[DEVLOG] On Great Angry Mountain

On Great Angry Mountain

I’m very excited to begin work on this new title for the MicoJS Game Jam!

I officially began today with the design and concept phase. I can not really say that I have finished this phase, but I have enough imagination juice to get working on something :slight_smile:

The biggest struggle will be scope limiting. Too often it is too easy to continue thinking “Well, what if!” and then one gets stuck with a half complete unfinished disaster that has too many fun ideas but no game.

Rant aside, here are the core ideas I’ve decided on.

The “story”:

Draoi (pronounced “Dree”) is a wizard that spends most their time in the woods alone studying plants and symbols. One day they are suddenly made aware of a darkness spreading in the woods. Investigation leads to the source of the darkness, a mountain buried in the woods. At the base of the mountain are four great pillars, each with deeply carved runes (Ogham) in front of a massive door. The door is shattered and the entrance to the mountain dungeons ooze a foul darkness.
Draoi’s shillelagh seems to be pulling into the darkness, and the knot at the end begins to glow with a strange energy. Understanding partly what must be done, Draoi enters the cave to recover the energy of the Ogham pillars, and reseal the mountain.


I jumped around quite a fair bit in deciding which theme would best fit the ideas jumbled in my head. I wanted to do higher and higher and have Draoi be a mountain climber. I thought maybe Draoi could use the magic shillelagh to fix shattered time. I even floated the idea of Draoi being in a dream state in space :laughing: … I ultimately decided upon “On/Off” hoping the idea that the player must enter a dungeon an re-activate the pillars by engaging each rune in turn will apply well to this theme.


I’m still planning how the overall game design will go. So far I’ve tinkered with some graphics and am still reading the MicoJS documentation to try and figure out how everything works. I’m hoping the framework will allow me to have enough room for the 5 map areas necessary (I may need to pick a reduced size for each dungeon).

  • Title Screen.
  • “story” image.
  • Aicme Beithe dungeon
  • Aicme hÚatha dungeon
  • Aicme Muine dungeon
  • Aicme Ailme dungeon
  • final dungeon, Forfeda
  • Roll save the day scene.

Each dungeon will be top down like a classic Zelda style game where Draoi has to explore and revive the Ogham Energy for the sealing pillars.

I’ve thought about having the magic shillelagh have some powers that enhance with each collected rune. But this may need to be reduce heavily to fit.

Combat is another thing I’m wondering about. Do I want to have some sort of evil monster that Draoi needs to conquer while hunting for the missing ogham energy? Or should I have the shillelagh be used instead for altering terrain to solve “map puzzles” (I like this the best).

I’ve also floated the idea of a point system based on time to completion and other collectibles. I really love a good collectathon :smiley:


Devlog Entry 2

After much inner turmoil and reaching out to the community for guidance I have decided in order to keep myself interested and excited I will be utilizing some pre-made graphics. At least to start. So in that spirit I have picked up a fantastic little tileset from OpenGameArt - Dungeon tileset | OpenGameArt.org

This set has a very great aesthetic and provides enough details for me to begin working on the parts of the game that I actually enjoy working on :smiley: the code haha.

Seen in the screencast I have a working map! Whoo-hoo! Really excited about that now because it means I can focus on game and not how ugly my graphics are (you can probably still tell the main character, shrub, and whatever I turn that ugly pod into are still originals haha)

Shown here is that the character can navigate the room and place a shrub! Eventually the player will need multiple shrubs/place-able items to complete activation of switches by connecting an energy source to the different Ogham stones (still needing to be added).

I’ve spent a good deal of time working through how to make all the tools work out as I need the last day or so.

