Bulletpattern Game design, Flash and Unity development

12Oct/102

TKO – 4 new characters!

TKO Update

Last week there was a huge update for TKO. To support the Ben 10 10/10/10 promotion, we made 4 Ben 10 Ultimate Aliens (Rath, Armadrillo, Ultimate Echo Echo, Ultimate Big Chill) and unlocked Ultimate Humungousaur, who previously required a player to be logged in a have a certain number of wins to play.

Restructure

TKO has been more successful than we ever hoped, so in addition to new characters, the entire structure of the game was changed to more easily allow for updates. Originally, TKO was supposed to have 9 characters, so we just put all the character data in the main file. As we added more characters to TKO, we saw more and more people fall off during the initial game download. However, now TKO has over 20 characters, way too many for a single file.

Our ninja engineer (ninjaneer?) completely re-factored the game, moving all assets outside of the main game file. This allows for all the character data to be loaded as individual files. It also lets designers and artists to update characters without having to recompile the game.

The art pipeline was completely overhauled. Our 3D artists worked magic to convert files from Blender to 3DS Max. This allowed up to make some nice, new animations for the new characters, like Ultimate Big Chill's fireball. This conversion will allow us to produce characters much faster in the future.

Building Characters

In building the new characters, we had very, very little time. As a result, instead of making all new special moves, we mixed and matched special moves from previous characters. This was an efficient way to build new characters and ended up creating very different play styles.

Balance

I collect data on character selections, wins, etc. and make balance tweaks based on these numbers. In a previous build, I nerfed Big Chill a bit because he was far and away the most dominant character. I increased the recovery on his Ice Dash (which was was too safe) and decreased the damage on all his freezing attacks. This resulted in Big Chill going from a break away first to dead last in win percentage. Numbers like this can be tricky to evaluate. Were players still attempting to spam his Ice Dash which is no longer safe? Or did these change really really make him a much worse character? I decided to go back half-way and increase the damage on his freezing attacks. I will have to keep an eye on him for next build. I also increased the hit area for Chowder's Kimchi attack, since his wins were pretty low.

Success

TKO saw a 5x increase in traffic last week, so obviously, the new content was a hit. At last count, there has been over 37 million TKO matches. We will continue to make TKO better with new features, balance tweaks and content. We are also building some exciting promotions and events around TKO so stay tuned for more robot fighting action.

30Apr/101

TKO – New character! Generator Rex

The latest and last addition to the TKO roster is Generator Rex. Generator Rex is a new show from the creators of Ben 10.

Generator Rex is like Reptile from Mortal Kombat with a beefy uppercut. We had some extra time to work on him so his special moves are much more visually customized than other characters. He is most likely our last character and I am happy he turned out so well.

19Apr/1010

TKO – Ultimate Humungousaur! (but you have to EARN him)

Today we added a new character and a new feature to TKO. Ben 10 Ultimate Alien character Ultimate Humungousaur was added but not everyone will be able to play him. You must register and get 3 wins with any characters to unlock him. Very few users are registering so hopefully this will drive more player to register.

Ult. Humungousaur focuses on landing throws. He has a ground throw (which is actually a hit) and an air throw. The ground throw was a true throw but since the special moves are so easy to perform, a Zangief-like throw was horribly overpowered. The air throw combos well with his stomp that pops opponents up into the air. His heavy stomp flies way up into the air and can cross up at the right distance making it very sneaky.

Here is a combo video for Ultimate Humungosaur.

19Apr/100

TKO – Webby Honoree (and other awards)

Our online fighting game TKO has become a Webby honoree! Being beside such awesome projects as 1066 and eRepublik is an honor.

This is old news but since we are on the subject of awards, TKO also won "Best in Class" from the Interactive Media Awards and the promo team making our awesome promotional videos and ads won silver in "Best Online Ad Campaign - Casual Game" from MI6 Marketing Awards. (I would link but it's a PDF)

Tagged as: No Comments
19Apr/101

TKO – Invite-a-Friend and Finn

The number one request for TKO was, "I want to play my friends!" so we listened and made it happen.

This was an interesting challenge for 2 reasons, 1) We don't have friends list on CN.com and 2) a majority of our users don't even register, they play as guest. The answer was to make a link the player could send to friends and this link would match them. This way players don't need to be logged in. We also used a code system so players could just tell their friend and code to enter on the cartoontko.com site.

We also added Finn from Adventure Time! We made sure to have Jake in there are much as possible since they are inseparable buddies.

More characters coming soon!

TKO - with Finn and Invite-a-Friend

Tagged as: , 1 Comment