but that was only part of it.

In this case, I want to take the basic style of 3D characters in a side-scrolling world with limited lives and game-overs, and use that to make a completely unique game experience that pays tribute to that game style without being a rip-off.

So I guess what I really need are those one or two fresh new ideas, and then start building on the ideas from there.

I thought of one idea (not my best idea, but it should give you the idea of what I'm talking about not being a rip-off of any other game).  Suppose the main character was a glass bowl or pitcher with face, arms, and legs (made to look like a super hero with a cape, for example).  He would start out with no special abilities other than the ability to jump, walk, and run.  One hit from an enemy would shatter him.  He would be able to catch things in his bowl (items rolling off of platforms), and be able to dump them out (to block things, create stepping stones to got over obstacles, drop onto enemies, etc).  He would also be able to fill up with different colored liquids at fountains, which would give him different abilities.
The american SMB2 is actually a reskin of doki doki panic, the real SMB2 (called the lost levels outside jap) was too hard for people.
Also an idea I got: some random powerup that makes the game go retro for a minute and lets you stomp and kill the enemies in one jump it? This would make a great tribute imo
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 18, 2013, 05:03:39 AM
Also an idea I got: some random powerup that makes the game go retro for a minute and lets you stomp and kill the enemies in one jump it? This would make a great tribute imo

This could actually be a very good idea of used correctly. Making it a common power-up would be overkill though because it would be sensory overload to have the screen switch so frequently.

What if instead of it being a power up there were bonus (secret) levels that used the effect? Sort of similar to what Super Meat Boy does.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 18, 2013, 07:15:35 AM
Also an idea I got: some random powerup that makes the game go retro for a minute and lets you stomp and kill the enemies in one jump it? This would make a great tribute imo

This could actually be a very good idea of used correctly. Making it a common power-up would be overkill though because it would be sensory overload to have the screen switch so frequently.

What if instead of it being a power up there were bonus (secret) levels that used the effect? Sort of similar to what Super Meat Boy does.

what about making it show in the first level and be extremely hidden in the other levels? Something like what nsmb does with the mega mushroom
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 18, 2013, 08:14:26 AM
If the game were written with sound MVC techniques, changing the view of a level on the fly would be very simple.  Obviously the special effects of trashing everything as a 3D character tearing apart a low-resolution 2D world would take some work for it to look good.  I'm thinking Paper Mario type of effects where the tiles fly around in 3D as they are being trashed by the player.

I kind of think the story behind the game could be a kid who gets sucked into his portable gaming device after being kicked off his video games and sent out of the house by his mom.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on January 18, 2013, 03:16:15 PM
Just a random idea: Could it be possible that character could have option to morph itself into some basic shapes (ball, cube, pyramid, etc.) and various materials by using some sort of energy or powerup for specific platform areas where physics might be important?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 18, 2013, 03:46:25 PM
Thinking about the morphing concept, I was trying to think of a (non-Kerby) type of character that would be good for morphing.  What comes to mind is a creature like Bob from Monsters vs Aliens.  That then gave me the idea of the creature being semi-transparent like Bob.  Sort of coupling that with the Kerby concept of taking something from the enemies, I had another good idea:

What if the main character is a gelatinous, semi-transparent blob that devours the enemies and digests them.  Certain enemies will have some part that is not digestable (sharp teeth, claws, horns, etc), which the blob incorporates into part of its own body, becoming more powerful/ versatile as he goes.  Damage breaks away these added parts, until you are down to just the blob, and the last hit squashes him (lose a life, restart the current level).
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on January 18, 2013, 05:08:50 PM
Not sure about blobbish style.

My idea would be to make main character as a simple puppet-like character which is made out of basic shapes, and enemies could drop voxels or something similar to equip character with morphing abilities.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: shuy3n on January 18, 2013, 06:29:06 PM
 ;D Just a message of goodluck with this guys wish i could fit into the art styles but i absolutely suck at anything organic or fantasy-esque in 3d

Cant wait to play what you come out with
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 19, 2013, 05:33:28 AM
I don't like the idea of a blob character, just by thinking it it makes me get bored. I prefer the idea of the guy getting sucked in his "retro" game more
Also I got a special level idea: a part where you go in a mine cart or something, that would make people remember about crash bandicoot. I don't know why but I think a warp zone like thing would be awesome, it would make the game different from the others, I'm hating all the level buttons that are all the same in the games
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 19, 2013, 06:55:05 PM
A kid getting sucked into a video game is cliche. A blob that eats things to get powers is trying too hard to be Kirby without being Kirby. More importantly, why are we making this character transform if our goal is to make a game about nostalgia?


[relevant digression]

Have any of you guys played Majora's Mask? Link solves puzzles using masks. Some masks transform his physical body entirely, some give him special powers/abilities, and some influence social situations. Link hides his true face behind masks to accomplish tasks that would otherwise be impossible.

This game mechanic has a point, though. It reveals itself when you visit the moon and talk to the masked children there. They ask Link:

Quote
Your true face...
What kind of...face is it?

I wonder...
The face under the mask...
Is that...your true face?

When we're exposed to different situations, we have to be versatile and react appropriately in order to survive. We tend to act differently around different people because we know they have expectations of us, and we strive to meet them so we can benefit. "Be yourself" is good-intentioned advice, but is not necessarily the best advice, and that's what this game is about at its core.

[/relevant digression]


Kirby 64 is a classic, and the sense of discovery you get from that game is fulfilling. Combining power-ups begins to turn into a science, and when you find a good combination you breeze through the level feeling like a God. It doesn't directly communicate any meaningful anecdote to the player, but it doesn't have to because the game is just so interesting.

There's nothing wrong with making a game that's just interesting.

But Paul, you want to create a game that's reminiscent of your past. You don't want this game to be a clone of popular games from your childhood, you want to communicate a message about how playing games used to make you feel.

Unfortunately, I don't know how to turn that thought into a video game right now, but I am thinking about it. I just think that as we're brainstorming here, we should keep these ideas in mind.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on January 20, 2013, 06:48:41 AM
We're pretty much supposed to end up with some sort of idea like this if our goal is to make a game about nostalgia?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ3BnJ0A2Iw
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 20, 2013, 08:50:58 AM
Haha, no that's more about making fun of NES games.  I may have conveyed the wrong idea here.  What I want to do is create a legitimate game, not a parody, spoof, or copy.  Just a new game that is something I would have enjoyed playing back when the N64 was popular.  The nostalgia factor comes from the way I want the game to feel when playing it, not some "trip down memory lane" built into the story or game play.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on January 20, 2013, 02:08:22 PM
The nostalgia factor comes from the way I want the game to feel when playing it, not some "trip down memory lane" built into the story or game play.

My point is that since you want to make a game that feels like the old games you used to play, the game is about nostalgia. You don't want to make a modern platformer like Super Meat Boy or N+, you want players to be reminded of what good old games were like.

My idea was to make this game somehow self-aware of the fact that it's doing this to avoid it feeling like a clone or a simple novelty. But maybe I got a little carried away. ;D

I hope I'm not coming off as cocky. I've never made a video game before and really don't know anything.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 20, 2013, 02:48:47 PM
Sure, I agree with that, but I think the order of operations for the concept phase needs to be

1) New novel game-play concept, that hasn't been done a thousand times already
2) Brainstorming on how this game-play concept could be worked into characters or levels
3) Develop the characters and story (the "self awareness" piece would come into play here)
4) Repeat steps 1-3 a couple more times with the characters and story as a compass to further mature the game idea and brainstorm new game-play concepts, enemies, level challenges, and plot development
5) Begin the development phase
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 20, 2013, 03:00:02 PM
So I guess what I'm saying, is the discussions of the Cool Aid man, morphing shapes, gelatinous blobs, etc. are relevant and a good way to get the creative juices flowing, to hopefully work toward that initial novel game-play concept that is needed to really kick off the discussion on what the game will really be.

