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[commercial] Spirits Of Metropolis


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#1 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 22 December 2008 - 08:22 PM

Note: Wanna win a free copy of Spirits of Metropolis? Just post here for your chance to win: http://www.vertigoga...-of-metropolis/

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Spirits of Metropolis is a game I've been working on for over a year now, and is my first major commercial game. I've made quite a few freeware games before this one, including Ore no Ryomi 2 and Sandbox of God. This is a bit of a change of pace, but no less unique than the two other titles I mentioned.

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The demo of the game features fifteen levels, and no time limit/trialware.

Spirits of Metropolis takes the core concept of the match-3 gem genre and turns it into something completely new and original. In most games, you're massive combos are 95% luck, with little strategy involved other than what's presented in front of you. Match-3 gem games are little more than find-the-combo games that can quickly turn boring and dull.

In this game, I've given more power to the user to decide their winning strategy. Gems won't automatically react when you match three together; instead, you tell the game when to start combo'n it up. You don't simply match three gems together, but place them in a strategic way to give you maximum bonus points. The game clicks once you start playing it, so...download the demo and give it a try!

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You can purchase the full version through the game or at www.spiritsofmetropolis.com.

The game will be updated throughout the year with new levels, content and features! There's also a colorblind editor to change the gems to whatever color you need them to be.

Hope you enjoy the game! :unsure:

Edited by Mr.Chubigans, 16 May 2010 - 04:03 PM.

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#2 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 11:02 AM

It's a good logic game. Match-3 variants aren't my favorite genre though. I liked it and love how you varied the gameplay with different modes; reminds me of Ac!dbomb (although I preferred the Ac!dbomb series for the tension and story element and general atmosphere). A few nitpicks:

- the continue button is hard to click, you have to click on the word itself rather than the button, which is counter-intuitive

- the sprite for the gem is a bit ugly, I'd have expected gems to be shinier or something, graphically most of the game is great but the gem sprite feels amateur in comparison to the rest.

- not much motivation to play; i.e. I didn't know why I was connecting gems and scoring points, there didn't seem to be any meaningful reason to do it, so perhaps some backstory (like Ac!dbomb had) would help provide that motivation. It could be fairly simple, like "the stars have fallen out of the sky! You need to put them back!" or something.
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#3 Toni12

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 03:12 PM

Yet another great game by Mr.Chubigans. Great Job Man! Although, you might consider lowing the price a bit. I mean UT3 on steam cost $20 and that is a professional game.
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#4 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 03:15 PM

Yet another great game by Mr.Chubigans. Great Job Man! Although, you might consider lowing the price a bit. I mean UT3 on steam cost $20 and that is a professional game.


This is a professional game too. Just because it's a smaller team doesn't mean it isn't professional. He probably has as much experience and ability in game design as the UT3 team does. This game would be as fun for people who enjoy this genre as that game is for people who enjoy that genre.

Edited by rinkuhero, 23 December 2008 - 03:17 PM.

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#5 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 03:19 PM

Price is something I've been putting a lot of thought into. Ultimately if I want to compete with other games in the same genre, I have to match them with the same price, but with more features. Undercutting games with a lower price typically has little to no effect.

Thanks for the comments so far! If you guys want to see a behind the scenes type thing going on, check out this topic in the Distributing Games forum.
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#6 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 03:45 PM

Price is something I've been putting a lot of thought into. Ultimately if I want to compete with other games in the same genre, I have to match them with the same price, but with more features. Undercutting games with a lower price typically has little to no effect.

Thanks for the comments so far! If you guys want to see a behind the scenes type thing going on, check out this topic in the Distributing Games forum.


Also, note that in the other thread he mentioned that reducing the price from $20 to $5 for his last game didn't affect sales at all. That's kind of typical: often lowering the price doesn't increase sales one iota, depending on the genre of the game and the audience, and sometimes reducing the price can even reduce the number of sales.
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#7 NAL

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 04:00 PM

Haha, I remember previewing this in GMTech several months ago. It was really well made back then - I'll have to try the demo out and see if it's worth buying. ;)
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#8 Toni12

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 04:14 PM

Yet another great game by Mr.Chubigans. Great Job Man! Although, you might consider lowing the price a bit. I mean UT3 on steam cost $20 and that is a professional game.


This is a professional game too. Just because it's a smaller team doesn't mean it isn't professional. He probably has as much experience and ability in game design as the UT3 team does. This game would be as fun for people who enjoy this genre as that game is for people who enjoy that genre.

No offense to Mr.Chubigans, he is a great designer, but the designers of UT3 are industry defining designers. Majority of all game studios use the Unreal Engine 3 because it has been so well designed.

Price is something I've been putting a lot of thought into. Ultimately if I want to compete with other games in the same genre, I have to match them with the same price, but with more features. Undercutting games with a lower price typically has little to no effect.

Thanks for the comments so far! If you guys want to see a behind the scenes type thing going on, check out this topic in the Distributing Games forum.


Lowering price isn't to increase sales dramatically, it's to allow those can't just throw around money for games, the ability to buy your product. Besides most games like this on Steam are priced at around $5-10. If it's profits your worried about $10 can add up over time. Just look at Garry Newman, he's practically rich from Garry's Mod.
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#9 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 04:18 PM

Creating a good game engine isn't the same thing as being a good game designer though -- skill in programming a game isn't the same as skill in making a game fun. In terms of sheer fun, Chubigans has probably provided more of it than any individual on that team, especially because they're specialized on one tiny part of the game, whereas he has to know enough to create most everything in a game. Why do you believe this isn't a professional game? What criteria do you use when deciding on whether a game is professional or not?

And telling people to lower their price happens in literally every commercial GM game release, it gets kind of annoying. Don't you think the people actually selling the game have a better idea about what to price it than you do? Wouldn't they have done more research? People don't price things on whim.

Edited by rinkuhero, 23 December 2008 - 04:19 PM.

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#10 Toni12

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 05:47 PM

I'm have yet to say this wasn't a professional game. Also, the features in the engine are designed by artist, animators, etc. and then handed of to coders for implementation.
In a lot cases in GM, not all, you have younger people simply trying to make a quick buck so they jack up the price. In this case I was saying, it would appeal to more people
if it were cheaper. It's a great game, but I and many others can't just throw out 20 bucks for games like these. To put it in economic terms, games are a want not a need. We distribute our individual income to needs first, otherwise we just go broke. In Conclusion, game prices need to be economical.
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#11 Sindarin

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 05:47 PM

the designers of UT3 are industry defining designers.


They are just celebrities. Celebrities are overrated.

Majority of all game studios use the Unreal Engine 3 because it has been so well designed.


Game Maker has a nice design as well. What has the UNREAL ENGINE has to do with this PUZZLE game!?

Some gamers are willing to spend those $20 for action games while others will for puzzle games. Who made them makes absolutely no difference as long as you enjoy what you're playing.

Price is something I've been putting a lot of thought into. Ultimately if I want to compete with other games in the same genre, I have to match them with the same price, but with more features. Undercutting games with a lower price typically has little to no effect.


Don't do that. The price stays as it is. You just need more attention at the moment.
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#12 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 05:50 PM

Saying that most commercial GM games are younger people simply trying to make a quick buck so they can jack up the price is pretty crazy. I can't think of one commercial GM game that that description fits.
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#13 Alert Games

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 06:06 PM

Very professional looking. Its a large file, but worth the download. Sounds excellent, menu is very nice and easy. really really nice!

it was kinda confusing for me at first though. there was a tutorial that showed me the chains, but it seemed like the end of the chain influenced other peices that i needed to chain... so i thought it was a little confusing explaining it, but i figured it out. I just dont see myself playing this game over and over again, maybe to beat the game, but then it just gets old. But it very very professional. awesome game!

Edited by Alert Games, 23 December 2008 - 06:47 PM.

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#14 Sindarin

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 06:15 PM

I liked the overall layout, although I'll agree with:

the sprite for the gem is a bit ugly, I'd have expected gems to be shinier or something, graphically most of the game is great but the gem sprite feels amateur in comparison to the rest.


