Solar Plains: Invector
Mario Kart with a twist of Psygnosis' Wipeout.
Please note, due to a lack of time, the ability to detect track progress and basic multiplayer has been disabled.
Due to the aforementioned issues, the game is currently as of GameJam endless and is a tech demo with a somewhat functional game element. Please note that a second client will be instantly kicked on join due to incomplete multiplayer support.
Starting your game:
|E/Aux1/Fast||Exit Testing Kart in Creative Mode|
|Sneak/Shift||Freely Rotating Camera|
|Dig/Left Mouse||Fire/Use Carried Weapon|
|Place/Right Mouse||Fire/Use Carried Weapon Alternative Mode|
An impressive tech demo
Regarding the laggy nature, I think anyone who has worked with minetest long enough would realize this is the norm especially with dealing with entities of this scale.
Putting that aside, this game does introduces some pretty impressive mechanics. The fact that the AI cart players (for most parts) actually work is impressive enough for me to provide a thumbs up. The gameplay is fun and has a lot of interesting powerups, karts while laggy, are still very responsive to controls. Even in endless singleplayer its definitely fun enough for me to play continuously.
I definitely look forward to more stages & multiplayer being released.
Author is crazy, in a good way
First of all, there is an AI regulating how the other participants work. That alone deserves a thumb up.
Then, the author took care of the aesthetic, both with a custom main menu, a nice soundtrack and a clear UI/UX (power-ups as symbols, visible effects, a menu where to pick your driver): all these things require a lot of effort, so chapeau for the work done, especially considering that there was a window of time of 20 days.
My critiques derive from the laggy camera and the overall speed. About the former, I don't know if it's because of a MT limitation (with the author trying to find a workaround), but it makes me also think about whether MT can actually feature fast paced games like racing games or not. I should investigate the code to have an answer but... I'll leave the pleasure to others. About the overall speed, I think it was too slow, and that the turbo boost was too short.
The game is definitely not finished (for instance, there are no laps) and I don't know if it's well suited for an engine like MT, but I expect to see at least a special mention to this: congratulations to the author.
(as I've said below another 2021 Jam game, consider converting it into a minigame with arena_lib)
kart goes brrr
very fun game but how other players so good? the camra not being controled by the player is a bit anoying but other than that, i cant think of any other bad thing. PS i love the kart modle
Pushing the boundaries of more than just the engine
Thematically speaking it is quite refreshing to see a game made using the engine that avoids the all too common survival-sandbox game genre. Despite being unfinished, I found it to be enjoyable and at times engaging. For the most part, the simulated opponents behave pretty convincingly like actual racing contestants (though I have seen a few glaringly obvious exceptions). The camera jitter is off-putting and feels like typical engine stuttering, but it is inherent to Minetest’s camera manipulation and cannot be avoided.
The soundtracks are good, and seem appropriate for the environments where they are used. The menus are nice, I quite like the Invector font and rotating character selection images; though I felt they lacked a more personalized background image that could have tied the other elements together well.
The item and weapon indicator textures are relatively easy to distinguish from one another (perhaps improving the accessibility of the game) in shape and colour. Most don’t seem to conflict too much with other visual elements.
The speed boost indicator and weapon selection crystal felt somewhat intuitive and were easy to learn. Some of the weapon indicators were easier to learn than others (rocket, shield, sand, boost variants). This will probably vary for users with differential exposure to similarly designed games, but I think the developer worked well within the creative limitations they had.
It is impressive that there even is a track editor on top of the main game and I would love to see what others make with it. The track editor could use some more builtin tools and documentation, though.
I surmise that (like the other contest submissions) most of the deficiencies would have not existed had the developer been given more time. I am fairly confident that this game will be improved upon further, and I look forward to seeing where it goes from here.
A very promising project produced by a quality MT dev.
On the road to greatness
Even though you can't win or lose at the moment, it's still fun to overtake the AI and test out the powerups/mechanics.
Multiplayer and damage would be on top of my wishlist.
Currently reminds me of the good old racers of the PS1, where I spent countless hours.
Also I see some people mentioning performance issues, but on my laptop it ran nicely!
Definitely one to watch!
EDIT: added a bit more info.
I honestly had a lot of fun playing this. for a game jam having AI carts to race against that actually are pretty decent is pretty impressive. this is not to say that the game is without issues, it has some bugs here and there, and the user experience could be improved in places. overall tho a fun game to play and keep myself entertained
GAME DESCRIPTION: Invector is a karting game that heavily bases itself upon some of the more popular entries in this field, such as Mario Kart.
Visual Appeal: 20/20
Sound/Audio Design: 20/20
User Friendly/Intuitive: 95/100
FINAL SCORE: 420/450
FINAL THOUGHTS: Some modders and game developers stay within the constraints of the engine. Jordach has been known to make demonstrations displaying how far the engine can really be pushed, contrary to public belief. From a technical standpoint, Invector really is an amazing demonstration of this. From the very good AI to the even better nature of this being able to support custom maps, Invector really is a game that has potential to be played, as, well, a game.
I didn't realize my Minetest client could stretch (:
Great Idea, but not really playable
This game was played and rated in the Minetest GAME JAM LIVE (ep3): https://rumble.com/vri6iu-minetest-game-jam-live-ep3.html Note: rating system was changed a bit from ep1
OVERALL: 18 (Good)
The game concept is really cool, but it's so glitchy and buggy, that's it's not really playable. The editor also lacks a tutorial, and if you break the floor and accidently fall in, it's over, you have to make a new world. I'm not sure if it's even possible to make a game like this in Minetest, but hopefully you can polish it up a bit. Thanks for participating in the game jam!
This game is a project in itself. I'm overwhelmed by how smooth and well this type of game (kart/race) works in Minetest, despite MT's limitations as mentioned in other reviews (e.g. camera). I love how music, textures and player effects/power ups fit together perfectly well giving the game an own type of aesthetics. The fact that the game includes a track editor speaks for itself. Looking forward to see this incredibly awesome game in active development.
The best the engine can do is "Solar Plains: Invector"
Jordach is one of a select few modders who like to work against the engine. This game is a piece of art (including textures with meme references and sounds created by Jordach during the jam, which is probably unique) which gets the most out of the engine. Initially it appeared "laggy" to me too, while in reality it isn't - the issue stems from Jordach using the only way the engine provides to set the camera direction, which isn't smooth by default. In order to keep this camera stutter to a minimum, I suggest you enable cinematic camera smoothing and - most importantly - keep your hands off the mouse!
Apart from this, the AIs are a rather amazing demo considering the short timeframe, and a couple effects have been implemented as well. All that is lacking are a couple more maps, which is why in it's current state this is more of an - impressive - tech demo than a fully enjoyable game.
And granted, there are some minor bugs, including a crash. Quality assurance is a time-consuming process finding little place in a game jam; only the most glaring issues can be fixed before release.
7/10 | Good
Edited because the game was updated
The models are nice, but there
are a lot ofis one issue swith this package: - Constant crashes - Extremely laggySomewhat "laggy", I am aware that this is the engine's fault and not a performance issue, but wouldn't it be a good idea to try to implement vehicles a different way if the current implementation is too much for the engine to handle? - Your kart goes so fast that it's nearly unplayable.
All the other issues appear to have been fixed by the today's patch, hence I'm updating my review.
Reviews from Emojiminetest: LAG, and more
Laggy and crashed but great anyway
The game is very laggy and crashed at some point (my computer is slow so I don't know if it's the game). It is not playable for me at this point but I hope it will be at some point because the karting game looks really great.
Just a techdemo at this stage.
PLEASE NOTE: This review is written for the 2021 Minetest Game Jam version of this game, by a PARTICIPANT. I used Minetest version 5.4.1 to playtest.
So … The basics of a kart racing game are present. You can race on a simple race track, there are computer opponents, there are some bonuses that I don't understand. The driving physics seem solid and also the opponents seem to work more or less OK (but I did not test for long). The fact that you managed to get some kind of working AI in that time is really impressive, however, I have to admit.
But the most important thing is missing: There's still no actual game. There is no time-trial, no laps, no actual timekeeping, no actual racing, etc. It seems like an early demo, probably ran out of time. So since the most important aspect of a racing game is missing (i.e. racing), I sadly have to give a thumbs down. Sorry if this sounds harsh, but for 3 weeks of time I expect at least have a basic gameplay. At least playable 1 level/race/time-trial, or anything. Keep in mind the theme of this game jam: "small game". This is small, but not a game (yet). I'd say this thing was CLOSE to a thumbs up from me, but it's not quite there yet.
As for graphics. The racing track isn't really exciting either, the landscape is completely flat. This is probably also on the TODO list, I guess? I like the kart racer models and the kart selection.
Finally, I can 100% say this one is far superior to the other kart game in the game jam (Minekart).