Zoonami - Retrospective

Thanks to all who played and ranked my game.

I'm glad that quite a few people had fun with the game. It was a "clicker" and so the usual downsides apply. Sorry for those that don't enjoy those games and had to break their mouses (and fingers) to play!

Because I had only half a week I made an early decision to simplify and go for a clicker. I reviewed about 10 of the top rated ones I could find and highlighted the features that I felt would be fun. This resulted in the core feature-set of,

1. Attacks in waves

2. Boss battles to gate the progress

3. The different kinds of player-character power-ups

4. Creating a solid feel for the clicking with good sound and visual animation (never achieved this last one!)

I'm pretty happy with the core game but there were several areas that I really needed more time as mentioned by a number of players.

The balancing

Someone mentioned that they got killed out-of-the-blue. This was probably the snake, that deals a ton of damage with a very slow wind-up. But the player is right. The idea that different beasts would have different characteristics and so you would have to choose which order to kill them was quite central to making this more deep than just a clicker.

However, I didn't have enough time to balance this part. With so many different beasts, power ups and dimensions I got quite lost in how to adjust the attack, cost, damage, AC elements to create a compelling curve to the game. Most clickers get around this by just making things really "expensive" and using the players time (and boredom level!) to balance. I wanted to avoid this but this needed more polish.


I wanted the game to be fun and to play with the Sharknado theme but I didn't get to scratch too much below the surface on this. I was looking to have splash screens when side-kicks and bosses entered the game and also an ongoing storyline that was revealed as you levelled. 

I also needed some animation.

The beast graphics and side-kicks were generated from stock photos and the lunar pic online tool (https://www298.lunapic.com/editor/). This allows you to use neural network models to apply artistic styling to photos. It created a really interesting effect but I wanted to go a bit further with animation too.

Anyway, overall another fun Pyweek. Thanks to the organisers and all the other competitors. Your games were awesome. I'm always amazed at the quality and diversity of entries.

See you next time.