Light the Way - 10th Anniversary Edition

LTW (2023)

Ten years later, the premise remains the same. A sequence of tiles light up, creating a path across the playing grid. Your job is to memorize which tiles light up, the order that they light up in, and recreate said sequence by tapping the correct tiles in the correct order. It may sound easy, but as you progress through the game, the playing grid gets larger and the sequences longer, testing just how effective your memory truly is.

Everyone remembers the first game they created, whether it was a good outcome or not. Luckily for me, Light the Way was the former. It had a good gameplay loop and, at the time, seemed like a complete product. I was proud of what I had created, as many peoples first projects never see the light of day, let alone in a functional state. I knew that for the games’ tenth anniversary, I wanted to revisit it, get it working for newer devices and add new content. Work started in September 2021 by playing through the original version. Listed below are some of my notes that I jotted down on my initial play through:

  • Graphical glitch when going from the Main Menu to the Difficulty Select screens
  • Graphics in general suck (neon themed?)
  • Level Select number sizes inconsistent, fonts don’t match
  • Entire game loads slowly, especially between levels
  • On HARD difficulty, the tiles overlap with the outside borders 
  • Blue is not pronounced enough, clashes with the white and is hard to see
  • Pattern plays too fast
  • Patterns on Medium/Hard are boring/not elaborate enough
  • If you fail a level, the ENTIRE game freezes. The only fix is to kill the game, which also erases progress

I quickly realized that I was blinded all those years ago by the excitement of making my first game. I also realized that I wasn’t going to be able to use the original as a foundation for the update, leading to a full blown remake. 


DESIGN CHANGES

  • I always envisioned people playing the game while standing in line waiting for coffee or sitting in a doctors office. One handed gameplay fit this vision, thus the switching of orientation from landscape to portrait.
  • The next big change was in the form of a complete graphical overhaul. While the original neon theme may have worked had it been done properly, the new flat colors are a lot easier on the eyes.
  • I spent a lot of time early in development going back and forth on how I wanted to set up the menu systems. In the original, you would select a difficulty and then select the level you wanted to play. However, there was no incentive to go back and play levels that had already been completed. It did not make sense to implement a score system, as you either completed or failed a level. I ultimately came to the decision to get rid of the level select menu and create a flow like system, where you complete a level and move on to the next. 

GAMEPLAY CHANGES

  • The speed at which the pattern plays has been decreased from four tiles per second to two tiles per second
  • A new feature this time around is the strike system. Depending on the difficulty level the players are on, they have an allocated amount of strikes they can get before failing the level, almost like a second chance system
  • Level design can make or break even the best of games. I noticed during my play through of the original that, compared to Easy mode, the patterns on the Medium and Hard difficulties were kind of boring and not very elaborate. Taking a look at the pattern length to grid size ratio, it’s easy to see why:
  1. EASY: 6 tile pattern length to 16 tile (4x4) grid size (37.5%)
  2. MEDIUM: 8 tile pattern length to 25 tile (5x5) grid size (32%)
  3. HARD: 10 tile pattern length to 36 tile (6x6) grid size (27.7%)

As the grid size increased with difficulty, the pattern length did not grow proportionately. I went back to the drawing board and reworked the levels to the following:

  1. EASY: 6 tile pattern length to 16 tile (4x4) grid size (37.5%)
  2. MEDIUM: 10 tile pattern length to 25 tile (5x5) grid size (40%)
  3. HARD: 14 tile pattern length to 36 tile (6x6) grid size (38.8%)

By keeping the pattern length to grid size ratio around the same for each difficulty, it resulted in better, more elaborate level design in higher difficulties.


Below, you can find a few comparison pictures.

Currently, I'm adding the finishing touches to the iOS version of the app, with the intent for it to release on January 5th, 2023. After that, I'm planning to shift focus to an Android release, but having never ventured that direction, that decision is still up in the air.


As a side note, I am looking for anyone with an iPad Pro 12.9 so I can gather screenshots for my App Store page. If anyone would be able to help out in that regards, it would be much appreciated!


Let me know what y'all think!

Comments

  • The GlessnerdThe Glessnerd Member, PRO Posts: 54

    Well, submitted to Apple today. Fingers crossed it goes through without any hiccups!

  • The GlessnerdThe Glessnerd Member, PRO Posts: 54

    Sometimes things don't go as planned. For example, you set the release date for your game as January 5 in hopes of getting put in the Preorder page to potentially get a jump start and get the word out, but Apple goes ahead and releases it the day they approve it two weeks early. Must mean that it's so good that they just couldn't keep it out of everyones hands, right? Right? Anyways, Light the Way is AVAILABLE NOW! Follow the link below


    Since the original release date was after the end of the 12 Days of Gamesalad event going on in the forums right now, I wasn't able to submit anything. To make up for it, here are a few Promo Codes for the game. Please, if you take one, be sure to say so. And please leave a review and help spread the word to get this game in as many peoples minds as possible. Thank you all for your continued support and Happy Holidays!


    7K7ENM6E9YPJ

    HWX9YY3TKJ4A

    PNRH3MKN7MPF

    JE4X9MY4K7X9

    XPY496MRFH93

    LYLHL9633YNX

    H643RX7NJEF9

    YXJELEKXMFEJ

    3937MATHA7R7

    Y94KAEJ4PFR9

  • The GlessnerdThe Glessnerd Member, PRO Posts: 54

    #62 on the charts in less than 12 hours!

  • tatiangtatiang Member, Sous Chef, PRO, Senior Sous-Chef Posts: 11,949

    An oldie but goodie! Congrats on getting it out there!

    New to GameSalad? (FAQs)   |   Tutorials   |   Templates   |   Greenleaf Games   |   Educator & Certified GameSalad User

  • The GlessnerdThe Glessnerd Member, PRO Posts: 54

    The game wouldn’t be where it is today without your contributions back in the day. Many thanks, friend!

  • The GlessnerdThe Glessnerd Member, PRO Posts: 54
    edited December 2022

    Anyone use any of the codes and has any feedback/input they’d like to give?

  • The GlessnerdThe Glessnerd Member, PRO Posts: 54

    Threw together some new App Store preview images to replace the current boring ones. These, a new icon, and some other new stuff will be included in an upcoming update

Sign In or Register to comment.