Really the only constraints I'm putting onto this are that I want it to be a side-scroller with 2D maps and 3D characters.  This is not just for nostalgic reasons - this setup is perfectly suited to embedded systems, by reducing the number of polygons that must be rendered for a scene.  Developing for embedded systems like the OUYA is not the same as developing for systems with a dedicated graphics card, and I think that is very important to consider right up front when thinking about creating a new game.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 20, 2013, 06:10:37 PM
Ok, I had another idea that I don't think has been done before.  It would involve possession.  Suppose the main character were some sort of spirit without any particular form.  It would have the ability to jump into objects, statues, enemies, etc, which you then control.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 21, 2013, 05:07:02 AM
I should be sleeping since I have to work today, but when I have an idea I can't stop obsessing about it sometimes.  Anyway, I was thinking more about the possession idea, and thought that a good name for the game, or at least for the main character, would be "Caped Soul".  This is a subtle anagram I've used before (rearrange the letters and you get "Paul's Code").

I put together a concept image for the caped soul (pieced together results from a Google Images search, healed, desaturated, colorized - not really an original work, just a basic concept):
(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/caped_soul.png)


This should demonstrate why I can't be the artist - the character would need to be more spirit-like, and is much too serious.  It would need to be made way more "Nintendoy" to fit into the style of game I'm wanting to do here.  I was going to say more "cutesy", but I'm not going for Casper here either.  Hopefully you get the idea.

This creature would start out in his ghostly form, and be able to jump into things.  When damaged, he would pop back out in his ghostly form, and of course from there if damaged he loses a life and the level restarts.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 21, 2013, 07:33:06 PM
I was thinking about this some more today, and I really think the Caped Soul/ possession idea is the direction I want to go with this game.  There are all kinds of unique experiences you could create with this idea, and deciding what to possess and in what order will make the game experience different each time you replay a level.

The idea of possessing statues, not just enemies, is something that really has potential I think.  For example, you know how several games have statues of heads on the dungeon walls, which spit magic balls or arrows?  Wouldn't it be cool to possess something like that and snipe the enemies on the map?  How about statues of guards at the entrance to a palace?  Or possess a gargoyle statue and go on a rampage!

It would be important to limit this power somehow, or the game would just be too easy, and no fun to play.  One idea would be to make it so possessing something takes some amount of time (targeting and then staring at at the target, for example).  The more powerful the target, the longer it would take to posses.  Fast-moving targets would be very difficult to posses, but would be a huge advantage if you can pull it off (flying enemies, for example, to skip over difficult areas of a map).

I also like the idea of making the ultimate enemy to be other creatures like yourself, who can also possess things.  It could be used for some very exciting bosses at the end of the levels - utilizing the environment through possession to attack each other!
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: EGOvoruhk on January 22, 2013, 01:21:14 AM
This sounds kind of like a 2D version of Messiah. Not exact, but I'm getting reminders of it with the possession talk. I liked Messiah


Also, I just felt the need to say that this:

It would be important to limit this power somehow, or the game would just be too easy, and no fun to play

is oh so very wrong, and one of the biggest mistakes game developers make.

Why is Mario fun, because it's hard? No, because it's fun. Fun and difficulty aren't mutually exclusive. Never limit a fun (main) game mechanic unless you're going to replace it with another fun game mechanic. If you want to make it hard, then on the last level, have the protagonist turn the antagonist into a human, or other killable form, maybe trap him in whatever last possession he took, and limit them that way and give them another way, that's not frustrating, to beat the game... even though that's so cliche

Whatever you do, just don't make the game get progressively harder for no reason at all. Plenty of games barely progress in difficulty, but stay fun throughout. If it's too hard, people might start throwing their controllers like the old days ;D
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 22, 2013, 11:20:50 AM
TWhy is Mario fun, because it's hard? No, because it's fun. Fun and difficulty aren't mutually exclusive. Never limit a fun (main) game mechanic unless you're going to replace it with another fun game mechanic. If you want to make it hard, then on the last level, have the protagonist turn the antagonist into a human, or other killable form, maybe trap him in whatever last possession he took, and limit them that way and give them another way, that's not frustrating, to beat the game... even though that's so cliche

Whatever you do, just don't make the game get progressively harder for no reason at all. Plenty of games barely progress in difficulty, but stay fun throughout. If it's too hard, people might start throwing their controllers like the old days ;D

SMB, nsmb, even mario kart double dash, these all get harder progressively because the player gets more experience. A game must have progressive difficulty because it can get boring. Even an easy game like Klonoa (PS1) got some hard parts, still the concept is crazily simple.
Also, what's bad about throwing controllers like the old days? Wasn't the game supposed to give nostalgia? ;D
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 22, 2013, 11:24:38 AM
It would be important to limit this power somehow, or the game would just be too easy, and no fun to play

is oh so very wrong, and one of the biggest mistakes game developers make.

Why is Mario fun, because it's hard? No, because it's fun. Fun and difficulty aren't mutually exclusive. Never limit a fun (main) game mechanic unless you're going to replace it with another fun game mechanic.

I agree with your point in principle - I definitely am not suggesting making it difficult just for the sake of being difficult.  Instead, my idea was to make it simple in the initial levels (to get used to the game-play) and progressively more complex (perhaps "complex" is a better word than "difficult", but the two often go hand-in-hand).  If the game is a simple mindless repeating level after level, then it will not be fun either.  Not talking about making huge pit that you have to run at with a tiny platform to land on.  Rather, I'm talking more about complex scenareos and more difficult things to possess, to make you strategize what you want to possess in what order, so that you can not only complete the level but also get a good "score" or be rewarded for accomplishing a particularly difficult possession.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on January 22, 2013, 11:26:50 AM
About possessing, maybe this would make it more complex... you could try to possess every possible object in game, including doors or walls or gates or lamps, so pretty much everything, the only thing it would depend is how it will affect its abilities. Player will have to find a way how possesion of those things would help him, or not.

No limits, but no hints either. Some objects should have an additional random ability/disability so that it doesn't always end up that you think that something will do what you think it will do, but it may do something else, too. The scenario by itself could be dynamic, so that it's not always the same objective or process to make objective successful.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 22, 2013, 11:51:40 AM
That's an excellent idea!  It would be a good way to hide items like extra lives, warp zones, etc (instead of pounding blocks with your head or pressing "down" on pipes).  It would also give you the sense that you were controlling a powerful character, which is what I want.  I'd like to draw the player into the character and get a sense of what it would be like to have the ability to just take control of things at will.  Jumping into simple things like doors and what-not should be instantaneous point-and-click, so you could quickly cover everything on the screen and move on without getting bored.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 22, 2013, 11:56:58 AM
I agree with the idea, it makes me think about zelda games, they're puzzle all the way and if you don't use logic you get stuck forever. Also the game should have an hint you have to think about to find out what it means, appearing after some minutes being stuck.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 22, 2013, 12:30:43 PM
Any thoughts on a story?  Perhaps a starting point to build on, is that Caped Soul could be a rebel of some sort, who is fighting against others of his kind.  Not sure if he should be a "villain" trying to become the most powerful of his kind, or a "hero" fighting against some injustice perpetrated by others of his kind.  Also along that same vein, not sure if most "enemies" should be innocent bystanders or minions of the other spirits (or a combination of both).
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 23, 2013, 12:33:50 AM
what about the backstory on the evil guy, saying he was good but then something bad happened to him/soeone hypnotizes him to make people think he's the villain?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: harrbri on January 23, 2013, 05:46:53 AM
how bout the main character has had his body stolen...
or id love for the main character to have "square eyes" from to much video gaming....
or the level to fold upon itself so you can play in the background and the foreground in opposite directions...
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 23, 2013, 01:40:51 PM
I think what I'll do next is write a very basic core for the engine (something without any "bells and whistles"), probably in a web applet (using jPCT, since it can be easily ported to jPCT AE which I'll be using for the 3D engine in the OUYA game).  I feel like I'll be able to generate more interest in the project if I have a simple demo for folks to look at, and we can tinker around with it while brainstorming.

