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Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

Last post 6/5/2008 3:45 AM by Jim Perry. 20 replies.
  • 7/1/2007 1:39 PM

    Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Magic Crystals is an action puzzler, with gameplay based on the idea of indirect control. Here are screenshots:
    Screenshot 1
    Screenshot 2
    Screenshot 3

    And a demo:
    [Update] Windows

    Good luck to everybody in the contest!


    Now if I only could get past the freaking uploader :(

  • 7/1/2007 2:41 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    That looks gorgeous! Congrats on finishing, will give it a go stat! :-)

  • 7/1/2007 3:10 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Wow.. that does look really nice.. :)


  • 7/1/2007 3:23 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Great job guys. It was easy to play, technically impressive and looked great.

    Good luck guys!
  • 7/1/2007 3:56 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    looks incredibly good, congratulations!
  • 7/2/2007 11:57 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Thank you all for comments!

    * sigh of relief * Now that my entry is finally uploaded, I can relax... :)
  • 7/2/2007 12:44 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    I like it, though I did get a little distracted and played about just generating land and watching it disappear. :D

    Great game, meets the criteria for XBLA as it is easy to get going and definately hard to master.


    Good luck with the competition.

  • 7/5/2007 3:45 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    I agree with Antony, a very nice game indeed. Very polished and easy to pick up. I wish I had an Xbox just so I could see how easy it is to use the GamePad to move the seer stones.

    I'd be surprised if this does not win something in the competition.
  • 7/5/2007 9:32 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Cool, thanks for feedback!

    Controller scheme adjusts to the platform, on Windows it is more or less regular painting with a mouse, while on the Xbox cursor position is fixed in the center and terrain is moving around it.

    I was thinking about supporting controller on Windows as well, so the first thing (easy way) I've implemented was to move cursor with it (imagine doing the same with cursor keys). This appeared waaaaaaay unresponsive, so I dropped it. Another idea was once player started using controller to switch to Xbox scheme, and revert back when using mouse, but didn't have time to implement it.
  • 7/6/2007 2:43 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Wow, great looking game.  Did you do the artwork yourself?
  • 7/6/2007 9:02 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Yup, that's a solo entry. I joined quite late in the game, so didn't have time to look for designers to "outsource" graphics :)
  • 7/7/2007 7:17 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Well the game looks awesome.  I'll have to give the demo a try.
  • 7/7/2007 2:38 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    I tried the demo and it is a beautiful game.  Wow that's just impressive.

    It worked fine until I tried to go full screen.  I'm not sure it's just your game that does that though because there's a couple of games that won't run that appear to be full screen but I can't be sure.  Just for info my screen res is 1024X 768 and my max resolution is 2048x1536.  I'm not sure if it's because my resolution is too low or the widescreen aspect, but something's not working.  Again I encountered this error with a few other games as well, so it could just be something with my card.

    A thought for the windows controls would be to allow the screen to move with the arrows so you could focus on moving the terrain.  Moving the camera while trying to raise terrain means you loose focus on the game.

    But dude that game rocks and puts me to shame.

  • 7/7/2007 4:35 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Hm, that's interesting, since the mode switching code is brain dead simple:

    Graphics.IsFullScreen = !Graphics.IsFullScreen;
    if (Graphics.IsFullScreen)
      Graphics.PreferredBackBufferWidth =
      Graphics.PreferredBackBufferHeight =
      Graphics.PreferredBackBufferWidth = 800;
      Graphics.PreferredBackBufferHeight = 600;


    Basically, it just sets your current desktop resolution as target frame buffer size. Moreover, UI system doesn't care about aspect ratio, and does layout independently. Makes me think if there is something else going on, like lack of video memory or XNA picking invalid refresh rates or something. How does it not work exactly on your system? Does the menu appear back after the mode switch?

    Thanks for the tip about keyboard scrolling, I will definitely implement that for advanced players. I'd like to keep mouse scrolling though as well, for the sake of simplicity of controls.

    Just had a thought, keyboard may help a lot for notebooks, since it's a pain right now to play on a touchpad.
  • 7/7/2007 5:19 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    I would keep both means of scrolling.

    Anyway it runs fine until I tell it to go full screen, then it minimizes down and if I click on the tab the screen will flicker and then minimize again.  I'm puzzled too.  I mean it's only a Radeon 9600 pro but I would think it shouldn't have a problem.  But it does the same thing on the Shruggy demo too, yet any demo that's not full screen it doesn't have a problem.  Maybe it's an Xna thing.  To tell the truth I haven't tried to make a game of my own that's full screen on my comp.

    It might also be this card and my new LCD.  It's been a little off since I bought it.

  • 7/7/2007 10:43 PM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Well for what it's worth I figured it out.  For some reason it won't display 800x600 in full screen mode, but on higher resolutions it has no problems.  Really weird.
  • 7/8/2007 1:59 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Awesome game dude! :D

    If I may ask, what program(s) did you use to create the 2D menu graphics and your textures? Did you draw them by hand? Also, is the music an original piece and if so, what program did you use to create it?

  • 7/9/2007 11:27 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Obviously, the primary choice for graphics is Photoshop. Menu (and pretty much everything else) is based on photo textures, with an overpaint to give it a bit less photorealistic, more cartoonish feel. The great help is a tablet, Wacom Graphire 3 in my case.

    Terrain textures are using a speed trick - GIMP with the Resynthesizer plugin by Paul Harrison. Resynthesizer is a cool piece of software which allows to generate images based on existing (take a look at that guy's research), and a great help when you need to quickly make up tileable textures.

    Music is mostly a placeholder, bought royalty-free loop. As an amateur photographer I kinda have a feel for graphics design, but in no way I'm going to get into sound design. For the release I will probably change it to a custom one, within the similar style. Anybody knows an affordable composer? :)
  • 7/13/2007 1:27 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    I'm a sucker for action-puzzle games with a simple concept but lots of depth.  This game ranks up there with Katamari Damacy and Super Puzzle Fighter in the simple-but-addictive category.  And the tutorial is exceptionally well done. 

    This is just about the only DBP game that I can't think of anything that I'd change.  Sure, I'd like more levels.  And the text is a little small on an SDTV display (but still readable).  But overall, this is just a great game.  It's original, polished and lots of fun.


  • 6/5/2008 12:27 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry



    Demo won't run for me on Windows. Got the following error:

    'MagicCrystals.exe' (Managed): Loaded 'C:\WINDOWS\assembly\GAC_32\mscorlib\\mscorlib.dll', No symbols loaded.
    'MagicCrystals.exe' (Managed): Loaded 'C:\Documents and Settings\portersr\Local Settings\Application Data\XNA Creators Club Games\Magic Crystals\MagicCrystals.exe', No symbols loaded.
    An unhandled exception of type 'System.IO.FileNotFoundException' occurred in Unknown Module.

    Additional information: Could not load file or assembly 'Microsoft.Xna.Framework.Game, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=6d5c3888ef60e27d' or one of its dependencies. The system cannot find the file specified.

    The program '[1592] MagicCrystals.exe: Managed' has exited with code -532459699 (0xe0434f4d).

     Good luck with it, it looks great.


  • 6/5/2008 3:45 AM In reply to

    Re: Magic Crystals - DBP Entry

    Umm, you do realize this thread is almost a year old and that's an XNA GSE (1.0) game, not a 2.0 game, right?
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