Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team on Kickstarter May 15, 2018

I am happy to announce that Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team will be coming to Kickstarter on May 15 and coming soon to Xbox One, PC, and Mac.

This game has come very far with only one person working on it but honestly if it gets any bigger it will be impossible for me to ensure it’s quality without some dedicated outside help. Doing design, code, business, music, sound, hydration, art, marketing, cat grooming, user experience, etc. is truly an absurd thing for one person to attempt.  I would not have gotten this far without the wonderful public domain assets from opengameart.org which I have collected here. I am absolutely super proud of the game’s current state but there is a more polished version in my mind’s eye that haunts my dreams. With your help we can step into that dream and play that version together.

The plan is to use these funds to pay some lovely people to help me out with Quality Assurance and additional artwork. Securing funding now will also help me add to the game after it is released. There are so many interesting and exciting possibilities I haven’t even touched yet and I would love the chance to explore them. If you want more Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team than be sure to check it out and pledge!

The Kickstarter campaign will reveal new LORE, new MECHANICS, and MUCH MUCH MORE! I’ve got some awesome rewards lined up too. Expect technobabble world building, narrative ambiguity, and simmering silliness. It begins at the end. Onward Treasure Team!

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Ruby & Majesty: Latest Features and Upcoming Stuff!

Greetings Treasure Team Enthusiasts!

WARNINGS:

  • This update should be compatible with saves from 0.7.0 as long as the game is saved on the Fragment Selection Screen.This means you should exit the Fragment you are in before updating.
  • Old saves might show collectibles in the wrong locations in Quantum Micro Dim Sim but the counts should be accurate.
  • The way that Settings are saved has changed so you made need to adjust some stuff.
  • 30 FPS is no longer available via in-game menus. If you cannot maintain 60 FPS, 30 FPS mode can be set by adding 30fpsmode = “1” to shared.ini under Video. Contact me if you need any help with this.

Onward Treasure Team!

The latest update is a great one to try if you haven’t played the game for a few versions because it includes a number of visual refinements alongside some more narrative content. At this point the game is very close to Feature Complete but that doesn’t mean I haven’t upped the ante to bring you a more accessible and playable experience. I am continually iterating the Content so there will usually be something new to see in each update but it will likely focus more on Narrative and Progression in coming updates.

For players who have some experience with the game or for those that want an even more non-linear experience, Slot 3 has all of the Fragments unlocked on New Game. This is only in the Full Version.

NEW FEATURES in 0.7.2

  • Settings are now saved for each Slot.
    • Slot is now the first menu on the Title Screen.
    • Full Screen and Scaling are saved as shared settings.
  • Added new dialogue options.
    • Dialogue now defaults to NOT advance automatically but it can be toggled to do so.
    • Dialogue speed can be set for those who want faster or slower text.
    • Dialogue options are now in their own sub-menu under Settings.
  • Added optional border graphics when in Full Screen.
  • Colors have been tweaked.
    • Moving walls have a different color from other walls.
    • Walls and floors are now different hues for legibility.
  • Added Quantum Replay.
    • Players now will see a short loop after a failed attempt.
    • A convenient effect will point out which member of the team got into trouble.
  • Added a carry effect for the Purple Gem.

OTHER TWEAKS in 0.7.2

  • Menu drawing has been overhauled for legibility.
  • FPS has been removed as a Setting.
    • The default should now be 60FPS.
    • 30 FPS can be set by adding 30fpsmode = “1” to shared.ini under Video.
    • NOTE: 30FPS mode is mostly untested at this point but should not affect in-game timings.
  • Dialogue no longer jumps to the next line in the middle of a word.
  • Fuschia Gems now destroy projectiles when they aren’t being carried.
  • Individual sprites now have effects during shake.
  • NPC speeds have been increased to help them keep up.
  • GUI elements are now drawn at the correct resolution so all the pixels should fit into 320X320.
  • Swapped in a new music track for Quantum Zone that should feel more Quantum.
  • Menus can now have grayed out options which is going to save me some headaches later.

On The Horizon

User Content

You may notice that the User Content menus have a lot of grayed out options. The last few updates have had some broken stuff in there so I’m locking it out for now. It is still possible to build Rooms and Layouts and World Maps in the Editor but they won’t be playable outside of the Editor until a future update. The idea here is that players won’t need to mess with making a World Map if you only want to share a single Room or Layout. To clarify, a Room is a single screen, a Layout is a collection of interconnected Rooms (i.e. a level or in the parlance of the setting a Fragment), and a World Map is a collection of Layoutsthat will function exactly like the Fragment Selection Screen. Previous builds had the option to load and play user created Layouts and nothing else. This is going to take quite a bit of work so it might be a few updates out before these options start showing up again.

Narrative and Progression

There is still room in the game for more dialogue and NPC interaction so expect more of that in the future. I will also be looking at ways to communicate Progression better.

Sound Design

This is an area of the game that I feel is very good but could use some polish. I want to add some more ambient loops that fit the environments better and I’d like to add some more music for specific moments also.

