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Anyone have simple game ideas for me?

12-05-2009, 04:38 PM
#1
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 362
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Anyone have simple game ideas for me?

I recently started playing with GameSalad, and after digging through some of the first tutorials and making a simple test game, I'm very impressed with it. I'm starting on a new ambitious Zelda-like adventure game for the iPhone and after being impressed with GameSalad, I figured I should go ahead and buy the $99 license and get to work.

But then I realized that GameSalad has a couple of severe limitations that I didn't realize before, that prevent me from using it for my new game. The big one: there's no way to save state. If your game is longer than something you can beat in one sitting (like if it's plot-based), you can't use GameSalad. Also, since you can't save and load data, there's no way to make a high scores list. What sort of iPhone games don't have high scores lists? Also, there isn't yet support for social gaming networks like OpenFeint. And if I wanted to roll my own achievements system in GS, it would be kind of useless because I wouldn't be able to save what achievements were achieved the next time the player opens the game.

So now I have a $99 GameSalad license, but I can't use it to make my next game. It is fun to work with though (so far), and I think I can probably make some pretty sweet games in just a couple days with it. So I want to still put my license to good use.

I keep hearing that ideas are a dime a dozen, so here's a request for ideas. With these limitations (no saving, no high scores), what kind of iPhone games would be fun?

--=] Insurgent Games website | twitter [=-
Cryptose (TA) - Skeleton Key (TA) - Skeleton Key HD (TA link) - Aeropack (TA)
12-05-2009, 05:21 PM
#2
Joined: Dec 2009
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well obviously it couldn't be one of those 'just have to beat my high score' games. hmm... this is a bit hard, I'll get back to you.

[ERROR<:>/ insert witty saying here/>]

12-05-2009, 05:24 PM
#3
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 362
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I was actually thinking maybe two-player (on one device) turn-based games might work with this. Something like tic-tac-toe or battleship (though if it were battleship, you could cheat). This way the challenge comes in playing against your friend, rather than competing for high scores.

But it would be cool to take advantage of live-action physics stuff though .

--=] Insurgent Games website | twitter [=-
Cryptose (TA) - Skeleton Key (TA) - Skeleton Key HD (TA link) - Aeropack (TA)
12-05-2009, 05:29 PM
#4
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: ,,,,,,,
Posts: 814
hey I'll be back in about an hour, I have to go somewhere, but I might have ideas when I get back

[ERROR<:>/ insert witty saying here/>]
12-05-2009, 05:41 PM
#5
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 3,741
I've never used GameSalad so this could be totally useless... but is there any way you could generate a level password like the good ol' days?

  /l、
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12-05-2009, 05:46 PM
#6
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: San Francisco
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Heh, like Lemmings! Yeah I think you can do smoething like that. But I'm afraid that it would get lots of bad reviews if you made people use level passwords and things, because it's making the player do more work.

And also, you can make a game where they can just select any level without needing a password, and just play whichever one they feel like. I think I've actually seen a couple puzzle games in the App Store like that.

--=] Insurgent Games website | twitter [=-
Cryptose (TA) - Skeleton Key (TA) - Skeleton Key HD (TA link) - Aeropack (TA)
12-05-2009, 05:55 PM
#7
Quote:
Originally Posted by micah View Post
Heh, like Lemmings! Yeah I think you can do smoething like that. But I'm afraid that it would get lots of bad reviews if you made people use level passwords and things, because it's making the player do more work.

And also, you can make a game where they can just select any level without needing a password, and just play whichever one they feel like. I think I've actually seen a couple puzzle games in the App Store like that.
Yeah, Flickitty does that. We have a recommended path, but don't force the player to follow it and all regions are unlocked by default. They just get increasingly more difficult.

Megaman also followed this, but to a greater extent. You could go to any level and fight any boss, but sometimes it was easier to fight a certain boss first to take his weapon and use it against the next boss.

A ragdoll physics platformer:Flickitty
The artist: randall schleufer
Twitter: @FlickittyiPhone
12-05-2009, 05:55 PM
#8
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 3,741
Thought I'd search for "gamesalad" on AppShopper out of curiosity... this is the only game that came up: http://appshopper.com/games/brickone

  /l、
゙(゚、 。 7 ノ
 l、゙ ~ヽ
 じしf_, )ノ
12-05-2009, 06:02 PM
#9
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: San Francisco
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Here are lists of games made with GameSalad on their blog:
http://gamesalad.com/blog/2009/11/20...ne-releases-5/
http://gamesalad.com/blog/2009/11/13...ne-releases-4/
http://gamesalad.com/blog/2009/11/06...ne-releases-3/

I haven't yet taken a good look at all of those.

And yeah, I actually really like how Flickity does it. But it really helps that when you close the game and come back to it later, you're at the same place where you left off, and it remembers which tasks you've already completed, which makes it way nicer. You can't quite do that with GS.

GameSalad is a pretty amazing tool, and very cheap for tools of its kind. But this lack of saving thing makes it really hard to make a serious iPhone game...

--=] Insurgent Games website | twitter [=-
Cryptose (TA) - Skeleton Key (TA) - Skeleton Key HD (TA link) - Aeropack (TA)
12-05-2009, 06:25 PM
#10
Quote:
Originally Posted by micah View Post
Here are lists of games made with GameSalad on their blog:
http://gamesalad.com/blog/2009/11/20...ne-releases-5/
http://gamesalad.com/blog/2009/11/13...ne-releases-4/
http://gamesalad.com/blog/2009/11/06...ne-releases-3/

I haven't yet taken a good look at all of those.

And yeah, I actually really like how Flickity does it. But it really helps that when you close the game and come back to it later, you're at the same place where you left off, and it remembers which tasks you've already completed, which makes it way nicer. You can't quite do that with GS.

GameSalad is a pretty amazing tool, and very cheap for tools of its kind. But this lack of saving thing makes it really hard to make a serious iPhone game...
Yeah, I think saving game states is pretty important on a mobile platform. Sometimes, people don't have time to dedicate a solid 30 minutes to a mobile game- sometimes they only have 5 minutes.

I don't know anything about GameSalad, but is seems pretty dumb not to have the basic functionality of a save state. However, setting up the save state in Flickitty was pretty tough to do. It doesn't just grab and store the pointers- those are invalid on a restore. The game essentially restarts as normal, then grabs a table of data that stores the entity, its location and rotation and spawns all new entities. For the tasks, I had to store which ones were completed.

If your game has any complexity at all- like the state of each entity, it becomes way more complex. For instance, I don't store how much damage the rocks have taken, they are fully restored with full health.

So I guess looking at that, adding a generic save state to a game might be really difficult. As I said before, you can't simply store pointers.

A ragdoll physics platformer:Flickitty
The artist: randall schleufer
Twitter: @FlickittyiPhone