Contraption Maker: Build Chain Reactions & Blow Up Cats

Discussion in 'Pre-Orders, Soft Launches, and Upcoming iOS Games' started by Jontunn, Mar 20, 2015.

  1. Jontunn

    Jontunn Active Member

    Apr 30, 2012
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    Game Designer
    Eugene, OR
    #1 Jontunn, Mar 20, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2015
    Hi guys,

    We just started work on the mobile version of our game, Contraption Maker. Contraption Maker lets you make Rube Goldberg style chain reactions using parts like toasters, motors, bombs, dogs, bears, etc. The game has a puzzle mode that has you fixing broken contraptions, and the "Maker Lab" that lets you go crazy and build whatever you want. You can share things you build in our online workshop, and use the Maker Lab in online multiplayer.

    If anyone is old enough to have played "The Incredible Machine" back in the 90's, this is kind of the spiritual successor to that game with the same guys working on it. Unlike the Disney version of The Incredible Machine that came out a few years ago, this isn't a dumbed down/stripped down mobile game. Our goal is to let you do everything that you can do in the desktop version.

    We just got the game running on iOS a few days ago, so we are pretty excited about it. We haven't done any work to the UI yet, so it's pretty hard to play on a phone right now with tiny buttons and windows. Here is a short video of me fumbling through our current mobile build.



    I'll update this thread with more videos and screenshots as we progress and make the game more mobile friendly. Here are some fancy moving images (and a couple boring still ones) of things made in the game:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here is the trailer for the current desktop version to give an idea of what the game is like:

     
  2. slewis7

    slewis7 Well-Known Member

    Apr 6, 2011
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    Houston, TX
    I love this genre and this looks pretty great. Keep us informed!
     
  3. Back2funk

    Back2funk Well-Known Member

    Mar 3, 2010
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    This looks fantastic :) I will be keeping a close eye on this thread :)
     
  4. Lavender

    Lavender Well-Known Member

    Dec 31, 2013
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    #4 Lavender, Mar 22, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2015
    Looks frustrating and fun.
    Perfect combination!
    :)

    I've got the usual boring questions for you....

    Will it be universal?
    Gamecenter?
    In app purchases/iap's ?
    Freemium or premium?
    Do you have an estimated date of completion and or release?

    Thanks!
     
  5. kzwen

    kzwen Well-Known Member

    Jun 25, 2010
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    I love the pc ver...cant wait to see the mobile!
     
  6. Jontunn

    Jontunn Active Member

    Apr 30, 2012
    32
    0
    0
    Game Designer
    Eugene, OR
    Yes it will be universal.

    We haven't thought about GameCenter yet. We have our own backend for multiplayer that allows us to play cross-platform between mobile and desktop. We could possibly use it for achievements though.

    A lot of this is up in the air for what our official solution will be, but I would like to share with you our current thoughts. We want the game to be free, but we hate exploitative/"evil" f2p. We really want to just offer an honest, up front, free system for the game.

    Something like you get the base game for free that comes with a whole bunch of puzzles and parts to build with. If you really like the game you will be able to buy new part packs to build things with, and there will be free parts added to the game over time as well. The most similar game I can think of right now would be "The Sandbox". The game is free and puts out a lot of free content, but there are also new sandbox packs to buy as well.

    We would also love to have a way to earn everything that you can purchase through playing the game as well.

    Again, nothing is official yet, but this is the type of system that we have been thinking about.

    No estimated release date yet. We have it running now, but there is still a lot of work to be done to make the game really play well on the mobile platform. I will update this thread as we make more progress and can give a better estimate as the release date becomes clearer.

    :)
     
  7. Jontunn

    Jontunn Active Member

    Apr 30, 2012
    32
    0
    0
    Game Designer
    Eugene, OR
    Here's a video I made showing off our cross-platform multiplayer. It's a little hard to see everything, but you can see me: place a part on the laptop and it shows up on the phone, place a part on the phone and it shows up on the laptop, and I sent a chat message from laptop to phone.

    This also shows the mobile version running at a decent framerate with a pretty big contraption running. We have done no optimization so far, so this was pretty exciting to see.

     
  8. Jontunn

    Jontunn Active Member

    Apr 30, 2012
    32
    0
    0
    Game Designer
    Eugene, OR
    We are starting work this week on the UI to make it more mobile friendly. The desktop version is very reliant on movable/sizable windows, something that doesn't translate very well to phones and tablets. We want to free up as much screen space as possible, while still allowing easy access to everything you will need to use. It's going to be fun trying out different prototypes to find what works the best!

    Here is the current desktop version:
    [​IMG]

    And here is our first pass at a simplified version:
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Jontunn

    Jontunn Active Member

    Apr 30, 2012
    32
    0
    0
    Game Designer
    Eugene, OR
    I did some testing on the iPod Touch today, it's really great to see how well it's running already.



    I've also been working on mockups for making the rest of the game sections work on mobile. Originally we were thinking the game would only go on tablets because it just seemed too complicated to work on smaller screens. However, the more we have been working on it, the better it feels on small screens.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Back2funk

    Back2funk Well-Known Member

    Mar 3, 2010
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    England
    Looks like it's coming along nicely :) saying I was excited would be an understatement!
     
  11. Spock4Pres

    Spock4Pres Well-Known Member

    Nov 21, 2014
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    Alright, I was interested when I saw this and had player the desktop version, but now I'm in. Also, I thing your payment style should work well, seeing the success of The Sandbox which has a very similar system.
     
  12. Jontunn

    Jontunn Active Member

    Apr 30, 2012
    32
    0
    0
    Game Designer
    Eugene, OR
    New update today. We have been working on part handling and placement. Contraptions that you build can become really complicated, so we are experimenting with ways to make it easier to see what is actually under your finger. Here is an example of what we have been testing

    [​IMG]

    The other option would be to have a d-pad or something when a part is selected to allow for more finite control on final placement, but this magnifier option is feeling pretty good.

    Not much more new UI work, so here are some bonus gifs instead

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Back2funk

    Back2funk Well-Known Member

    Mar 3, 2010
    316
    0
    16
    England
    I sometimes find with the magnifier option that when I place what's underneath my finger then go to lift my finger from the screen it moves. If you can get it working without that problem then it would be fine.
    Although, if it's not too much work, having the choice of both magnifier and d-pad would keep more people happy.

    The gifs look great :) really looking forward to this :)
     

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