…as mentioned in the last post we’ve been developing our first title Triplane: Furball for over a year. So I think we owe you all some catch up to do.
I think Triplane: Furball started as an idea in early 2016 to celebrate the 20th birthday for the retro classic Triplane Turmoil that was released as shareware in 1996! Well as you can probably deduct by now the release didn’t quite happen as originally planned. Triplane is the first game I ever have been developing, well kinda first.. I did a gamemaker youtube tutorial of Asteroids by Shaun Spalding and after that the first working prototype of Triplane: Furball was born. I think it was maybe July of 2016. It only had the red plane sprite from the original game in a blue background but there it was, flying in the sky and I had made it. I was so proud of it, of course ALOT has changed since then and this is the short version of year in development…. Part 1..!
Game engine and starting 4realz!
I didn’t start game development from nothing, I have a “life” code behind me in form of back-end and embedded systems so being a gameDev is just a new challenge and the first one was the challenge of choosing a game engine. I had actually fooled around with unity before but not made anything real with it. It was quickly crossed off because not getting a lot of love from the 2D community. LÖVE was also an option but felt not so powerful and usable. After a lot of reading, game demos, forums and reddit GameMaker studio was the weapon of choice and lucky for us it was in humble bundle in september 2016 so the most important asset for indies was also saved: money. :D
Development really started in early fall 2016 when I pitched my game idea for my buddy Iiro who I knew was GREAT with graphics and I sucked at pixel so I reeeeaallly needed him to join my effort. Somehow I managed to lie him about great glory and fame of being an indieDev (like I knew about it!) and got him to join me. Not much after that MansikkaMarmeladi.io was born (the name actually came a bit later but anyhow anyway..) and project was on the way! At this point and as a little side note I really need to tip my imaginary hat for the creators of the original Triplane Turmoil (Dodekaedron Software) who say they did it in merely 5 months! What a feat guys! Kudos!
Fast progress slow schedule
From the start, we set no schedules for when the game was supposed to finish. Certain goal days for features etc. have been set to have something to aim for. It may have negatively affected the development speed but we are doing this for ourselves first and as mentioned before, part time. Still development has been at times really stressful and if I had been alone with myself and the project, I would have quit so many times already. So a “PRO” tip of the day – get a buddy to share you frustration with.
Basic game mechanics came together quickly. Looking at the commit history, we had a working alpha version right before the new year. It had a working local multiplayer, AA’s, hangar etc. so dogfighting was ready to commence. There were just two planes available for play and UI was HORRIBLE and only hard coded “customizable” controls and no pad support… and a great number of bugs… :D but it is still something WE MADE.. OURSELVES.. it was awesome! It was like being a child again dogfighting for glory and braggin’ rights! It was JUST the feeling we were looking for and the reason why we were and are sinking our time into this project.
You can really see the change in graphic style when you compare something I did vs. what Iiro did.. :D .. Next week Iiro will be writing about the art and style of the game and how it came together and in part two of this blog I will go deeper into UI and the overall code and how it is progressed through the development. So check back in a week and follow us @twitter for updates! :)