My latest level is finally out of the starter blocks and published online. I've been working on this level for far too long for something that isn't paying my bills.
PSN: Trindall (Search for @Trindall)
Level Name: Heart of the Flip-Side
Location: North America West coast near Mexico/US border
Short description: Travel through the heart of flip-world as you try to find a way out. A moderate to difficult platforming level where you play across the eight faces of a rotating 'plus' shaped level. Unique challenges that change as the level rotates as well as an unlockable Dev Center for a behind the scenes look into the making of the level.
Comments/Notes: There are four different zones in this level, two of a bright, sunny nature and two that are dark and noisy. Each zone contains different hazards and challenges with elements that carry over after the level rotates for that zone.
There are some tricky sections, some hidden areas and the point bubbles are spare and not always easy to get to, each one counts.
As mentioned in the description there is an unlockable area of the game which is my version of the bonus content you find on many DVDs. In this Dev Center area there is a internally propelled automaton on display that is used as an obstacle in the game, there is a short tour of the logic and sequencers powering the level, and pictures of the level and how different aspects fit together. (There is also text commentary that can be turned on or off if you want a bit more info.)
I'm happy to discuss objects in the level or methods used to do various things and I'm happy to hear feedback and criticism from anyone who has it.
Below are a few screenshots from in and outside the level.
I hope that you all enjoy the level as I had a lot of fun making it.
[Watch YouTube Video]
This last shot is a composite of most of the level to give you an idea of how things fit together. Maybe it's giving away too much but I'm not trying to surprise anyone and I think it looks cool. Plus it may entice people to check out the level.
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Heart of the Flip-Side - Spotlighted - (Pics/YouTube)
- Join Date
- Dec 2008
- Floating around in a tin can, far above the world.
- Blog Entries
ok i cant pro and con much but its EPIC
love the ideas and the dfferent stages...
keep dieing on the last bit
Last edited by Zommy; 02-10-2009 at 08:46 PM.
Well, I'm back for a while. Making some more sigs for people and such. So, just sent requests my way.
Still getting back into sig making, so bare with me a bit ^^'
New band - Bad Mother Folkers
Level(/s) - Music/Concert related level.
Top-Shot Plane fighter game.
I just gave it a try (got a lot of threads in this forum tabbed so i can give feedback, yours is the first i went through!) and I have to say that it was pretty great!
The entire feel to the level was very strange and just felt nice in a weird way. The gameplay was pretty basic for the most part, but the sprinkle of brilliance here and there (especially the train cart sequence and rude goldberg sequence at the end. wonderful ways to end the level) really kept things fresh. I also loved finding the 4 different dev switches. Especially when I got to the end, saw that I missed a fourth one, then I thought for a second and found it :P Felt so much better. Just an "ah ha!" moment, even though it's so simple.
Overall, the concept was great and if you were willing to really take it the next mile, I can see even better ideas coming out of it, maybe more ideas based off of physics and the turning of the wheel. I'm sure it'd take some doing, but there could be some amazing puzzles derived from this.
And if there were any cons, it'd just be that the Developers Center and area right before the scoreboard could use some tunes! Reading through the way you made the level was neat, but the lack of music made it feel empty.
Otherwise, I 5'd it, hearted it and called it cute
I have put in some upbeat music that may do the trick for this area.
Is there anything I can do to return the feedback, levels or what-not?
Okay just played this level (and the first one ) The first level was absolutely flawless, and beautiful. I liked the style, and how it was almost made for kids.
But on topic (this second chapter in the series) this level was awesome too, but much more challenging for younger players and I fear you'll lose some of your audiance due to that (mainly because you say in the description of the first level, that it's for kids or something along those lines) I didn't have too much trouble with this level, but could easily see how younger crowds could. I suggest simply removing that comment from the first level, or saying in the second one that it may be too hard for those yougins.... that's really just my preffereance, specially since the second one seems in a different vein.
But mechanically everything was sound. The only problem I had was, on one of the flips, there were some spikes that I was lined right up with, and lost two lives on by spawning and falling into them. Spawn deaths are probably the worst kind of deaths in this game. I wish I could be more specific on which flip it was... sorry.
The story... was cute, and so were the visuals. I liked that you added a dev center, even if I missed a switch.... I could have sworn I hit all 4..... but ohh well .
Over all a cool level. 5 stars!!!
Hi. Just finished your level.
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+ Unique concept.
+ Everything works flawlessly and I did not encounter a single bug. I wonder how you did all those precise things with a level that is constantly moving.
