Strict Standards: Non-static method phpbb_feed_factory::init() should not be called statically in /home/xinkgame/public_html/feed.php on line 66 [phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /feed.php on line 171: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /feed.php:66) [phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /feed.php on line 172: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /feed.php:66) XINK Games2012-09-29T13:21:11+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/feed.php2012-09-29T13:21:11+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/viewtopic.php?t=36&p=42#p42
If you wonder what the game could have been feature wise (not the level design) once completed with all the levels planned initially, have a look at this. This is a messy level containing all the balls and cannons along with a few other game items. I added some physical shapes, even without textures, just for testing purpose. The Ball/Cannon combination is a bit hard to apprehend at first, so I provide some screenshots of the Help section of the game. I spent weeks to get this working correctly when I was developping it.
Ballistic Bonbon is too difficult for you? You will be glad to learn that you can download a save file, to replace your current one, in order to unlock all the levels available. However, it is strongly adviced to try the levels in the right order, and to have a look at the contextual Help for each level, in order to learn how to use some of the game's items.
Enjoy: Save File All Levels Unlocked
]]>2012-09-09T21:44:19+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/viewtopic.php?t=34&p=40#p40 Enjoy, from now on, Ballistic Bonbon is completely free. Sadly, this also means that there won't be updates any more. I spent a lot of time on this game, and it's time to move on. Have fun!
Hi, you might have seen my previous post, and I removed it. For a simple reason. I have lost enough money and time with this game, and don't want to go further... The bad news is that the development is probably completely dead this time. The good news is that from now on, Ballistic Bonbon is going to be free. I will update the site and the download during the week end.
]]>2012-09-07T17:07:50+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/viewtopic.php?t=31&p=36#p36 Hi everyone,
I have submitted Ballistic Bonbon to Steam Greenlight. It's pretty unlikely that the game end up on Steam, given that it doesn't match with current standards, but I see it as a good promotion. And moreover, the 100$ fee allows me to do a good deed, so why not?
It seems it will be impossible for me to work on two projects at the same time. And I decided that I will work on a brand new game for the Ouya, as announced on the Home page. Ballistic Bonbon developpement may be resumed after the current game release. It's not decided yet what type of game I will work on. I'm still in the reflection phase. I have dozens of game concepts waiting to be done. I just have to see which one suits the best to the controller. Or create a new game from scratch? Who knows?
just a quick note to inform you that the development of Ballistic Bonbon restarts after a long pause. The game as it was released was never intended to be so short but I was forced to release something, due to my lack of funds to achieve the initial goal. The price asked for it has been reduced accordingly, but it also gives a false idea of the product quality in people's mind. If this game had been released with all of its levels on a Nintendo console for 49$, everyone would have praised it for its gameplay qualities and its originality. But I don't have the means to do that, for now... And I dont have money to advertise it either. Such a sad thing! We live in a world where people with money can sell their shit like hotcakes thanks to their means and the advertisement system. And creative people without money have to count on word of mouth to succeed. Since the feedback has never been at the expected level until recently, I spent my time on other projects rather than this game. But the butterfly effect has struck and the feedback given recently gives me the energy to back on track and finish the job. I have a few surprises to share between now and the release of new levels. So keep an eye on the blog.
]]>2012-01-05T23:15:17+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/viewtopic.php?t=27&p=31#p31 Hello everyone!
We are pleased to announce that the Free Version of Ballistic Bonbon now contains 10 levels. This is exactly the same version as the full version except it contains less levels. There's no time limit to play.
Click here to download the Full Version
]]>2012-01-05T22:38:50+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/viewtopic.php?t=26&p=30#p30 A new brasilian site, superdownloads.com.br, has reviewed Ballistic Bonbon. And once again, they are pleased by the game. It is given a 4.5 out of 5 by the editor. Use Google Translate to get a better grasp of the content of the article, but it is really positive about the game...
If you like target-shooting games (especially ones that require a bit of lateral thinking in addition to accuracy) then Ballistic Bonbon is for you. I’ll admit that I didn’t take to the game at first, but after persevering and realising a few things about how the game worked, it became a very enjoyable challenge. At €4.99 it’s a lot of gameplay for not a lot of money (and it looks like more levels are going to be released free for registered users).
This post inaugurates a series of articles explaining some features of Ballistic Bonbon. The first feature I will talk about is the Hidden Keys.
Since I am aware that my game can be difficult sometimes, I have implemented a feature that allows you to unlock a level. In order to do that, you have to find 5 hidden keys in the game. As long as you find enough keys, there's not limit on the number of levels to unlock.
Each level greater than or equal to 5 contains an hidden key. When hit, the hidden key have a short animation and a specific sound plays. This key is obvious to find in level 5 (see screenshot above) in order for everyone to find it and to know what it is like. I was a bit too confident that this will suggest the player to click on the Help button, but from the feedback I received, that was not really the case. So I have improved things a little in Version 1.1.
To register the fact that you have found the key, you need to finish the level. Once found and the level finished, the text “Key Found!” is displayed in the Congratulations screen. And since V1.1, the text “Key Missed!” appears if the player didn't find the key, in order to help people understand that there is still a key to find. If you replay the level, the text only appears when the key is found again. It's not necessary to recall the key was missed if the player already have find it previously and don't want to bother find it at each game.
