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iPad: Via Pompeii by TimeTours (developer diary)

01-06-2012, 03:26 AM
#1
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 333
Via Pompeii HD - story driven board/puzzle/strategy game by TimeTours (dev diary)

01/06/2012 Via Pompeii will be the first game published by TimeTours with a tentative March release date. It will be a story driven board/puzzle game with some great presentation.

Mathias, our programmer has some experience with smaller iOS game projects and is working on this in Cocos2D. Nothing has been set in stone but we'll probably release it as an universal app. I post it here because right now we are concentrating on the iPad while it runs fine on both devices already.

We are through with the first very important part, the level editor (which runs on iPad as part of the game). The idea was to do this the right way from the beginning and so we chose Dropbox to save our levels. That way every level is instantly available to test by any team member.

Graphically we are going the 3D route for most of the levels, menus and backgrounds. But the characters will be hand drawn...well, to give them...a little more character. Same goes for the introduction to the (guess what) 'time travel' story told in comic style.

Ruy F. who does our 'The Time Traveler's Kids' comic will be responsible for the characters who will be a little more realistically proportioned and textured but still retain a slight comic look (first scribbles for your viewing pleasure):


Last edited by kukulcan; 01-25-2012 at 02:47 PM.
01-06-2012, 03:58 AM
#2
Joined: Oct 2011
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Posts: 438
Send a message via Yahoo to reec0X Send a message via Skype™ to reec0X
What is the game all about? Is it RPG or TD?

GameCenter: reec0X
Devices: iPhone 6+ / iPad Air WiFi
Beta Game Tested: Click HERE
Member of THE BETA TESTER ALLIANCE group

01-06-2012, 04:37 AM
#3
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 333
Quote:
Originally Posted by reec0X View Post
What is the game all about? Is it RPG or TD?
Puzzle/Board game with a touch of TD but no RPG.
01-09-2012, 06:50 AM
#4
Joined: Sep 2011
Location: Kiel, Germany
Posts: 290
The soldiers are well done and some inside info is always nice...but how about a little more info about the game itself, so we get an idea if this is one to watch.
01-09-2012, 01:30 PM
#5
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 333
Quote:
Originally Posted by LazyGamer View Post
The soldiers are well done and some inside info is always nice...but how about a little more info about the game itself, so we get an idea if this is one to watch.
Ya, sorry, it is game where you remove tiles from a board, in the mini boss levels you place tiles and in the boss levels you move tiles

It goes from a rather meditative start to more strategic and puzzle centric levels.

More in the next episode


P.S. Gruß nach Kiel
01-13-2012, 06:26 AM
#6
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 333
01/13/2012 Now that the level editor is done and the basic game features (taking tiles away from a gameboard) are implemented, it is time to evaluate which ideas and which extras work to make the game fun. As there are quite some games with a similar basic gameplay, coming up with new ways to get rid of tiles and combining extras for puzzle elements is our foremost challenge.

The basic menu structure/level selects are done and we decided on the size: Five cities with 19 levels each. Net playtime (without 'sidequests') about 6 hours if you do every level first try. So realistically 10+ hours, backtracking will be encouraged, not only to get higher scores in old levels with new extras, but to unlock even more extras and an extra city.

Mid-level bosses and bosses will have different gameplay, more strategy and puzzle focussed to make the game more diverse.

Just a quick size test for our level select screens (all final rendering will be done in 2048x1576 just in case):



On the music front, the fellow who we found in the developer support forum, came up with the first menu/level select tunes, more of that in the next entry.
01-16-2012, 04:24 AM
#7
Joined: Sep 2011
Location: Kiel, Germany
Posts: 290
So you say it is basically a Mahjong style game?
01-16-2012, 01:23 PM
#8
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 333
Quote:
Originally Posted by LazyGamer View Post
So you say it is basically a Mahjong style game?
Yeah, like Gran Turismo 5 is basically this:



Via Pompeii is losely based on Mahjong, yes, but we want to do something that is much more diverse. There are two basic ways to remove stones plus one addition for every new city. That is plus "extra-weapons" you can collect in the levels.

And you can go back to earlier levels with your new abilities to get more points/achievements.
01-17-2012, 04:21 AM
#9
Joined: Sep 2011
Location: Kiel, Germany
Posts: 290
eeehhh...ok...guess I have to wait for some gameplay video to understand...but if it is anything like Venice Mystery count me in.
01-20-2012, 03:02 PM
#10
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 333
01/20/2012 Starting to build levels in order including the tutorials and introducing extras one by one.

Meanwhile we have set up the app, so in theory the game will be released in max. 120 days. Game will have 8 leaderboards and we are deciding between some 150 and 320 achievments. To keep the localization cost reasonable we think about doing the achievements texts in Latin - everybody should understand that

On the graphics side the final tiles and first gameboard have arrived so next week we are finally ready to show first game screens.

We are not yet decided if we want the contrast realistic/comic or will adapt the backgrounds to comic style with rendering cel shaded for the "encounter" screens:



And as promised, first result from Sam, our musician, who made a first version of a track for the levels with a military setting:

http://www.time-tours.com/daily/Saalburg.mp3

Sam is a TA Member and we found him in through the "Developer Services and Trade" forum...gotta love TA.

Last edited by kukulcan; 01-20-2012 at 03:04 PM.