The demo will be a single screen, a ground, a background, a single platform, a single 3D enemy, and a single 3D object.  You'll be able to walk, maybe jump, possess the enemy and object, and control them once possessed.  I'll make some simple placeholder images and models for the demo (unless anyone has some stuff I could borrow)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 23, 2013, 05:42:00 PM
I have a blocky king harkinian model I made long ago, he's holding the cup. Tell me if you want to use it as placehorder model :P
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 23, 2013, 06:44:13 PM
Haha, sure that will work for a place holder  ;D
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 23, 2013, 07:11:38 PM
ok I sent you a pm with the model. Tell me when you'll use it (and also tell  me how good it is :3)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: harrbri on January 23, 2013, 07:40:37 PM
i have a nexus 7 and was wondering if it would be testable on other android devices with say button mapping.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 23, 2013, 07:46:16 PM
i have a nexus 7 and was wondering if it would be testable on other android devices with say button mapping.
Paul said it can be for other android devices and the test engine will be tested on browser. He will port the test engine to ouya, and at that point it looks that he'll make a normal android engine.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 23, 2013, 08:15:15 PM
i have a nexus 7 and was wondering if it would be testable on other android devices with say button mapping.
Paul said it can be for other android devices and the test engine will be tested on browser. He will port the test engine to ouya, and at that point it looks that he'll make a normal android engine.
Yes, initially it will be a browser-based applet for playing around with concepts (keyboard controlled).  Once I begin the real development I'll port the engine to the OUYA and begin doing the real work.  I'll probably add a simple interface for button mapping early on so folks with Android devices can help test levels and what-not.  Eventually I'll do a proper Android port, with touch-screen control option and a more solid controller mapping component, but the OUYA game will come first so I don't get bogged down with trying to support a huge range of devices and input methods.

Hope I can get to work with you guys, thanks.
I know a lot of folks on the forum would be very capable of doing the artwork or modeling, so I'll have to make a decision at some point.  The team will necessarily be small (I can't afford a big development team).  I might do a competition if lots of people want to get involved, and pick the person I think will fit the style I'm looking for.

Another thought would be instead of paying folks up front, we could agree that everyone on the team would get an equal share of profits (after calculating taxes) from both the Kickstarter campaign when it is run, and for the first year of sales.  That would allow the team to be larger and complete the game more quickly, but of course nobody would actually make any money until the game was basically finished.  Anybody have thoughts on this?  Nobody has really brought up what they'd expect to be paid for their work, so just throwing around some ideas here.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tripod on January 23, 2013, 09:38:16 PM
I'm liking the possession idea.

Some thoughts that come to mind:
Caped Soul could have a physical body and is completely stationary and vulnerable as s/he calls forth and maintains his spiritual form/s.

Perhaps s/he acquires each boss' souls or an item to summon more which will progressively allow more at your command.  This will allow you to make some very well hidden puzzles in the early levels that are essentially locked until later if you wanted to.

Extending to the idea of having more souls/spirits, the player can choose a combination of how many spirits they would like to control at any time.  Combining all current souls into one will call forth the player's most potent spirit (an ultimate spirit of sorts) which can posses larger objects and more powerful enemies and do so at the farthest distance from the physical body.  How many current souls the player has obtained will determine how potent the ultimate spirit is.  Conjuring more spirits would cause them to be a proportion of the so-called ultimate spirit and each are limited to possessing smaller objects, weaker enemies and at a much shorter range.  Different ratios could be used: If you have a total of 3 souls currently, 2 souls in 1 spirit while only 1 soul in the other spirit could be a combination.

Caped Soul initially came to mind as a being with a skeletal/demonic mask and once pulled off would reveal an intangible, ghostly head which would 'leak' out the spirits obtained thus far with each leaving a tail tethered to his/her would-be face.  I thought about it a bit longer and perhaps this would make the character and setting too dark and if the bosses are of the same 'race' their appearance may be very similar.

Then I thought jewels/gems could be used to contain the souls and that Caped Soul could be an alias for a normal human to hide his/her true identity to save his/her loved ones from danger (or it could just be their real name) which could make the story a tiny bit more relatable and possibly introduce new mechanics.  In terms of being more relatable, Caped Soul could have received a family heirloom (an amulet etc.) and unbeknownst to him/her it contains a powerful soul of some importance (a king or pharaoh etc.).  This leads others with these gems to seek out Caped Soul to prey on his inexperience with this power and try to take the amulet for themselves to have the power they need to overwhelm the more experienced gem wielders in order to gain their gems too.  In regards to new mechanics, each gem would produce a spirit with a similar colour to the gem they are contained in.  Combining spirits would perform certain mixtures of colours that would be necessary for certain possessions to be successful.  For example a purple monster may only be possessed by a purple spirit.  The gems jewellery could be contained in jewellery worn by the characters such as a diamond amulet, ruby ring, sapphire earring, emerald pocket-watch and a jet crown.  Or maybe the CMYK colour model should be used.

This then brings into mind how many bosses there would be, for 3 primary colours there would be 2 main bosses which might be a bit too small.  There could be 4 main bosses to make 3 primary colours, white and black, but that might be too many spirit which may overwhelm the gamer and may also be hard to implement levels based off them.

I really don't know, but these are some things that came to mind.  Hopefully they can be of some use.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 23, 2013, 10:36:53 PM
I like a lot of what you brought up there.  I especially like having the main character be a normal human.  This would make him much easier for the player to relate to, and would provide more opportunity to work in that "self awareness" factor that Alex mentioned.  Additionally it would help bring the game more in line with the style that I'm looking for, I think.

Building on your ideas, what comes to mind is the relationship between Ichigo and Zangetsu (if you are familiar with Bleach).  Basically the gem would contain the "Caped Soul" (also the title of the game).  The Caped Soul would be a mysterious, shadowy being, who the main character (a human boy) would forge a relationship with throughout the game, and learn wield more effectively to accomplish possessions.  Learning the identity of the Caped Soul could be one of the main plot points, and there could always be a question of whether it can be trusted as a friend, or if it is only manipulating its human master to achieve its own goals.

For enemies, I think that they could be creatures that are simply drawn to the Caped Soul's energy (much like the hollows in Bleach being drawn to the most powerful soul reapers, or evil being drawn to Mordor as Sauron regained his power in Lord of the Rings).  The bosses would be other "soul wielders" or "possessors" (or whatever we decide to call them).  As far as number of bosses, I want the game to be relatively fast-paced, which will translate to more bosses.  I don't think we need to have only one boss of each color, or even have colors be of such importance in the first place.  I would say we could come up with a triad balance based on the colors red, green, and blue (a paper-rock-scissors type of deal) where blue is most effective against red, red against green, and green against blue)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 24, 2013, 09:02:08 AM
I was thinking some more about the "self awareness" piece that we want to work into the game.  One place we could start this discussion is with the question "Wouldn't it be cool if...", from the perspective of classic Nintendo games.  Smash Bros, for example, used this concept with great success, by asking the obvious question "Wouldn't it be cool if classic video game heroes could face off against each other?"

The first question that jumped to mind was "Wouldn't it be cool if Mario had the power to control the enemies?"  That's too literal, of course, but it did get me thinking.. what is it about SMB that I really liked?  What can I take from it, so that my game feels like a new SMB with Mario having cool new powers?  Not talking about the story here, but how the player feels playing the game for the first time.  The more I think about it, the thing which sticks out to me most about SMB is worlds 1-1 and 1-2.  Specifically entering 1-2 after having completed 1-1.  I vividly remember the feeling I got having gone from the bright outdoors, open feel of world 1-1, and finding myself in the dark, enclosed dungeon of world 1-2... the shiny yellow/orange question mark blocks and coins that seemed out of place compared to the blue-tent that dominates the map.  If I could capture that feeling in my game, I think it would go a long way towards giving the player that sense of nostalgia.

