Posted 02 May 2012 - 05:13 AM
Heads up: I though it was very well made and presented BUT just complimenting the game doesn't help it! So here is a healthy, hearty critique!
It really didn't take advantage of the existing game mechanics very well. In the very first level you introduce the simple mechanic of manipulating light and water... and it doesn't go beyond there. The rest of the game was a matter of me merely lining up the platforms as a ramp for the water to haphazardly splash along into the seed. And why did you only plant the seed in the first level? Did that have significance?
The only level that challenged me was the one with 17 mirrors towards the end, and I ended up rage quitting this because I managed to get the light all the way to the end... but the plant didn't grow. I don't know why. I realize that it was probably not enough light, but I had the thing engineered quite brilliantly and it still didn't work. This level was especially jarring because there was no difficulty curve leading up to this point. I was just mindless clicking before that and then suddenly I was slapped in the face by this ludicrous level design.
SO, how do I recommend moving on from here? I'm glad you asked!
- MORE VARIED GAME MECHANICS
When I saw the hollowed-out log-thing I was hopeful that this would be some new, useful mechanic. I was disappointed. The entire game revolves around one thing with no variation: line up platforms into ramp. Line up mirror to reflect. Done. Switch it up with something different, like a water-wheel, or solar-powered devices. Something to keep me learning and discovering.
- DIFFICULTY CURVE
At the moment this is non-existent. The game is mind numbingly easy and then suddenly you get destroyed by an impossible level. Have a smooth curve of progression: introduce a mechanic, then make it more complicated. Once that is developed, introduce another mechanic, make it complicated, mix it with mechanic 1, make it even more complicated. Then introduce mechanic 3... etc. This will involve you spending more time - by more time I mean a heck of alot of time - on level design, which is possibly the most important part of a physics based game like this.
- PURPOSE IN COLLECTION
So I found a stone leaf. Cool. What do I do with it? Not the foggiest idea. Either give these collectables some purpose or get rid of them. And it would be good to make them a little bit more difficult to find.
- MAKE SOME EYE CANDY
The game has a very playful aesthetic to it, but the background is just dull. Have it change up to fit the level a little bit more. Make the background look like you're in a shed at first. Maybe when you add solar powered devices it looks like you're in someone's garage. I don't know. But just having a brown background with a green border is boring. HOWEVER you also want to be careful because sometimes your game mechanics could make the computer chug (not because my computer is weak, but because GML is inefficient). So I would make these backgrounds ONLY, no moving parts.
- PORT TO iDEVICES
This game is perfectly suited for mobile devices and it would be a silly thing to not think in that direction.
I know this might have seemed harsh, but let me just say that most of the stuff here on the GMC is so bad I don't even read the topic, let alone download it, and even rarer do I ever actually review the game. So I am only posting this because you have a very nice game here, but it still needs work. Maybe you can give it a little more love after the competition.