The state of things – December 2020

Hello there! How’s this nightmare we call 2020 going? I hope you are good and staying safe. I’ve realized I hadn’t written a post in forever and I thought it would be good to do a little update.

What’s new

Last time I wrote I was working on a game called Arctic Edge and I was making good progress. I had spent a lot of time working on enemy behavior but I wasn’t happy with the player controls and the feel of the game, specially in combat. I also realized that to see my vision of the game come to fruition I’d have to make a big effort on pixel art, and being completely honest, I didn’t see myself with the energy to do it. Due to this and other concerns like the scope of the game (probably too big) I decided to put the development of AE on hold.

A test of the enemy AI in Arctic Edge

At that time Maddy Thorson, co-creator of Celeste, made a thread in Twitter about a series of gameplay “tricks” they used in that game to accomplish the best possible game feel. Being myself a lover of platforming games and wanting to improve my understanding of ‘the little things’ that make games enjoyable I started a quick prototype in Game Maker. In a couple of days I had a square moving around the screen with a bunch of little features that made it feel really good.

I kept working on it and soon enough I found myself immerse in what would end up being The Mighty Purrito Adventure, a game that mixed my love for the Sonic 2D games and my two cats – with a Mexican twist. The project went through around 3 or 4 months of production and I finally managed to release it last October.

Some gameplay from The Mighty Purrito Adventure

The game is (very) far from perfect but I think it plays quite well and, allow me to say this, is cute as hell. It has some issues here and there but I’m really proud of it for several reasons, but more than anything because is the first time I manage to finish a game outside of a game jam. When you don’t have that pressure of the clock ticking it’s damn difficult to reach the finish line.

Talking about game jams, in August I participated with my brother in the 2020 edition of the Game Maker’s Toolkit Game Jam. We made a game – Fire Campaign. It was an amazing experience to make a game with my brother even if we didn’t end up being super happy about the end result. Game jams are very difficult by nature, but they can turn out to be nightmarish if you don’t ‘feel’ the theme.

What’s next

Since finishing The Mighty Purrito Adventure I have started working on a new project. The game I’m working on is fairly simple – a top-down boss rush. I have set for this projects a series of goals aimed to progress in me journey as a game developer. I want to specially focus on mechanics and enemy patterns, trying to make every encounter unique and fun, with a common gameplay base but offering as much variety as I can. This occurred to me while working on the boss level of Purrito. I had fun working on those mechanics and I thought that a boss rush would be a good way of experimenting patterns and mechanics while keeping a very small scope.

An update video from my new Untitled project

I have also started to share updates in Twitter whenever I have something new to show, trying to put myself a little more ‘out there’. I always struggle with this, it’s really not my thing but one way or another I have to create an audience, it’s the only way I will get feedback on my work. Posting these updates takes some time, specially because I have to record video, convert to gif, etc. But I guess it’s the only way to catch people’s attention.

And that’s all I have to share for now. I would like to do another Chai&Churro with Aneesha, it’s been too long since we did the last one but we’ll see. Be careful out there, take care and wear a mask (please).

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *