What’s that you say? You like playing games with social features that let you connect with your friends on Facebook and see their highscores and challenge them for bragging rights? Well then have I got a game for you!
That’s right. As of last night at around 1AM we now have online functionality a la OpenFeint! This is very big news for us as I believe it elevates our game to the next level. In case you don’t already know, OpenFeint is the biggest mobile social gaming network. It allows players to create a profile which they can use to post their highscores to online leaderboards, unlock achievements, and connect with their friends. This profile can then be used with any game that they play, creating a seamless social experience which makes life easy for developers and fun for players. They have over 50 million users and 3800 games, so chances are you’ve probably already played an OpenFeint game.
Now I have to admit, adding this functionality seemed a little bit daunting at first. I fully expected this to take days to get working right. Although their website has a pretty good step-by-step tutorial, they’ve only been on Android for a year so they’re support for specific issues was a little bit lacking. I even found a few problems in the tutorial code that was given which set me back a bit and lead to a lot of trial and error coding. In the end, however, I ended up getting full functionality and implementation within about 5 hours, so I’m stil extremely happy with how painless and easy this was. I’ll be writing up a blog with more specifics about the errors I found and what I did to fix them to help expand their support section and hopefully aid anyone in the future.
So on another note, we have done a lot of new things since my last post. One of the coolest is the successful implementation of the initials entry screen. Now this may seem unnecessary with the addition of OpenFeint, but we’re sure there will be people who don’t care to create a profile and we didn’t want to keep them from the fun of being able to keep track of their high scores and achievements. For this reason, the game is designed to keep a local copy of the top 5 high scores from your phone and all achievements earned. So here’s the new initials screen:
This is actually an older screen shot and we’ve made a couple aesthetic changes (like the enter button is now a rectangle so it’s more prominent), but for the most part this is what you’ll see. We kept in symbols so that people can get creative and we save the last name that was entered so you don’t have to bother with it if you want to use the same name. The other exciting news is the implementation of our first accelerometer and tap-tap games!
We’ve already shown you the Magic 8-Ball a couple of times, so I won’t dwell on it too much. Basically, it pops up empty, and you have to shake your phone until the fortune pops up. It really creates a nice change in gameplay from the normal touchscreen stuff and I’m really glad we decided to add these types of games in. The next one will be the Hula-Girl!
The punching bag game is one of my new favorites! The POW meter on the left starts out empty and you have to keep hitting the bag until it’s full. We made the meter fill up faster on the harder levels to keep it fair because hitting the bag even 3 times in 1 second is pretty challenging. I like this one so much because it is absolutely a reflex game. There’s nothing to do here but tap as fast as you can, but if you don’t recognize what game you’re playing immediately, then you’ll definitely fail on the faster levels. It brings a nice balance to the game and it looks really cool, too! Ryan did a great job on the art for this one. The next tap-tap game will be Rocket Ship!
Well that’s all I have for now! If you’re interested in the OpenFeint stuff then keep a lookout in the next couple days for my post on that. So long, and thanks for all the fish.