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JAGEN - A FREE Marble Madness inspired game

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by bach, Jun 18, 2011.

  1. bach

    bach Newbie
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    Hi everyone!

    We just released our first game on the Android Market! It's a Marble Madness inspired game with lots of surprises and challenges.

    Here's the blurb:

    [​IMG]

    https://market.android.com/details?id=com.thegreystudios.jagen

    The game is available for completely FREE. We'd love it if you'd take the time to check it out and let us know what you think!

    Cheers,
    bach | the grey studios
     

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  2. No_u

    No_u Android Enthusiast
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    Looks really good but why is the tilt movement so weird?

    Moving my tablet down makes it go to the right
    Up to the left
    Right will make it go up
    And left will make it go down

    Why not just make it right=right left=left etc.?
     
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  3. bach

    bach Newbie
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    Ah yes - I assume you looked at this on your Honeycomb tablet? We're working on a bugfix for this issue and it'll be released very soon.

    Unfortunately, Honeycomb tablets have a different default orientation which causes the accelerometer data to be out of whack.

    If you check it out on your phone, all should be good.

    Thanks for checking it out and reporting! :)

    Cheers,
    Bach
     
  4. No_u

    No_u Android Enthusiast
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    Nice, I'll wait for an update and might try it on my phone in the meanwhile.

    Thanks.
     
  5. bach

    bach Newbie
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  6. hansschmucker

    hansschmucker Android Enthusiast
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    It looks good on my little 480x320 LG P500... except the scrolling, which isn't integer-rounded, meaning that vertical and horizontal lines flicker quite a lot.

    The problem is that I can't actually play at, except in dark rooms or at night: There are red markings on partially transparent red tiles floating in front of a red background... you see the problem. So far there hasn't been a single round where I didn't fall through a hole because I thought it was another red/transparent tile. You really need some more contrast: I made a (horrible-looking, but that's not the point) little sketch so you can see some of the things that I think would improve gameplay dramatically:

    Original
    [​IMG]

    Edited
    [​IMG]

     
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  7. bach

    bach Newbie
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  8. hansschmucker

    hansschmucker Android Enthusiast
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    You're welcome. You get some feedback, I get a potentially better game: everybody wins :)

    P.S. It's really that you forget to round the scrolling offsets to integers (it's just not visible on higher resolutions since there your textures have a lower resolution than the screen). Making everything more blurry would work too, but the best (and probably easiest) thing would really be to fix the rounding.

    P.P.S. The orange "danger" markings would really be the most important thing for me... the rest is sometimes annoying, but it doesn't break the game.
     
  9. bach

    bach Newbie
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    Just released a minor update to the market. We've improved controls quite a bit (a lot smoother now).

    On the scrolling - I'm not following you just yet re: the rounding. From what I can tell the effect that you describe happens is because the texture gets scaled down on smaller screens which makes the filtering kick in and that causes rounding errors which = flickering.
    Unfortunately I don't have a small screen device around, so I can't really test this effectively. I'll see if I can obtain one for testing.

    We're looking into the whole contrast thing and we'll work on this asap.

    Thanks again for the feedback.

    Cheers,
    Bach | the grey studios
     
  10. No_u

    No_u Android Enthusiast
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    Honeycomb fixed worked, thanks
     
  11. hansschmucker

    hansschmucker Android Enthusiast
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    Maybe it's best described with an image. The effect is not exactly the one I'm getting in-game since, as you say, the image gets scaled down there as well, but it should help you understand how the issue is best fixed:

    [​IMG]

    You currently calculate your offsets as floating point, instead of rounding them to the nearest screen-density integer. It's not a good idea to scroll 1.3 pixels, since a clear line in the texture would suddenly be spread across to rows on the screen, which looks very different: Since this "spreading" happens differently for each frame, the line will appear to be thinner on some frames and wider in others.
     
  12. bach

    bach Newbie
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    Got it. Looking into this now, as I don't think the fix is as trivial as I'd like it to be. :)

    Thanks again!
     
  13. bach

    bach Newbie
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    Hi everyone,

    There's a new update on the market that should improve visuals on low-res devices.

    Hansschmucker, would love it if you could let me know if this has helped at all! Unfortunately it's going to be very difficult to completely fix this problem as all the graphics were optimised for HD. But the fix should improve things at least :)

    Market link: https://market.android.com/details?id=com.thegreystudios.jagen

    Thanks again!
    Bach | the grey studios
     
  14. hansschmucker

    hansschmucker Android Enthusiast
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    Sadly: not really... lines still flicker as they did before... if all else fails, you could include pre-scaled resources for the different resolutions, but of course that would blow up the size of the executable quite a bit.
     
  15. bach

    bach Newbie
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    We're looking at that now - it might be possible without to much extra baggage. We shall see!

    Obviously you have some development experience yourself, I'd be interested to see some of your stuff. Got anything out in the market? :)
     
  16. hansschmucker

    hansschmucker Android Enthusiast
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    Nope... I'm just starting to learn Android and only for fun... but I do have a history in graphics programming, so I'm sort of familiar with the issues... I don't know your code, but my guess would be that you're using a GLSurfaceView... which means that you convert all offsets to floating point vectors... so in order to have an integer offset, you have to calculate the floating point offset at the current scale that would effectively create an integer offset... it seems like a very strange exercise, I know: And most of the time it wouldn't matter, but with the design choices you made, namely having a lot of straight narrow lines, it becomes a very visible problem.

    Stuff like this is what I'm usually dealing with:
    http://www.tapper-ware.net/blog/?p=47
     
  17. bach

    bach Newbie
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    Yea, all the position offsets are actually done with integer offsets now. The issue is that the scaling causes the graphics to be non-integer. And fixing it is unfortunately a little harder, since it changes everything - not just the offset.

    I think the best solution would be to introduce a low-res version of the artwork. And for the future we'll avoid these things at design stage :) We might be able to smooth some of this out by getting rid of the super bright/sharp edges.

    Thanks again for your input, it's really valuable feedback!
     
  18. hansschmucker

    hansschmucker Android Enthusiast
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    You're welcome. Nobody gets everything right on the first try, but I'm looking forward to seeing what you'll be able to pull off the next time, now that you do know about these pitfalls.
     
  19. bach

    bach Newbie
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    You and I both :p
     
  20. bach

    bach Newbie
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    For anyone interested, we just released an update of the game to the market with 2 new levels.

    We've also improved contrast on the background so this should make it better playable in daylight conditions.

    As always, feedback is appreciated! :)

    Market link: https://market.android.com/details?id=com.thegreystudios.jagen
     

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