CategoryNews

New Tumble Panda update

We just published an update to Tumble Panda, adding another four levels.

While they are all hard, the last one is almost unbeatable.  Here’s a little teaser video I made:

In total this makes it a 44 levels of Panda fun now, all free to play.

If you haven’t tried it, click here to give it a try.

 

Announcing TUMBLE PANDA

I am absolutely excited to announce Andlabs’ first big game: Tumble Panda, coming to Google Play tomorrow.

Pandas are quite cute and adorable. We always knew that and always loved the cuddlesome black and white, bamboo-loving bears. And when the opportunity came along to make a Panda the hero in one our newest game, we took it.

Tumble Panda is a 2D jump ‘n’ roll adventure game. As a hungry Panda, the player is perma- nently looking for delicious bamboo. And since trotting is just not fun, the little Panda prefers to roll through the 40 handcrafted levels.

But obstacles are blocking the way. Geysers eject hot water and steam, unstable paths made of lampions need to be crossed and trampolines used to reach high platforms. A normal day in the life of a hungry Panda.

The Panda curls up into a ball, gains speed and launches himself over an abyss. While flying, he uses his Panda-powers to trigger an explosion at just the right time to destroy a pile of stones obstructing his way on the other side. Alternatively, he could have also caused an earthquake to clear them away in advance. Many adventures and challenges await the little Panda.

We will have many more information soon, at this place. In the meantime check out our website at TumblePanda.com and the screenshots bellow:

screenshot_menu_1024x576
screenshot_lampions_text screenshot_looping_text screenshot_explosion_textscreenshot_geyser_text

Wanted: Beta Tester

We will soon release our first big game, Tumble Panda.

We put a lot of effort in this game, and I think we created a great and fun product. However, in order to find the last bugs and get your valuable feedback on where to improve next, we need beta testers. If you are interested, please go to our Google plus community and click on “Ask to join” . I will grant you access within 24 hours.

A click on "Ask to join" will open your gate to tremendous amounts of gaming fun

A click on “Ask to join” will open your gate to tremendous amounts of gaming fun

Enough of the text, here are some screenshots:

menublueskyboom3

And some of Tumble Panda’s features:

  • Be a furry Panda
  • Tumble around the world
  • Eat bamboo
  • Collect hidden stars
  • Jump on trampolines, fly on geysers, balance on lampions and fall into water
  • Destroy obstacles using Panda-powers
  • Train your Panda’s abilities
  • Hand illustrated, colorful graphics
  • Simple gameplay
  • 40 Levels, all free
  • Regular updates with new levels

Thank  all of you that are joining in advance. I’m looking forward to your feedback.

 

Creating a ‘Flappy Bird’ clone

So, last week, on Thursday I sat with Felix, one of the people that are supporting us with designs, and we were talking about ‘Flappy Bird‘s tremendous success. The, now unpublished, Chopper Mission-like game at the time grossed around $50k a day and was, as you probably all know, topping app store charts around the world.

Flappy Bird

Flappy Bird

We were impressed by the simplicity of the design and the very easy gameplay. This was also what made us think that it would probably be quite easy to implement an app with similar functionalities.

$50k/day, a possibly fast implementation. That are two  pretty convincing arguments towards just trying it out.

Brainstorming

The Greek restaurant we went to

The Greek restaurant we went to

The decision was made and we headed over to the Greek restaurant next door to brainstorm a bit. The mission: Creating a game with similar behavior and and addictiveness as flappy bird while maintaining an own character.

Besides the amazing achievement of $50k/day in front of our eyes we wanted to keep up the spirit of ‘Flappy Bird’, which, in our impression, was rather the creation of games as a form of art instead of pure means to make money.

The brainstorming started. The basic wireframing was done rather quickly. A simple start menu, the game itself, a game over menu, GPGS highscores, maybe a bit of Tapjoy and a splash screen.

Left: Wireframes. Right: Design drafts

Left: Wireframes. Right: Design drafts

Then the big question arose: Where and when did we want our game to take place? We are working on another game in the steampunk genre anyway at the moment, so why not use this environment?

 Steampunk Bird by ~Adrienne-the-ripper. Click on the image for the origin.

Steampunk Bird by ~Adrienne-the-ripper. Click on the image for the origin.

While that sounded pretty cool we wanted to grab the chance to try a different setting. Ever since I first played it, Age of Empires II was my favorite computer game, which it stayed until today. This resulted in our final choice: The medieval times.

Getting started

First we created kanban-boards, each customized and simplified in the way needed them.

Left: My Kanban-board; Right: The designer's Kanban-board

Left: My Kanban-board; Right: Felix’ Kanban-board

Then we just got started.

I first began implementing the physics with Box2D but then decided it would be overkill and just used simple entity modifier. After a couple of hours the first, almost complete, game was done. On the left you can see our main menu, in the middle the game while it is playing and on the right the game over ‘menu’:

The first playable version of our 'Flappy Bird' replacement

The first playable version of our ‘Flappy Bird’ replacement

I like to call it ‘Flappy Pong’.

As with most casual games, writing the basic game logic needed the least time. We needed a decent character, the hero that would breathe life into our game. His name? Sir Flapalot.

Who is Sir Flapalot?

Who is Sir Flapalot?

We wanted a unique character. A person that’s cute, has a visual reason to fly and can still transport the adventurous aura of a knight.

Felix did an awesome job and created our flying hero:

Sir Flapalot revealed

Sir Flapalot revealed

Sir Flapalot comes in five parts: A tilesheet of the cape which consists out of four parts for a fast paced movement animation, a three-part-tilesheet of the arms with the wings, the harness with the feet, the helmet and the hemlet’s ventail, which opens when the knight flies downwards. Here you can see his first flying attempts in our virtual world:

Sir Flapalot flying and falling

Sir Flapalot flying and falling

Here’s the main menu with Sir Flapalot flying around on a Galaxy Y and a Galaxy Nexus:

Sir Flapalot on different devices

Sir Flapalot on different devices

Next was the Name and the Logo. We both were certain about the name in an instant. ‘Flappy Knight’. We couldn’t find a fitting font so Felix did another amazing job and hand-drew Flappy Knight’s own typeface:

logo

Development

After this two important decisions, the title and the main character of the game, development continued. We included backgrounds, a parallax floor like in ‘Flappy Birds’, the green rectangle barriers of the screenshots above became walls and the game over and start menu went through plenty of iterations.

Once this essential parts were done, I started integrating GPGS for highscores, ad banners (only AdMob for now) and Tapjoy.

Last Thursday, after one week of development, we presented the result to ANDLABS and started balancing the gameplay a bit more. It turned out that Sir Flapalot fell too fast so that sometimes it was too hard to stop him at the right time. With the change of giving him more time to the fall, a bigger distance between the walls came. While the game initially was much harder than ‘Flappy Bird’, it is a tiny bit easier now. My current record is 39, which makes me third out of four test players.

After the balancing, sound came into the game. This took us quite some time since we hand made almost all of them on our own. We tried to keep them as annoying yet motivating as the flappy-bird sounds, while sticking to our genre. While we may re-record some of them for an update, we are satisfied with the current state.

Flappy Knight

Today, after one week and three days of work, Flappy Knight was finished. Here are the final results:

Flappy Knight's main menu and get ready screen

Flappy Knight’s main menu and get ready screen

Flappy Knight's gameplay and game over screen

Flappy Knight’s gameplay and game over screen

So now, if you like (or hate) ‘Flappy Bird’ and need an adequate replacement but are not satisfied with the gazillion of copies out there, or just want to try our work, you might give Flappy Knight a try:

promo

get flappy knight on google play

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