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Program Announcements / MINECLIMB - An Addicting Vertical Scroller!

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thenerd
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Posted: 4th May 2014 21:03 Edited at: 4th Aug 2014 16:41


Reposting this as an Announcement considering I'm finished the game.

"What a poor little man in all that trouble. Looking at the poor man surrounded by sharp spikes, molten lava inside a deep dark claustrophobic vertigo instilling mine pit makes you want play just to save him; oh and there are mines!" - Chris Tate

Concept:
In Mine Climb, you play a Jim - your average miner. On the job deep in the mines, Jim unintentionally releases the forces of a dormant volcano! Luckily Jim is wearing his climbing boots and has a chance to escape by rapidly climbing up the side of his mineshafts. The mines are quite a work safety violation, though! On the way up, Jim must jump out of the way of any obstacles that will knock him off the walls and into the rapidly rising lava below.

Control Jim and his boots as he climbs up out of the endles deep! Try to reach all four distinctive zones, and see how far you can travel as you compete with others to give Jim the fate he deserves.

This game only has one key! By pressing the space key, you can jump from one wall to another to avoid obstacles as Jim climbs out of the pit. Which might be endless... Jim has been digging for a while. Poor Jim. I hope he gets paid overtime.

Features:
-Addictive, extremely difficult gameplay
-Endless vertically scrolling levels!
-4 unique zones with difficult challenges
-Online high score system
-Hand crafted pixel art

Screenshots:




Videos:

Score of 1210 by Sasuke:


Instructions:
- Feel free to either launch the game directly or use the provided launcher to set your config before you play.
- Remember to set a unique name to distinguish yourself when you reach the top of the leaderboard!
- Once you launch the game, use the space key for everything! The arrow keys are also used when navigating the menu.
- There is no pause in this game - the volcano waits for no one. You can, however, press Escape if you desire to seal Jim's fate at any time.
- NOTE: this version has an odd crash bug and will occasionally not launch. If it does this please try again!!
- Good luck, and have fun!

More Information:
-I created all the graphics myself from scratch!
-Software used: Dbpro, Adobe Photoshop CS3, Paint, Audacity
-I used Scoreoid.net for the high scores database - check it out!
-Interesting fact: It took me hours to get the screenshots for my post because I couldn't reach those levels! How's that for a difficult game

[/b]Download/b]
Available now on http://chrisdalke.itch.io/mineclimb

Thanks! Don't forget to post your highscores and feedback! i'm interested in seeing how people did!


wattywatts
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Posted: 4th May 2014 23:30 Edited at: 5th May 2014 00:49
Downloading now. Does it have controller support?

<EDIT>
I guess it doesn't need controller support with only 1 button used.
Pretty fun game!
Sasuke
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Posted: 5th May 2014 11:35 Edited at: 5th May 2014 11:35
I hope your happy thenerd, I'm addicted already

Sorry for dominating the charts Mwhahahaha


This is a great little game, really enjoyed the challenge of trying to see each stage and then conquering that 1000 meter barrier

"Get in the Van!" - Van B

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thenerd
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Posted: 5th May 2014 23:29 Edited at: 30th May 2014 00:48
I'm very happy...hehe... That's a great score. I havent even broken 1000 myself! congrats! I'm glad you find it addicting. I spent a lot of time tweaking values to give it the right combination of difficulty. It seems some people find it too difficult but I'm glad you're able to master it! Some future improvements I plan to do are to add more variation, and perhaps port it to iOS. But for now I'm very happy with the status of the game

[EDIT] Just wondering, how did you manage to get a score of 1 meter!


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Sasuke
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Posted: 6th May 2014 00:09 Edited at: 6th May 2014 00:10
Quote: "Just wondering, how did you manage to get a score of 1 meter!"


Was on a tapping rage at the start and you can kill yourself straight away.

