Are you tired of being the dungeon “hero“?
Killing innocent Skeletons without getting to know them?
To understand a Skeleton, you must become one!
Defend your dungeon!
Oh, and you have a pet Bat, how cute!
What is this, and what is that… and where are my pants?!
Welcome fellow Game Makers to the second article in this series where I will be looking at games made with Game Maker 1.4 or Game Maker Studio 2 that are either Work In Progress or Early Access, and try to provide constructive and honest feedback for the developers to help them with their development process.
Other articles in this series:
Dungeon… dark, damp, rotten… home sweet home!
Our second game on the list is Skelattack, a adventure action platformer. Where you will be defending your dungeon from “Heroes”. Nice twist. So far, so good.
Before I started the game I had a look at the screenshots on the steam greenlight website… and I have to say they looked pretty awesome. It is always nice to see a game with graphic design that has a personality and is own to the developer.
There also appears to be some sort of a tiny bat/vampire/pokemon flying around you. As one (fictional) man once said “You had my curiosity, but now you have my attention.”
Time to PLAY the game!
Honest Feedback First Impression video (not the latest version)
Killing Heroes, how does it feel?
When I started the game I was welcomed by a rather simple, but good looking main screen. As always the first thing I wanted to explore was the Options screen, that in my personal opinion is missing just one thing – the ability to change the volume levels for sound effects and music. However I think this will be added later in the development stage.
New game started in a great looking room. Clearly my room, with my room mate… who was a little nervous (and missing 1/4 of his skull) because the bell was ringing, which meant that human “Heroes” were trying to save the day…again….
I had a nice little chat with my bat pokemon, yes, I could TALK to my companion! Feels like a good game design practice, so you don’t feel alone! And the bat also knew some jokes.
The initial tutorial explained to me that the bat is my spell caster, he can learn spells that I can buy for coins I collect int he dungeon. However he can only hold one spell in his tiny head at a time.
My own minion, cool!
And then I got the sword, I assume that this is something you can later upgrade to deal more damage to the filthy “Heroes“! After that, it was time to rattle em bones a little bit!
Jumping, double jumping and wall sliding felt good, even though in my opinion the player character jumped way to far away. But I was able to justify that by thinking “Well he is all bones, so he is light.” then the other voice in my head went “But if he is all bones how does he jum…” – “Silence both of you, it is Magic, deal with it and shut it!“, I thought, problem solved.
Then came the first contact with the disgusting humans. Some had swords, some had fire balls, some believed a spooky mask will make them stronger. Trying to scare a undead skeleton? Not sure how that is supposed to work. Silly (and dead) humans.
The action part of the game – the killing of the humans – was fast and felt good. The sword animation was superb, fluid and when you have hit someone the sound effects were very impact-full! Kill, kill kill…
And then I god stuck, what to do, what to do… Might as well ask that smart-ass bat, and hey, what do you know!? He actually gave me a Hint on how to proceed with the level! Neat little game design decision.
The level design was great, required you to open doors using levers and was just the about the right amount of challenge for a brand new player to make it both enjoyable, fun and a little frustrating (in a good way).
I spent a lot of time crawling through the dungeon, killing everything that moved – I even tried to kill a friendly, smiling, nice, green cube-shaped jelly blob! I am evil, I see something in a dungeon, my instinct says kill it.
I wonder if I could have killed the pet bat companion….
But to find out more about the Lore and the game, you will have to play it yourself. Which brings me to another point…
I can see the light! And it is Green!
Skelattack is currently on Steam Greenlight, and I really hope it is doing great and continues to do so! I would love to see this game published and be embraced by the gaming community.
If you would like to vote for this game, well, you know what to do (psst, psssst: click on the image below)
Skelattack is a fun and fast paced action platformer that is very eye pleasing – it looks very pretty! I had about the right amount of fun and frustration to make it to a pleasant gaming experience. The premise of the story is simple, but from what I have read it gets more exciting as you progress through the game, meeting more NPCs and exploring more types of areas. The Lore appears to be well thought through, but that is for the players to judge.
The graphics are very clean and neat. It has personality and although some backgrounds could do with additional details, the character and NPCs are very pretty. There are some small things missing – like room transition animation, when you enter a door to another level. But as this is still work in progress I believe that will be added in the near future.
The visual effects of the spells, attacks, damage, death of the enemies, and death/re-spawn animations of your character are well drawn with decent number of frames.
The user interface is easy to understand and is not in the way during the game play when you need to concentrate on the jumps, and slashing, and jumps, and wall sliding, and jumps…. and…. you get the idea.
Sound effects in this game already feel pro, not sure how the developer plans to improve them. But maybe more of them in the future can make the environment even more lively and atmospheric.
Here I have to be more descriptive.
Music in this game sounds as if princess from Super Mario met Diablo and they had a offspring that decided to produce a song for the dungeons under the castle… What I am trying to say is that the music is good, if fitting for a dungeon environment but also supports the platformer genre of the game.
I found myself humming the melody of the main theme song in the middle of the day, so I guess the tune is catchy, and that is a good sign for the developer. Less good if you are like me and cannot get a good song out of your head for days, and days…
I can only reflect on the first few locations that I have played, but from those I can say that the difficulty was challenging for a brand new player as well as enjoyable. The tutorial explains to you how things work, though I would also welcome some jumping/wall sliding tutorial in the game.
The enemies are not that difficult, but I guess that will change in later stages of the game.
The companion bat helps by casting spells and providing hints on what to do, if you feel you are stuck.
Playing Skelattack felt satisfying, not too easy, not too hard. As I mentioned the only complaint I have (more of a personal preference) is the jumping distance, it seems a bit too much for me. That does not however make it less pleasant to play, you just have to get used to it, that is all.
Fighting enemies was simple, but entertaining (killing humans in games always is, right?).
The addition of your minion bat that can learn spells to support you in your adventure as well as provide hints and just general chat (I hope more jokes will be added in the future!) makes the world feel more alive and less static.
After playing the demo I felt curious about how the other areas look, what other enemies you can encounter, what other spells can I teach my bat and when can I upgrade my weapon.
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Thank you for your time & Stay Tuned!
Check out the Dave_Draws Twitter here
Check out the developer website here
Vote for this game on Steam Greenlight here
article by: MEITdev