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Drop Dimensions
Author: HS_Dave
- Posted on: 24/04/2017
Post Type: Blog Entry
So we're all familiar with "fall down" style games these days. You are usually some object thrust into a world that is forever scrolling upwards and you have to find your way down to prevent yourself being pushed off the top of the screen.

This formula did not really change at all when I created Drop for windows phone 7 several years ago. Thanks to the work of Elin the art was slightly more polished than most fall down games and a few additional features such as powerups (speed up, slow down, world freeze, etc) and persistent online leader boards made it slightly more interesting than your average fall down clone but not by a massive margin.

These games can be fun to play for a few minutes but there is not a lot to them and long sessions are probably going to begin to drag eventually. I started to wonder what could be done to make these games more engaging without significantly changing the nature of what they actually were. It's okay that the average play session isn't massively long as long as the time spent was enjoyed.

From this the design for Drop Dimensions was slowly crafted. It was (and still is) a constant battle of feature ideas and feature cuts to try and balance interest and simplicity. It's a slightly faster game than Drop was and coupled with the increased speed we've added columns that block the player from moving in a certain direction. Some columns can be bashed apart with a new dash move but some are indestructible. To balance the increased difficulty this presents the world now supports a wrap-around feature so if you move off the left of the screen you will appear on the right and vice versa.

You can still die fairly easily but you'll always see during your last moments that way you could of taken to escape. The levels themselves have a larger variety of powerups and obstacles ranging from bear traps to concussion mines. The whole idea has been to try and create a more interesting gaming experience without over complicating the simple formula or making it require a large investment of time to play in one sitting.

Another aspect that has been focused on is game setting. I wanted to prevent everything from becoming too "old" too quick and started toying around with the idea of levels with their own graphical themes. What I did NOT want was to interrupt the players game at any point with an "end of level" or similar event so what we eventually settled on was this concept that you were trying to survive in an unstable multiverse where dimensions would repeatedly collapse on you. Survive long enough on a specific level and the dimension you are in will start to fall apart until eventually it collapses and hurls you into a new dimension (level). The transition only takes a few seconds and helps to prevent things from becoming boring without interrupting your game.

Finally, it's not just levels/areas that belong to a specific dimension.. but playable characters too. I really wanted to add more in-game persistence beyond just the leader boards so you can feel you are achieving something even if just a short play session. At the end of each session your final score gets converted into in game currency which you can spend to unlock new characters to play as. This is NOT a real money transaction but just a way for you to convert your game time into new unlockables to enjoy.

Development on this game is very advanced already and I look forward to showing you media from the alpha build soon! I intend for it to be available on all major mobile devices and POSSIBLY PC. I play test it on PC and it certainly works well.. but I keep asking myself: does it belong here? :o