Universal The Barbarian (by S.F. Bay Studios)

Discussion in 'iPhone and iPad Games' started by PeteOzzy, May 8, 2015.

  1. squarezero

    squarezero Moderator
    Staff Member Patreon Silver

    I'll see if I can contact the dev today. I know as much about them as anyone else here - zilch.

    I would say that this is no more half-baked than Aralon was when it was first released.
     
  2. redribbon

    redribbon Well-Known Member
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    Jun 11, 2010
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    entepreanur,programmer
    that, i cannot say much more if you compared this game to aralon since aralon is not released for steam, but yeah aralon is full of bugs on its first release. moreover, thank you for trying to contact them, man.
     
  3. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    The Dev is Here!

    Sorry, I didn't realize this thread was here. Let me read through what's been posted and reply.
     
  4. redribbon

    redribbon Well-Known Member
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    Jun 11, 2010
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    thanks for coming here and joined us dev. :)
     
  5. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    Yeah -- sorry about that! It requires 1gig of ram or the game will certainly crash. I tried to get the textures smaller, but the quality of the look just sucked ass and it still crashed.

    I do try to not over or under sell it! It should take about 20 hours to play through. It takes me 12-15 hours and I know all the secrets, but even I die from time to time. Depending on what skills and spells you choose certain dungeons will be easier than others, so the actual path you take through the game will end up varying.

    The screenshots were captured in the game engine. However, and people should be able to back me up here, they look pretty much the same on the device. Retina displays are better, of course. Since the speed of devices vary (and in a couple situations in the game, things are taxed more), there's a "quality" option that lets you lower the resolution anywhere from 50% to 100% in 10% increments. You can also switch from "all shadows", "torch/sun only" or "blob shadows". What I've found on the slowest devices is 70-80% resolution and single shadows is ideal for me, and for iPhone 6/6+ and iPad Air 2 I can usually get away with full resolution and often full shadows. I'm sure the next iOS devices will be even faster.

    Also -- if it wasn't obvious from the fact that I'm a single-guy team -- I use Unity. They've just implemented "Metal" graphics. The version of the game that existed a month ago was MUCH slower. As Unity increases their pipeline, the game will benefit.

    The "flashing character" bug, usually happening when all shadows are on, is something that will be fixed in the coming weeks I hope, since it's a Unity/iOS bug, rather than something I can control myself.

    Yes, I *HATE* free to play. I love RPGs (huge fan of Might and Magic 6-8), but get so pissed going on the app store and finding crap like Kim Kardashians game under RPG. I've downloaded (paid for even) plenty of apps that look great but turn out to be utter nonsense. So I made a game that I would want to play.

    Loot: Yes, chests are plentiful, gold when you defeat most enemies. Skill points upon level gaining (1 / level, 2/ level after lvl 30), which allow you to buy skills and spells. Many categories, each with Novice/Experience/Master and Grand-master for the skills. You'll beat the game before you even get half of them, though, so you can specialize depending on your play style, and how you go through the game will likely be heavily influenced by what you choose.

    Weapons/Helmets/Shields can be equipped. There are (I think) 10+ types of each weapon and armor, and 5 weapon types (Swords, Mace/Club, Staff, Spear, Axe). Each has different unique abilities (aside from the sword which is a generally good weapon all around), and all items can get Prefix and Suffix powers, of which there are plenty. All randomly generated depending on level and such.

    Green dots rotate the camera. Top/ bottom ones will tilt the camera. The video shows the lowest view point, highest is nearly straight down. Camera will auto-tilt when you get close to a wall. I find myself playing with my left thumb as a controller (pops up when you put your thumb down) and stearing using the green dots, so I'm always facing forward. I prefer the angled tilt over top down.

    No achievements -- I plan on adding this in the future, however. Not multiplayer -- was supposed to be, but I quickly realized it was way above my head. Unity. Unity is coming out with a very advanced and simplified multiplayer toolkit sometime soon, so I'm sure my next game like this will try to have multiplayer.

    THANKS! :D It took about 20 months from start to finish, 2 years from when I first started thinking about it.

    I will do my best! This is my first real game. (As others pointed out, my previous things are one puzzle game [which is actually quite fun for people who like puzzles, even if it lacks cool effects], one non-game app [because I love quotes and thinking about things] and two games i made for my 2 year old nephew [who is now 5]) I'm brand new to marketing and really, the marketing is a daunting task for me. It doesn't come naturally.

    I'll try to make more videos including commentary ones. For my next RPG project, whenever I start it, I plan on blogging about it from the start.

    YES, thank you :D You noticed! I like games like Metroid (you know, on the Nintendo?) where if you go in the wrong door without a powered up armor you start to die super fast. I was very purposeful in many of the design decisions. The combat is one, as distance of weapon does matter (and the longer the weapon of the goblins etc, the further they will try to hit you, and they back away if you get too close). Many of the enemies have randomly generated attack patterns, including running away, jumping back after attacking etc. The weapons you choose matter here. The spear is the weakest, and you’ll notice that esp. at the end, but can hit the most at once. The club/axe are the shortest, but have a stun/double-damage bonus that makes the somewhat very powerful. Sword and staff are a mix of both, but staff has an evade bonus.

    Fighters can use all weapons from the start, and can advance to one of four advanced classes. Each of those can use only ONE school of magic. Mages can use all magic from the start, but are limited to Staff weapons until they advance, and then they can use one additional weapon class. Learning the Weapons Master Grand Master skill will allow you to use all weapon types.

    Enemies respond typically after 2 hours of play, and usually are higher level enemies. Skeletons tend to respawn faster. Grinding is possible, but isn’t something that’s designed. There are reasons to go back into some previously completed dungeons, however, which will usually mean more fighting in them.

    I was able to test on iPhone 5s, 5c, iPad Air 1, iPad Air 2, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6+. I did not get to test on an iPad mini 3, although the specs show it *should* work. I’ll see if any friends have one I can borrow, or I’ll just buy one if I get enough sales (HINT HINT!) :D

    It should work ,and if I can fix it, I will. Crashing is the worst. The most likely times for crashes are level loads, which is why it auto-saves before those times (And every 60 seconds).

    Sorry to hear that. I wasn’t sure if I could or was able to make it more optimized. When I started the project 2 years ago it wouldn’t have run on anything but the latest device. In a year it’ll run on most everything. I decided to go with the resolution/shadow options to let people choose what they want to do, and because some people are more frame-rate sensitive than others.

    The camera should auto-tilt if your view is blocked. (also try rotating the camera) If there’s a spot where this doesn’t happen, please let me know and I can fix it.
     
  6. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    Please please please post bug reports on my forum: thebarbarian.boards.net

    I will fix bugs, esp the silly ones like walking through walls. I’ve played the game 50+ times, but I know I can’t find them all.

    The “low frame rate” notice will only come up once per scene. I’ll see about adding a toggle to turn it off.

    I’m not sure why the avatar would change, but it’s something to report, esp. if there were any funny circumstances about it, like a crash or something.

    The price I chose for the game has caused a lot of discussion among the other indie developers I network with. There’s a big push right now from bigger “indie” companies to stop doing free to play and increase prices of games. I figure the game is worth $10 in my opinion. I did make it to be a game I’d want to play, and I get so pissed at a lot of the good looking but boring RPG like games on the app store. Things like tap to move or tap an enemy to auto-attack are boring to me. Things like tons of loot or level grinding annoy me. So I made something that has less of that type of thing.

    I don’t really plan on dropping the price. (Of course saying anything other than that here would be not smart!) But really, I don’t plan on dropping it. I do plan, however, on improving the game. I’m currently working with artists and animators to re-do all the art in the game, every character, every rock, every single pixel.

    I expect at least a year to finish all of it (and the value of a house down payment it looks like too!). But in that process I’ll be adding more levels probably, more enemies, and more of pretty much everything. I do not plan on abandoning this. My goal is to get it on Xbox and PS download stores.

    {End of replies, I’ll write another post right after this}
     
  7. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    Game Developer
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    Alright, more info from me now!

    First, thanks for letting me know this was here. I'm kind of a noob when it comes to posting blogs and all that, which is why no one has heard anything about me and the website kind of sucks. I will do my best to do better!!

    This is my first "big" game. I spent nearly 2 years working on it though, so I do hope it's fun. I made a game that I would have wanted to buy, and I specifically wanted to target all platforms. So mobile first. In my experience most mobile RPG games kind of lack what I'm looking for, which may be a bit of an old-school feel.

    A couple things I want to change ASAP would be the player characters. When I began this i wanted to get all the art custom made (which is one thing I can't do myself). The first artist I hired though walked off with half the money and didn't send anything useful. I wasted 3 months while he kept giving excuses why it wasn't done. Then I read somewhere to "work with what you have today, not what you hope to have tomorrow."

    So, for better or worse, I went to the Unity Asset Store and bought my art there. I didn't buy the crappy stuff, I bought the best available, and did my best to make sure the look of it all worked well together.

    Downside with all this is that I'm heavily limited with what I could do. The name of the game "The Barbarian" is actually because I decided to use the barbarians as the main characters. I wanted male and female characters, but at least there were different skin tones for the barbarians, so I went with that.

    Animations are from Mixamo, so higher quality, but I couldn't specialize them. That's why the attacks are the same for all weapons. I had some variations, but not enough and I found that some, like a straight jab with a spear, were way too hard to control.

    Throughout development more asset packages came available -- the town interiors happened right at the best time possible, since before when you went into a store it was a 2d screen and nothing else. I love that you can walk around inside. Other maps, like the graveyard, weren't even planned when I first started making it because the art wasn't available.

    But I'm not sitting pretty accepting things as they are! I'm currently working with a super talented model and a crazy talented animator to re-do all the stuff in the game. I don't know how long it'll take (and if I'll be able to keep paying them for it!), but the quality is WAY cooler, and I have so much control now it's insane. The main character will be male or female, armor will be much better and more varied, and classes will have at least slightly more unique looks. Again I have no ETA on this, but it's not going to be any time soon I bet!

    I'm attaching 3 work-in-progress images for replacements for the Mushroom (Which will now move around), the Giant Worm (which will be 2x the size) and the Gargoyle (which will be bigger, stronger, and can fly. And can turn into stone.)

    I'm doing all the texturing myself, but in a procedural way so that there will be even greater variety in the looks of the enemies and characters.

    BUGS! I guarantee you they exist. (And I'm not talking about the bugs in the swamp and abandoned temple!) Please please tell me about them on my forum page: thebarbarian.boards.net I will do everything I can to fix them.

    iPhone 5/5s Users: For some reason dumb-me didn't realize the sample photos weren't uploaded ,so on the app store page you won't see any samples. I've submitted an update (that also has a couple bug fixes) and that should be approved early next week. It takes 7-8 days to get approve, unfortunately.

    I'll try to remember to check this thread and answer you guys. The other forum will be checked as well of course.

    So hopefully you guys like it. It's not the best game in the world, that's for sure. But it's certainly not the worst. And not at all like a lot of the really good-looking stuff in the app store that ends up being absolutely terrible. I spent a long time on this and I intend to keep working on it to make it better. Hopefully I'll be able to keep making games!!

    Any other games that you're working on?
    YES! I've got a simple prototype for a VR game called "Dragon Rider", but that's not high on the priority list. I've been working with some killer 2d artists on a turn-based strategy game similar to "Hero Academy" that has to do with Cyborg Bugs. And I've got a prototype for a super fast paced space drone fighting game for mobile I'm currently calling "Space Drones" -- 60 second matches in a space arena against other players and smart AI, where if you win, you win money to buy cool new shit, and if you lose, you lose your drone completely. (But you can get a new basic one for free, of course -- and you can have many at once). Losing the match doesn't mean you lose your drone, you lose the drone only when you actually explode during the match.

    And ultimately I would LOVE to make a sequel to this game and my real big goal, a 1st person party based RPG similar to Might and Magic 6 & 7.

    About the price: $10 is not cheap, I know that. I really do think it's worth the price, though. I think people who like this type of game will get much more play out of it than 2 $5 games or 3 $3 games or an infinite number of Kim Kardashian games. And rest assured your money is being put right back into this game and future games.
     

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  8. meril

    meril Well-Known Member
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    Oct 13, 2011
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    #68 meril, May 12, 2015
    Last edited: May 12, 2015
    Thanks for your great reply.

    Yes, me too :D

    I don't know Kim Kardashians game, but for the rest: YES YES :D:D

    Yes Yes Yes :D:D:D

    I'm in. Downloading now. You get my support. :)
     
  9. Wow. I have a backlog at the moment of games I need to play, but definitely keeping my eye on this. I think once you've ironed some things out (and I have the time to devote to it), I would enjoy it. I absolutely loved M&M6-8 (even though I never actually completed any of them :p ). For a while now, I've been hoping someone would make a game inspired by those for iOS with updated graphics. If you can pull that off, I'm totally there.
     
  10. skoptic

    skoptic Well-Known Member

    Apr 3, 2015
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    Good work for all the responses mr dev man! This goes from a maybe to a definite now :)
     
  11. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    California
    Demoing at Apps World in San Francisco

    I'm showing the game at the Apps World conference and expo in San Francisco. Got shot glass and post card swag. But like an idiot I forgot the iPad at home so today will be desktop only, tomorrow will be both.
     

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  12. Based Xatu

    Based Xatu Well-Known Member

    Aug 27, 2013
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    Developers just don't know how posting on a thread can help sales. I'm grabbing this.
     
  13. Amenbrother

    Amenbrother Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2011
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    Like seeing the dev here posting things!
     
  14. redribbon

    redribbon Well-Known Member
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    Jun 11, 2010
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    entepreanur,programmer
    wait, is this you alone making this game?oh im still missed that day when i fired up my first scene on my ipad back in 2012 using unity. kudos to you dev. ok, im throwing my money now, hope that little help can somehow give you spirit to continue developing more premium game on our beloved platform.
     
  15. L0ck

    L0ck Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 2015
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    Dev, thanks for the awesome replies. I gotta applogize -- crazy-rare is the $10 game I buy for my phone, especially actiony games, at most any price point. I just don't use my phone like that, that's what my PC and handhelds are for.
    That said, I understand and love your reasoning for the price and am glad those here who do more intensive gaming on their phones are diving in. AND I'm excited about the steam version now, especially if it'll be at a similar price point!
     
  16. Based Xatu

    Based Xatu Well-Known Member

    Aug 27, 2013
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    What's the installed size?
     
  17. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    ~650mb Download I think, 1.2gb installed. Tried to get it smaller but there's a lot of textures for different environments.
     
  18. sfbaystudios

    sfbaystudios Well-Known Member

    May 12, 2015
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    Steam should be similar, yes. I'm hoping to get cooler particles that won't work on mobile for the spells but mostly it'll be the same. Textures may be a bit bigger since ram won't be an issue as it is on mobile.
     
  19. skoptic

    skoptic Well-Known Member

    Apr 3, 2015
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    This is for iPad too!! ;)
     
  20. ashmike3

    ashmike3 Well-Known Member

    May 15, 2014
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    Any thoughts yet red?
     

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