What Would You Change?

clip_1807Allow me to apologize for not responding quickly to some people’s posts.  It’s been a bit crazy around here lately, as it always is after a new game release.   And it’s just me here.  Indie Game Developer Extraordinaire.  I have customer support on one screen, and raw game code on the other.

Airport Madness: Time Machine has received plenty of feedback.  I’ve heard the good and the bad.  All of it via email, telephone, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Kongregate.  The people have spoken. The game is an experience.  A journey.  It’s worth the ten bucks.  But it’s not quite Airport Madness 4.   It’s my goal to get this game where it needs to be.

Using Kongregate’s feedback ratings as a measuring stick, here are the scores given to all of our games thus far.  Kongregate says a 3.0 is “fair”, a 3.5 rating is “good”, and a 4.0 rating is “great”:

  • Airport Madness 1 – 3.57
  • Airport Madness 2 – 3.59
  • Airport Madness 3 – 3.31
  • Airport Madness 4 – 3.68
  • Airport Madness 5 – 3.45
  • Radar Chaos – 2.66
  • Radar Chaos Hawaii – 2.66
  • Sky Madness – 2.78
  • Will It Fly? – 2.57

Some find the process of working through 60 years long and painful.  Some say that certain levels are painfully hard.  Others painfully easy.  I suspect that the levels are too long.  They need to be shortened, from their current 4-minute duration, to about 2.5.  The levels also need to be unlocked, so that users can jump to any year, any time they feel like it. These types of tweaks are easy for me.  I just need to be pointed to where the game is boring, or where it feels impossible.  Game duration and intensity are easy.

With some minor changes, I can get this game above the ‘good’ mark.  So please, shout out the feedback to me if you have it!

14 thoughts on “What Would You Change?

  1. Luke

    There is a bug in 1935, I have a dc-3 lined up on runway and an electra taxcis on to field directly behind it and line up on field, not wait for dc-3 to takeoff

    1. admin Post author

      Yes, I’m aware of this one. It’s a big fix, unfortunately. There are some 100 different ‘paths’ for aircraft to follow, and these paths are all glued together depending on what year it is. Fixing 1935 will break 1933 and 1934. It’s on the list, however 🙂

  2. Matthew Good

    I don’t agree that levels are too long. I think if anything they could be a touch longer. If you shorten them too much you would lose that feeling of the “journey” and it would just become another “lets kill a few minutes while waiting for the kettle to boil” game.

    1. admin Post author

      Good point. However, some are saying the game is long and tedious. I guess you can’t please everyone. I will leave the level duration as-is. Thanks.

      1. Justin

        Some levels are too long and others too short. Some just feel this way even if they are the same length. Maybe you can find out which levels these are and adjust the times on those specifically so they all feel to be around the same time.

        1. admin Post author

          Can do. One thing I’ve done is make the early levels shorter. I thing the later levels need to last longer, definitely.

      2. Jason

        I think that the early levels (actually all the levels with a single runway) are tedious… not so much that I noticed it the first time I played through but after losing my save and having to replay them it’s a long slog to get to what I actually want to play.

        The later levels at the main airport feel too short. For me just as all my runways started to get a little cramped (which takes a while since you start each level off with everything parked) and I start to get that feeling like everything is running right but you’re right on the edge of everything falling apart, the level ends which was a little disappointing. However I’m not sure that making them longer would necessarily make them better. The problem I see with the game is that once you figure out a particular level and get it under control there’s a short period where you have fun just managing “normal” but shortly afterward it becomes tedious because nothing really throws you off or forces you to change up your tactics. I think the game would benefit immensely if there was more random stuff that happened within the level that forced you to change up the way you control things (like emergencies that force you to shuffle traffic around, or temporary runway closures).

        The other thing that I think would help is if you had fewer hard stops between years. I think that by stopping each year you’re kind of breaking the game and (again because everything starts out parked) the player has to sit and wait for a minute or so for everything to get moving again. I think ideally you’d start at 1925 (or whatever the starting year is) and go through the end (or at least until the next time the camera pulls back).

        Finally regarding the fantasy airports. The steampunk airport is neat but I was left kind of disappointed that it didn’t go any further. The future airport is (sorry) not really adding anything, the planes move too fast for you to really have much control over anything; to a large extent I spent most of the time just hoping that nothing wrecked into anything else.

        1. admin Post author

          Thank you for the write-up. It’s tremendously helpful. Now to try and implement such changes…

        2. Martin Roell

          One solution to the level-length issue might be to make it a player’s choice when the level ends: at some point the game would say “you have mastered this level – click here to get to the next one” and you could choose wether to go there or just stay with the current level for as long as it’s fun.

  3. Cooter

    I think the game is great, though I wish we could play through all the way to present times instead of just 1970

  4. Matthew Good

    One clever subtle thing I have noticed is the “expedite from runway” feature has to be used much more carefully than in AM4. In the old game you just pressed it and your aircraft went careering off the runway at great speed. In this game you have to think before you use it because the aircraft will speed up for a while but might slow down at the wrong time for you (if you have another one landing on the crossing runway for example), so timing is the key. I like this.

  5. John

    For some reason, in the year 1928, a Ryan NYP somehow adopts the taxying speed and callout while still in the air!
    Also, I would appreciate if you could bring back the 3 strikes and you’re out thing. Limiting it to a single crash is irritating. Perhaps adding a slider for the number of mishaps( of course, max. 3) would be good.

  6. Wilson

    Get rid of the level system, please. Go back to the way you had it before. There seems to be precious little payoff with the number of planes you deal with per level.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *