Lava Lava Panic

by Crabmaster
created Sep 5
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198 views | 21 downloads

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Volcanoes have suddenly sprung up all around the city!  Put out as much fire as possible to save what is left, and then quell the mighty magma itself before more damage can be done!

Submission for the 2020 Summer Map Competition.

Also my first finished level!  Woot woot. Big thanks to this whole community for being so supportive, and extra shout-out to Skyhawk for giving some bonus-advice/doing some testing.

5 comments

MNTempest
said Sep 5
very nice for a first map!
sheilalpoint
said Sep 5
i dont know what smc is but this is the best map this year
TwinkieSWF
said Sep 5
This is an incredible first map. Awesome concept, great art and fitting gameplay. Please make more maps.
jdude0822
said Sep 12
I would say this is the best first level I have seen from anybody.  Start of the level reminded me of ascent .  

The particle effects you used were really good on the dust / enemies.  Loved the flaming look. The level design of the 1st big drop section was quite nice.  The shape and potion of the lava drips really did a good job of explaining where to go in the level without overtly creating walls or arrows for the player.   

I liked the sound design choices as well in the 1st volcano  where the music got more quiet as you entered, and louder as you left.  It did a really nice job of making it feel "indoors" as well as hot and stuffy.  The burning buildings and background was all really well done.

There were a couple issues I did have with the level though.  One is that  here:
https://imgur.com/jXNdQ7I

The spikes are the wrong color so they blend super well into the rocks so I ended up dying here.  I think this was an accident on your part though so that is totally understandable.

My 2nd complaint is that, while the dust particles do help with dust visibility, having layer 20 tiles over all the collision made noticing missed dust very difficult.  This was especially noticeable due to the specific tile you used which has extra large sprites that cover dust more than flatter ones.  I realize this was done in order to have glowy red tiles for layer 19 as well as to cover up some of the edges on the lava pools, but I think it causes more issues than it solves.  If you do decide to make another map (which I do hope you do), check with skyhawk for his layer controller script.  It would let you do all the stuff you were trying to achieve here without having to compromise visual clarity.

My 3rd issue I had was the gameplay in general was long and did not flow very well.  I think some spots were ok, but in general, it was very difficult or impossible to keep your momentum.  Dustforce is a momentum based platformer, and when you arent really given the opportunity to build or use your momentum, it can feel like a drag.  This paired with the fact the level is around the same length as the last level in the game makes playing it feel frustrating for some people I would imagine.  This all is just due to lack of game experience which you will build as you make more levels and play the game more though.

Anyway thanks for this map.  It's super cool visually.  If you can nail down gameplay, you for sure would be a top mapmaker.
Crabmaster
said Sep 12
Thanks for the feedback!

Nice catch on that spike I missed, meant to replace all the spikes in the level with the more visible red ones.

As for the layer 20 issues, yep I've learned my lesson that the visual clarity compromise was not worth it.  Definitely will mess with more scripts and layer options if I go for another fire or similar themed level.

As for gameplay, definitely a lot of learning experiences came from this one and the feedback I've gotten.  I could have probably played it safe with the design until I was better practiced at making the feel good, as I did want to try something a bit different with making it more heavy handed on the dust clearing and needing to think about when to use supers and such, but besides general flow issues not being executed as well as they could have been the main issue I see is that the level ended up way too long and wears out its welcome.

This should have likely been more of a 3 act stage, instead of the weird 2 parts/4 acts stage it ended up being, if I had made it shorter having the ruined building segment be at the start, lead into a single mountain climb, and end with the one big drop into the volcano the pacing would have likely been much better.  I may consider remaking this level down the road after I've made plenty of other stages to get me some practice!

Thanks again, the feedback and kind words are very appreciated!

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