So you may have heard of this project before since I posted it in a previous C3.
It's a brand new game for the NES called Force Bot. You play as a small robot who pushes around boxes in a puzzle style manor similar to Sokoban.
Well the game is still being worked on with plans on finishing it sometime this year 2021. If I had to guess, I would say that I'm around 70% done with the game.
I started on the game back in early of 2019 and the game has undergone 3 major versions.
Version 1) Has 96 levels, 4 songs
Version 2) Has 128 levels, 4 songs
Version 3) Has 192 levels, 8 songs
The original game had 96 levels and 4 songs and at the time I thought I was done with the game, but after playing it several times, it felt like it needed more content. The same thing happened with the 128 version. Both of these versions didn't feel like a full legit game.
So I decided to expand the game much further to 192 levels and add in some extra color palette changes and songs.
I also ended up purging around 30-40 levels from the original 96 and 128 level versions since I had gotten better at level design over the years making this game.
So as of right now I have like 40 maybe 50 new levels to create before I reach that 192 level goal. After that I will be going into the beta testing phase and then the final release.
You can follow my progress and updates on my Twitter.
In addition, the engine Force Bot is using is not a 1-1 (one to one) remake of the traditional Sokoban game. The rules in Force Bot are slightly different, yet these slight rules end of making a big difference in the two types of games.
In a traditional Sokoban game, the number of boxes equals the special squares that the boxes must standing on.
This means that there are no throw away boxes since every box must be placed on its special square.
In Force Bot, when you place a box on its special square both the box and the square disappear. There are also levels where there are no special squares to place boxes on. And boxes in general can be thrown away "disposable" at times.
So the content that I am making is 100% unique to this engine and its hard to make 192 original levels that are fun yet challenging.
There are many Sokoban websites which host literally thousands of Sokoban puzzles that you can play. But if you try and take those exact puzzles and put them into the Force Bot engine then the puzzles fall apart and most of the time they become 99% easier.
So I went into this project thinking that it was going to be a blast making my first ever NES game, but now I'm finding that it was 100 times harder than I ever could have expected. But at the end of the game, its going to be a really cool game!
I myself sometimes get really frustrated when playing traditional Sokoban, and because of this, I'm trying very hard to make Force Bot more fun than irritating. The levels themselves in Force Bot are pretty small only an 8 X 8 size level, by doing this, the puzzles are more simplified and if you mess up you don't feel like your loosing progress by re-starting over.
In traditional Sokoban, some levels are big like 32 X 32 level and with tons of boxes, so when you do mess up you get mad because you just spent 30 mins on the level. So the way that Force Bot is set up, it just makes for a more fun game overall.
And just a second ago, one of the music composers just finished up one of the songs and you can listen to it here.
I have two versions, one with an instrument at an higher octave and another one with a lower octave. Let me know which one sounds better as I need some feedback.
These are downloads from a Discord link so let me know if these work or not.
Thanks for reading!