Interactive mock-up of exocomics’ #337


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Yesterday I've made an interactive mock-up of "Extra Ordinary" comic #337. I think it carries the point pretty well. A link to the comic is available from the page (view after page to avoid a micro-spoiler). This blog post, on other hand, covers a few technical/process details, just in case you're curious.

Sometime late Friday evening comes the point, when you can no longer work on anything serious, but are not sleepy enough to go to bed yet. This having struck me yesterday, I memorized the absence of motion in earlier viewed #337, and thought that I could make some micro-game/thing with that. So this happened.

While I'm perfectly comfortable with working in Haxe, JavaScript, ActionScript, and other relevant technologies that can be utilized to produce a web-based application, I've made this in GameMaker: Studio. One reason is that I'm reasonably familiar with GM:S physics API (and could tell that I wouldn't get stuck on something), and the other was that I did not really want to search for some level editor/solution that would allow me to construct a more or less pixel-perfect replica of original comic. After all, this was to be a few-hour, not a few-day project.

Project file can be downloaded here, with interesting details as following:

  • There are only 23 lines of code total.
    16 of those are screenshake.
  • Imagery was extracted from original comic via brief use of Paint.NET.
    Semi-transparency was done with a custom plugin of mine (which I need to publish sometime soon, actually).
    The only things missing are the elements specific to last comic frame, which I couldn't quite do without having to manually redraw something (due to rotations).
  • I've spent some minutes fine-tuning all parameters (object velocities, mass, friction, screenshake) to feel right. I think the comic implies obstacles to be slightly more "heavy" than they are here, but destruction feels more satisfying this way.
  • First thought was to use sounds instead of screenshake, but in this context screenshake seems to be a much better way to display feedback. Oh, and screenshake can't turn out to be "too loud" for some viewers.
  • Preloader is the one that I've made a year ago.
    Not sure if anyone used it in their projects. It's looking good, isn't it?

Overall it seems to have came out pretty good. What do you think?

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3 thoughts on “Interactive mock-up of exocomics’ #337

    • ESR (extended support release) versions of Firefox are not super-intended for running HTML5 applications and other edgy things of modern web.

      That said, I might look into it sometime, but generally it’s easier to try a different browser.

  1. Just came to say that the screenshake efect is really nice and perfect for this purpose. I played it before reading and I felt exactly like the comic guy, I even tried it at slow speed.

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