Now, if you return to the Level Selector, you can see a little green key beside the button from the level you just finished. When you have collected enough of them, at least 5, you can unlock a new level. Note that before Level 5, there's no way to buy a level. The relevant text only appears -in the lower left corner- after Level 6 has been unlocked. To unlock a level, just click on the text “Unlock a level”. Use that option wisely as higher levels can be more difficult than earlier ones. If you decide to buy a level, the level to be unlocked is the one which is just after the last unlocked one. After that, the first five green keys on the screen will be colored in red, since they are now used, and a new level button is available.
With this feature and the new Easy Mode, Ballistic Bonbon should not be considered as a difficult game anymore.
]]>2011-05-17T00:09:24+00:00http://www.xinkgames.com/viewtopic.php?t=22&p=26#p26 A new version of Ballistic Bonbon is available. It's V1.1.
-Easy Mode implemented! It's a new setting available in the Level Selector screen. Just click on the Easy Mode text and you will be able to play with a very generous amount of balls and time, ie 2x amount of each ball type, and 2x amount of time. -The Key system, which allows you to unlock a level when you have gathered 5 keys, is now more obvious. The text "Key missed" appears at the end of a level when applicable. It appears as well more intuitively in the Level Selector as the text "Unlock a level" instead of "Buy a joker". -Some minor fixes.
Yesterday, I received an email telling me there was a new review of my game. I was so glad to read that, until I realized the reviewer completely missed some aspects of the game. I could be quite happy that the game received a silver star and a general score of 76%. Moreover, the tone of Steve Blanch's review is globally very positive on every aspect he has tested. That's were the problem is...
The reviewer admit to have tested 11 levels out of 25, which corresponds to 44% of the game. He spent 3 hours to go there until he get stucked. As a side note on the longevity, just multiply that time to go to 100% and you obtain roughly 7 hours. Granted the higher levels are much longer and harder to finish than the first ones, you can add at least 2 hours, so it ends at 9 hours. Not so bad for a game sold 4.99 euros. He gave a score of 65% for longevity, I don't blame him for that, at least not directly, because that's the result of his experience with the game.
That leads us to the real problem of the review. I ask you, reader, do you think a review is professionally done when a reviewer don't read the manual/help or whatever you call it? I'm perfectly OK to admit that most users don't read manuals, it happens to me as well. But what if a reviewer doesn't read them? I don't talk about reading every line of the manual, but just ensure you didn't miss anything important so you don't make wrong assertions in your review... I spent long hours to code a feature that I will explain in detail in my next blog entry. It's a system of keys you have to find in the game, it allows you to unlock a level when you're stucked.
Obviously, the reviewer has missed it since he didn't mention it anywhere. The feature is explained in the main Help of the game, as well as in the contextual help of the Level 5. I placed the first key of the game in a way the player can not miss it in the Level 5. Then the Level selector screen reflect that by displaying a specific text and some keys. I admit I could have done that even more obvious or intuitive but I always wanted the contextual Help not to be intrusive. It's a design choice. You're not forced to read it, but you're missing a lot of useful information if you don't. So, just RTFM! I feel partially guilty, though, for not having make it even more intuitive... But how?
And thus, since the reviewer didn't find this feature, his experience with the game has lead to an understandable frustration. I quote him “This seems to be a bit of a game design problem, since the gameplay itself is not bad per se, but the repetition is. Unfortunately, just hammering away at the same level over and over is really the only way on.“ I can't blame him, but what is written is wrong, you just need to find 5 hidden keys and you can unlock a new level. No need to finish the one you're stucked at.
Therefore, he couldn't test the remaining 56% of the game where the gameplay is sometimes totally different of what it is in the first levels. Simply have a look at these 4 different screenshots. In Ballistic Bonbon, every level brings a few novelties. So he couldn't put his hands on the Cannon Selector or the Ball Selector features. He couldn't test either the Comet ball and the Precision cannon, which address two of the flaws he described in his review. I quote “The game can be frustrating because there is nowhere on the display that indicates the current angle or elevation of the shot, nor any trail or tracer extending from the short barrel of the cannon.” Yes, Steve, the ball can have a trail, and the cannon can have a HUD where you can set the horizontal and vertical values with precision, but that's not the basic equipment.
During my discussions with Mark, the admin of Bytten, I was asked why I placed these items at the end of the game instead of the beginning if they were the best features? And I answered, hey, when you played Super Mario World, did you start the game with the Cape power up, or with the tiny Mario? Were you invicible or do you had to wait for picking up a star? You had to discover these new features throughout the game. Guess what, that works like that in Ballistic Bonbon, you start small and you have to find new power ups by yourself. And not only the Precision cannon and the Comet ball aren't the best features of the game, but this isn't the end of the game either! They're just a part of the game, inside the Level Pack #1. There are 8 different cannons and 8 different balls in Ballistic Bonbon, where only 3 of each were used in the first 25 levels. What if you were to review Super Mario World and stopped at 44%?
I understand that the team at Bytten review games for fun and not as a professional activity, but I contacted them in a friendly manner to ask them to update their review to reflect the aspects mentioned above but they refused, that's why I made this blog entry. As a closing word, I say it again, I find the review pretty good, but just incomplete.