Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Portaball 1.2.1 goes live!

It's not a well-known fact, but Apple allows developers to apply for an expedited review, should there be a valid reason. Since it wasn't me who changed iOS API, I didn't hesitate to do so. It worked! I've received nice e-mail from review team that they've made 'one-time exception' and Portaball was rushed into review. 

As a result, Portaball 1.2.1 version is now available and hopefully fixes Game Center problems.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Game Center problems - Update 1.2.1 submitted to review...

As it turned out, Apple has changed the way Game Center authenticates user in iOS 4.2. Due to this fact it is now only possible to submit score and achievements on fresh run of Portaball. It means that game must be closed from multitask menu and opened again in order for Game Center to work.

This is a really troubling problem. I'm really sorry I haven't checked release notes on Dev Beta of iOS 4.2, I should have done that. I've just submitted Portaball 1.2.1 which fixes this issue. Hopefully situation like this will never happen again.

Portaball 1.2 goes live!

Tonight Portaball 1.2 finally got approved! As a result it is now available for download:

Portaball on iTunes

As well as upgrading full version, I've made Portaball Lite to version 1.1 adding tutorials and 5 more levels from original version. You can get it in AppStore as well:

Portaball Lite on iTunes

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Portaball 1.2 submitted to review!

I expected it to take me two weeks and here we are, right on time. Just to highlight it one more time, here is 'What's new' list for Portaball 1.2:

  • 30 new levels! 
  • new tutorial system 
  • ball movement indicator 
  • new leaderboard 
  • 9 new achievements

I've also improved few other things as well. Both restart and exit button will now require confirmation, you will no longer accidentally ruin your almost finished level. Few new sound effects are introduced, this should make Portaball a little bit more alive. Finally, I've fixed little bug that under very rare circumstances would cause crash.

I'm happy for this new update. I personally think it's great improvement for Portaball, it will surely make it much better!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Portaball 1.2 - new features incoming!

Portaball 1.2 update is now in development! Here's the list of so far planned features:

  1. 30 new levels - this one is great, all fresh new levels for free, making it total 80 levels available! With new puzzles come new types of elements.
  2. Interactive tutorial - this will make jumping into Portaball much easier. A follow trough, step by step guide will show the basics of Portaball. 
  3. Ball movement indicator - When paused, a motion blur 'tail' will appear behind ball. This help as a reminder of ball's movement. You will no longer wonder where the ball was moving.
  4. New leaderboard - compete with players worldwide on getting least portals in new set of levels
  5. New achievements - for every achievement junkie out there

I'm spending all my free time working on this update. However, there is still a lot to do. I estimate I should be done in two weeks, don't forget it will take some time for apple to review.

All in all, it's great to work on Portaball again!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Level designing

It's been two weeks since I've started designing new levels for next version of Portaball. Till today I've managed to invent 22 puzzles, my goal is 30. It's surprising how hard it is to come up with something really difficult. So far there has been only few levels that made me astonished with my creativity ;). I'm still planning to make some really hard levels, I've gotten few requests for those. Yet again, I can't just sit down and draw something extraordinary, it doesn't work this way. The great idea comes up unexpectedly, it strikes with its ingeniousness. Sadly it doesn't happen as often as I want it to.

Every single level is hand drawn on a piece of paper. It allows me to alter it a little bit if needed. Here's a picture of one of the new levels:

As you can see it's just a simple layout, not a masterpiece. However, it is deadly useful. I often draw numbers on walls, they correspond to each portal I have to place in game, in order to finish level. Sometimes it's really helpful, especially when I'm trying to complete level I've designed few days back and I have completely no idea how to solve it. At least I know it's a good level!

Here's how the same level looks in game (rescaled Retina version - not so crispy):