Rocket Wars Released

Rocket Wars is a modern take on Missile Command for iOS and Android.

Rocket Wars

Available Apple App StoreGoogle Play button

Remember Missile Command? Rocket Wars is a modern take on it that I created with my friends at A Very Cool Game Company.

It’s available now for iOS and Android. Check it out and let us know what you think!

The Joys of Simplicity

Making a small game was a nice change of pace and was surprisingly fun. It was also exciting making a game specifically for mobile devices instead of a game that is played with a controller. I like that it is free with ads but you can pay to remove the ads, so you have options. Modern technology is pretty cool! 😎

I enjoyed the simplicity of this project, and it makes me want to do more things like this that are simple. I plan to continue doing small collaborations like this while working on my own projects.

Celebrating Small Victories

In case you haven’t been paying attention… this is the first commercial game I’ve ever released. This isn’t how I expected things to go, but that’s alright. You never know where life will take you, and you just gotta keep going.

It was good for me personally to know that I have no problem finishing a game under normal circumstances. So this is a victory for me, and it’s important to celebrate the victories in life, no matter how big or small they are.

For additional information about the game, see the Rocket Wars game page.

Still Alive!

After surviving a difficult personal situation, I’m making some changes and enjoying the simple things in life.

It is my great pleasure to inform you that I am still alive. For the past few years, I have been in a very challenging personal situation; but I am finally free. As part of my celebration, I have redesigned the website to be incredibly simple. I didn’t delete all the old stuff though. Instead, I moved it over to SuperMarioBrosCrossover.com since most of it was related to Super Mario Bros. Crossover.

I am so happy to be alive, and I am thankful for the people that have helped me through this situation. I will not talk about it again, except maybe far in the future if I write a book, or make a movie or game about it, but until then… let us forget about it and look forward to new things.

I have a game that is 99% done. It’s nothing major, but it’s a game nonetheless. It’s not up to me when it gets released, but I don’t think it will be too far off.

I will leave you with this song you can listen to whenever you are down. Always remember… you are still alive! 😀

Game Units

Early on, you should decide on a game unit that is simple and intuitive.

When making a game, one thing you have to decide early on is what you will use as units. Having a game unit allows you to consistently express things like distances and speeds. Below, you can see the units I use for Super Retro Crossover. Since the world is split up into tiles, 1 unit is equal to 1 tile (16 pixels).

grid-with-text

Having a unit that makes sense and is easy to wrap your head around is important. For example, if I tell you that Mario’s max walk speed is 5.625 game units per second, can you imagine how fast that will be in your head? With the units I’ve chosen, it’s pretty easy. He’ll move past about 5 and a half tiles every second.

mario-max-walk-locked

Units shouldn’t always have a direct relation to pixels though. For example, one unit is equal to 16 pixels now, but if I wanted more detailed graphics, one unit might equal 32 pixels or 64 pixels. It’s generally a good idea to think of rendering as separate from the rest of the game engine.

I’m telling you all of these things because I did them wrong in Super Mario Bros. Crossover. In that game, one unit was equal to half a pixel. Look how much more confusing this is!

smbc-grid

In this case, Mario’s walk speed would be 180 game units per second. That’s a lot harder to visualize in your head. The point is, keep your game units simple and intuitive!

Sprite Flipping and SMB 1-1

Sprites can now be flipped!

sprite-flip

I implemented sprite flipping in the level editor and game engine. The image above shows flipping on hill. Those are both the same sprite.

I also built the first level of Super Mario Bros. There is a toad there because the story takes place after Mario beats Bowser, so he has freed the toads.

Speaking of that… does anyone have any ideas for how the first level would be different after Mario has beaten Bowser? So far I just have toads hanging around that you can talk to, there are no enemies, and some of the bricks and item blocks have already been hit. I was wondering if there could be anything else different to make it more interesting to go through the level. It’s important for the story that the player goes through the whole level.

Collider Modifications

new-colliders

Switched to using one collider per tile to make it quicker to build levels. The sides that are in red are ignored so they still behave properly.

 

old-colliders

For comparison, this is how colliders looked before. They are bigger, so they’re more efficient, but it takes longer to make them.  I’ll probably eventually have something like this auto-generated when a level starts.