Here’s a great example of why so many Flash authors write crap games:
What the F happened?
Someone let an animator dictate the game-design.
This is one of the side-effects of Flash: it encourages people to base games off animations, instead of basing animations off game-design.
The game is actively unpleasant to play because the controls suck so badly. They suck so badly because:
- they won’t “allow” you to do a new action until the current anim finishes
- if the engine cannot visually playback the anim it’s trying to, it cancels your keypress (!!)
- your “position” in game terms is dicated by the current anim-frame
In case that last one is too subtle: the main character has a very camp “skip” walk-anim. But your character is physically “taller” during that anim, because they keyed CD off the anim, rather than off the game-logic.
So, when you’re doing fine movement, you have to wait-and-watch the individual frames of animation to decide when to jump. I find it hard to believe that this is what the authors intended. In practice, you end up spending most of the time watching anim frames, and/or counting frames, instead of playing the game.
I suspect – partly from the documentation from the authors – that they thought everyone would admire the “prettiness”. No. You made a game. People will judge it on the playability. In fact, they have (read the comments – endless complaints about the infernal control system).
For the record, I’ve seen this exact same problem on at least one 7-figure-budget game, and it contributed to the entire project getting cancelled. The studio making it had a background making animations for other people’s games. I shan’t name names because they were skilled and competent – just naive at the time – and my impression was they learned a *lot* from the experience. (I doubt they’d make the same mistake today).
I have seen very similar issues on a couple of other games – most of which got canned; at least one SHOULD have been canned, but instead cost an ungodly amount of money before putting the studio out of business.
It’s not a small issue. Any real game player will spot it. Any professional game developer will recognise the n00b mistake and scoff at it. The sad truth is that many artists – and most animators – won’t even notice it.
Until they get terrible reviews, and wonder why no-one is buying their games :(.