I just noticed that the trees in Super Mario World do that creepy upside-down lighting thing. You know, like when you put a flashlight under your chin and point up. They also like to do it in old film noirs.

I just noticed that the trees in Super Mario World do that creepy upside-down lighting thing. You know, like when you put a flashlight under your chin and point up. They also like to do it in old film noirs.

100rings:

Open world Spider-Man game where you actually have to manage time effectively as both Peter Parker and Spider-Man. Miss too many classes, get fired from too many jobs - Peter’s life suffers. Let crime and villains grow out of control - Peter’s life suffers.
Effective…

this takes me back to shenmue

and i kind of want shenmue 3 to star ryo hazuki in a spiderman costume

er, i’m sorry, not ryo hazuki

i kind of want shenmue 3 to star shenmue in a spiderman costume

Yeah, exactly—touch screen controls lack that precision granted by having something there to feel, and shmups are all about precision.
I also have a controller on hand that I sometimes use for the Sonic games. It works great with them, but when I use it with R-Type II, it’s really laggy. I haven’t seen anyone else mention having the same issue, so I wonder if it’s just my Android or controller or what.

Yeah, exactly—touch screen controls lack that precision granted by having something there to feel, and shmups are all about precision.

I also have a controller on hand that I sometimes use for the Sonic games. It works great with them, but when I use it with R-Type II, it’s really laggy. I haven’t seen anyone else mention having the same issue, so I wonder if it’s just my Android or controller or what.

Importance of Incidentals 2: Difficulty

guilelessmonk:

When I talk about incidentals I mean things like coins in Mario, things that you like to collect but don’t actually help the player complete the level. I’ve talked about the importance of incidentals but that was just about how useful they are for level design. They have many uses, the one I want to get into today is difficulty. I did touch on this in my word count review of Yoshi’s New Island but I don’t really expand upon things in word count review and so I want to explain it now.

image

Read More

scalable difficulty!

this smartphone port of r-type 2 makes me appreciate my 3ds

I’ve been working on getting together Shatterhand resources over at The Commune. I don’t have any analysis yet; it’s a bunch of various studies I’ve done. I don’t like the game, but it’s very rich, and there’s a lot to break down.

levitatingsasquatch:

Art by Earthbound character designer Benimaru Itoh.

levitatingsasquatch:

Art by Earthbound character designer Benimaru Itoh.

Powerups vs. Pickups - Part 3
Ultimately, these definitions will need to be fine tuned for each game. They can be helpful for identifying trends of similar objects in games, but at the end of the day, each game is going to use its objects in whatever way it sees fit.
Shouty: I guess in that sense, powerups can also be pickups, and there doesn’t have to be a distinction.
Golem: It's useful to have both words around, but yeah, they can apply to the same object, like a mushroom in Super Mario Bros.
Golem: But a coin is not a powerup, only a pickup.
Shouty: But the red jacket in Shatterhand isn’t a pickup because you have to buy it, even though it is a powerup.
Golem: Exactly, it's the Fantasy Zone example.
Golem: This definition also means that the health platforms are pickups and not powerups... or, hm. Maybe they are.
Golem: The coin in Super Mario Bros. and the health platform in Shatterhand are not the same.
Shouty: What if they’re neither?
Golem: Well they're definitely pickups, right?
Shouty: So pickups can be bought, even though they’re not standalone anywhere else in the game, unlike the arrows in Zelda?
Golem: My line of reasoning there is that you have to collect it from the platform.
Golem: Although that does raise the question, is there a meaningful distinction between the shop platforms in Shatterhand and the shop in Fantasy Zone?
Golem: If the Shatterhand powerup is a pickup, why isn't the Fantasy Zone laser a pickup?
Shouty: Because it’s not always in the same place.
Golem: I see. When you say a pickup is collected in the game world, you're implying that going to the location to collect it is an important part of that process.
Shouty: Not necessarily going to the location, but moreso the happening upon it.
Golem: Yeah, I think that's all I mean, just that its location is somewhere in the level design.
Golem: So buying deku nuts from a goron in the fire temple, that's a pickup.
Shouty: Is he still there after you buy them?
Golem: Oh, good point. He is still there, he's persistent.
Golem: So, when you collect something, you are removing it from the game world.
Shouty: Yeah, at least in that playthrough.
Golem: Right, so you might have awkward cases where something respawns, and that'd be an ugly discussion.
Shouty: Like in a deathmatch game?
Golem: Yeah, that'd be a good example.
Powerups vs. Pickups - Part 2
Ultimately, these definitions will need to be fine tuned for each game. They can be helpful for identifying trends of similar objects in games, but at the end of the day, each game is going to use its objects in whatever way it sees fit.
Golem: A powerup is not reliant on anything, it always affects your state.
Golem: The arrow is only relevant if you have the bow out, so the arrow is linked to your bow, not you.
Golem: In this case, I think we can agree that the Piece of Power's reliance on Link's sword is an ornery border case that doesn't do much for our purposes.
Golem: Yes, you can swap out the sword, but that doesn't help us deal with powerups and pickups.
Shouty: You also can’t engage in violent confrontations without it.
Golem: There's still bombs and arrows, right?
Shouty: Yeah, but you can run out of those. The sword will reliably let you attack enemies.
Golem: So it's kind of always there in one sense, whereas the bow can be not there.
Shouty: Yeah, it’s static.
Golem: Isn't there a fire wand?
Shouty: I don’t think that’ll work on every enemy.
Golem: Oh yeah, true.
Golem: So the takeaway is that Link's Awakening has kind of a complicated context for the sword, and we can argue about how static it is, but there's enough evidence to at least intelligently say we're gonna count it as static.
Powerups vs. Pickups - Part 1
Ultimately, these definitions will need to be fine tuned for each game. They can be helpful for identifying trends of similar objects in games, but at the end of the day, each game is going to use its objects in whatever way it sees fit.
Golem: Have you played Fantasy Zone?
Shouty: No, I’ve only seen videos.
Golem: Do you remember how the buying stuff worked?
Shouty: Wasn’t there just a shop you could fly near?
Golem: Right, you kill enemies for cash and then fly into a shop, and you could buy stuff there with the cash you had.
Golem: The shop has a powerful laser that lasts 30 seconds. Is that a powerup?
Shouty: Isn’t everything else in the store also a powerup?
Golem: I'd say so, yeah. Is the laser a pickup?
Shouty: Can you buy pickups?
Shouty: That would be like in Link’s Awakening, if you could buy one of those items that make you really strong or increase your defense.
Golem: Link's Awakening does stick a craw in this line of reasoning, because you can pick up arrows or buy them.
Golem: I guess it's based on context. If you pick up the Piece of Power, it's a pickup. If you buy it, it's not. But it's always a powerup.
Shouty: So how do you define "powerup" and distinguish it from "pickup"?
Golem: A powerup is something that changes your character's state in some meaningful way.
Golem: A pickup is something you collect in the game world.
Golem: But in the Link's Awakening example, an arrow isn't a powerup, right? Yet it still alters your character's state in a meaningful way, right?
Shouty: Not really. It alters your character’s weapon in a meaningful way.
Golem: Aha. So if I can expand on that notion--is the red jacket in Shatterhand a powerup?
Shouty: I’d say so, because the character itself is the weapon. Opa-Opa is also his own weapon.
Golem: So what's the distinction there? If Shatterhand's fist is the same as Shatterhand himself, how come the bow isn't the same as Link?
Shouty: Because you can’t switch it out.
Shouty: If Shatterhandman could remove his fists and put something else on his arms, then that would distinguish him from his weapon.
Golem: A powerup is not reliant on anything, it always affects your state.
Golem: The arrow is only relevant if you have the bow out, so the arrow is linked to your bow, not you.