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Posted by polkoii - June 10th, 2021


https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL1OFXjTpl97it7umX_qtlkwdgxXCY3PTV

Grim Companion is an animated short done by Yam Jam Animations which I am a part of! A good years worth of planning, animating and, for me, composing!

A Share of PeakShare is the only OST in the short but many ideas came about during composition so I decided to flesh out a few and create the EXTRAs!

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Posted by polkoii - May 18th, 2021


What went right

  • I was surprised people liked MION's character design so much! (little tidbit: her hat's feather changes! It is a heart for her lives, a broken heart when she is hit, and an exclamation mark when she dies!)
  • The animations worked as well! I am so glad that my intuition with frame timing has not faltered with a transfer to game design!
  •  The sound is exactly what I like to work on. They were the style and feeling I've wanted to do for so long. I am so happy I pulled through.
  • The Dash was satisfying and was keyframed well! I hope those who talked about it, talked about it when we added the extra i-frames to it! I thought it gave more freedom to an already unfair game.
  • The Attack was also satisfying to hit and see the animation go! The lights and sound helped a lot to make it pop!
  • No-one mentioned the i-frames being unfair nor the movement being too slow so that's a plus! Or maybe that was also part of the difficulty problem. Either way, I hope the extra invincibility at the beginning and end of the get hit animation and the end of the dash helped!


What to focus more on

  • Explaining the game better (in game & browser descriptions): Goal, Obstacles, and how to overcome and achieve.
  • Images for Clarity: Have graphics for controls and images to show off as previews
  • Controls should feel intuitive: maybe this is b/c of the above^ point but I feel like we could do better and maybe make more actions to do!
  • Make sure the HUD is the perfect size and it is big enough to see without giving the player a disadvantage! Possible transparency could work!
  • Balance focus between the theme and the game you want to make: we had a lot of trouble trying to fit in the theme. tbh, it slowed us down and we should have just went straight into gameplay ideas rather than the theme of them.

What went wrong (+ what to work on)

  • The light mechanic (having it spotlight the player & clover ball) had no purpose and hindered the player more than offer a challenge. Removing it or making it more intuitive to discovery would make it more useful.
  • The attack system (moving the ball by pulse attack left click) was almost executed well! But due to the ball not being able to rebound and us not explaining how the ball can kill the enemies (the ball has to be bounced at an enemy)
  • Overall Difficulty: while we worked and worked, we did not playtest enough and the game came out super hard and unfair in the end. I like to think of it something like Super Mario Maker: if you cannot beat it yourself, you can't upload it!
  • Camera Distance: the camera distance/angle must match the gameplay you are going for! Ours did not match and the camera was too close for the player to react fast enough!
  • Enemy Balancing: The blue ball is basically a non-threat compared to the red ball's fast speed and high stealth. It is an assassin stacked against the player. There should be less of a difficulty difference between the enemies in the same level. Ramping up difficulty as the player progresses can also be a better fix.
  • Due to us revamping the gameplay mechanics back and forth, it left the gameplay in the end feel far from fleshed out. Deciding on a basic idea for the game (goal, controls, and how to achieve the goal) would make it much easier on testing and coding.
  • The Dash's charges: Heads: they turned out to be an afterthought as it was first thought that the player would be collecting the heads (as MION FOREVER was a puzzle game) but the heads later became just pickup charges for Mion to use to dash. The idea turned out to be a hindrance as the dash felt too good! Maybe it would have been best to just let yall dash!


We currently have no plans to continue working on MION FOREVER however, we love to see all the feedback as we will definitely continue to design games! :D


THANK YOU ALL FOR PLAYING OUR GAME <3


Links

Game Jam Pagehttps://ldjam.com/events/ludum-dare/48/mion-forever

Itchhttps://polkoii.itch.io/mion-forever

Newgroundshttps://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/791388

SOUNDTRACKhttps://youtube.com/playlist?list=PL1OFXjTpl97jwCtsW8TR3sPf0HgiQbmHP


Credits

Programming: @royalcookiex, @joshthestriker

Art & Sound: @polkoii

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Posted by polkoii - May 9th, 2021


Hey! Just wanted to do a post update / insight as the artist and sound designer of the team.


I really fell in love with Mion's design and I was really lucky to like the first art I put to my digital paper! I am really glad the art paid off :D Not a bad start for my first time trying out pixel art for real. I hope I can do more with the design. The animations were a first as well for pixel art so I had to make a lot of references. Kudos to Pedro Medeiros (the pixel artist for Celeste), for their amazing work! I am so glad the feeling I was trying to convey got through!


I really love the dash and attack mechanic but due to time constraints, we never really got to see the whole thing through and match the feel of the animations to the gameplay so the game does feel a bit off.


This game has a very steep difficulty curve and we currently do not have time to fix it :( Although, I can give some tips:

 - Enemies only die if the ball is in motion (basically the ball has to be bounced at the enemies to count). The ball has to hit the enemies, not the other way around.

 - There are 5 waves per world, spawning 2 enemies each in the first world (forest), 3 each in the second (sand) and 4 each in the third (wood) (Totals per world respectively: 10, 15, 20)

 - Blue Balls are low priority since they are slower and are always visible. However, they do hurt in numbers.

 - Red Balls are high priority and blink back and forth. I've found staying in a corner helps.

 - There is a weird "cheat" where if you attack just far enough from the clover ball so it doesn't move but still be affected, the ball will become an active hitbox for the enemies! Just have the enemies bounce at the ball and they will die!


While I would love to see the fabled "wood" world be beaten, I just can't imagine it. Please let me know if you ever manage to get there, that would be incredible.


However, if you want a challenge that is not the wood world, the "EX" button on the main menu takes you to the Bunny in a Car world with a super fast bunny in a car.


I've made it to the sand level myself so my highscore is about 13! (since the score resets every world)


Good luck everyone and stay safe! We appreciate all your feedback! Thank you for playing our little game in our first game jam! 


If you ever want to chat, I'm on discord, IG, twitter, itch, etc. by the same name!


Posted by polkoii - April 26th, 2021


Hey!

Me and 2 other friends made MION FOREVER. A dungeon crawler!

This is our first 48 hour gamejam and we had a great experience! We're still sorting out some bugs but overall, the game is done but pretty hard. 

Please let us know if you find any bugs!

https://ldjam.com/events/ludum-dare/48/mion-forever

https://polkoii.itch.io/mion-forever

>NEW< It is now on newgrounds now! https://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/791388?updated=1619965952

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