So the result of this first "Wouldn't it be cool if..." line of thought: We should make the first map very bright, open, and outdoorsy, with a clear blue sky and sparse green vegetation.  It should transition to a second map that is dark, bluish tent, pitch-black background, sparsely dotted with shiny yellow/orange objects (will depend on what objects we use in the game).  I think this could go a long way toward bringing in memories of SMB without looking like a complete rip-off.

Anyone else have strong memories if something specific from SMB or another of the classic nintendo games?

Anyone have some other "Wouldn't it be cool if..." questions?  Don't worry if they are too literal.. like the one above the idea is just to get the thought process moving so we end up with an idea to help facilitate a sense of nostalgia while playing the game.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on January 24, 2013, 01:44:02 PM
I would say we could come up with a triad balance based on the colors red, green, and blue (a paper-rock-scissors type of deal) where blue is most effective against red, red against green, and green against blue)
The similar example of that would be The Ancients in " Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem".
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eternal_Darkness:_Sanity%27s_Requiem#The_Ancients
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on January 25, 2013, 12:38:43 AM
For the  story, I have 2 ideas:
1: The caped soul in the amulet is actually evil and the "main enemy" makes the person get powerful enough to fight the caped soul in the last level, because if he told the umexperienced weak person at the beginning, the caped soul would kill him.
2:Another idea is, the evil guy makes everyone think the person is the evil one, by morphing into his shape and doing evil things (this  was heavily inspired by mario sunshine)
Also gameplay wise, I have some ideas too:
1:there could be 5 amulets, white/purple will be the one you'll start with (white if soul is good and purple if soul is black) and the main enrmy would own the black one. This way there can be 3 bosses then final boss.
2: the white amulet could be held by a good powerful person that kid has to run to in the end of the game to save himself. Also the kid would get the white amuler in the game and unlock a special power and concept art etc.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: JNiceNick on January 25, 2013, 04:25:26 PM
Wouldn't it be cool if instead of limiting one's freedom with whatever Nintendo/Sony etc. games were able to achieve you put some effort into making roguelike-stiled RPG with sophisticated talent tree (with ghosts and whatever being some of abilities), randomly generated monsters (giant flaming-skin flying freez-breathing mushrooms and such), fully destructible levels and multiple character races instead? Greatest benefits of the genre are ability to fully indulge oneself into creation (and possibly never finish resulting game) and immediately incorporate any community-provided good ideas, as if it all was planned from very beginning.

PS do not take this too seriously, probably just played ToME 4 too much...
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: ghshan on January 26, 2013, 01:58:37 AM
well ive got an idea for a storyline. the protagonist (make it a male) could have someone dear to him kidnapped by the antagonist (like how most game story lines go) and that the protagonist has to travel extremely large distances getting seriously hurt along the way but not giving a crap about the pain as he has to save that person dear to him.

P.S the protagonist could be a master swordsman.

this is just a suggestion if you like the idea please consider it
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: shuy3n on January 30, 2013, 08:07:37 AM
Thought I'd chip in with a mechanic even though i don't know the constraints of the OUYA, could possession work as by you stand still, then touch the touch pad which lifts your soul from the body and you then control it onscreen from the touchpad hovering over an enemy/object for a tiny period of time will then posess that enemy/object, releasing will return the soul to the body
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on January 30, 2013, 08:16:32 AM
I don't know - seems like that could be a little awkward, but I'll refrain judgement until I give it a test.  My thought was to show a targeting "line" that extends from the center of the player when the "posses" button is pressed.  It can be rotated 360 degrees using the analog stick (2D view of the game, so that can easily cover every possible direction).  Releaseing the button "fires" the soul in whatever direction you aimed it (possessing whatever it collides with).
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Alex Gleason on February 08, 2013, 11:04:55 PM
"Caped Soul".
It would need to be made way more "Nintendoy"

Many of Nintendo's ideas and characters are adaptations of Japanese folklore. For instance:

Kappa (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kappa_(folklore)) (Koopa)
Tanuki (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanuki) (Tanooki)
The statue Tanooki Mario can transform into is a Ksitigarbha (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ksitigarbha#In_Japan)

Maybe we should consider implementing Japanese folklore as a tribute to this. While searching for Japanese mythology which features capes, I stumbled across Aka Manto which literally translates into "Red Cape".

See here for an explanation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_urban_legend#Aka_Manto_.28Red_Cape.29

This is a pretty dark piece of folklore, but equally are the legends that Nintendo drew from to create its characters. As the Wikipedia article for Kappa says:

Quote
Kappa are usually seen as mischievous troublemakers or trickster figures. Their pranks range from the relatively innocent, such as loudly passing gas or looking up women's kimonos, to the malevolent, such as drowning people and animals, kidnapping children, and raping women.

So perhaps something can be done with the Aka Manto or a similar legend.

EDIT: Perhaps the caped soul could alternate between red and blue capes under different circumstances. Do we want him to be the playable character, or a rival (possibly primary rival)?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 10, 2013, 09:36:17 AM
Very interesting.  I particularly like the concept in the legend about choosing how you are going to die, and "the only way to win is not to play".  The whole bathroom thing is just weird.

If we abandon the kid with the jewel containing the caped soul for a second, my initial thought for how this legend could work into a game, is to have the player control a caped figure wearing a mask in an attempt to look menacing (as a "Nintendoy" character, it would be something similar to Shy Guy).  To accomplish a possession, he would remove his mask and lock gazes with an enemy before jumping into it (basically using his charisma as a weapon to disarm the target as it were).  During the short duration where he and the target have locked gazes, his cape would flash between red and blue, slowing down until it lands on a random color.  If it lands on red, the enemy is immediately killed when the soul jumps into it.  If it lands on blue, the soul takes possession of the enemy.  If the enemy breaks the gaze, then the possession fails.  I think if the animations for the possession sequence are done well, this should give the impression that the enemy chose his fate (or chose not to play)

I'm actually now torn between the concept of controlling a human character that is wielding the soul as a weapon, or just controlling the soul directly.  The latter would be simpler and certainly fit the legend better, but the story behind the former could be a lot more compelling.  I'll have to think about this some more.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 10, 2013, 10:28:18 AM
Another thought besides flashing capes, would be to have the cape just red all the time.  Instead, the enemies could point toward the soul (making a choice), and the word "...red" or "...blue" appear in a word-bubble over their head, before the soul jumps into them.  And a bubble with "!!" could appear over the enemies if they break the gaze (as they turn around and walk the other way).  I'm just thinking of ways to make it obvious that the enemy is making a choice.  Any other thoughts?

Also, I was thinking that a possessed enemy/ object could have a blue tint to it (just to tie into the legend a little more with the colors)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on February 10, 2013, 03:47:48 PM
what about some fast "tricky" challenge to possess an enemy? Something like you said but that would need things like swiping (on smartphones and tablets), moving analog sticks (OUYA and Xperia play) and moving the phone/tablet/OUYA gamepad (if it has a sensor). Also the blue for the enemy should be a bright blue with light, since the one that is possessing the enemy is a good person, and red if some sorta of boss possess them

Also I got a puzzling idea: Giving you the possibility to move the main character with one stick, and the enemy with the other one. This would make great puzzles
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: shuy3n on February 19, 2013, 09:41:46 AM
Randomly flicked through my friends comic book collection and came across a guy name "Task Master" mite be a good reference for you main char?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 21, 2013, 09:08:52 AM
I really want to get some momentum going on this project, but seem to be in a bit of a quagmire with my other projects (Mupen64Plus AE updates, Open Pandora port, N64 controller project, OUYA port).

I'll put together a weekly schedule to better organize my free time and ensure that nothing ends up on a back burner indefinitely.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: littleguy on February 21, 2013, 11:15:12 AM
Let me know if I can lighten the load.  I can start by not pushing so many updates to the ae repo  :P
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 21, 2013, 11:56:02 AM
LOL, you're actually a huge help.  The project would be moving quite a bit slower if it wasn't for your efforts (and I'd have a lot more on the queue that needed prioritizing)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: shuy3n on February 22, 2013, 08:03:00 AM
LOL, you're actually a huge help.  The project would be moving quite a bit slower if it wasn't for your efforts (and I'd have a lot more on the queue that needed prioritizing)

have you finalised the story and setting yet Paul also what art style did you decide on, wind waker esque?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 22, 2013, 08:18:16 AM
I haven't finalized the story - still torn on whether to have a human handler be the main character controlling the caped soul, or having the caped soul be the main character.  As far as art style, definitely NOT wind waker (I hated that look!)  I'm thinking more like NSMB (clean, bright "Nintendoy" graphics, not "Cartoony")
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: hortino on February 25, 2013, 11:39:28 PM
Had a few thoughts on the game.
     First, in regards to possessing things. I hate how in some games you can interact with certain creatures/objects, only to come across a similiar creature/object and not be able to interact with it for no reason, apart from "you don't need to." i.e. tubes in mario. Specifically pointing towards the puzzle aspect of the game. If you can possess one door you come across, like to open it and reveal a power up kind of like chests in other games, then you should be able to possess all doors, some revealing 'shinies' most revealing nothin, some revealing enemies even.
    Second, in regards to the main character being a human weilding a spirt v. just a spirit. My initial thought is a game map similiar to mario, where you move about the map from node to node. Where the main character is a human and the "nodes" could be like mystical looking stones that you can possibly possess (simply transporting you to a certain level where you now take on your spirit form) or use a different color crystal to insert into the stone, each crystal endowing you with a different skill set or allowing you to possess different types of things (enemies, inanimates, or statues.)

I thought of the italicized mechanic while typing. I don't necessarily like it in that context, but I do think it is an interesting mechanic and adds to the complexity a bit. It opens up the replay value of the game, as one choice may progress you through the game, another will land you valuable power ups/loot.

EDIT: Thinking about the graphics of the game. The series "Zenonia" for iOS and Android has simple, clean graphics. Not saying you copy them, but you may be able to find some inspiration in their design.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 26, 2013, 08:48:11 AM
If you can possess one door you come across ... then you should be able to possess all doors

That is exactly what I was thinking.  You would be able to possess really anything, but whether or not it was useful would depend on the particular area or puzzle.

My initial thought is a game map similiar to mario, where you move about the map from node to node. Where the main character is a human and the "nodes" could be like mystical looking stones that you can possibly possess (simply transporting you to a certain level where you now take on your spirit form)

That's an interesting idea - it sort of provides a third option, where you are controlling both the human character and the spirit in two separate and distinct aspects of the game (along a similar vein to Act Raiser, where you control both the angel and the god)

The series "Zenonia" for iOS and Android has simple, clean graphics. Not saying you copy them, but you may be able to find some inspiration in their design.

Not really in terms of perspective though (it looks to be 2D overhead, where as I am wanting to do 3D characters on 2D side-view).
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: hortino on February 26, 2013, 02:01:03 PM
Not really in terms of perspective though (it looks to be 2D overhead, where as I am wanting to do 3D characters on 2D side-view).

Like I said, I know that isnt the design you were looking at, but they have lots of different character models that would be relevant to this genre, and again not copy them, but I thought maybe you could get some ideas from those.

Im a little cloudy when you say, "3d character on a 2d side view."
Do you mean like a 3d character in a 3d environment, but you are only scrolling along one axis of this 3d environment? Will the character only be able to move left to right on the screen, or also "in-to" the screen?

Expanding on the side-scrolling format a bit. Generally when you think of a 2d environment, it has an x-axis(left to right) and a y-axis(up and down), but suppose we added a 3rd axis 'z'(into the screen). Along that z-axis, you could define more "x-axis," parallel to the orignal x axis, at z=0,1,2,3 ect.. 0 being the orignal x axis that you are initially moving along. Now, along these additional lines on this z axis you have another string of enemies, objects, etc.. These additional lines, could have optional content, hidden items, puzzles, or whatever.

Excuse me for the mathy explanation. I'm a math major, so its the only way I could think of it lol. Also its just an idea. I think it opens the game up a bit, but if nothing else maybe it will give someone else an idea.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: littleguy on February 26, 2013, 02:10:42 PM
Do you mean like a 3d character in a 3d environment, but you are only scrolling along one axis of this 3d environment? Will the character only be able to move left to right on the screen, or also "in-to" the screen?

I think he means 2d as in planar motion - left,right,up,down - with no motion into the screen.  3d models limited to 2d motion.  Like Trine.

but suppose we added a 3rd axis 'z'(into the screen). Along that z-axis, you could define more "x-axis," parallel to the orignal x axis, at z=0,1,2,3 ect.. 0 being the orignal x axis that you are initially moving along.

Reminds me of Double Dragon.  I would call that 2-and-a-half D.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 26, 2013, 07:14:22 PM
By 3D characters in 2D, I mean the characters will be 3D models, allowing smoother animations, greater range of motion, nicer lighting and shading, and cleaner special effects.  The maps however will be 2D.  Not 3D viewed from only one angle - actually flat 2D layers.  The idea is that if you only view something from one direction, then it can be simulated with far fewer polygons.  So for example, the entire background for one screen-width of the map could be rendered with only 2 polys (or 4, 6, 8, etc if you do layered backgrounds).

There are some advantages to a system like this:

1) Less 3D modelling work (a major chunk of the development time)
2) Faster map design (additional levels and upgrades will be easier)
3) Smaller app size (map definitions will be small text files)
4) Simpler hit detection (only need to calculate oval intersections)
5) Less processing power (freeing resources for other things)

The system will also allow the game to be ported to vanilla Android down the road and be supported on a larger range of devices.  I'll basically be marketing the game on "cool idea" and "fun to play", not on "cutting edge" or "awesome graphics".
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: hortino on February 27, 2013, 04:48:36 PM
Ah, I see now. I like the idea of clean and simple as opposed to choppy and complicated. Have you gotten anywhere on what you want your main character to look like?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 27, 2013, 06:42:43 PM
Yes, I'm thinking he should look something similar to Shy Guy, but with a cape rather than a hoodie.  If you google "shy guy" that will give you an excellent idea of what I mean by the "Nintendoy" style I'm after for the game.  Whoever does the character modelling will also have to come up with an appropriate "face beneath the mask", since removing the mask is how he will possess things.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: shuy3n on March 05, 2013, 06:17:42 PM
edit:after looking at it i see how bad it is but wont tidy as i think i have a better idea of the concept now

(http://i.imgur.com/6cpaBRV.jpg)

quickest dirtiest sketch you'll ever see but i think i went something spawned from kokiri forest kinda direction instead of mario
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on March 05, 2013, 08:37:23 PM
(http://i.imgur.com/6cpaBRV.jpg)

Not too bad.  Much better than I would have done, haha!
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: shuy3n on March 06, 2013, 08:19:28 AM

/deleted/

Not too bad.  Much better than I would have done, haha!

i was doing someones website and their ftp was being shockingly slow so i kinda scribbled in the 5 mins it took for 4 pictures to upload lol

I'm horribly poor at the weirdly unique chibi Nintendo style
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Jimlarck on March 18, 2013, 07:28:01 AM
I'm really excited about this project.

Please no leveling up system to get to another spot to be able to defeat other enemies. I've played Advena and found myself getting bored of it rather quick. The gameplay became repetitive, defeat enemies until you level up to move on to the next area, if enemies where to strong move to the area before to level up. The only thing that made it fun was the story. It was a pain to play.

