Author Topic: Traiteur: A colorful, detailed ASCII world... with emoticons going to WAR!  (Read 3182 times)

RaconteurNick

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Hi everyone!

My team is making something... weird, called Traiteur.

It's a detailed ASCII world where the vertical and horizontal emoticons are going to war, and you're the only one who can stop them.

Elements of old-school Zelda, rogue-likes, dungeon crawlers, and more are in this odd little game. But enough talk  -- here's a gif of ASCII COMBAT!



I'll try and keep you all updated on what we're doing. We have a dev blog here if you want to get a better idea of the thought process behind this strange little thing!

In the meantime, my question for YOU: What's your immediate thought upon seeing this?

Eager for feedback and to share with y'all what we're doing :)

Here's some facts/features/random thoughts:

  • The game name comes from the Cajun French term for a faith healer, though the game is not specifically about that -- we picked it to symbolize the healing after making a game that didn't perform as well as we hoped originally
  • The world will be full of color and detail, like swaying trees and colorful foliage!
  • Several different abilities will be unlockable apart from the main light attack.
  • We're looking at releasing the game on Steam later this year.
  • The best description someone has given me of the game: "An ASCII quest for human understanding."
  • We have a group of NPCs that speak only in motivational quotes!
« Last Edit: July 13, 2016, 03:17:07 PM by RaconteurNick »

Krice

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What's your immediate thought upon seeing this?

It's not a roguelike.

RaconteurNick

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What's your immediate thought upon seeing this?

It's not a roguelike.

You're absolutely right -- it's not exactly a roguelike. I've had a bunch of people ask if it was due to all of the ASCII art -- I figured I would still love to share it with a community of people that love roguelikes, since to me the ASCII always stood out as a distinctly roguelike feature.

Aleksanderus

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What's your immediate thought upon seeing this?

It's not a roguelike.

You're absolutely right -- it's not exactly a roguelike. I've had a bunch of people ask if it was due to all of the ASCII art -- I figured I would still love to share it with a community of people that love roguelikes, since to me the ASCII always stood out as a distinctly roguelike feature.
Krice said it was not a roguelike! It's over, game over man...

Gornova

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at first sight for me seems to be a shump or a bullet hell game.. I mean, only a gif is not enough to judge your game properly!
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RaconteurNick

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What's your immediate thought upon seeing this?

It's not a roguelike.

You're absolutely right -- it's not exactly a roguelike. I've had a bunch of people ask if it was due to all of the ASCII art -- I figured I would still love to share it with a community of people that love roguelikes, since to me the ASCII always stood out as a distinctly roguelike feature.
Krice said it was not a roguelike! It's over, game over man...

He has a fair point! I don't give up that easily though... ;)

at first sight for me seems to be a shump or a bullet hell game.. I mean, only a gif is not enough to judge your game properly!

Good feedback! I'll update the OP with more detailed visuals and information today to give you a better look. Thanks for telling me! :)

jere

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RaconteurNick, you can ignore Krice. Having only two posts, you probably wouldn't know he's the resident troll.

However, I would spend some more time evaluating if ASCII is really the way you want to go. The trees look nice, but appear to be using that "ascii as pixels/lines" approach that is barely recognizable as ASCII. The rest looks mostly like placeholder art, so it doesn't seem that you are too far in to change directions.

Most ASCII games are not only hitting the nostalgia notes, but actually delivering a traditional roguelike experience as well. Cogmind is a great example.

Other games use ASCII as a theme, but stylize/polish the hell out of it, so they're no longer relying on hardcore players. Like Brut@l

If you're making a shmup game, you're not going to be getting a huge amount of interest from the hardcore audience (though actiony roguelites are certainly still discussed here). And if the game doesn't look absolutely amazing, the mainstream audience is going to be confused or apathetic.
Golden Krone Hotel -- available on Steam Early Access now

AgingMinotaur

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The game name comes from the Cajun French term for a faith healer, though the game is not specifically about that -- we picked it to symbolize the healing after making a game that didn't perform as well as we hoped originally
Interesting. The title first had me thinking of a snackbar/deli ("traiteur" in Continental French) ;)
The gif looks … totally crazy, which is always a Good Thing™, I think. Jere may have some good points to consider, if you want to think strategically about which audience you're appealing to. Or you can just follow your vision and see where it takes you. For sure, if you were using pixel art instead, the gif would look like any old shmup. Anyway, best of luck.

As always,
Minotauros
This matir, as laborintus, Dedalus hous, hath many halkes and hurnes ... wyndynges and wrynkelynges.

