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XINK Games • Dev Blog - Feature Explained: The Hidden Key System

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Feature Explained: The Hidden Key System

by Cardek on Wed May 18, 2011 4:23 pm


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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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With this feature and the new Easy Mode, Ballistic Bonbon should not be considered as a difficult game anymore.

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