Quote: "It seems some people find it too difficult"


There's a learning curve for sure, learning the patterns of structures, you can sort of guess what will come up next or what side of the screen you need to be when a pattern appears. I could of got more but my finger was frozen from all the constant tapping.

Quote: "Some future improvements I plan to do are to add more variation"

Quote: "and perhaps port it to iOS"


Can't wait

"Get in the Van!" - Van B
thenerd
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Posted: 6th May 2014 00:46
Quote: "Was on a tapping rage at the start and you can kill yourself straight away."
Shoot! I'll fix that.

I'm a little frustrated because I can see the scores of everyone and it looks like both Naphier and BatVink (they're judging the nexus competition) got to around 300 meters and then gave up, likely because of the difficulty. So they missed a lot of the game. It seems to be either a hit or miss, some people find the game too hard, others find it addicting.


Sasuke
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Posted: 6th May 2014 02:12
Well the first bit is the hardest part I find, it goes the fastest, so I could see how that would be a deterrent.

"Get in the Van!" - Van B
wattywatts
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Posted: 6th May 2014 06:04
I admit I got frustrated pretty quickly. I had fun while I played it, but after dying so often I didn't want to start back at the beginning. Maybe if you added lives and the player could respawn close to where they died it might help with the frustration... but there's obviously certain people this game appeals to, like Sasuke, so I'd take his advice over mine.
I'm curious, what did you use for your chiptunes? I've been using gxscc and I have to EQ the crap out of them in protools before they sound decent.
Sasuke
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Posted: 6th May 2014 20:53 Edited at: 6th May 2014 20:57
Couldn't have people beating my score now can we:


"Get in the Van!" - Van B

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Chris Tate
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Posted: 6th May 2014 22:31
Loving the music. My highest score is 682 so far. I play at least once a day; slowly getting better.

I would say have people video their action so you can judge the problem. I find the walls spawning in high frequency pretty soon during the first zone, feels a bit more like the last level than the first. The randomization is pretty interesting, although it makes me wonder what it would have been like if the levels were designed manually.

You can't really make clear judgement by reading lots of comments. Have to see with your own eyes.



Love the music and the game in general. Would be nice to play on my android phone. Keep up the good stuff, would like to see more.

Sasuke
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Posted: 6th May 2014 22:52 Edited at: 6th May 2014 22:54
Chris you video is private. And I agree, the first zone is the hardest.

I was gonna film a vid but in doing so I'll end up eclipsing the charts like I have already (Maybe a score reset is in order, or if possible it doesn't score under your highest score). So I'll let others get better before I do so.

"Get in the Van!" - Van B
thenerd
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Posted: 7th May 2014 00:37 Edited at: 7th May 2014 00:39
@Chris Tate:

Quote: "The randomization is pretty interesting, although it makes me wonder what it would have been like if the levels were designed manually."


It's semi-random. the world is split up into 8x16 areas. Each of these areas is a unique puzzle element and all of these have been designed manually. This is why you see the repeating challenges. However, which challenges you will see in which order is random. This can lead to some problems because you can have strings of really hard challenges, or strings of really easy challenges. If I release a future update thats another thing I have to balance out.

In addition, the level path consists of:

-Start tileset
-Tutorial 1
-Tutorial 2
-8 (I think it's eight, gotta check) stages from zone 1
-5 stages from zone 2
-8 stages from zone 1
-5-10 stages from zone 3
-8 stages from zone 1
-10 stages from zone 4
-Start over with zone 1.

I don't describe the four zones very well in the description of the game. My original idea was to have the zones as a checkpoint and rest period in between the main level areas. However, I didn't implement checkpoints so I added a few easy challenges. But I wanted zones 2,3, and 4 to be a break from the difficulty of zone 1.
@Sasuke:

haha, nice job! I definitely feel once youve mastered the game it gets easier to get really high scores. Another future feature... some harder late levels!