Also another suggestion. To keep the player from getting bored after finishing the game why not make a Level editor? Simple blank map with different blocks to add and enemies to make a level.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on March 18, 2013, 07:54:36 AM
I actually am considering making a level maker and import/ export functions (so folks can share their work with other players).  Like you suggest it would probably start with  a simple system of making a map and placing enemies and objects on it, but eventually I want to include an events-based language that could be used to control AI's, make things reactive, etc.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Epic_bubble on April 10, 2013, 08:42:57 AM
Speaking of platforming games I actually made a prototype for my own html5 platforming game during the last ludum dare. I never finished it (probably never will) but it still felt awesome to have a working game with proper graphics sound effects and music. :)

Controls are W, A, D.

Link: http://midgard.on-rev.com/daniel/main/games/

I also made a slightly more advanced version of the engine with wall jumping but I made it in flash rather than html5.

Link: http://midgard.on-rev.com/daniel/main/games/flash/

I also made in in XNA with xbox controller support, I managed to get parallax scrolling working in the XNA version.
It kinda sucks that XNA is getting phased out, it was pretty nice to use.

I cant remember if I already mentioned it a while back in the shoutbox.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 10, 2013, 09:41:33 AM
I think what I'll do next is write a very basic core for the engine (something without any "bells and whistles"), probably in a web applet (using jPCT, since it can be easily ported to jPCT AE which I'll be using for the 3D engine in the OUYA game).  I feel like I'll be able to generate more interest in the project if I have a simple demo for folks to look at, and we can tinker around with it while brainstorming.

The demo will be a single screen, a ground, a background, a single platform, a single 3D enemy, and a single 3D object.  You'll be able to walk, maybe jump, possess the enemy and object, and control them once possessed.  I'll make some simple placeholder images and models for the demo (unless anyone has some stuff I could borrow)

I started writing the basic engine for the demo yesterday.  I have the placeholder models I'll be using for the Caped Soul and enemy, but wanted to see if anyone had some placeholder tile images, music, sound effects, and object.  I can make these myself as well, just seeing if anyone has something sitting around they wouldn't mind lending me.  I will need the following:

Object model, .3ds format
- Something simple (like a rock)

Tiles, 32x32
- Two different floor or ground tiles (can include a couple transition tiles if necessary)
- One platform tile
- Set of background tiles (something simple - sky, cloud, and tree.  No layering at this point)
- Set of midground tiles (something simple, like a tree, will scroll at slower speed than foreground)

Skybox, 640x480 (may be higher-def if desired)
- One horizontally-repeatable image (will scroll at slower speed than midground)

Music,  Vorbis (.ogg) or IXBM (.s2m, .mod, or .xm)
- Loopable (may include a separate lead-in.  I can convert from other formats)

Sound Effects, Vorbis (.ogg)
- Jump
- Damage (possessed enemy)
- Die (Caped Soul and "red caped" enemy.  May be the same sound, or separate sounds)
- Successful possession (object and "blue caped" enemy.  May be the same sound, or separate sounds)
- Failed possession (enemy refuses)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Epic_bubble on April 10, 2013, 11:22:10 AM
You can use some of the assets I made for my prototype http://midgard.on-rev.com/daniel/browse.php?dir=main/games/sounds

I will never finish the game so somebody might as well put them to use. :D

When I have some free time I wouldn't mind making some proper music for your game. The one in the folder linked above is more suited to a 8bit style game.

Heres a simple tile and platform image too. (32x32)

(http://i.imgur.com/FiPjXHm.png)

(http://i.imgur.com/aZu4QIO.png)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 10, 2013, 12:33:35 PM
Thanks!

I've been thinking about the background piece, and I think a better way to do that instead of tiling is to use a scrollable skybox instead.  Instead of a grid of 32x32 tiles, the background will instead be a series of large images (or a single repeated large image).  Then there would be a midground layer with simple tiling (for things like trees).  This setup will be better optimized (fewer textures and polygons) and be more visually appealing (background more detailed and less "blocky").

I updated the resource list.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Epic_bubble on April 10, 2013, 02:05:36 PM
Thats more or less what I did for the XNA version of my game. I used 32x32 tiles for the foreground to create the actual level itself (Walls, platforms etc) and the background consisted of 3 layers which used parallax scolling to give a nice effect when the character moves. The background images repeat over and over kind of how old cartoons used to be animated.

I can imagine doing this in a 3D setting is much more complicated :D
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on April 10, 2013, 03:08:16 PM
I have this skybox if needed, horizontally repeatable: http://i.imgur.com/Pe3zSUo.png

Not sure if placeholder images require to be themed properly. If they do, I'll try to make them that way if possible.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 10, 2013, 06:06:14 PM
No theming necessary at this stage.  It is just to have something range able to tinker with while we're brainstorming.  We can swap things out as we go.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 11, 2013, 09:17:11 AM
I've been thinking about it some more, and actually I can take advantage of the fact that this is a 2D world simulated in a 3D context, to even further optimize and improve the visual quality with respect to the "midground".  Instead of using tiles for the midground, I can use billboarded squares at different depths.  This will cause them to scroll at a realistic speed and be scaled to a realistic size based on how far away they are.  For anyone who is not familiar with billboarding, it is used extensively in N64 games (most notable that come to mind are the vehicles in Mario Kart, and the Bomb King in Mario64).  The idea is that if you have an object that is symmetrical (looks more or less the same from any angle you'll be looking at it from), then you can draw it as a 2D image onto a single square (only 2 polygons) and have that square always pointed at the camera.  In the case of a side-scroller, we will only ever be looking at objects on the X/Z plane (no tilting the camera "up" or "down"), so the symmetry only needs to be horizontal.  In other words things like trees, grass, mountains, etc could all be billboarded (and the textures could be as detailed as we like -- can easily get away from an 8-bit look without drastically increasing the polygon count or impacting performance).

For anyone having trouble visualizing what I'm talking about, I drew up a basic diagram of how the layers of the world would be set up (this is a top-down look at the world).  It is surprisingly simple, now that I am looking at it.

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/layer_diagram.png)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 11, 2013, 10:22:54 AM
With every advantage comes some disadvantage.  A couple of extra things I thought of that will need to be dealt with in a setup like this:

1) The further away a 3D object is, the closer it approaches a vanishing point.  What this means is if trees/ midground objects are given the same y-coordinate as the ground, they will appear to "float" off the ground the further away they are.  To counter this, they'll have to be placed on a "ground plane" with a downward slope.  Will take a little math to calculate this plane (jPCT provides some nice interface methods that should make this relatively painless).

2) Pits will need to extend out like a triangle (when viewed from overhead), and no midground objects should be placed within this triangle (otherwise trees, etc will appear to float over the pits).
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: littleguy on April 11, 2013, 10:48:39 AM
I wonder, is it mathematically possible to create a camera projection matrix that is orthographic in y and perspective in x?  The view volume being a trapezoid when seen from above (down the y-axis) and a rectangle when seen from the side (down the x-axis)....

Edit: here's the math http://www.songho.ca/opengl/gl_projectionmatrix.html
Need to look at it closer to see if a hybrid matrix is even realizable.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 11, 2013, 10:59:03 AM
I'm not the best with geometry (I don't even know the definition of "orthographic" off the top of my head, but gather the meaning from context here), but wouldn't that result in the objects maintaining a constant height regardless of depth? (in other words, they would be more tall and thin the further away they were).  I think I want the objects to be fully perspective so they scale properly.  They will just need to be positioned such that they essentially have a constant visual y value.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: littleguy on April 11, 2013, 11:12:05 AM
Yes, you'd have to squash/stretch the aspect ratio of the image depending on its depth I guess.  If you're placing the background at arbitrary depths, I guess you squash the billboard on the fly.  If you're only using a few "layers" of background, then you could optimize the source images for the necessary aspect ratio.

