Link Dump Friday №237


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Link Dump Fridays

DoraHow are you going to spend your weekend? Building something? Horsing around? Making new friends? Or, uh... Whatever this is? Whatever your plans, Link Dump Friday will start you off right!

  • Guild DungeonsGuild Dungeons - Hyptosis' latest simulation adventure game is an experiment to better learn how to program, but an entertaining one. Create and manage a fantasy city full of fantasy creatures, then recruit and train them to send them into fantasy dungeons and earn you fantasy treasure. There's no save, unfortunately, and the lack of a tutorial may be a bit daunting, but a true leader doesn't need a rule book and counts every painful death of their loyal minions as a learning experience! (Lesson learned: Buy more minions, fewer health insurance policies.)
  • Story HeroStory Hero - Cute and simple, this little text puzzle asks you to walk across lines of text, selecting the proper word from each to deal with the threats placed in front of you. More a concept than a fully fleshed out game, it's still a good idea and adorable as all get-out. Think there's a market for this as a future iPad app to tell nerds and nerdlettes in training bedtime stories? The first adaptations should clearly be Goodnight Moon, Madeline, and The Cask of Amontillado.
  • Bone SnifferBone Sniffer - Set out for adventure, cold noses, and big floppy ears in this point-and-click puzzle. Click the correct items in the correct order in each scene to help a dog with curious talents recover his enormous bone, carried off by an equally enormous condor. At least this dog is being proactive about his problems; all a cat would do is take it out on your sofa and clean laundry.
  • VerminatorVerminator - Finally, a use for all that stinky "fancy" cheese everyone has to pretend they like at expensive restaurants! Drop the smelly stuff around the levels of this puzzle game to lure rodents to their demise, All We Need is Brain style. It may seem cruel, but honestly if you woke up one morning and one of these fat, goggle-eyed, puppy-sized rodents was squatting on your chest, cheese would be the last thing you'd reach for.
  • FlagmanFlagman - You think your job stinks? The star of this little platformer is in charge of picking up and planting flags on pads to open doors. And there are spikes everywhere. And teleporters. And his feet appear to be coated in Vaseline. Look, even Mike Rowe would hesitate on this one, and he's been inside unspeakably small places filled with unspeakably foul things.

31 Comments

*Cask, not count. Though I'm not sure if that's the kind of thing that should be a bedtime story... If i remember correctly, it's pretty dark.

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Anonymous October 14, 2011 2:36 AM

I misunderstood the description of Guild Dungeons. It's not a programming game like Light-Bot; it's more like Evony. Oh well...

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Flagman was fun, but the second boss was ridiculously buggy. The vast majority of the challenge was finding the right pixels to hit him. I did like the Eggman/Robotnik reference, though XD

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I liked the idea behind Story Hero, would be lovely if the concept were expanded and polished.

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Flagman wasn't bad.. not good enough to keep me playing though :P

Also, I kept mixing up and down to pick up and release the flag. I don't even understand why it has to be two different keys, to begin with.

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ThemePark Author Profile Page October 14, 2011 7:52 AM

Yeah, I had the same experience as JDGA. It's completely random whether you die or the boss takes any damage. Several times I would hit the hat and die, and one time I hit the ship instead and he still took damage.

Also, whenever I would die upon hitting him, the level would restart with me jumping even though I hadn't touched the space bar.

And one of the levels may seem impossible, because it requires a very precise landing. However, it's possible to pick up the flag mid jump and that's the key to getting through that level.

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Anonymous October 14, 2011 9:30 AM

Secret in story hero:

If you activate the word "time" on the first screen, you can keep track of how long it takes to beat the game

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mezzanote Author Profile Page October 14, 2011 9:35 AM

Love, love story hero. It would be great to see a teeny little hero wandering through a library of stories, looking for just the right princess to rescue :)

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I liked Story Hero too. It reminded me of another word game on JIG, but I can't recall the name right now; this one was definitely more fun. :D

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Anonymous October 14, 2011 1:46 PM

@Kana Do you mean Gregory Weir's "Silent Conversation". The concept of walking on white words on a black background remind me of it.
Hope the mentioned sequel is fleshed out.

Tried "Flagman", the game seems to run on low frame rate plus super slippery feet. Managed to make it to the second boss, needs more polish.

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I like Story Hero, but I don't really understand how I can use objects on other objects. I can't get past the witch when I have the holy grail...

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SonicLover Author Profile Page October 14, 2011 3:00 PM

@Rachel: Try water instead. You can go back for the grail afterwards.

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Anonymous October 14, 2011 3:43 PM

I really, really like Story Hero -- **very** different concept!

And as a teacher of English as a second language, oh boy, can I think of a great way to use this!

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they're all pretty fun so far, story hero and flagman are too short though. story hero is a really good idea though. and i agree with kana, it reminded me of another game.

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@Dora

It was late. I was tired. :-D

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Flagman's first boss is a simplified but nearly identical copy of Fracktail, the first boss of Super Paper Mario. That's some pretty lazy game making.

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Story Hero gives whole new meaning to "text adventure"! I would love to see it completed and expanded, and more in this (new?) genre. It's got a lot of potential.

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Guild Dungeons seems pretty buggy. The interface isn't exactly friendly to most screen configurations, and it froze up on me the first time I tried a dungeon-run.

Story Hero, though, is definitely an interesting concept. There was a lot of extraneous items floating around on it, which made it a little tricky to pass each stage. What really ramped up the difficulty, however, was the phrasing. I'm not sure if the author isn't a native English speaker, but most of the sentences presented made no sense whatsoever -- which made it hard to figure out what the author wanted me to do.