Hit me up if you have any questions about anything TheWzzard or Ruby & Majesty related! <3

Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team​ finally makes the leap into 0.7.0!

Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team​ finally makes the leap into 0.7.0!

This one is a long time coming. This update includes massive changes to content, art, sound, music, etc. This new build is very close to feature complete and adds a lot of new mechanics such as mind transfer drones, tenacious fungi, and The Quantum Teamwork Beam. Ruby and Majesty now have 12 unique Fragments to explore with lots of new challenges to overcome.

I didn’t have super clear goals when I made the first Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team​​ prototype in September 2015 but I had a few rules.

No button input. Single screen challenges. Force simultaneous control. Make the characters different from each other.

​Since then I’ve released a few other small games and spent a whole lot of time refining Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team​​. I also experienced a lot of stuff. I also made a lot of changes to my life. The world turned. Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team​​ became more and more about helping others in a world that seems broken beyond repair. I hope you enjoy it.

Design Goals

Action without fighting
— Violence is not an option, therefore never a solution
— Player interaction with the world only happens through moving Ruby and Majesty
— Stuff in the world should interact as much as possible
— Ruby and Majesty​ face different problems and offer different solutions​
— Teamwork is always the answer
Exploration with minimal backtracking
— Multiple paths
— Multiple solutions
Simple but unfamiliar controls
— Feels weird for most people
— Plays fast (simultaneous) OR slow (alternating)

2016 in the rear view mirror, 2017 in full swing

Hey folks!
2016 was a wild ride for me. To quickly recap:

2017 is already flying by! Development on Ruby & Majesty: Treasure Team is coming along nicely and I am very excited about the direction it’s moving in. Visually the game has improved drastically and my next focus is improving the pacing and presentation.I am hoping to be more consistent with updates in the future.

Glaring Soundtrack


Now Available!
This includes tracks that aren’t in the game!
All tracks loop and are Creative Commons Attribution.

Blog Post: One Game A Month

I love game jams, or rather I love making a game during game jams. The adrenaline, the looming deadline, the snacks, those moments of problem solving clarity after my PC has just shut down, and the inevitable awesome new system or cool new thing I learn. I love all those things. I always learn something new and I always have some new little piece of work to show to the world and my fellow jammers, but there’s a downside for me that I’ve only recently come to understand. While the jam itself is always a fantastic experience I’ve realized I can do without almost everything that happens after the timer stops.

Maybe it’s because of the jams that I’ve chosen to do. I’ve done Ludum Dare a few times and I like doing GameJolt curated jams but only the ones that have prizes. Keep in mind I’m not bashing jams or jams with prizes. I even won passes to IndieCade East and a Show and Tell slot from a jam. It’s just that the results of the jam shouldn’t be the main takeaway and I’ve spent too much time and energy focusing on what happens after I submit my entry. The main takeaway should be that new thing I learned and all of the reusable code I put together, and the neat little game or prototype that I actually put out there for the world to see. Despite ranking 25 overall in the last Ludum Dare Compo, it didn’t seem like many people even saw my game during the voting and afterwards too. I know I didn’t look much at the games that ranked above me because I had just finished playing and ranking a bunch of games and I needed a break from jam games. When you get right down to it, LD is a vast and impersonal experience.

I’ve always been shocked at the vote counts for the smaller jams I’ve done. Jams seem to have a large number of participants that just walk away after their game is submitted. It’s hard for me to understand why you wouldn’t play every game in a jam where there are less than 30 entries. I just can’t seem to stop myself. I’ll compulsively check how many votes I’v received and I’ll play and rank as many games as I can squeeze in. This wouldn’t be such a big deal but I don’t have much time to play games, and jam games are well jam games. Most of them are either totally broken or just completely uninteresting. That’s to be expected and I don’t mean to say that I haven’t seen some amazing work and connected with some awesome people through game jams. I’ve just realized that I need a change of pace.eld

This brings us to One Game A Month, which I’ll be referring to as #1GAM from here on. Thanks to the awesome @McFunkyPants there’s a community online built around folks doing exactly what the name implies. Each month I’ll be making a small game, remixing an old game of mine, or making a large chunk of new content for one of my existing games, mostly Ruby & Majesty which is still my back burner baby. NOTE: Do not put a baby on a burner. This will give me more structure than “Oh this jam looks neat” and it will free me from the whole voting/results thing that ultimately messes with my head and I won’t have any of the limitations of a jam on the work I create.

I am tackling #1GAM as an iterative experience. I don’t want to work from scratch. I’ve got massive amounts of perfectly reusable code. I want to build upon my previous work. I want to remix games to try out new combinations, play with themes, and spend time focusing on what’s important to me as a developer. I don’t just want to have work to show, I want to have systems and assets to reuse and re-purpose for when I get the opportunity to make a BIG game.
I plan on making small posts about my #1GAM adventures here so stay tuned! This month I finished the first iteration of a skeletal animation system so I will be making a small prototype using that. Look out for that coming real soon.
anm