Try using smooth PNG sprites like Bejewed does.

Also add an option to be able to change the resolution. I'm pretty sure you made the game in 800 x 600 screen resolution so let the player set it so, the graphics will look more crisp.
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#15 Toni12

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 06:30 PM

@Sindarin:
Did you even read what me and rinkuhero have posted? The Unreal Engine has nothing to do with it, the designers do.

Anyways, lets all just agree to disagree.
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#16 Sindarin

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 07:29 PM

Did you even read what me and rinkuhero have posted? The Unreal Engine has nothing to do with it, the designers do.


Nothing has to do with anything. You're comparing apples with oranges there.
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#17 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 07:41 PM

Did you even read what me and rinkuhero have posted? The Unreal Engine has nothing to do with it, the designers do.


Nothing has to do with anything. You're comparing apples with oranges there.


Exactly. Creating big-budget multi-million dollar games for a salary and living off of it is a profession. Creating independent games as a small business and living off of it is a profession. Being an indie game developer, selling games directly to customers, is no less a profession than working for EA is, and the quality of independent games often ranks up there with mainstream big-budget games (as reviews of Braid and World of Goo testify).
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#18 Hambone4097

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 11:28 PM

Wow! I'm impressed. Very well made and I liked almost everything. Almost. The gmaeplay just felt too slow once you atarted a chain. Maybe If you made the chain reaction move faster it'd be that much more appealing.
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#19 FredFredrickson

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 11:49 PM

Being an indie game developer, selling games directly to customers, is no less a profession than working for EA is, and the quality of independent games often ranks up there with mainstream big-budget games (as reviews of Braid and World of Goo testify).

I'm not sure how this might fit into the discussion here, but Jonathan Blow (the creator of Braid) estimated that Braid's development cost about $180,000. Nowhere near the likes of big-budget games like GTA4 ($100,000,000), but definitely not what I would call a typical indie game programmer's budget.
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#20 rinkuhero

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Posted 23 December 2008 - 11:52 PM

In calculating that figure he estimated what would have cost to pay his own salary and the salary of his artist over the three or so years of production, so it wasn't that the game literally cost that much to make, it was that it would have cost that much to fund if he were paid.
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#21 FredFredrickson

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 12:08 AM

I know that, but that doesn't make the figure irrelevant. Devoting yourself to full-time game development, even if the process only takes a year, can be a costly move, with rent and utility bills ringing in every month. Most people here who live on their own probably don't have the money to hole up in their apartment for 12 months without any income; one reason why it's not an easy profession to break into on your own.

Anyway, I don't mean to detract from the game's discussion here - I've yet to play it, but it looks very cool, so I'll have to try it when I'm home from work. Good job, Chubigans! :lol:
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#22 rinkuhero

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 12:13 AM

I know that, but that doesn't make the figure irrelevant. Devoting yourself to full-time game development, even if the process only takes a year, can be a costly move, with rent and utility bills ringing in every month. Most people here who live on their own probably don't have the money to hole up in their apartment for 12 months without any income; one reason why it's not an easy profession to break into on your own.

Anyway, I don't mean to detract from the game's discussion here - I've yet to play it, but it looks very cool, so I'll have to try it when I'm home from work. Good job, Chubigans! :lol:


Sure, but a lot of indie developers create Flash games, which can be made in a month or two and can make thousands of dollars each due to advertising revenue and sponsorship on places like kongregate and armor games, so that may be a good entryway for those who can't take off 12 months.
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#23 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 04:40 PM

The game is now available at YoYo Games:

http://www.yoyogames...ames/show/64678

This has been a pretty interesting discussion so far, I must say. :D

Edited by Mr.Chubigans, 24 December 2008 - 04:41 PM.

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#24 PurpleFuzzy

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 04:55 PM

Great game, certainly. But Nocturnal Emission is still my favorite Mr. Chubigans work of art. :D

Unfortunately, I'm far too broke right now to be worrying about buying a game, but if I find the money somehow, I may purchase it. 'Til then, I'll enjoy the demo for all it's worth.

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#25 pedrosorio

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Posted 24 December 2008 - 08:34 PM

I do like it and actually made it a Christmas Gift but... The tutorial seems to leave you without a complete understanding of the game. What I mean is, ok, we have to change the gem-colours but the goals of the game are (as long as I played): attain x score, yet apart from the multipliers we have no idea how the score is calculated. You also don't tell the players they'll be able to form other chains just in case they fail to get the required score in the first.

I agree that some kind of storyline, just to provide some reason to go through the levels would be nice.

The main flaw I see is, from the tutorial and the first levels, without any kind of storyline, there's not really much grabbing your attention and I believe this will reduce sales, I'm far from being knowledgeable in this area so it's just an opinion.
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#26 G.I.L.

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Posted 28 December 2008 - 02:34 AM

could you please update us on your sales and sucess rates continually because im trying to follow this topic and i think its interesting ^_^
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#27 LostOverThere

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Posted 28 December 2008 - 05:53 AM

I bought it. Brilliant game with with an amazing amount of polish as always. ^_^
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#28 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 28 December 2008 - 03:56 PM

could you please update us on your sales and sucess rates continually because im trying to follow this topic and i think its interesting ^_^

All sales data/info will be found in this topic:

http://gmc.yoyogames...howtopic=411560

And thanks Lost! :)
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#29 Sindarin

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 04:17 PM

Also add an option to be able to change the resolution. I'm pretty sure you made the game in 800 x 600 screen resolution so let the player set it so, the graphics will look more crisp.


Update to that I said, changing the viewport of all your rooms to your game's resolution is significantly better than scaling the screen from global game options. So there is no really need to change resolution. All you do is use views and change the viewport values to the user's current resolution.

I use the code:

v_get_displaywidth=display_get_width();
v_get_displayheight=display_get_height();
room_set_view(addyourroomshere,0,1,0,0,800,600,0,0
,v_get_displaywidth,v_get_displayheight,740,480,32
,32,-1);


look up the Game Maker manual for room_set_view and change the room view for all the rooms of the game.

Edited by Sindarin, 30 December 2008 - 05:02 PM.

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#30 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 08 January 2009 - 03:02 AM

Ah, thanks for the tip! That'll come in handy in future versions of the game.

Edited by Mr.Chubigans, 08 January 2009 - 04:29 PM.

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#31 grandhighgamer

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Posted 12 January 2009 - 06:20 PM

A really nice game and pretty fun too... it has it's flaws but they are fixable.

*Remove the v-sync option I'd say, with a game such as this it really doesnt serve that much purpose
*By default I think the game looks much better windowed
*The "Start Chain" button is somewhat easy to miss, I'd have text underneath it and make it glow slightly
*The chain-ends look like the number zero ( 0 )... I'd rather have a glowing sprite underneath the gem
*Sometimes differenciating between linked and unlinked gems is a trouble... outlining the chain pathways would help... unlinked gems could have different background tiles aswell...
*The next gem area should be a tad more prominant
*When I go to look down for the next gem my eyes travel to the bottom right of the screen and then back to the center, this makes spotting the choose colour option less likely until you adjust... I'd move it to above the next-gem-colour

A bad illustration of my suggestions:
http://img300.images...=nextgemls1.png

Edited by grandhighgamer, 12 January 2009 - 06:48 PM.

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#32 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 13 February 2009 - 06:36 AM

Thanks grandhighgamer, those are some interesting points. ;)

Edited by Mr.Chubigans, 14 February 2009 - 06:51 AM.

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#33 Mr.Chubigans

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 04:04 PM

Wanna win a free copy of Spirits of Metropolis? Just post here for your chance to win: http://www.vertigoga...-of-metropolis/
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#34 Desert Dog

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 05:53 AM

Yay, I'm not allowed to post in your blog ;) Something about spammers, and proxy's. Not that I deserve it, since I haven't even tried the demo yet! :GM015: Guess I should try it now...
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