Archive for November, 2012

iOS Devices Research

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

I’ve already shipped 2 games on iOS: Holiday Bonus and Spring Bonus. The 3rd title (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz) will be ready for testing soon.

So I’m building a list of what iOS devices exist to figure out what I’m planning to support because things have changed a lot in the last year.

Devices I plan to support

– iPhone 3 (not supporting this, its ARMv6 CPU is too slow)
– iPhone 3GS faster ARMv7 CPU
– iPhone 4 retina display
– iPhone 4S retina display and faster
– iPhone 5 retina display and longer screen (16:9)
– iPad 1 slow
– iPad 2 faster
– iPad 3 retina but slower than iPad 2 due to 4x pixels to draw
– iPad 4 retina and faster
– iPad Mini same as iPad2 hardware


– iPod Touch 3th gen comparable to iPhone 3GS (32Gb and 64Gb. Watch out for 8Gb which is a 2nd Gen in disguise.)

– iPod Touch 4th gen with retina and comparable CPU/GPU hardware to iPhone 4 but same 256Mb RAM as 3S

– iPod Touch 5th gen retina display and longer screen (16:9) but not iPhone 5 hardware, more like iPhone 4S inc. 512MB RAM

Hope this list is useful to other devs wanting to see the lay of the land.

Ideal test devices

[EDIT] OK I’ve added my ideal list of test devices (without having to own one of everything):

– iPhone 3GS (256Mb RAM, slow, non-retina)
– iPod Touch 4G (for retina with only 256Mb RAM)
– iPhone 4S just because it’s my current phone and is nice.
– iPhone 5 in simulator to avoid buying iPhone 5 or iPod 5th gen
– iPad 1 (slow)
– iPad mini (compares to iPad2 but has smaller screen)
– iPad 3 (retina but slowish)
– Don’t need an iPad 4 yet

Please let me know if I’ve got anything wrong or should add anything else. Thanks!

Dying To Live – Developer Diary #1

Friday, November 2nd, 2012

Back in June I made a small game at the Full Indie game jam in Vancouver. The concept is that you have to kill the player character in order to beat the level. It was well-received by people at the jam and by people I showed it to afterwards. Everyone I said that they haven’t seen a concept like this before, which is encouraging.

Here’s a video of the original game jam version.

At the time I knew the game had lots of unexplored potential, so I planned to work on it some more and release it as an online Flash game. I did a bit of work after the jam including improving the font, adding lava, and creating a few more levels.

You can play the “extended” version here.

Recent Features

Since then I’ve added:

– Particle effects/sounds for different deaths
– Fireball shooters
– Water (including splash effects)
– Water death and floating corpse (still working on this as it’s a bit buggy)

I haven’t made any new levels with the above features yet; I’ve just been testing the features out in the built-in level editor.

Also I’ve been working on the underlying framework to make sure it’s good for future Flash/download games.

The Plan

During the last few months I’ve been pretty busy due to packing up to leave Canada, going on a 3 week road trip in British Columbia, and then settling into our house back in the UK. Therefore the game hasn’t progressed much. However, now that I’ve got my home office sorted and nothing much on my to do list, I’m ready to get rolling with finish this game off. Yay! I also need some money pretty darn soon (like yesterday), and thus my aim is to finish this game in November and get some sponsorship for it in December via FGL so that my family can actually eat something other than snow at Christmas.

If the game is popular as a Flash game then I’ll turn it into a larger PC/Mac download. This isn’t very difficult because I’m using the excellent Monkey cross-platform language. I’m not planning a mobile version though because the game has too many controls for phones in my opinion.

A cool side-effect of making this game is that I’ll have a) a decent re-useable cross-platform framework in Monkey, and b) a fully featured platform game engine that I can use for other ideas.

I’ll be posting regular, perhaps daily, developer diaries to chart progress and to keep me accountable 🙂 So please check back often!

Future Features

Here are some features and wishlist items I have planned:

– 20-25 levels (10-15 mins play time)
– More background/foreground graphics
– Bombs
– Spring/catapult
– Buttons/Doors
– Moving platforms
– Enemies
– Traps
– Ladders
– Conveyors (maybe)
– Slippery ice
– Map Screen
– More stuff!!

This list is of course subject to change depending on what works and how much time I have left in November.

Please try out the game and let me know your thoughts in the comments section.