Sanpo Movement Test 2023/12/31
A downloadable game for Windows
As of 1/9/2024 a new demo is in progress with revised controls and magic spells. You can still play the old one if you want but it's harder to control.
Updated to v 1.1 - 1/1/2024 10:56 AM (7:56 PM US Central)
Movement test for Sanpo game. Controls are in game - works with keyboard or any ganepad. Any thoughts or feedback appreciated! Windows only for now.
The controls are momentum-based and take some getting used to, but are also designed to make you think about the level shapes a more than you would with more traditional controls.
Eventually I want to add the ability to cast spells (e.g. a mushroom that you can stand on, a spawnable booster pad, a slow-moving fireball you can stand on, etc.). You can use spells to help navigate the game's various levels.
There are two test rooms - the one with wooden crates and the one to the left of it.
( old devlog: https://melodicambient.substack.com/p/sanpo-game-devlog-006-moving-on-from . The game structure is probably going to differ from what the post describes, though. I basically want movement that works well in compact spaces and makes even a simple-looking layout feel memorable)
the main polish i think is lacking is jumping along the x axis (left-right) is prone to bumping into the edge of walls, bc of depth perception.. solution would be to secretly nudge you or somethig
- Marker added for forward-facing walls
- Polished movement (tweaked drift jump feel, drift jump speed limiter, tweaked ground-turning/breaking, adjusted bumping off walls, add very subtle hover, adjust movement physics for better compatibility with common level gaps/heights)
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thanks for playing! Yeah I'm wondering about the braking after jumping and air stuff. I feel like the 4-direction booster controls are strange enough that it would be ok to compromise more towards normal platformers by adding some air control/more controllable braking - especially with all of the magic spell stuff i want to add.
Tried version 1.1, and I liked it! The drift jump is neat, having it only make the player character move forward is a fun restriction that felt "realistic." One potential problem is the depth perception, as I tried to jump on the rightmost pillar in the left room but couldn't as it was one tile north of where I though it was. I am also curious about how drift jumping southwards would work if the platform you are jumping on obscures your view of the player character. Overall, I'd love to see this movement applied to more difficult platforming challenges (moving platforms, areas with limited options for drift jumping, etc).
thanks for checking it out! Generally for this kind of game the levels would avoid going upwards, north to south. For the depth perception stuff I think there would eventually be a more polished marker that marks more blocks in front of you.
I feel like this this movement is close to the old 2D sonic games (momentum-based platformers). Since you can only perform your highest jumps once you get some speed going I feel like it would be much more fun to play in a more track-like area (or at least a bigger one) that encourages building up that speed and keeping it.
In my opinion adding more puzzle elements like spells and crates you need to carefully jump on is the wrong direction since at first glance the character feels like an elephant in a china shop. Even scaling a simple staircase feels clumsy when you bounce off of each step of it, but give me a runway and I would skip it entierly with a well timed high-jump.
Thanks for checking it out! Made some adjustments with the feedback in mind, I think the original version was a bit too in between something that seems like 'you should go fast' and 'you should go slow'. Going slower is what I'm going for so I've tweaked it a bit in that direction.
Okay I've played this a little bit now and I have some thoughts:
I played this on a gamepad using a control stick, but also with a dpad.
As a player I felt that I could accurately judge jumps heights that would be possible at a glance, I think this is excellent.
Usually in 3D platforming games aerial control is something to be managed
in real time with quick reactions to course correct mistakes. This throws that out the window while still being quite responsive. Everything here seems to encourage a commitment to your platforming. If you approach at the wrong speed you will fall. You have to manage when you are accelerating and control your sliding carefully. This is really cool, kinda reminds me of how some bits of riding the mach bike in spear pillar in pokemon felt. Hitting a wall giving a visual feedback and punishment is interesting I'm looking forward to seeing where you take that.
The only thing that i felt that was a bit off was accelerating from a standstill felt very slow/sluggish, whereas when I was landing from a jump it felt more right to me ? Applying different variable amounts of acceleration for accelerating with vs breaking your momentums coordinate direction could subtly improve the feel of that. I'm fearing that this may rear its head later if you decide to put moving platforms that you can walk on in your level design language.
Combining the drifting and jumping felt fun. Felt myself wanting to skate around some 90 degree turns and do some tight jumps. On the single block jumps I did wish I could prepare a smaller jump in advance, something like half the height. Having a way to do this either with a spell or by releasing the jump within an input window. As a more general note, I felt like platforming horizontally was easier to judge visually than into the screen. out of the screen jumping feel a bit less instant to process.
I can sort of see the game loop being multiple gauntlets of continuous platforming challenges with optional momentum blocked challenges that require the courage and planning from the player on a reentry to the area. Flip jumping is awesome also
Thanks for playing! Some of the braking stuff was definitely off after looking into it, I tried adjusting stuff so smaller movements are easier to perform consistently. Glad it seems fruitful so far!