  • Tiled → getting the layers to behave as I needed and including the events and re-learning how these translate into the MicoJS environment. This was great fun! And not as difficult as I for some reason expected xD Exporting works great and the drag/drop import was incredibly smooth.
  • LibreSprite → Finding the palette and getting this set up wasn’t difficult because I already use it (I mean, I could be using Aseprite, but LibreSprite comes from flathub so for me it is a much quicker experience to work with than trying to find where Aseprite is (I think in Steam for me hah…))
  • Audio → I see in the template there is a directory for sound but I don’t actually know if this is implemented in any way yet. Sound support · Issue #6 · micojs/micojs.github.io · GitHub

I am still thinking about the overall gameplay and how that is supposed to be implemented. At the moment I am leaning towards no-combat. I want my kids to be able to play this and enjoy it so that immediately removes count down timers and most complicated combat.
My idea right now is that Draoi must solve some basic dungeon room puzzles to activate disconnected Ogham stones. Once they are all connected Draoi progresses through the dungeon until they are all connected from the entrance through to the master stone which will complete a full Aicme set and open the next set of dungeons.
The game will be pretty short in this way, the scope can be maintained too and I know I can complete this. Making it fun and engaging and all will be an interesting task :slight_smile:
Changing the Shillelagh from being a bludgeon weapon of doom into a magical crafting tool for reconnecting the energies of the mountain seems more postivie and fun to me anyway.

Things I still want to figure out:

  • Collectibles. Because I enjoy them and they definitely help add extra purpose to both replaying (if they are tricky enough and someone has that completionist drive) and really enjoying the full content of the game.
  • I’m a huge sucker for outfit/item customizing (like I did in dash of the dead) ((I might revisit that one and make an offshoot. I really liked the mechanics of that one!))
  • Need to work on the “scenes” such as the “story intro” between title and dungeon select and the “dungeon complete” hurrah hurrah stuff. And the final “saved the day doodah” stuff.

Devlog Entry 3

A great deal of thanks yet again to everyone in the community helping out over on the chat in pokitto-jams! I was having such a weird time figuring out how to get some different things working and it became pretty obvious I had no idea what I was doing :slight_smile:

First Issue:

Apparently, when using the scanTileMap method it really helps if you actually do setTileMap first so that scanning actually has something to scan! With that in mind, I am now able to set and discover events for dynamically working with generated content :smiley: Super awesome! Don’t think I have done that before.

Second Issue

I’ve been struggling with figuring out how to export → modify → import my project. Well as it turns out when I was doing compress in my OS’s File explorer, I was compressing the project folder itself

Screenshot from 2023-05-11 19-21-49

The problem with this is that it creates the project folder as the root inside of the zip. MicoJS expects the project files themselves to be inside of the zip, not the folder. Need to keep that in mind xD works great now!

Changing things up a bit

In discussing the themes of the jam @carbonacat helped me realize my plans were bad and not very fitting to the On/Off theme I wanted to go with. Which made sense since I was missing many components to make it really match.
This led to the idea of changing up how the activation phase will work and changed the overall game from a “connect the dots” style of puzzle to now be a “find the energy portals” type puzzle. Here is a sad attempt at a preview:

Displayed in the screencast is the character sort of hunting for the energy fields in the room. In this case they are to spell out the ᚁ character (but running bottom to top)
Screenshot from 2023-05-11 19-26-58 (without the bottom arrows)

Once the energy portals are all activated (I’ll need some indicator that this is the case) the player will then go and interact with the character stone to “lock in” the energy fields. Once complete, the door to the next location and the next puzzle will open.

Another thing @carbonacat talked about was including some sort of penalty for incorrect answers. So attempting to lock in the answer when it is wrong would have some negative response. I will definitely consider how this could work and what might happen :slight_smile: risk helps drive some motives.

I am pretty excited as there appears to be some game play starting to form! And progress is still being made. Though time is rapidly running out so I do hope I can figure out a nice way to develop the 20 puzzles I need xD I might end up needing to shave off some time and go with 10 puzzles, essentially cheating and consolidating the first two Aicme and the second two. Just to make sure the game can be completed in time and still be a game start to finish :slight_smile:


Devlog Entry 4


After finally being reminded to check on Emulator and hardware, I discovered that the final size of the bin was already far surpassing any reasonable endpoint and the concept I had in mind was literally doomed to failure. :smiley: yay!~
Then life events happened and took a lot of days away from being able to actually find any spare moments to bang out a new concept or game or even try to rework what I had already started.
This is not a cry for help or a post of complaints! This was actually fine. I have decided to completely shift gears on the game mechanics, and I’m actually enjoying the new idea significantly more :slight_smile: And thankfully the days I’ve spent so far in learning MicoJS will continue to pay off and accelerate my new game concept.

The theme is mostly the same It is still a story about Draoi. Now, Draoi is druid working tirelessly (endlessly maybe) on tasks to create an Ogham stone. Perhaps in a dream, Draoi needs to remember the shapes and correct number of carvings to make into the stone for the correct Ogham rune characters.
Enter, the new game mechanic:

The player will now be tasked with identifying matching rows/columns of Ogham and “smashing” them with the Shillelagh to help Draoi to remember the shapes! As Draoi remembers, they will carve them into the stone going higher and higher up the edge.
Given this will be a dreamlike state, perhaps Draoi will never reach the top nor the opposite side of the massive Ogham stone :slight_smile:
As the player progresses they will encounter more and more Ogham shapes. With more Ogham filling the memory space, it will become increasingly difficult for Draoi to recall the specific shapes they should be remembering for the stone.
How many Ogham can be remembered before Draoi awakes?

Things to still work out before the rapidly approaching deadline (insert internal screaming)

  • A title screen. This one I am going to have fun with. I don’t want to spoil my plans just yet though.
  • More graphics around the edges of the scene instead of a blank black background.
  • Scoring and advancement of Draoi as Ogham are collected in proper sequence based on the numbering of the Ogham in their Aicme . (See original post for links if you’d like to learn more about Ogham runes)
  • Game over / End game scene. (or not, may make it perpetual with a counter instead.)
  • I may rework the tiles pending any feedback on how easy/difficult they are to distinguish. I have tried a few things to make them more obvious, especially around the 4 to 5 branch sizes with 5 having almost rounded edges.

I have indeed been checking on hardware this time, and will provide here a demo for anyone willing to try it out for themselves on Pokitto :slight_smile: :
game.bin (115.7 KB)

In this version:

  • You can select ANY tile to clear it from the memory space.
  • Groups of tiles matching in rows/columns will also be cleared.
  • Draoi doesn’t know what they are doing so they kind of just stand there dazed and confused.
  • “C” will reset the memory space.

Devlog - The Final Entry

Well, I wrapped up and popped my game into a POP and am ready to submit. Here you will find the .pop and the source files themselves (including the very lovely, and sloppy, source code :partying_face: )

OgamMicoJam.pop (208.9 KB)
OgamMicoJam.zip (61.1 KB)

The game is actually playable, though likely for a very niche group of folks :slight_smile:

Things added since the last devlog:

  • I decided I had space and time to add the Forfeda into the game so I did that as the final level (before unlocking and rolling over into Endless Mode)
  • I added Endless Mode. Now after completing all of the main Aicme and the Forfeda you continue playing with randomly selected tiles. This is a sort of “zen mode” as you continue to help Draoi carve higher and higher up the stone remembering each Ogham as they are required.
  • Draoi moves up the latter to indicate the target Ogham.
  • Added a “Bomb” and a “Clear Selected” ability which gets charged by collecting large matches.
  • Added a “title” screen.
  • “Normal” and “Easy” mode. In Normal mode, you can only make selections with actual matches. In Easy Mode you can clear individual tiles for no points, basically another way to get to “Zen” mode.
  • Added some more graphics.
  • Added the “target ogham” icons on the Ogham stone.

It is likely I missed some things I changed/added but that is alright. It is what it is :slight_smile:

If anyone happens to browse the source and has any feedback I’d love to learn anything I can improve on (I know the code itself has plenty to improve :wink: )


Maybe this great game can be improved for 128x128 ESPboy resolution to play someday )

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