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Guild Dungeons was pretty cool, except for one major problem. The trading system.

First, the pricing is totally out of whack. Cheese, something I produce by the bucketload every tick, is astoundingly valuable, selling for 5 gold each. My entire economy is built on goat cheese. Meanwhile, Lumber, the backbone of your construction industry, something you'll be spending by the thousands, costs 10 gold each. Mushrooms cost 750! There's no way a single Orc Cultist is worth that much!

Second, making the trade requires you to hold down a button for an extremely long time. For example, at the moment, I'm trying to get a Keep. That takes 5000 stone, and your mine hardly produces any on its own. So you need to trade. Trade 500 cheese for gold, one at a time. Trade the resulting 2500 gold for silver, one at a time. Trade the resulting 250,000 silver for 5000 stone, one at a time. And you have to do it in batches, because you can only hold ~30,000 silver at a time. That's a lot of "one at a time"!

So, yeah, fix the pricing and the trading so that adventuring is worthwhile and it doesn't take a millenium to get a keep, and this will be a pretty good game.

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I got past the witch, but how do I get past the demon?

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@Rachel:

Are you sure you've tried *everything*? :)

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Guild Dungeons seems to have been updated. I can hold far more silver than the 30,000 mentioned above at any one time. Trading is still ridiculously slow though, and has to be done one by one. 5000 stone takes about 10 min of holding down the key to trade. There should be an option to trade x500 in one go, or select a slider.

Gems are 500 gold, while mushrooms are 750 gold each? Hedge Mages are 'low priced' but take 10 mushrooms each to buy?

Worse of all, sending a party on a quest consists of about 3 minutes of a static screen and watching a progress bar slowly fill up. That was what killed it for me. That, and trying to equip a party based on a scout report that you only get one look at, with no gauge of how many troops you need to send for that particular dungeon.

Considering you get a lovely animation of your village expanding and going about its activities, to be stuck watching a mere progress bar for what's supposed to be the climax activity in the game is bloody cheeky.

All in all, lovely concept, but has severe flaws that render it not fun at all.

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Story Hero is wonderful. I especially liked the level that starts "up the stairs, rested the holy grail". Still smiling!

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I was playing Verminator and my fiancé wanted to know what it was he was hearing. I told him it was the cute sound of rats drowning. Now there's a sentence you don't expect to form!

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Story Hero is a nice concept, but that's about all that can be said for it. To make an actually playable and fun version, somebody needs to learn to write proper English, and there really needs to be a way to turn the effing music off. (And obviously, it needs to be longer, but that should go without saying.)

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Anonymous October 17, 2011 3:29 PM

Reka, there's a clumsy phrase in one sentence (I think just so you can use the word in the clumsy phrase), but the rest of it is proper English.

-- the English teacher

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Guild Dungeons has a lot of promise; I've been enjoying myself a lot playing it. But I've been trying to play without slaves or conscripts (I like my paladins and knights and stuff) and I'm a little disappointed that it doesn't seem to be possible, ie nobody can carry anything except slaves? Why are my troops so ridiculously lazy? When I can only bring back 10 silver per run, the costs to bring the stuff I've researched are prohibitively expensive. But I'm a stubborn person, and keeping slaves is bad, so I'll probably keep playing like this.

On another note, the magic system is neat (it rewards the sort of person who likes to try lots of stuff with obscure bonusses - I find it fun, anyway) but not all of them seem to work. Haste Arrows (Time-Time-Life-Life, for one example) gives me some feedback in the mission report that it worked, but when I use Nightvision (Vision-Vision-Vision-Vision) they still complain that it's too dark to see anything, and when I use Soil Elemental who's supposed to able to carry stuff (this one seems rare, I won't give it away), I still get the same amount of loot brought back, although there's lots extra.

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Further thoughts:

* OK, I was forgetting that 10 gold = 1000 silver; not nearly so bad.
* I just discovered that order *does* matter on spells. I thought I determined earlier that it did not. Well, more to test!
* Wish I could just "send all" of ALL troops instead of each type.
* Also, finally tried a much harder area and found a gem which is worth 200 gold, ie 20,000 silver, which counters the 10,050 I brought on supplies. Guess I complained too quickly. I've been doing much better now. Also, that advice about selling cheese - so much wealth!
* Why don't I get population space back when people die?
* For anyone else misinterpreting the Lock symbol when grabbing gear - it doesn't mean you don't have enough space to take it, it means you're carrying enough stuff that you can't *not* take it. Yeah, I thought the Wagons must only be for carrying more stuff *back*, and was wasting 1000 silver each time taking mules when I didn't need them. :P
* It's a little frustrating that the map is different every time and I'm not sure what controls it.

Re: scouting. You can re-read the mission without paying, just click "send a scout" even though it says "already scouted".

My opinion re: the loading bar for quests. Although I wish I could see more of what happens in quests, it's *not* what the game is about. You're not going with them, just hiring & supplying them. So it's less fun, but it *is* true to the game concept. Also, you don't have to leave that page open, you can go do other things while you wait.

PS. Many Boggins died to bring you this information.

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Anonymous October 17, 2011 7:19 PM

Parmeisan and other dissapointed players of GuildDungeons, I thought people like you would understand or even read the pre-game message. It talks about how the guy made the game to learn about making games, it even confess that it might not be perfect.

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I did. But as a game developer myself, I cannot help but offer critical feedback in case he decides to come back to it. I really, really hope he comes back to it.

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