Of course the alternative to this, while staying in the GL world, is to simply use an orthographic projection matrix and programmatically move the background billboards on "conveyor belts" as you scroll.  I assume that's the default approach for a side-scroller implemented in GL?

The easy way to think of orthographic is that the size of the object on the screen is independent of its z-coordinate.  Like a detailed engineering drawing, where you want an undistorted representation of dimensions.  With perspective, the size on screen is inversely proportional to its z-coordinate, technically speaking.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 11, 2013, 12:13:39 PM
Yes, you'd have to squash/stretch the aspect ratio of the image depending on its depth I guess.  If you're placing the background at arbitrary depths, I guess you squash the billboard on the fly.  If you're only using a few "layers" of background, then you could optimize the source images for the necessary aspect ratio.

Of course the alternative to this, while staying in the GL world, is to simply use an orthographic projection matrix and programmatically move the background billboards on "conveyor belts" as you scroll.  I assume that's the default approach for a side-scroller implemented in GL?

The easy way to think of orthographic is that the size of the object on the screen is independent of its z-coordinate.  Like a detailed engineering drawing, where you want an undistorted representation of dimensions.  With perspective, the size on screen is inversely proportional to its z-coordinate, technically speaking.

I feel like that would further complicate the "tree floating over the pits" issue (assuming the background conveyer belts moved at a slower velocity than the forground)., and would require manually handling two factors (scaling and velocity) versus a single factor (y offset).  My thought is to just let the 3D engine handle most of the work.  I actually don't have to do a whole lot of math, because jPCT has interface methods to make this easier.  The process would work like this:

1) Calculate the two furthest corners of the sloping "ground polygon":
Code: [Select]
Interact2D.reproject2D3DWS( myCamera, myFrameBuffer, 0, groundY, leftCornerPoint );
Interact2D.reproject2D3DWS( myCamera, myFrameBuffer, screenWidth-1, groundY, rightCornerPoint );

2) Create the ground polygon using the camera position as the third corner:
Code: [Select]
groundPolygon = new Object3D( 1 );
groundPolygon.addTriangle( myCamera.getPosition(), .5f, 1, rightCornerPoint, 1, 0, leftCornerPoint, 0, 1 );

This would only need to be calculated once (simply move the ground polygon with the camera - only one of them is needed).  It could even be calculated ahead of time and the values hard-coded.  Then when an object is about to enter the view, adjust its y position:

1) Calculate the y-offset of the ground:
Code: [Select]
float groundDistance = myWorld.calcMinDistance( myObject.getTransformedCenter(), new SimpleVector( 0, -1, 0 ), 100000 );
2) Translate the object:
Code: [Select]
if( groundDistance >  0 && groundDistance < 100000 )
    myObject.translate( 0, -groundDistance, 0 );
EDIT: Of course you'd need to take the object's height into account for the translation, but you get the idea
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: littleguy on April 11, 2013, 12:22:57 PM
Sounds like you have it figured out.  I forgot you were using a higher-level rendering api, I was just thinking low-level nuts and bolts....
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 11, 2013, 01:06:13 PM
(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/layer_diagram.png)

Actually, I thought of another potential concern with this setup.  Because the 2D panel is at a distance from the camera, it could end up experiencing some scaling or tile-edge alignment problems.  A better way to do this would be to draw the 2D foreground elements as an overlay on top of the 3D scene (and use the "conveyor belt" scrolling that littleguy described).  This will of course require a couple more calls to reproject2D3DWS to calculate a scaling factor for the grid to match the depth where the 3D characters are located (for hit detection purposes).  This again would only need to be calculated one time (like the sloping ground polygon), and the value could also be calculated ahead of time and hard-coded.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 11, 2013, 03:54:52 PM
I had a thought about a solution for the "trees floating over the pits" problem.  Instead of requiring the person designing the map to worry about the problem, have the engine calculate the x-position for midground objects based on their distance.  Then the person designing the map only has to think in terms of the 2D grid.  For example, a (really tiny) map file might look something like this:

Code: [Select]
[Details]
#  1) Spaces are ignored
#  2) Multiple objects may be placed on each square

#  LEGEND:
#  B = Brick
#  T#,# = Tree [z-depth (0 -> 1.0)] [, x-offset (-1.0 -> 1.0)]
#  ; = End Square

[Foreground]
          ;         B;         B;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;         B;         B;         B;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
         B;         B;         B;          ;          ;         B;         B;         B;

[Midground]
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;          ;
          ; T.5,-.5 T;      T.25;          ;          ;         T;          ;   T.2,.75;

Even with the added complexity I put in there for allowing x-offset and stacked objects, the map designer can still very easily see where the pit is located (columns 4 and 5), and avoid placing any trees over it.  This would be even easier with a map-maker GUI like I have planned at some point.

EDIT: For anyone having trouble visualizing how this would look in practice, here is a rough example of how the above map file would appear in-game:

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/map_example.png)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on April 12, 2013, 05:38:22 PM
Hey Paul, what about making some levels with 3d backgrounds and rotating levels (something like what klonoa does), It doesn't necessarily take that much of processor, it could be simple textures etc. The rotating 2.5D levels are just perfect for games with a story. Maybe something like carts going on the z axis to other sections of the levels. These scenes could be used in zones like this
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 12, 2013, 05:51:46 PM
I don't really want to do that because it would add complexity (would require two different map-control engines, and two different map definition syntaxes).  Processor requirements are only one factor - the other factor is time (how long it will take to develop).  Thinking of maps in 2D is much simpler all around (smaller map files, less rendering and camera logic, less math, simpler hit detection, etc)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 12, 2013, 07:02:22 PM
I don't really want to rule anything out at this early stage, though.  It might make sense to have a second perspective for the game once I start getting into it (what comes to mind is the overhead view in NSMB when going from level to level, or the FPS rooms in Jurassic Park).  I'll start with the first engine and see where things go.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 10:05:57 AM
I had a thought about a solution for the "trees floating over the pits" problem.  Instead of requiring the person designing the map to worry about the problem, have the engine calculate the x-position for midground objects based on their distance.

Actually, this won't work -- I was thinking in terms of a single screen where the camera is not moving, but for a moving camera, the background grid shifts right compared to the foreground grid as the camera moves.  Consider this for example (overhead view, camera at the bottom):

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/grid_view.png)

At this point, the tree is in grid 5 and not floating over the pit.

Then if we move a little to the right:

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/grid_view_right.png)

Now the foreground grid has move 3 squares, while the background grid has moved only one square.  This results in the tree being directly over the pit when viewed from this perspective.

So, there are a couple of ways around this.  The first would be to simply design the maps so there are no background objects on squares that are close to pits (it might not even be possible, considering how much slower the backgrond moves in comparison to the foreground).  Probably a better solution would be to change the sky panel, so that it has a ground texture from ground-level down.  So instead of this:

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/tree_pit.png)

You would have something like this:

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/tree_pit_dirt.png)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Tom.K on April 13, 2013, 11:13:04 AM
Probably a better solution would be to change the sky panel, so that it has a ground texture from ground-level down.
Just to make sure: That would work like with 2 background layers (ground and air) or you will merge both textures into one (which isn't a good idea in general)?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 11:40:52 AM
It would be more versatile (for mixing and matching, swapping, etc) to have two separate panels for the background.  To avoid edge alignment problems, the ground panel would need to overlap the sky panel a bit.  Of course that could lead to z-fighting, so the sky would have to be a tiny bit further away than the ground (but close enough that they don't look like two separate panels.)  It'll probably take some trial and error to get it right.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 11:43:59 AM
Another way would be to use foreground tiles to create the "ground" (basically certain tiles would be solid, and others would not).  This would cause it to move at the same rate as the foreground, so I'd have to try both ways to see what looks better.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 11:50:50 AM
A third alternative would be to make the midground (where all the objects are located) a raised platform.  The side of the platform would be textured with the ground image, and since all the objects are sitting on top of the platform, they would never look like they are floating in mid-air.

