One of the great things about creating vector based 2D art, is the ability to scale it as big as you need it. Today we started going through all the assets from our 2011 game Monster Soup. We thought it would be a good idea to go ahead and bring the game into the age of high-res displays as well as work on some other tiny improvements.
The game’s assets are mostly bitmaps, but the original artwork was created with vectors. Diving into a project that’s over four years old can be a bit disorienting, but a few hours later I had recreated half the game in 4x, high-resolution glory. The update will of course take us a while because we are also working on a bunch of other projects, and this is a Maintenance Monday kind of thing. But in the meantime I thought I’d share this lovely tiling background of frozen soup monsters. Enjoy.
A very big update is here for Blockwick 2. We’ve added all 144 puzzles from Blockwick 2 Basics. These are easier puzzles that are great for a more casual experience (also more accessible for kids). It’s our way of saying thank you to everyone who has supported us in our quest to create a premium puzzle game experience.
On top of the gargantuan puzzle drop, we are including a French and Spanish translation of the game. A big thanks to Ross, Vicente, Ehrlichmann, and Jonathan for the magnanimous, linguistic assistance. If you’d like us to continue adding puzzles to Blockwick 2 please don’t hesitate to tell your friends. If we reach 100,000 downloads, we’ll definitely add even more (and maybe even a puzzle editor). Tell your friends!
Sticky blocks were perhaps the trickiest element to implement in Blockwick 2, especially considering our desire for “pixel-perfect” collisions. Here is a quick breakdown of how we pulled them off.
First build a hierarchal array of blocks. Then move each dynamic block towards its goal (with a lag if not root block). Then collide each dynamic block against static colliders. Each block that collides with static collider is flagged and locked from moving in that direction. Then collide dynamics blocks against each other causing any lock flags to propagate. Each collider’s lock flags expire after a few physics steps using simple bitwise operations.
Pros: Stable simulations in most cases. Fairly efficient for pixel perfect collisions. Cons: Rounded corner collisions are not handled very well. No rotations.
What’s the difference? We’re glad you asked. I put together this nifty little graphic to show you.
Blockwick 2 is a truly premium puzzle experience. 160 puzzles from easy to difficult with lots of interesting specialty items to keep you on your toes. There are no ads, no annoying pop-ups. An original ambient soundtrack, sleek, clean graphics, and fluid controls.
Blockwick 2 Basics is a primer to the Blockwick universe. It is a free-to-play ad-supported game. There are 144 original puzzles, but they are much easier than Blockwick 2. We also introduce some of the specialty blocks you’ll meet in Blockwick 2. Even if you’ve already played Blockwick 2, go ahead, go get Blockwick 2 Basics, it’s free.
With the past couple of years’ design trends all rushing towards a flat world, we wanted Blockwick 2′s art style to draw from this, but add some dimensionality and not get bogged down in some of the shortcomings of flatland. The idea to stay as flat and minimalist as possible, and still suggest dimension was more easily conceived than accomplished. Here’s what we came up with.
So the look is simple and clean, but definitely 3D. Afterall a game where you slide around blocks really just feels better when its world has some physicality.
Here is a good list for the icon dimensions required for making an app for iOS and Android. I made this list for our latest game Blockwick 2. Note that the largest sizes are for the respective marketplaces.