Sunday, February 5, 2012

Since not much was happening this week besides the release of the newest Level Pack for Mars Lander Runner, I thought I'd go into a bit of detail on how I got about creating levels. But that quickly became a two page long, complete "behind-the-scenes" write-up on the creation of the program itself. As a result, I decided to split the article up into key components and I'll release a part of it along with each week's Level Pack News Post. So without further ado, here is the first part of the behind the scenes look at Mars Lander Builder and Runner:

Working with a Theme:

First of all, I don't use any type of specialized editor which only I, the creator of the program, can use. I've been using Mars Lander Builder to make levels, just like anyone else with the program could. That is to say, I don't make the levels with GameMaker, I design, build and test them within the same program.
Mars Lander Builder

When designing a Level Pack, I try to go for some kind of theme. When I initially created Mars Lander Builder, and knew that the more features I packed into it, the greater variety of levels I could make. That's why I added Asteroids, Geysers, UFOs and Crystals. Imagine playing a version of Mars Lander where your only possible goal was to get the Rocket to the Landing Pad, without ANY other things to collect or anything to avoid besides the terrain. It certainly presents its own challenge, but it can get boring quickly if that's the only thing you are doing. Well, that's the type of "Mars Lander" game I'd been playing for years, as part of the camp I work at. Like I said, not bad, and not without its own brand of difficulty, but why stop there? With only terrain pieces, you can only design so many kinds of challenges. With other pieces you can make SO many other kinds of levels, so many different types of challenges.

Level Pack #4:

If you're new to this: The easiest way to play Mars Lander levels is to use Mars Lander Online Runner Edition, which you can play by clicking on the image below. Alternatively, you can download the level packs with the links above and play them offline.
Mars Lander Online Runner Edition will prompt you to paste the level codes which you can copy from the text-boxes below (Yes, they run off the page... just double click them to make sure you select the entire code and then copy it).

Level 1:
text code:
Level 1

Level 2:
text code:
Level 2

Level 3:
text code:
Level 3

Level 4:
text code:
Level 4

Level 5:
text code:
Level 5

Don’t forget, you can submit your own custom levels and get them featured in future News posts, or even as part of a Level Pack in the future:

And as always,

Good luck Game Making!

~Bluish-Green Productions

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