Android Phones

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Android Phones

Postby rt » Thu May 26, 2011 2:05 pm

Anyone have one? I just got the Nexus S and have been enjoying it greatly. The app marketplace is large and i'd like to try making an app of my own. Possibly something using the clones graphic art to raise brand awareness.
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Re: Android Phones

Postby CCX » Fri May 27, 2011 9:15 am

I could've remembered wrong, but I believe someone did try to create an unauthorized iPhone port of Lemmings before Sony's legal department shut them down, so it'd seem possible to create at least a playable, singleplayer-only version of Clones on a touchscreen phone, despite the smaller screen size and lack of keyboard/buttons/d-pad. Then again, we wouldn't know since they shut iPhone-Lemmings down, so no one has actually experienced what it'd be like playing it on a touchscreen-only device with small screen. I'm saying singleplayer-only because I'm pretty sure the small screen and lack of keyboard will make MP Clones a non-starter.

I do have to say though, not yet owning a touchscreen phone, I do have to wonder how well they really work for gaming in general. Obviously some types of games can work (and in some case even enhanced) with no buttons/d-pad and only the touchscreen, but even simple arcade-type games and platformers would seem to suffer from the input methods available on a phone. Or do such games provide virtual buttons on the touchscreen as substitutes? Perhaps the situation is better on Android phones, not limited to Steve Job's "Model-T" approach to hardware design (in the sense of "it can be any color as long as it's black").

I'm aware the phones also allow accelerometer-based inputs (eg. tilting the phone), but that also seems a bit awkward compared with a d-pad, except maybe for certain types of games (driving).

If the input method conundrum can be resolved, two possible ideas for non-Clones games featuring Clones graphics:

1) a Pac-Man clone (no pun intended), with a gulping clone substituting for Pac-Man, Q-Dots for the dots, and slugs for the ghosts. Not sure what to use for the fruits yet but I'm sure you can come up with something appropriate. You can find more detailed information on the ghost movement algorithms here (or just Google).

2) a standard platformer game with a clone as the main character you control, effectively a light clone (but hopefully with more Mario-like jumping abilities, as the jumping abilities of an actual light clone leaves much to be desired for platformer games). Q-Dots are stuff you can pick up, slugs can be one of your enemies, and lops can be your main offensive weapon. (Or maybe just go all Mario and allow stomping to kill most enemies?) Be sure to include some fun contraptions like slingshots, shooters, hoverboards and anti-gravs!

I'll post more when I come up with more ideas, especially ones that are more certain to work on a touchscreen.

------------------

Perhaps a really appropriate app for the phones would be something that can help with coordinating Clones MP matches/tournaments? :idea:

On the other hand, it'd only be useful to the rather limited audience of avid MP Clones players who also own an Android phone. :| Probably not your target audience. Never mind. ;)
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Re: Android Phones

Postby Simon » Fri May 27, 2011 10:14 am

CCX wrote:no one has actually experienced what it'd be like playing it on a touchscreen-only device with small screen.

Nope, there is Lemmings DS, which never got axed. Its author even got a job at Sony where he put this on his resumee.

Additional info, even though nobody asked for it: List of Lemmings clones and how they fared.

CCX wrote:I'm saying singleplayer-only because I'm pretty sure the small screen and lack of keyboard will make MP Clones a non-starter.

Yes, it doesn't seem to be a nice competitive environment at all. I already suspect singleplayer to be played very pause-heavily because there is limited screen space, so one must zoom in further than on a desktop screen.

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Re: Android Phones

Postby rt » Fri May 27, 2011 11:37 am

Cool ideas, just a quick reply here, i'll respond more to those concepts later. After looking around the huge Android marketplace i started thinking about what i could bring to it and the first 2 things that came to mind were: Clones and Beatles. I happen to be a huge Beatles fan and the apps i saw did not provide the information i was looking for, so perhaps i can raise the bar in that niche :) I'll basically write apps to make my life easier and hope that there are a million other people like me that are willing to pay 50 cents for the app.
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Re: Android Phones

Postby CCX » Fri May 27, 2011 2:01 pm

Simon wrote:
CCX wrote:no one has actually experienced what it'd be like playing it on a touchscreen-only device with small screen.

