Make the Sad Star Happy!

Sometimes, you think you have a good idea until you see it in game. I thought I’d instill some life into the puzzles by having the puzzles in the background float around or do a little dance when they were completed. Turns out it’s really distracting and takes the player’s attention away from the main puzzle they’re trying to solve, so I decided to scrap it.

The other thing I worked on recently was adding some more visual feedback for when the user completes a level. Check it out:

Note: Sound Effects are all placeholders at the moment.

I really wanted the game to celebrate and give positive feedback to the user for their accomplishment of clearing a whole level. I do this by adding a nice puzzle rotation/ re-orientation with a camera-zoom effect after the last puzzle in the level  is cleared. I think it gives the gamer a moment to take in what they just cleared. On the Level Clear Screen, I’ve added a fireworks display using the same particle system I just finished last week. I also have the stars ‘pop’ in to make it more clear that you are earning stars for your performance. One complaint I have when I play Angry Birds is that it’s not transparent what score you have to aim for to get 3 stars. You can’t see how far away you are from acquiring that next star.

As a result, I wanted to make it clear that you get 1 star for clearing a level, another star for clearing it under the target time, and a third star for not using a single missile. This data is also saved and displayed/reinforced on the Level Selection Screen. When you don’t meet the requirements for a star, you don’t get the fireworks display and instead you get a sad looking star. See how sad he is 😦

Hopefully this will motivate players to come back and try to clear the level with 3 stars 🙂

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