Monday, July 13, 2015

White Beach Escapade

After a five months since release, we finally have half of the next Act done for Super Tiny Monkey!

First of all, sorry about the pacing. You know how this goes; I have a full time job and I'm only left with so much time to devote on this project, with my wife lending a hand when it comes to testing and back end development. This upcoming game update is the result of five weeks worth of work spread across five months.

So, what's new with STM? What does this long overdue update bring?

First on the list is the removal of the dreaded "death on fall" mechanic. No longer will you instantly die when you miss your jump and fall to the ground. Instead of dying, your character will just continue jumping on the ground. We've been getting feedback about how the fall death makes the game much more difficult, and leans the game towards un-fun than challenging. That being said though, don't get too comfortable just watching your character leap across the ground-- we added ground traps that will appear from time to time, to keep players on their toes. Also, there's that poacher chasing you who will easily catch you if you stay too low.

Be careful of these spiky plants!

Next, and this is a big one, is the brand new map called White Beach. Our hero manages to flee from Rico the poacher and get out of the forest, only to end up in a beach filled with territorial monkeys, inexplicably aggressive sea gulls, and falling coconut fruits. It is here where Goggles will continue his adventure into the unknown world, and continue his escape from Dr.Zoo.

The new map isn't just a copy of the first map. While it retains the core gameplay of jumping from one platform to the next while avoiding obstacles, we added a new game mode: the "Ride" mode.

A few seconds at the beginning of the map, you will encounter a new friend.

I'm a fan of SHMUPS, and Gradius is on of my childhood favorites. Obviously, I'd be inspired to make at least a mini-game based on it. At some point in your adventure, you will meet a new character, Beaks the Hornbill, who will introduce the player to the Ride mode. All you have to do is catch up to him and you'll be taken up in the sky.

Ride mode

As with Gradius, you control Beaks directly by swiping you finger on the screen. Beaks will keep following the touched area. Your usual power up buttons will be relocated to the right side of the screen, but the other two power ups (Shield and Power Dash) will be removed, with only the Spitoon remaining. An Eject button is also provided if you wish to prematurely get out of this mode. While in this mode, you can collect golden bugs not found on land, either avoid or shoot enemies that come at you. Shooting enemies has the incentive of spawning more golden bugs. When you do get hit, you will automatically eject from Ride mode, but don't worry, Beaks will reappear after some time.

It is important to note that while in Ride mode, your Score will not increase. You will play Ride mode ideally when you're looking to collecting golden bugs.

Now let's go back to land. White Beach maps introduced new obstacles the player must deal with. Aside from the staple poacher that keeps chasing our hero, there are now actual monkeys in the game! Unfortunately these monkeys are territorial and unfriendly. They don't like it when you step on their trees. You can either avoid them or bring them down with your Spitoon or Power Dash.

There three types of territorial monkeys, each with their own behaviors. It's better to get to know them yourself, so I wont spoil them for you.

There are also sea gulls on land, so always be on alert!

You think those coconuts are harmless? Look again.

The update also added 30 quests to the game, and unlocked the next level of power upgrades (when you reach level 18).

The White Beach map is available to all players, with the minimum level requirement of 16. True to the STM design, each act is composed of two maps. This map will be the first half of the act, with the Boss map currently in development. You can follow our updates from our website, Facebook, Tumblr, or Twitter. Follow us!

Here's a sneak peak of what we have so far on the Boss map:

Get the updated game from Google Play.

-- LJ

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