Boo-oom, A Postmortem

Nov 3, 2017 ~ 2 min read ~ reviewspostmortemgames

Boo-oom, A Postmortem

Primarily for posterity, here are some thoughts about Boo-oom!

What went right:

  • Got it released on time! (Halloween '17) 🎉
  • It’s pretty fun.
  • It runs pretty well on desktop browsers that support WebGL 2.

What went wrong:

  • Not as polished as I’d like…
    • Animations are too subdued.
    • That fountain thing in the middle is shite.
  • No real story/explanation for what’s going on.
  • You never actually see the main character from the front.
  • It’s not exactly clear what triggers a game over until you play it a time or two.
  • “ACE” “COMBO” and other planned bonuses really should affect the score. How did I miss that?

How it could be better:

  • Different monsters beyond ghosts.
  • Better shader to make ghosts more “ghostly.”
  • Better level design… The “temp/testing” level became the only level because of time restraints.
  • Ground texture is too low-res – Just blotchy.

What I’d wished I’d done:

  • If you shoot the moon, it should shake and spin around a few times, prompting a huge wave of enemies to be spawned.
  • When the game is over, if the moon is in view, it should shake and laugh.
  • Been nice to sculpt/bake some normal map info for the well.
  • Made the water a little more interactive – If a ghost hits it, its death should behave differently and add a splash effect in there too.

Things for next game:

  • Loading screen that shows that, yes, the game is loading.
  • Title screen and menus w/credits.
  • Customize the html template.
  • WebGL 1 & 2 support – For better reach. (hopefully some mobile)
  • High score tracking. (server for ranking?)
  • Don’t make things singletons unless you really need to.
  • Have a better restart mechanism than literally reloading the level.

Here’s the original Game Design Doc, if you’re interested in looking it over. It contains some simple pre-production art and a level design I didn’t have time to implement: Boo-oom! GDD