ColourMapster & the Tomes of Life

Left & Right arrow buttons for movement
Up arrow or Z button for jumping
X button to donate health (useful when facing the giant creatures)

A friendly alien that visits other planets to learn about the knowledge and culture of each planet's inhabitants, ColourMapster, has recently landed on Earth. However, in order to proceed, it has to find 5 tomes scattered throughout a cave, each of which can be found after traversing a puzzle-obstacle course.

These 5 tomes embody the qualities of life that ColourMapster would need in order to survive travelling around a world filled with people and creatures who don't always share the same worldview of non-violence and acceptance as does ColourMapster.

This game was made as part of the Level Up Apprentice Programme 2017 which was managed by KDU University College and MDEC from September to early December 2017.

Platform       : Windows PC

Engine            : Construct 2 (visual scripting software)

Duration       : 3 months

Completion : December 2017

Team Size     : 1 person

Role                 : Designer, Programmer

I worked on the level design as well as the mechanics for both the main character and the other creatures living within the cave.

I have used art assets from and other sources, while the sound effects and background music have been sourced from, and Fantasy Musica.

1) Click on the bottom right corner of the game screen to maximise the view.

2) Press Enter, Space, or click on the Start button to start the game.

3) If you reach the 'Game Over' screen, refresh the browser to try again. Enjoy :)

Published Dec 05, 2017
Tags2D, Construct 2, Non violent, Puzzle-Platformer, Singleplayer
Average sessionAbout a half-hour

Development log

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(Edited 1 time)

Hey Hob,

Tested out your game multiple times to give good feedback on my experience. My feedback and my experience with your game is from the windows version and the web version. They play quite differently.

The game is very easy to understand. I didn't have any issue beating the game the first time (window version). You did very well to give players clear instructions on what to do. And I think it is good that you have a beginning and a clear end. 

I do have comments, questions and concerns. I have separated them by both, windows only, and web only.

Both versions

  • Avoiding enemies is made pointless since stamina is regenerated slowly over time. If a player doesn't mind waiting, the game is left with very little challenge. 
  • The hitbox of the player is too large. Most of the damage I received was from enemies that I never touched visually. If you trim down the sides of the hitbox to fit more with the main body of the character rather than the entire sprite, it would help to avoid this issue.
  • The player feels like they are sliding on ice making for more unavoidable damage from enemies/hazards.
  • Having the player use a close range "attack" to defeat bosses is counter intuitive to established rules of avoiding enemies. It would be better if the attack was mid range to allow the player to more easily avoid taking damage.
  • The jump sound is signaled by the button press rather than the player actually jumping.
  • Some of the sign's graphics are infront of enemy objects. Their depth needs to be adjusted.
  • Why does the heart "attack" not work on normal enemies?
  • It would be great if tomes had more purpose. A reward of a new ability or power would making collecting them actually worthwhile.
  • I think the level design of the windows version is better than the web version. Also the speed of the player is faster and enemies/hazards are easier to avoid due to their placement.

Windows Only

  • You can't die. I let the stamina run down and noticed I would never get a game over.
  • Rocks can still damage players even after they are on the ground. Also the last rock trap in this version caused the character to slide left through the wall, take damage from another fallen rock and end up in the shallow pit between the first rock trap and the second.
  • You can get stuck in the walls and stand on top of the doors.
  • The spider has a weak spot. By standing inside the spider out of the way of its attack and spamming the heart attack you can avoid taking touch damage from the spider.
  • I wanted to check and see if I could complete the game without all the tomes. And you can't, which is good. However if you miss any before defeating the wasp the door remains locked even after you retrieve them and you are unable to complete the game.
  • What is with the "?" in the background of the first water room?

