I’ve been away from this blog for about half a week. Why? Simple, I was doing more work on Turtles all the Way: A Shell Game. Specifically, I was converting the story into proper screenplay format. At the end of the day, I ended up with 152 pages. Sadly, I was using Celtx, which doesn’t support non-standard characters, so I had to transliterate the Greek letters (I used Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, Epsilon, Delta and a capital Omega for character names).
All that’s left before the story is finalized is waiting for a certain internet friend of mine, a reviewer known as No Limit, to possibly look over it later. Not that I honestly expect him, or anyone for that matter, to assist in looking over such a long screenplay. A few people looked over it when it was 88 pages and improperly formatted, though, so I may be fine, but they never looked at it after I made changes to address the issues they told me.
Another thing I was doing was looking into games with similar mechanics to the Sync Point System I’ll be using. Sadly, it seems the only explicitly close match I can find is the fangame for the Tohou series known as Mystical Chain (You can find it online, latest version is 1.21).
Engrish aside, Mystical Chain is pretty solid, albeit way too hard and it doesn’t tell you the controls, plus whoever coded it is quite stupid for not allowing me to configure the buttons to be 4 next to each other, rather than 3 in a row and one on top. It has gamepad support, though, which would have been nice if I had a gamepad. It would have been rather helpful to know I could have my partner stand in place and heal (Down + Switch Button), or that I could revive a downed partner by giving her half the surviving one’s health (Down + Spell Card Button).
Now, I’m not sure many people have actually played games to research specific, central mechanics, but this game in particular didn’t make it very easy. I have no indication of how what I’m doing is affecting my Coupling Points (what they call what Turtles all the Way will call Sync Points) until I see how many Coupling Points I gained at the end of the level, except when I see a “CP Down” message, which shows up if I’ve either not switched in a while or get knocked down. Generally, however, I gain just under one or two bars’ worth of CP every level, so it isn’t as strict and not as informative as Turtles all the Way will be with it. Still, seeing someone else’s implementation was very helpful to see what exactly not to do, and I’m going to play Mystical Chain again with full knowledge of its mechanics, on hard mode, to hopefully see if it turns out any differently.
So, as it stands, I’m going to be looking into that a little more, followed by some coding or writing out a formal Game Design Document, whichever I end up wanting to do first.