The name of my game is Cat Run, and it’s a game similar to Mario Go that I made using Flowlab. It looks like this:
The point of the game is simple: don’t die and collect all the keys needed to open the door and get to the next level. Some components of the game include Hearts (increase health by 1), Spikes (decrease health by 1 for every spoke hit), and Keys (needed to open the door and access the next level). There is also the player of course, and most of the “coding” I did were behaviours for the player. Below is a screenshot of what behaviour editing looks like:
When I started out, I didn’t really have a plan in mind aside from the fact that I was definitely going to use Flowlab and that I was going to stay well away from complicated things (since we both know that tends to slow everything down). As I progressed in making the stage for my game, I realized I should add more aspects to it rather than just keeping it as an obstacle-course-type game where if you hit the spikes you died immediately and had to restart, so I looked up some Flowlab games and found Super Monkey Adventure, where you needed to collect bananas to win the game. Based off that idea, I added hearts and the health counter in the user interface (top left corner). This addition means the user has an incentive to seek out hearts to safeguard against having to restart the game constantly (which I found to be off-putting after a while).
As I progressed in coding the behaviour blocks for the player (le cat), I found a Flowlab game called Colour Run that another user created, and got the idea to add keys that you needed to collect to open the door to the next level. I then added the keys, then figured out the coding needed. This part took a particularly long time, since I had to figure out how to make the door open ONLY if all the keys were collected (during the testing, either the door would not open even when all keys were collected, or the door would open before all keys were collected). I finally figured it out, and below is a snapshot of the coding for the door (it’s surprisingly simple, I’m infuriated it took that long to get it right).
When coding for the door, I learned how to successfully use the “switch” block, which I’m quite proud of because it didn’t work for a good half of the testing period. I also used the animation function in Flowlab to make the player run and the door open, and figured out how to make the screen scroll (which is great, because I was really worried about that for the first few lessons). By completing this project, I’ve become much more familiar with the logic flow of the behaviour blocks, and can confidently code simple to moderately complex behaviours for sprites.
We never did get to asking Ms. Stephen’s class for sound effects (which is sad, since it would’ve been funny to have them make cat noises) and the sub never really mentioned it or tried to facilitate communication between the classes, so my game doesn’t have sound effects. Aidan tested out my game and seemed happy that the cat could jump even when pushed against a wall (I don’t know why?), but he didn’t give any additional feedback aside from that.
I think some things I can improve on are making the stage larger and varying the appearance of the stage so that passing through a level takes longer/more effort. A menu screen would also be helpful in conveying the goal of the game and add a little order/structure to the game flow. I would also like to try making moving enemies so as to add a bit more challenge and intrigue to the game. Lastly, I think more levels are needed before I can call this game “fully developed and completed”, but that shouldn’t be too hard since I’ve already gotten past coding one level. I look forward to doing that in my free time 🙂
Also, I would like to try remaking my game with Unity if possible, because although Flowlab is great and easy to use, I would prefer to be able to customize my sprites. As you can see below, I’ve designed my characters and added a moving enemy as well. I’m not entirely sure how the animation function in Unity works (I’m sure it’s far more complex than Flowlab), but I’ve figured out the layers in which the limbs of the player and enemy sprites would move in, so now I just have to draw them on my tablet and voila! Sprites customized! Since I’ve already made the game once, I already know what kind of features I want, so the only issue would be learning to use Unity (which according to Taiki, isn’t too hard). So, now I’m set to learn Unity!
Overall, I learned about the basics about creating a computer game, as well as the coding needed for sprites and additional components. Should I get the opportunity, I would like to try out game making with Unity, since I would be able to make my own sprites and try more complex coding. I’m quite happy with this, considering the fact that I didn’t use tutorials other than the Flowlab user guide and taking a look at other Flowlab users’ games to figure out the logic behind behaviour blocks.
Here are my references: