There are a lot of games using anagrams as their core mechanic and they are essentially all the same. You get several letters and you either have to a) use all of them to form one word or b) use any of them in different combinations to create as many valid words as you can. It’s an interesting mechanic, no doubt, but it’s the same everywhere.
We wanted to create something new, something that takes advantage of how cool anagrams are, but with a whole different perspective. This is how Anagrams was born.
Anagrams mini-game from Prototype to Final version
Ever wondered if you remembered to lock the front door to your house? Is that your second or third cup of tea today? You unlock your cell phone every day, but you sometimes can’t remember those darn 4 digits? Well, you’re not alone.
We’ve all felt it, some of us earlier than others. Problem is, many believe these small brain malfunctions only happen due to aging. Thankfully, cognitive decline does not only depend on aging. The brain, like most of our other organs, is working on a “use it or lose it” basis. Which is actually great news!
Although there are many things you can do to protect your brain from cognitive decline, Harvard Health Publications claims you can implement a set of 6 very simple steps in your everyday life and start sharpening your brain immediately.
Posted in A Clockwork Brain, Health, Total Eclipse, Uncategorized
Tagged brain, cognitive, decline, Harvard, health, publication, sharper, six, training, ways
Last week we began by integrating the OBB downloader plugin for Android into our build. As this feature is only usable for Google Play distribution, we further extended it so that it is not included by mistake in i.e. Amazon builds. To do this we used Unity’s Platform Dependent Compilation capabilities, and specifically custom platform defines. So each time we choose to use split binary, we will also include a custom platform define to enable the OBB check inside the particular build. Uploading to Alpha was a bit messy, what with key signing and all that kerfuffle, this post helped a lot.
Quite some time was also spent in fixing a nasty shader bug that plagued the developers as well as our eyes: all the scenes that used a rolling texture, suddenly showed these textures as solid black. This bug to the clipping multiply shader only appeared on the device, but never in the Editor. It turned out that NGUI required the shader assets to be inside the Resources/ rather than just the Assets/ folder.
On the peripheral side we completed some of the offline specific components that had been started the previous week and started to work on the online component that will be talking to the server. In parallel, we created the infrastructure for storing player metrics. We also continued our cross-platform abstraction efforts by working on a way to store data persistently on the device through a unified interface. And a last, but difficult task, was to polish and standardise the procedure through which we merge our libraries and plugins into the Unity project.
That’s all for last week!
In the past years we have been traveling often; every one or two months, my brother Argiris and I, would go on a business trip to Athens or someplace abroad. In these trips, I always carry my bright orange notebook, as I’ve seen that time on a plane can be very productive. I guess it’s because there are very few distractions and you can focus more easily.
In one of those trips, I was trying to think of new ideas for mini-games, and I started looking around, in case I could get inspired by my surroundings. Then I saw the windows, and I thought “let’s make a game with airplane windows!” The idea was that the window shade would open, revealing an item, and the player would have limited time to tap on it before the shade would shut down again.
Speed Match mini-game from Prototype to Final version
Our goal at Total Eclipse is to offer our players unique, memorable experiences through games that are fun and engaging. If at the same time, our games can contribute in other ways, we feel we made the difference we want in the world. It took us a year to release A Clockwork Brain, one of our most important projects so far, which is a collection of puzzles that brings together benefits from both gaming and brain training in an effort to complement the brain’s natural ability of neuroplasticity.
Posted in A Clockwork Brain, Health, Total Eclipse
Tagged brain, clockwork, Games, gaming, health, neurology, neuroplasticity, puzzles, training
Week 13/10 – 19/10
Another week gone, another mini-game complete!
During last week we finished Word Length, which also happens to be one of my favourite mini-games, although I can never seem to reach the Insane Round. Besides porting the game to Unity, we also made some usability improvements, compared to its current version on iOS, which should now make it a lot more intuitive for the players to understand which button they pressed.
Word Length is a mini-game that was inspired by a story I watched on TV 10 years ago. It was about a teenager that was able to tell how many letters there are in a word really fast, just by hearing it. It was very impressive! He was extremely fast in his responses and he was always spot on! I guess I found that remarkable, because many years later I had the idea to turn this into a game.
Word Length mini-game from prototype to final version
Week 6/10 – 11/10
Welcome back to another post of insider’s information on the porting of A Clockwork Brain on Unity!
Last week we did a lot of bug-fixing and optimisations, as there were a few serious glitches to tackle, before moving forward. We also finished the Logic Tiles mini-game.
One of the first mini-games games we designed for A Clockwork Brain was Scrolling Silhouettes. The idea came from the hundreds of items we had from The Clockwork Man. These 1,500 items provide a huge variety of shapes and forms. The concept was to take advantage of these, and create a game that uses item shapes and pattern matching as the core mechanic. This is how Scrolling Silhouettes came to life.
Scrolling Silhouettes from Concept to Final Design
Last week we almost completed the porting of three more mini-games. More specifically, we began tackling the tile-based games, Sculpt Away, Size Matters, and Logic Tiles. These three games have very different mechanics, but are all based on using and manipulating blocks of tiles. The first part of last week was spent building the tile engine that would be used in all three games. After that, Sculpt Away was the first game to be finished. Size Matters was done next, but it gave us a bit of a trouble as there were some performance issues when moving lots of tiles of different colours. We promptly fixed that, and moved on to Logic Tiles which should be completed later this week.