The archives of this blog show how long I have been working on Crocodile Cat. It was my “teaching myself unity” project for a while, it was a commuter project when I was a junior, and now I am a lead designer at a larger studio – I don’t have so much time for personal projects. After a few days of -actual- relaxation over the holidays, I decided to finish it.
The biggest unfinished task was the audio. I enjoy making sfx and music (and I’m quite good at it). Unfortunately, I left all of my audio gear behind in the UK when I moved to Canada. Still, I have done my best using freesound and a few synths I still have a licence for.
The game design challenges also needed attention. Digging into old code is hard. When that code was written by a beginner, harder still. Through some user testing, I believe my tutorial is better than it has been but the game does not do a perfect job of teaching itself. Chance affects the difficulty curve more than I would like. But the game is stable, playable, fun and it is complete.
It now sits on the app store and a weight is off my mind. I can move on. Perhaps foolishly, I’m excited to start on another Unity game. I should wait until I’m back at work to decide if I can handle this though, or I will be sitting on yet another unfinished project. Rebecca Deakin created the wonderful art for this game and I took too long to share it with the world!
Crocodile Cat is a game where you control a cat that has become trapped between the jaws of an infinite crocodile.
It is a reflex game where you must tap the screen before the cat reaches the jaw of the crocodile. Once you tap, the jaw moves to the location the cat was when you tapped. This makes the play area smaller with each input, so consistent skill is important to reach a high score.
The player collects power coins to open the jaws. The power coin distracts the player’s attention and encourages to make a decision: risk collecting the coin to extend the run or make a mistake and greatly increase the difficulty.
The player can unlock cats by collecting gems to spend in order to free them and use them. Each cat has a unique power: extending or increasing the chance of seeing a different power coin type. Spending gems gives cats nine lives. Buying a key from the store gives cats infinite lives.
The artwork for this title was created by Rebecca Deakin. Rebecca is an obviously talented artist and illustrator who I had the pleasure of working with back at Plug-in Media.
Somebody’s got a birthday coming up and wants you all to party! (It’s me).
When I released RememBear last autumn, it was after quite a lot of hard work. I’m not usually a computer programmer, so creating and releasing my own game was a big deal! I was mostly shocked at how much work went into contacting the press and promoting the game around launch. First time developers: you can only underestimate this.
Sales and interest in the game have tailed – as is to be expected with the masses of competition and tiny marketing budget! Also it’s my birthday and I want to do something nice for all of you.
So as of Friday, RememBear will be free to download wherever it is available. No ads (why would I spoil Faye’s gorgeous artwork?) no IAP, just a gift from me to you.
Thank you all for your support on my game dev journey, double thank you if that support translates to a sales figure on my spreadsheet, and I’d love to buy you a beer some time!
My birthday is on the 18th of April, so if you want to send me a birthday message, my Twitter is @Mikey_PB and I’d love to hear from you!