Web Only

  • The placement of some enemies/hazards are almost unavoidable due to the speed of the enemy/hazard (rock traps are much faster in this version), the speed of the player, lack of traction of the player, placement of walls/ceilings, and lack of controllable jump height.
  • The player moves too slow making it hard to avoid enemies and land on platforms.
  • The heart "attack" harms the player. This isn't a big issue more so than a annoyance. Even though stamina regenerates over time, getting attacked along with attacking in this case can quickly lead to a game-over without the player fully realizing what happened. On top of that it is punishing the player for using what was given to them to deal with the boss. Avoiding the attacks from bosses is almost impossible, which leaves only one strategy to defeat them. Attack once, loose stamina, get attacked, loose more stamina, wait a few seconds to regenerate stamina, and repeat. And for me that isn't very fun.
  • After I got my first game over the stamina bar disappeared when I started over. I had to refresh the page for it to fully reappear.

Overall, this is a good start. It just needs more work to become great. Hope this helps to improve you game and keep making progress.

Hi Jessica, thank you for taking the time to play my game :)

That was a lot of critique for one game, especially since you've found both versions of the game to be completely different (which wasn't my intention) :o

I'll have to look at both versions again to see what went wrong, as both versions should have the 'Game Over' scene, faster player movement, and less knockback from the boulders.

Hmm, you made an astute observation regarding the Jump sound, and yes, I'll be making the Player Mask/hitbox smaller, as currently CM can 'float' off the ground despite it's foot being in the air, so to speak.

I'll have a look at the depth for the signboards and creatures again, just to be sure which parts are dodgy :o

Where did you find the "?" mark? I seemed to have sailed right past it after countless time testing the game :o

I thought I had removed that exploit in the giant spider section, but I guess not DX

The tomes are meant to symbolise the qualities the alien needs in order to handle the challenges of travelling around the planet Earth, and are thus at the end of each obstacle area (Tome of Humility after getting through the boulders etc).

Hmm, that bit about not being able to get through the last door despite collecting all the tomes (in a different order, no less) shouldn't be happening, especially since the door is not affected by your not healing the giant wasp; you're the second person to have discovered that error, so now I'll have to add that to my list of things to test and fix :x

The alien's stamina regenerates over time as opposed to killing creatures to get health from them as the game was supposed to emphasise non-violence, not the usual 'attack everything in sight' philosophy of Metroid and Mario-like games. The 'attack' reducing your stamina over time was put in to make the giant creature sections a little more challenging, and will only work on the giant creatures as they need healing as compared to the smaller ones just going about their usual routines (the spiky ones fire their spikes when you get too close).

In order to heal the giant creatures, the alien has to put out it's arm to touch them, and gives away part of it's stamina in order to facilitate the healing. Methinks the signboard I put up for both giant creatures was too small D: 

Yes, the game is not very challenging at the moment due to the time constraints I had while working on this game; I had intended the game level to be slightly longer and larger in the vein of Metroid-like games, which is why the puzzles and creature placements aren't as challenging as they could be. The arrangement of the puzzles and the creature placements will vary quite a bit from the last version you've played, since I'm still working on the game, so no worries :p

Once again, thank you for taking the time to play my game and spot all these bugs all over the place; Nintendo is very lucky to have you on their roster :)

I know why my experience with the windows version was so different. I didn’t download the latest version of it. I download the game a few days after you gave me the link. I missed the update log. Sorry for the confusion . Ignore the windows only section from my first post. I’ll update it later once I download and test that latest build.

Ahh, I see. I am usually very careful when I upload my files, mostly because it takes a while for Construct 2 to prepare them for me, and much longer for to upload my files, especially if the Internet connection suddenly stops :p

You're most likely going to find that both versions would play the same way, although you would have to close the game and restart it if you reach the 'Game Over' screen in the PC version, as otherwise the Stamina bar would remain invisible not matter what you do :/

Anyhow, I'll be uploading another version of the game within the next few weeks (or days, depending on how free I am) which would cover most of the glitches you found, while the tomes would most likely have an explanation to go along with them (as well as the signboards), since they're not supposed to grant any powers to CM (I did consider adding abilities before, but when I tried to implement a regular ability that unlocks after colliding with a powerup, it didn't work out :( ).