Nope, there is Lemmings DS, which never got axed. Its author even got a job at Sony where he put this on his resumee.

Thanks for the URL to Lemmings DS. I'm aware of Nintendo DS but since it also features a stylus and the traditional d-pad and buttons, I wasn't sure what input methods are available on Lemmings DS. From the URL, it looks like the touch-related input methods are best performed with a stylus. Not sure how many of the Android phones out there have styluses (which harks back to the pre-iPhone age of smartphones and Blackberries).

I'm not too bothered by the small screen, after all even well before Lemmings DS, they already had Lemmings on Game Boy.

I didn't know about the Lemmings DS author getting a job at Sony. :ooh: Then again, was Lemmings DS before or after Sony actually started publishing Lemmings games?
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Re: Android Phones

Postby Simon » Fri May 27, 2011 3:00 pm

Ah, you're right in that Lemminds DS uses the buttons as well as the stylus. There isn't a touch-only port so far indeed.

Matt from LDS has been working for Sony since middle of 2007. He has been working on LDS since middle of 2006 at least, probably earlier. Sony's PSP Lemmings was released in March 2006.

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Re: Android Phones

Postby CCX » Fri May 27, 2011 3:48 pm

Going in a totally different direction, inspired by such fan art as Gemma's, perhaps an interactive comic app featuring clone characters can work, provided you find the right artistic talent. Maybe you can even fit the Beatles in there somewhere. ;) :lol:
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Re: Android Phones

Postby rt » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:46 am

CCX wrote:Going in a totally different direction, inspired by such fan art as Gemma's, perhaps an interactive comic app featuring clone characters can work, provided you find the right artistic talent. Maybe you can even fit the Beatles in there somewhere. ;) :lol:


Yes! A cartoon featuring the adventures of the Beatles and some clones/clonesmasters would be awesome. The artist that did the CloneMaster concept art would probably be interested in this, he already has some web cartoon experience.

After using the android phone for a few days i find it to be excellent. I'm really looking forward to coding up some test apps and then attempting a slimmed down version of Clones. There are a few Lemmings-like games in the android market, but they seem to all suffer from the "finger in the way" problem of a touchscreen.
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Re: Android Phones

Postby rt » Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:53 am

CCX wrote:Or do such games provide virtual buttons on the touchscreen as substitutes?

1) a Pac-Man clone (no pun intended), with a gulping clone substituting for Pac-Man, Q-Dots for the dots, and slugs for the ghosts. Not sure what to use for the fruits yet but I'm sure you

2) a standard platformer game with a clone as the main character you control, effectively a light clone (but hopefully with more Mario-like jumping abilities, as the jumping abilities of


Most games provide some sort of virtual button. I tried a tetris game that rendered out a Game Boy like control scheme with the game area down the center strip of the screen, played in landscape-widescreen mode. Some other games are pure touch-input by clicking on characters and dragging/swiping.

1) This would be a fun variant to test out. There are a couple of android game engines/libraries available and it would be a good first project to learn about what's possible.

2) Hmm, a standalone game featuring a lost Light Clone? Interesting, if the terrain is not pixel precise then the collision logic can be easily improved. Could make it physics-based so that Lopped heads can bounce around and knock over objects :) The CloneMasters could show up along the way. Would need an overall plot.
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Re: Android Phones

Postby CCX » Sat Jun 04, 2011 1:32 am

rt wrote:There are a few Lemmings-like games in the android market, but they seem to all suffer from the "finger in the way" problem of a touchscreen.

Hmm, good point. On the other hand, is it really that bad? I think with the method of select a clones first and then tap to assign morphs to selected clone, only the tap-to-select-clone maneuver may get in the way, except your finger is pretty much in the vicinity of where you were focused on just shortly before, so maybe it's not that bad. Do want to make sure though to avoid forcing the player to tap too often on parts of the screen near the left and the top, so we don't have more of the finger's length covering stuff up.
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