+ Some funny speech bubbles.
+ Looks nice. First time I see someone using a lots of different materials in a good way.
+ Good challenge, but nothing too complex.
+ Good lenght.
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- Not a lot of hidden content. I like to hunt for hidden score bubbles and chain them together when it's possible to make more points. I did not searched a lot this time and got the 2nd or 3rd best score...
- The part where you say that there's nothing to see there and some prize bubbles appears, I jumped to the left side and got stuck.
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Not a lot of negative things to say because I think the level is great.
5 stars, hearted.
I'm also looking for some comments on a level I published this week-end, "Left Behind Part.2". The link is in my signature.
Thank you for the feedback on this level.
In the level's original iteration all of those components moved and were in different positions and you wouldn't get stuck. Now I'm torn between leaving it or ripping it out and replacing it with rock and making a cave out of it.
But on getting stuck I did plug up that spot so that it won't happen again. However it is a bit moot as there is no way out of that area to begin with and I edited the text a bit to reflect that. Sure you die to get out but the reward I think is higher than the bother
- Join Date
- Jan 2009
- i live in the small yet great Netherlands.
Hey Trindall, here's my review:
- I liked how the "heart' was pulsing. Flashing red lights Nice.
- The dev locks are quite well hidden. And that's a big pro, as i am ALL about finding secrets, i love secrets.
- Hooray, i'm into the dev center. Wow, the mechanics part hurts my brain. I don't understand ANY of it XD
- Best of all, i got the nr 1 score, even though i played crap!
- Got stuck by the falling rubble. Some of it dissolved, but even more rubble fell, and didnt dissolve. If this is done with an emitter, you might want to add a sensor switch, to make sure the player is out of the area, and does not get stuck.
- There are quite some parts that are, in my opinion, not so polished. Dark matter and those kind of things.
Overall: A really good, innovative level! I really liked it, and i thought having 4 different themes was nice aswell. It did lack visually pleasing images though, but it's more a gameplay-orientated level. Nice job.
Sorry for this VERY late reply. The last two weeks have been very busy for me... Anyway, I played Heart of the Flip-Side. I must say I really enjoyed your level! Here's my review.
Stuff I really liked:
- Great puzzles and platforming action, cool how they went hand-in-hand. It was a very fast-paced and exciting level, while at the same time it required a lot of wits. Very challenging stuff, but never frustrating or ridiculously difficult.
- The whole flipping thing is ingenious. I can't imagine how much time and effort went into the perfection of the mechanics of this level.
- Secret areas are always fun. It encourages exploration, which adds replay value to your level.
- There were some really fun "scripted" parts, like the cart ride and the collapsing floor/rubble at the beginning of the level.
- Very interesting premise that should pave the way for more levels like this one!
- Well, this one is just a personal opinion. I can understand how there are four different worlds, and that each world is supposed to be unique. But I thought that there were too many material types, and too many colors. In a way it worked to convey how different the worlds are, but at the same time it kinda made the level look a little inconsistent, or just too colorful. Also, I'm not sure if this was intentional or not, but it also made the worlds look less like "real" worlds and more like a series of obstacle courses, Takeshi's Castle-style.
Overall, a great, fun level. Thanks for sharing this with us! And I look forward to more levels from you.
I'd like to start by saying that I've appreciated the time and effort that you always put into your feedback, it's always thorough, measured and constructive - so I'll try to do your level justice!
To Heart of the Flip Side then...
The opening sequence worked very well for me - no difficulties at all, and it's a fitting way to enter such a weird and wonderful level, 'through the rabbit hole' as it were.
The music throughout was well chosen for each section and gave a real feel of exploratory depth and epicness (yes, I know that's not a word - shut up) to the whole level.
The platforming sections are well thought out, with a good peril/exploration ratio and the secondary objective of opening the dev area gives it replay value. The only thing I would change about it would be to let people know from the first how many locks there are to open.
The mechanisms all worked perfectly for me - and the little boat/ski lift thingy at the end was brilliant.
The only suggestion I would make would be to use slightly fewer stickers and fabrics. Not too much - you don't want to lose the fairground feel, but it was a bit noisy in places - and distracts the eye from the quality of the design.
This is a minor tweak however, and I gave it top marks and heart. I even searched for ages to find the 'ingenious' tag (which I did).
Great stuff, and I'll play your previous level later on...