Quote: "I was gonna film a vid but in doing so I'll end up eclipsing the charts like I have already (Maybe a score reset is in order, or if possible it doesn't score under your highest score). So I'll let others get better before I do so.
"


How do you guys think about having a leaderboard where each player can only have one entry? So only your top score will show up. That would solve the "Sasuke flooding the scoreboard" problem

@wattywatts:

Quote: "I'm curious, what did you use for your chiptunes? I've been using gxscc and I have to EQ the crap out of them in protools before they sound decent."


The chiptunes are the only thing I didn't make myself. They were free online. I forget the specific names of the songs but I found them at http://freemusicarchive.org/music/RoccoW/ I do need to add some sort of visible credits.


wattywatts
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Posted: 7th May 2014 03:28
Quote: "I forget the specific names of the songs but I found them at http://freemusicarchive.org/music/RoccoW/"

Oh he uses an actual Gameboy... well of course they sound more legit than mine. I need to investigate this a bit when I have some time!
thenerd
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Posted: 7th May 2014 04:48
Yep! all the music composed with LSDJ on the Gameboy automatically has that distinctive chiptune sound - I love it. Unfortunately I'm not very, err, musically inclined. So I have to rely on free music for now


Chris Tate
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Posted: 7th May 2014 09:22
I have published my video now. It is not going to be as wonderful as Sasuke's video is going to look if he records his footage.

Sasuke
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Posted: 7th May 2014 11:43
Quote: "I have published my video now. It is not going to be as wonderful as Sasuke's video is going to look if he records his footage."


I made a little one this morning, it's not my best but it's pretty good to demo each stage at least (next time I'll film at a high rez):



"Get in the Van!" - Van B
SamKM
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Posted: 7th May 2014 23:40 Edited at: 8th May 2014 01:49
I've gotta say, I'll be amazed if this isn't the competition winner!
All the games I've played from the competition were brilliant in different ways, but I think this one nails the adrenaline-rush addiction so well, I keep coming back to it to try and beat my score
Awesome work thenerd!

Quote: "There is no pause in this game - the volcano waits for no one."

Even the volcano briefly yields under the awesome power of the 's' key
It's not as useful for cheating as I thought it might be, though

The code never bothered me anyway...
thenerd
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Posted: 8th May 2014 01:54 Edited at: 8th May 2014 01:57
@Chris Tate:

Hmm, is the gameplay in that video faster than the actual gameplay? Your video looks like it's playing 2x faster than it should be. I certainly hope that is just an encoding problem because that would make a huge difference in gameplay if there is a speed glitch. Thanks for recording!

@Sasuke:

Nice job, added your video to the OP because it demonstrates the gameplay very well. Thanks!

@SamKM:

Thanks, but I'm worried. The game seems to have gotten Chris Tate and Sasuke addicted, but looking at the gameplay statistics both judges didn't seem to get addicted:

BatVink:
1) bat - May 5 2014, 11:00 - 315
2) bat - May 5 2014, 11:02 - 144
3) bat - May 5 2014, 11:02 - 112
4) bat - May 5 2014, 11:01 - 95
5) bat - May 5 2014, 11:02 - 92
6) bat - May 5 2014, 11:01 - 67
7) bat - May 5 2014, 11:00 - 30
8) bat - May 5 2014, 11:03 - 3

Naphier:
1) nap - May 1 2014, 15:14 - 169
2) nap - May 1 2014, 15:14 - 153
3) nap - May 1 2014, 15:15 - 143
4) nap - May 1 2014, 15:16 - 112
5) nap - May 1 2014, 15:13 - 61
6) nap - May 1 2014, 15:13 - 57

Maybe I'm analyzing things too much though. That's what comes of having a scores database Don't even ask about Sasuke's entries - he's played the game 95 times

Quote: "Even the volcano briefly yields under the awesome power of the 's' key
It's not as useful for cheating as I thought it might be, though "


Haha, yes, that takes a screenshot! Its usually a guaranteed game over after the screenshot saves though, because of the time delay.


