Posts Tagged Puzzle Platformer
A great robot once asked: “You guys like swarms of things, right?” How right he was to make that assumption. There’s just something about overseeing a churning mass of critters that feels oddly right. Or perhaps that’s just my inner overlord talking. Regardless, Wobbles, from Play Nimbus, offers up such an experience by letting players guide their aimlessly wandering charges through perilous maps in the name of technological progress. Sort of. We had a chat with Play Nimbus’ Nick Mudry (Producer, Creative Director, Marketing) to get the lowdown on these odd little characters.
148Apps: What sort of game is Wobbles, exactly? I can see some definite similarities to Lemmings but it also looks like there’s more to it than that.
Nick Mudry (NM): Wobbles is a 2D side-scrolling puzzle platformer where you guide a line of adorable creatures, called Wobbles, across a dangerous landscape. You do this by placing gadgets, such as fire, aqueducts, tunnels, etc, which the Wobbles interact with. For example, the fire lights their butts on fire and they fly into their air (think Mario 64) while the aqueduct allows them to safely land from falls in a pool of water.
Wobbles was inspired by Lemmings back when we were originally conceptualizing what game we actually wanted to make. It came up as “what if you had a ton of Lemmings running across a level and you were just throwing platforms in front of them?” That initial concept exploded into the game we have today. Minutes after we talked about that idea, we were already drawing concepts for the characters, mechanics, etc.
148Apps: About how many different eras are you expecting to include in the final build? Any plans to release more in the future?
NM: We are launching Wobbles with a total of 6 eras: Cavemen, Roman, Medieval, Industrial, Modern, and Future. Each era has 10 levels, which adds up to 60 levels for the initial release. Each era has their own specific gadget, ranging from the fire all the way to one that reverses the Wobbles’ gravity. We’ve had many ideas for different eras and gadgets that we would have liked to do for release, but they have been put aside for now. If Wobbles has a good reception, I’m sure we might work on a few new ones and release them.
148Apps: What made you all decide on the name “Wobbles?”
NM: This is an interesting story. It goes back to the night when we were initially conceptualizing the game. When we first saw the Wobbles’ concept and the way it was shaped, we were wondering what to call it. We threw a few ideas out in the air, but at the end of the meeting, we decided to call them “Wobbles” for the time being. It ended up sticking and being an adorable little name for them.
148Apps: Where did the Wobbles’ look come from? I think I see a little Alice the Goon in their design.
NM: A lot of the game originated at that meeting many months ago, and so did the Wobbles’ look. During our brainstorming of how the game played and what we wanted it to feel like, our amazing artist, Laura, was already drawing concepts for what they should look like. When I turned around, I saw something that I could easily remember and adore and knew that would be the design we’d pick. Funny you mention Alice the Goon as part of their design. While I haven’t thought of that until just now, it does have a little bit of the same style. We’ve noticed the Wobbles also look like a few other characters in games. I won’t say exactly which ones, but just picture a Wobble with a space helmet and then think what other characters look similar.
148Apps: Were there any mechanics that you wanted to include but had to cut due to time/balance/other reasons? Anything you’re hoping to add later?
NM: Before we went into a full production cycle this summer, we spent a decent amount of time in pre-production preparing. We had many meetings discussing what we should have in the game, and what we shouldn’t. This made us know exactly what we’d need to do, and didn’t have to cut anything. Surprisingly, things came together pretty well and almost on time. We did cut one feature, the stone bridge, since it was a bit redundant, but we didn’t miss it at all. There are things we hope to add later though. We have plenty of features in mind that we thought of during our production that we just didn’t have the time to add before release.
Wobbles is expected to wander onto the App Store sometime this month, where the curious and the insidious will be able to get their hands on it for $1.99. We’d like to thank Nick for his time and wish the team over at Play Nimbus luck with their game’s release!
A good many people have been enjoying collecting starites since Scribblenauts Remix first hit the App Store. It’s a pretty nifty game, after all. The down-side to games like this is that they eventually end once each level has been completed. There’s always the fun of revisiting completed stages in order to see what other bizarre ways its puzzles can be solved, but once it’s done it’s pretty much done. Until the developers release more levels for it, that is.
5th Cell has just made a new batch of 20 levels available for purchase, on top of the preexisting 50. I’m sure there are at least a few players out there who’ve been wishing there was more for them to do since they ran out of content, and an announcement like this should certainly brighten their day. Now they’ve got 20 more levels to bombard with adjectives and nouns as they attempt to grab that starite and have a good laugh in the process.
The level pack is available right now via in-app purchase, and will only set players back $0.99
Everyone knows that the best work is done when there’s a tight deadline looming. OK, this isn’t the greatest of things to say or the best way to lead a life, but I know I find I work so much harder nearer to deadline day. Kids: you shouldn’t do this, it’s bad. Honest.
Regardless of any of this, there’s an entire game design ethos behind working intensely for short periods of time, namely the Global Game Jam. It’s an event that happens all around the world in which people come together to make a video game from start to finish within 48 hours. Sometimes, some fantastic gems come out of this Jam.
This time round, it’s the turn of Somyeol, a game coming to iOS this December. Previously made for the PC during a Global Game Jam in Germany, Somyeol is a 2D platformer in which players must get the Somyeol people to their goal in as short a time as possible. Sounds easy, right? The twist is that there are numerous Somyeols to control at any one time and they each have their own abilities.
Check out the preview trailer below. It’s certainly looking interesting already.