January Dev Diary: Dropping Dan

Is it that time again? It’s the last day of the month, that means I have been summoned to my little corner of the internet for my (slightly) regular monthly dev log. As always, I’ll discuss what I’ve been up to, what’s new & what’s next. Let’s begin…

Previous goals

Last post I set goals for the year, however I did say I’d be working on the Don’t Drop Dan update. Currently, it’s waiting review for the Google Play Store, but it has been accepted already on the App Store. So if you’re an iOS user you can play it now! As for my friends with Android it usually only takes a couple of days, I’ll be posting on my socials as soon as it’s out. Stay tuned!

In the meantime let’s look at what’s in the update & what I’ve been up to this month.

The Last Update

It’s time to drop Dan. I’ve added as much as possible at this point but there’s more games to be making. This will be the “final” update, at least for now, there’s always the chance I come back later for a small update or two. With that in mind, I tried adding as much new content as I could.

New Costumes

It wouldn’t be a new update without some new costumes to unlock! There’s 3 new costumes in total, 2 of these come with new endings. The third was a little extra I added because Dan was featured in a Beer Squad Gaming video, you can check that out here:

It was only right to add a new costume to celebrate, and look, Dan is celebrating too:

I also shared the other costumes across my socials over the month. Rather than show them again, let’s get a first look at one of the new endings. If you do plan on playing spoiler alert.

Bank of Dan

This is one of the new powers. If you qualify you can open an account in the Bank of Dan, don’t worry, the bar is low. This let’s you store small amounts of gold for a rainy day, or the next game! Pretty cool right?

It was a little harder to make than expected but that’s probably my fault. I wanted the ability to upgrade your account so you can store more. It’s a little expensive but hey, it’s a permanent upgrade.

Floating coins

Collectables are almost required in games now, why should Dan miss out? They’re also easy to include, I created a simple asset, spawned it in (with limitations) added some effects and voila.

The thing I love the most about these horrible things is you can’t fully control where Dan actually moves on screen. You can drop him and move him back up the screen but horizontal movement is mostly random, making it a pain in the ass to grab them coins. But we can have fun trying…

Missions

Before I get into it, here’s a tweet that tells you most of what you need to know:

We now have missions to earn some extra gold! Each mission is randomly chosen to keep things interesting each time you play. Originally I wanted the missions to change as you played rather than once a game. For example, you complete the mission “collecting coins” when you claim the reward the challenge changes to “use upgrades”.

This quickly became too complicated & I decided to dumb it down a tad. I’ve added around 10 missions in total and 5 are chosen at the start. Total taps is the only one that isn’t randomised, this means you can track your score easier & get rewarded for it, bonus!

And More!

There’s plenty of other things like notifications and review pop ups that have been included in the update. Although they aren’t game features I think they’re important to include, every player and every review counts, especially for the indie devs. Plus I can always have some fun in parts:

The best part is now I have them working I can reuse them across my future projects.

That’s everything! I probably added more than I needed to but if I’m leaving this game behind it should be the best it can be. My final note, many bugs have been fixed along the way. I THINK we’re bug free at this point, there’s nothing game breaking at least and features work as expected. But if you find something let me know!

Planning & design

The rest of the short time I had for this month has been spent looking through my ideas book, I actually have one of those now:

So far a lot of the pages remain blank but I’m sure that won’t last long. I’ve got a couple of new ideas and of course many prototypes laying around I could move forward with. I’ll be deciding my next project within the next week so keep posted for that.

Finally, earlier in the month I mentioned I practiced streaming. I also recorded a couple of videos but being the noob that I am recorded them both only to realise there was no audio. So I’ve had to redo them, now if only I knew how to edit…

Goals for next month

Currently my goals for next month are pretty fluid. I’d like to say I’d have another game out or x amount of videos out but honestly I need to do some more planning before I move forward with anything.

Ideally by next post I’ll have a fully documented idea & a prototype to use as a starting point. I want 4 games this year, there’s just too many ideas to choose from.

Besides the usual gamedev work, I want to get some videos out. I intended to start this month but put more time into the update than I thought I would. I’ve plenty of ideas here too but I’m still pretty new to this. Mistakes will be made. If I can simply get one or two videos on my channel by next month I’ll be happy.

Until next time…

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