Mr Nibbles Forever – Alpha 6

Mr Nibbles Forever – Alpha 6

I haven’t posted an update on my new game Mr Nibbles Forever for a couple of weeks not because I haven’t been doing anything (quite the opposite) rather the game has been in a little flux and thus was a little too broken to blog about.

Well if you haven’t seen it in a couple of weeks there has been quite a lot of changes to the meta-game:

There are now several “meta-game” features which I hope will encourage the user to keep playing the game, find new and interesting things, continue to challenge themselves and (if I have done things right) generate some revenue.

I introduce the player to the meta-game by initially giving them a “free gift”:

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This is timed mechanic which I borrowed from social games and commonly used to encourage the player to return to the game at some point in the future. In Mr Nibbles Forever it also serves the duel purpose of providing the player with some early “nibbles” which they can then immediately use on the wheel of fortune:

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The initial spin of the wheel is hard-coded so that the player will always win an new outfit, that way I can introduce them to the purpose of earning nibbles (to get new outfits):

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So now the player has one purpose to play the game, earn nibbles so they can get new outfits. I however wasn’t happy that this was enough, I felt that the game needed another hook to encourage play.

I struggled for hours last week to come up with a way to do this. I really liked the way “Jet Pack Joyride” has missions which encourage you to go back and keep playing so you can complete a mission:

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I thought about this however and struggled to think of a way to make that work with Mr Nibble’s simple mechanics, it was just too complex. After a while I had a brainwave, why don’t I just set the player a “challenge” which is similar to a mission but I could change the rules somehow. This way I could keep the player coming back and challenge them to go further without over-complicating things.

Now every now and then the player is given an option to do a “challenge run”:

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(ignore the terrible visuals for now, they will change later)

So the player is given an explicit challenge, in this case reach at least 200cm, and they are given a reward. To unlock it they must watch a video but its totally optional, so if they dont want to watch a video and earn some nibbles then they dont have to.

As the player completes challenges new ones are offered but they get harder and harder but at the same time the rewards get greater and greater.

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I feel its a neat solution to the problem and I think its compelling enough that players wont mind watching a 15-30 second ad each time.

If the player fails the challenge then they are given the option to retry (by watching another ad):

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At the moment there is only one type of challenge; “distance run”, but I hope to have more types before the game launches. Some ideas are “fruit collection” where the player must collect a certain number of special nibbles (that are placed in strategic positions).

In addition to the challenges I have added a highscores button, it doesn’t do much at the moment but I hope to have that up and running this week.

Anyways, thats it for now. As usual if you would like to play the game send me an email: mike.cann@gmail.com and ill sort you out, or hop on the facebook page for the game: www.facebook.com/mrnibblesforever

This week im hoping to get the game feature complete, fix bugs and start getting new audio and art assets in there!

Mr Nibbles Forever – Alpha 4

Mr Nibbles Forever – Alpha 4

The 4th week of development is over and although I haven’t had as much time as I would have liked this week (reinstalled windows AGAIN, prepared for my open-water swim) I still managed to make some significant progress, checkout the video below:

I have managed to the “Wheel of Fortune” in and the “Dressing Room”. They aren’t quite complete yet but you can see where i’m going with it. You can spend your collected nibbles on the wheel:

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You can win a variety of prizes:

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At the moment there are two types of prizes “Powerups” and “Outfits”. Powerups may be things like an extra life or a free respin of the wheel or slow-mo. Outfits will change the appearance of Mr Nibbles as you play the game. I intend for there to be quite a few to choose from:

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The outfits wont just change the way Mr Nibbles looks they may do extra things such add particle effects, trails or different sounds. Im hoping this will provide the extra variance to the game that will keep the player playing, striving to get more nibbles and a better score.

I am planning on using the “Crossy Road / Bitcoin Billionaire” monetisation strategy, incentivized ads with a sprinkling of IAP. Incentivised ads on FB was not allowed but it seems like its okay to do this (and do it to make some serious money) on mobile.

Mr Nibbles Forever – Alpha 3

Mr Nibbles Forever – Alpha 3

I have had far less time than I would have liked to work on the game this week mainly because it was my birthday over the weekend and quite a bit of time was spent preparing for that.

The little time I did have however was spent on two main things. Firstly the video:

The first thing I worked on was adding a new type of chunk that serves as a sort of tutorial to teach the player to tilt the device to slow Mr Nibbles down or speed him up as this seems to be the biggest sticking point with people regarding the controls.

The hanging spiders force the player to slow down and the sign hopefully shows them they do that by tilting the screen:

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I have a bit more work do do on this before its done but I hope it will help teach people the controls, let me know if it works!

Because this chunk acts as a tutorial it needs to go near the start of the level so the second major bit of work this week was to create a “scriptable sequence” that lets me dictate the type of chunk that needs to spawn:

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Previously the chunks were randomly selected based on the difficulty which was based on the distance the player had travelled through the game. Now that its scripted its much more controllable but hopefully still leaves a lot of room for the randomness that makes the game replayable.

Other than that there was a host of other small changes in this release:

* Added menus music
* Added options for enabling and disabling sounds and music to the main menu
* Chunks now correctly join together seamlessly
* Added an in game pause button and pause menu
* Added a loading progress bar
* The backyard theme collapsible floor now looks like dirt rather than cage.
* Added unity analytics
* Fixed the chunk testing tool
* Fixed the squeaky sound effects issue

As usual if you would like to play the iOS version email me: mike.cann@gmail.com, the android version can be played if you join this group: https://plus.google.com/communities/100690884724496136044 or just join the facebook page to stay up to date with updates: https://www.facebook.com/mrnibblesforever