The biggest feedback I get on this level is what you also covered is that it is too busy visually, too many materials. I know where these comments are coming from but I also think it is a bit ironic. Welcome to the Flip-Side had too many materials and it was a killer on the thermometer so I worked very hard to limit the use of materials in Heart of the Flip-Side. There are really about 3 Ė 4 unique materials for the dark side and 3 Ė 4 materials used for the light side. (There are a few more materials than this but I tried to keep a dominant theme by using these materials for the major work.)
I used wood a lot and covered it up with stickers and the sticker aspect may be more of the sore spot. I have a lot of stickers everywhere to cover up the fact that without them there really isnít anything decorative anywhere. Iím better at functional and logical than creative and artistic so I threw stickers, sound and music in last to try and cover this up.
A lot of the sounds can come out as they donít serve much purpose but to add some aural activity, maybe make the level seem more multi-dimensional. Iíll go back through the level to try and clean things up a bit on the sticker and SFX side of things.
I appreciate the feedback I have gotten from all of you so far as it is helping quite a bit.
And for Zommy and others who may be having problems on the falling bar sequence in the fourth section you can cheat a bit to get past this section. As the bar is falling you can jump and grab the green fabric material that is holding the glass posts and wait for the bar to reach the bottom and releases the key and then you can drop down and keep going. It is cheesy and Iíve considered electrifying these pieces but for now it is good for those wanting to progress.
Boogaloo Iíve got your PSN on my list to of authors to play so I can do some feedback for you later. Cheers.
As promised I just played your level, sorry it took me so long .. I was fixing some of the issues you mentioned on my level and got absorbed for a bit lol.
This is an awfully cute level, and I'm going to leave a note for my 12 yr old to play it tommorrow after school, I'm betting he'll like it.
It wasn't too tough, and I made it through on my 1st try; although I did catch a snag and lose some lives at the very beginning (but just 2 though).
I didn't tag the 2nd checkpoint before I tagged the button that "flips" the level (actually I didn't see the button until I was standing on it lol) .. well once I flipped I hit some spikes and of course it sent me back to the 1st check point; which of course was flipped lol .. took some cat-like manuvering in the air on my part to land in the right spot, but like I said I managed to find the right spot on my 2nd try .. so not too much of a worry. However, a kid might not be so lucky .. and get a little frustrated by this should it happen to them.
My only other semi-concern is at the part with the sliding platforms (the ones with the fire and spikes) where you have to duck down into the gap to avoid being skewered lol. The camera angle is a bit tough in those areas .. tough in the sense on where to guage when to jump onto the on-coming platform .. you kinda just have to guess the 1st couple tries until you just make it. Perhaps instead of being able to see the check point (that is out of your reach over to the right at that point, since you haven't gotten to that area of the level yet) maybe set a camera to look more to the left (so it is facing more in the direction that the platform is coming from. Also .. the next platform up kinda has the same issue as well .. so perhaps it should look more to the right right than to the left (as it is currently sitting .. I'm guess it's just the regular camera angle that comes standard giving it that view).
Other than that .. I think there are perhaps a few cosmetic issues that could be touched up and made "prettier" .. but that is all a matter of individual taste, and makes absolutely no bearing on the fun you can have playing this level.
I gave it 5 stars and a "cute" tag.
Try my new level(s) Final Sack-tination 1 and/or Resident Evil: Sackopalypse
Thank you for the feedback on this level. I hadnít run into a situation where the first flip would be initiated without the checkpoint being activated. Iíll move the checkpoint so that you shouldnít be able to run into this situation in the future.
I also see you point on the camera issues on that moving platform section. Having made the level I know what to expect and didnít think of this. Iíll try to work in camera zones that put focus where it is needed. This is a very good piece of feedback.
I do want to add more character, visual appeal, to the level but my first attempt to do so was through stickering but that was pretty superficial and not done well. I got a lot of feedback that it was too much visually. Iím still thinking about what I can do to achieve this goal but this is, unfortunately, an area that I am not strong at.
- Join Date
- Feb 2009
I played this level and was gladly surprised, very original level with the rotating feature. The platform is pretty basic though, and although fun, it never felt "amazing".
Visual design is nice too, with bright colors and textures which fit the level.
I give the technical/engineering aspect a 4 star score since I guess it's not easy to perfectly calibrate the level after it rotates
Suggestions: The main flaw of the level is that the difficulty is not well balanced. It's generally easy until you arrive to a few sections, especially the one where you have to jump on top of moving "platforming sections" which have small pieces of fire you have to avoid and then some horrible spikes which move. I died a lot there since it was very impredictable and had to restart, maybe I just had sucky-fingers day.
Overall 4 stars and ingenious tag.