Actually I kind of like this idea.  It would allow the camera to actually be moveable if I wanted to do some kind of zooming out of 3D for certain areas like Vincentmrl was talking about.  For those areas, you'd just put a texture onto the top of the ground plane, make the sky the inside of a cube instead of a panel, and turn the foreground blocks into cubes instead of flat squares, allowing full camera motion.  I wouldn't use this everywhere, but would certainly be nice to have the option if I wanted to use it in a couple places for dramatic effect or something.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 11:54:12 AM
Hmm..  Expanding on this even further -- if there were always a textured ground panel, then there would no longer be any need to make the ground slope downward to avoid further away objects seeming to float off the ground.  They would simply approach the vanishing point as normal 3D, and would actually make the whole scene look a lot more realistic without adding too much complexity (just a couple extra polygons and another texture).

For anyone having trouble visualizing, the world would be basically set up like this:

(http://www.paulscode.com/projects/side_scroller/concepts/platform_ground.png)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: littleguy on April 13, 2013, 01:16:50 PM
Yeah, I was thinking the same, just putting midground objects on their own ground or make them extend all the way to the bottom of the screen.  This could be done entirely in billboards as well, like classic side scrollers.  Or 3d midgrounds as you mention.

(http://www.gameshaper.net/kyonoki/images/ss_nsmb_pre07.jpg)  (http://image.gamespotcdn.net/gamespot/images/misc/movies/gsm_169_nsmb2_review_v2_20120809_640.jpg)  (https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRzHsQyNTtuUwyYi70a55qAW2Rka0ZhZzU3pFM5Tn1RQTEer_Tu)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 13, 2013, 01:27:44 PM
(http://image.gamespotcdn.net/gamespot/images/misc/movies/gsm_169_nsmb2_review_v2_20120809_640.jpg)

Yep, this one is exactly what I am thinking.  The midground is a raised platform with texturing on the side, and the top of the ground is textured, with all the midground objects billboarded.  Guess I should have studied how it was done in other games rather than trying to reinvent the wheel, haha!
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: user7 on April 28, 2013, 09:43:22 PM
make the game about a magical rabbit! that would be badass. I don't have a video game background but a film background and would be willing to help out with character development and story.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 29, 2013, 08:38:19 AM
I'm locked into the Caped Soul concept, so no magical rabbits :)  The basic concept follows the Red Cape legend, of a supernatural being who hides his highly charismatic face with a mask, and who gives his target a choice of Red Cape or Blue Cape (or choose not to play).  The twist with this particular version of the legend is that instead of strangling the target if they choose Blue Cape, instead the Caped Soul possesses them.

So obviously that is very rudimentary foundation, and not really a story.  It is basically the foundation I needed to even begin work on the mechanics of the game (in this case, the concept of enemies choosing a fate and a system for possession).  That said, there is still plenty of room to expand and develop that story, so I'm happy to hear any input you might have.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: user7 on April 29, 2013, 08:58:37 AM
...who gives his target a choice of Red Cape or Blue Cape (or choose not to play).  The twist with this particular version of the legend is that instead of strangling the target if they choose Blue Cape, instead the Caped Soul possesses them.

I have to admit you have completely lost me here. The protagonist gives his enemy a cape then fights him? I have to admit this mechanic is confusing and might be simplified.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on April 29, 2013, 09:18:15 AM
No, from a game mechanics perspective, it is a semi-random event.  You target the enemy by pressing a button (Caped Soul removes his mask) and using the left analog stick to "aim", lock on (Caped Soul locks gazes with the enemy), release the button (or lose lock), and one of three things happens:

1) Red Cape (Caped Soul jumps into enemy, and it is killed)
2) Blue Cape (Caped Soul jumps into enemy and possesses it)
3) Refusal (Enemy breaks contact, becomes angry or runs away)

I say semi-random, because the probability will be based on the enemy's "level" compared to the Caped Soul.  Lower-level enemies are more likely to be Red Cape'd, and higher-level enemies are more likely to refuse.  There isn't any exchange of a cape.  The colors are merely a way to tie into the legend.  Visually, the Caped Soul's cape will become red as he jumps into an enemy on Red Cape, or blue as he jumps into an enemy on Blue Cape.

So from a game mechanics perspective, it isn't complicated -- you are just pressing a button and aiming.  The rest is handled by the engine.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: karl_87 on April 30, 2013, 05:07:04 AM
Hi Paul

I might be interested in doing sound work/sound effects for the game. I'm a music producer (typically dance/electronic) but I'm very influenced by early video game sounds and sometimes incorporate them in to my songs. I have quite a good ear for sound effects especially too. Let me know if I could be of any help.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Vincentmrl on April 30, 2013, 07:26:03 PM
paul, about the random event thing, what about making this only for semibosses, bosses and big enemies? The capture method being random would also make people get angry easily, so what about something like a quick puzzle or a combo to do to cap (like touching somewhere and swype in the directions the game says like a rhythm game or a combo for android, and moving analogs/pressing buttons and touch surface on ouya)? For small enemies instead you could make them take 2 seconds of watching to control (object falls in the way and you have to redo the thing since it's not anymore "hypnotized before capturing the soul". Also if you can attack with the controlled enemies, what about attacking others and "stunning" them to get more chance to control them (or easier combo)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: JoshaGibs on July 02, 2013, 12:12:08 AM
Well before you start making any type of 3d models your first going to need a good sketch artist for the character appearance. So I would consider you get someone to do that first. That is when you have found out what you want the characters to be or look like. A sketch artist is usually the best concept maker of the characters development. It's good to have the view through someone elses eyes so your absolutely sure people would like the appearance. Maybe have a vote on the best sketches to find a public appeal possibly could even create a contest based on your descriptions.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on July 02, 2013, 08:44:16 AM
Good point.  But even before that, I think the first step is to make a rough demo of the engine, which is something I unfortunately have not had time for.  I never anticipated that owning a house would take so much time.. maybe when winter gets here I'll have more free time HAHA!
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: seaking177 on October 14, 2013, 12:39:42 AM
Seeing as I just found this thread, would it be possible to request this would be ran on the nvidia shield as well? I can do the bug testing for it :D. For free as well.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Melinda on February 06, 2014, 12:46:29 PM
Dude, when are we going to start on this huh?  :P
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Paul on February 07, 2014, 07:51:55 AM
Depends on the size of the honey-do list...    ;)
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: jonsawesome on March 17, 2014, 09:59:36 AM
Hello guys,

I'm interested in working on the audio side of things, although I'm no professional...
What kind of music/sound style are you guys looking for?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: jasenickson on May 02, 2014, 08:32:37 PM
do u help with game modding and programming?
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: Benrox on May 22, 2014, 05:37:36 AM
Hellew when I was doing my robot RPG game for college I asked my friend to make a 8-bit song for it and shes actually really good at them ill try and send you song she made and see if she could possibly help with the music you are looking for she's kind of been busy lately but ill see if I can ask her about it at some point. Let me know if this is the kind of thing you are looking for.
Title: Re: Side-scroller game for OUYA
Post by: danny19901 on June 29, 2015, 02:50:08 PM
@paul if your planning on bringing a side scroller game try something like http://www.secretmaryo.org/ it's Mario pretty much but open sourced would love to see this on android but you could use some ideas from this
Title: Side scroller game for OUYA
Post by: JameBUYv on January 05, 2019, 10:09:00 AM
Yeah we are always looking for games to be released. Although TMG is going to a once a year full weekend event instead of 2 a year. If you have a playable level of your game or anything like that available please come be part of the indie game showcase and atleast show off what youve done so far and build interest.

I am guessing that we know each other who are you? I do recognize the name Kasumi but its used in alot of SNs.