RaconteurNick

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RaconteurNick, you can ignore Krice. Having only two posts, you probably wouldn't know he's the resident troll.

However, I would spend some more time evaluating if ASCII is really the way you want to go. The trees look nice, but appear to be using that "ascii as pixels/lines" approach that is barely recognizable as ASCII. The rest looks mostly like placeholder art, so it doesn't seem that you are too far in to change directions.

Most ASCII games are not only hitting the nostalgia notes, but actually delivering a traditional roguelike experience as well. Cogmind is a great example.

Other games use ASCII as a theme, but stylize/polish the hell out of it, so they're no longer relying on hardcore players. Like Brut@l

If you're making a shmup game, you're not going to be getting a huge amount of interest from the hardcore audience (though actiony roguelites are certainly still discussed here). And if the game doesn't look absolutely amazing, the mainstream audience is going to be confused or apathetic.

Even trolls can bring up good points :-)

Thanks for your feedback! Yes, it's early along - the colors in that gif are pretty bland and the only actual final ASCII are the trees currently. We'll be loading the world with colorful details (grass, rocks, bushes, all of which will have color and not just be white, etc.) so this gif represents a very early snapshot of things just starting to come together!

Out of the scenarios you listed, ASCII is our theme and we're going to polish the hell out of this - the story is what drives our game rather than the gameplay, and that's the biggest hook besides a detailed ASCII world. It's almost like The Princess Bride, I kid you not -- the first time I read the script, I had chest pain from how much I was laughing. Can't wait to share more in that regard!

Appreciate you sharing all those games too, I'll be looking at those very closely!

The game name comes from the Cajun French term for a faith healer, though the game is not specifically about that -- we picked it to symbolize the healing after making a game that didn't perform as well as we hoped originally
Interesting. The title first had me thinking of a snackbar/deli ("traiteur" in Continental French) ;)
The gif looks … totally crazy, which is always a Good Thing™, I think. Jere may have some good points to consider, if you want to think strategically about which audience you're appealing to. Or you can just follow your vision and see where it takes you. For sure, if you were using pixel art instead, the gif would look like any old shmup. Anyway, best of luck.

As always,
Minotauros

You speak some French? Comment ca va? :) Someone actually once asked me if our game was the indie spiritual successor to Cooking Mama, and I'll never forget that!

Building off of my answer to jere, we'll be following our path to make something really unique. Our company Raconteur Games is about telling different kinds of stories, and it's our biggest risk - we've gotten a much better response to this game so early in development as compared to our first game, which was actually a shmup! We've learned a lot and my #1 priority is going to players early to get feedback and talk with them.

Our goal is to mix some genuine strategy into our approach (because we gotta eat after all!), while also going with our vision of making really different kinds of games. :)

Appreciate your feedback!

Aleksanderus

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Alright, now that you have survived my mindbreaking techniques I'm gonna tell you what I think about this game.

So...

1. It's a roguelite

2. hitbox is shit

3. elitists (like me!) won't play it because it isn't fully a roguelike

And also the most important question in this thread:

WILL IT BE COMMERCIAL?

RaconteurNick

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Alright, now that you have survived my mindbreaking techniques I'm gonna tell you what I think about this game.

So...

1. It's a roguelite

2. hitbox is shit

3. elitists (like me!) won't play it because it isn't fully a roguelike

And also the most important question in this thread:

WILL IT BE COMMERCIAL?

1. Awesome!
2. Definitely - gameplay isn't balanced yet, good eye!
3. That's unfortunate! I hope that as the game gets further along you'll see something that makes you want to play :)

Yes, the game will be commercial, coming for sale to Steam this year.

Krice

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since to me the ASCII always stood out as a distinctly roguelike feature.

It's the least important feature. Ascii was used, because at that time there was no other way. Most roguelikes today have tiles, but they still are 100% roguelikes. But if you make a shmup or platformer with ascii graphics it's not going to make it a roguelike.

RaconteurNick

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since to me the ASCII always stood out as a distinctly roguelike feature.

It's the least important feature. Ascii was used, because at that time there was no other way. Most roguelikes today have tiles, but they still are 100% roguelikes. But if you make a shmup or platformer with ascii graphics it's not going to make it a roguelike.

Sure, I can see that. ASCII for us helped make the project be visually unique from the beginning. Hope you follow along and find something in the game that interests you :)

Kyzrati

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OP can check out another ASCII shmup that's already been Greenlit on Steam.
Cogmind - Sci-fi Roguelike (devblog) | X@COM - The X-COM RL | REXPaint - ASCII art editor