Chris Tate
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Posted: 8th May 2014 11:58 Edited at: 8th May 2014 12:01
Quote: "Hmm, is the gameplay in that video faster than the actual gameplay?"


Roughly the same speed; perhaps its the video capture causing a discrepancy.

Quote: "
The game seems to have gotten Chris Tate and Sasuke addicted, but looking at the gameplay statistics both judges didn't seem to get addicted"


They haven't got the correct technique. You need to focus on the top of the level. I was pretty bad at first when I focused on the character.

Quote: "Maybe I'm analyzing things too much though. That's what comes of having a scores database Don't even ask about Sasuke's entries - he's played the game 95 times"


If you are tracking the death locations you will also notice that I keep dying on the same spike!

Ohh, ahh. I have a score in the scoreboard.

Sasuke
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Posted: 9th May 2014 00:33
Quote: "Nice job, added your video to the OP because it demonstrates the gameplay very well. Thanks!"


Oh sweet, no problem

Quote: "Don't even ask about Sasuke's entries - he's played the game 95 times"


Um... alot more now

Quote: "I have a score in the scoreboard."


On my mission to the 2000 barrier, I may have knocked off you score sorry.

"Get in the Van!" - Van B
thenerd
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Posted: 9th May 2014 01:04 Edited at: 9th May 2014 01:05
Quote: "Roughly the same speed; perhaps its the video capture causing a discrepancy."


Is it possible for you to test it on a different computer and check the speed or record a video with higher fps? i'm just worried there might be a timing glitch in there somewhere.

Quote: "On my mission to the 2000 barrier, I may have knocked off you score sorry.
"


Not for long! I'm gonna update the game so each user only has one score

[EDIT] Have you guys been using the launcher to play the game? I think I might add an auto-update feature to it.


Chris Tate
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Posted: 9th May 2014 23:32
I have been using the launcher.

I will try to play it on my Laptop when I get a chance; to test its speed. Or perhaps you could time it in code. (Does it not use timer based movement?)

thenerd
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Posted: 13th May 2014 01:03
Damn, I didn't win Oh well, I guess I can't please everyone. Glad you guys found it addicting. When I have some money I'm going to work on porting it to IOS.


Chris Tate
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Posted: 13th May 2014 15:29
It is still a good game, will be interesting to read the reviews

thenerd
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Posted: 14th May 2014 00:32
I'm a little dissapointed because I found out there is an already successful game on the Ios market with similar gameplay, called Ninja Jump. I'm not sure if it's worth porting to Ios if I can't compete with that (although I genuinely believe my game is better).


Chris Tate
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Posted: 14th May 2014 19:02
You will figure out what is best. You could make a slightly different version.

swissolo
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Posted: 3rd Jun 2014 20:37
This game is fantastic! Hats off to you (I'm apparently wearing more than one...) Not to derail the other projects, but your's has been my favorite The difficulty is perfect. I could imagine it being harder actually, but don't touch it My only complaint is that it slows down too much in new zones. There seems to be less going on in the different areas, it should be the fastest in the more empty areas, not the slowest. Anyways, I think I need this on my phone Too bad you didn't write it in AppGameKit If you decide to port it over I'd be happy to help

thenerd
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Posted: 3rd Jun 2014 22:56
Thanks I was a little dissapointed that I didn't win the competition, but oh well The game that won did deserve it. That caused me to lose motivation for a little while, but I'm actually planning on porting this to Javascript for the web as well as possibly AGK. I haven't bought AppGameKit yet so I can't port it right now.


Chris Tate
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Posted: 4th Jun 2014 14:04
Porting the game to AppGameKit is a good idea; I was thinking of playing this on my phone as well. I think mobile gamers will love it. The JavaScript version will be cool as well; I am guessing HTML5 is a good web platform to build on.

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