Saturday, August 28, 2010

Dweller 1.3.0 - this time with Cupcake support for real!

Well, what can I say. I failed in adding Android 1.5 Cupcake support even though I claimed doing so in the last release. It all boiled down to the incorrect minimum SDK version specified in the manifest file used when generating the application for the Andoird Market. This is now done and while I was at it I also tried to focus a bit on the Android crash bugs I get reported via the built in Android crash report system (a very helpful feature indeed!).

One of the major gripes some Android players have with Dweller is that when the app crashes an ongoing game is lost. I do realise that this is not good and I have tried to tweak how Dweller behaves during the entire application life cycle. Most of the issues I've seen reported are related to how Dweller handles when the application is paused, most often when an incoming call arrives. I hope that with the changes in this version the game will be more stable and lost games will be much fewer. Please report your experience of the stability of the game here or via e-mail. Your feedback is invaluable to me!

Get the latest version via the Android Market or via the instructions here.


  • Added an option to Use All (for instance use 3 Mushrooms of healing in one go, without having to go in to the menu between each use)
  • Added Potion of Mutation
  • Pushable stones
  • Some rooms within the dungeon have predefined spawn points for items and monsters when the map is generated


  • Game is now saved when moving between levels. This will prevent complete loss of your character if the game crashes


  • Floating damage text was not shown correctly for ranged attacks
  • J2ME and J2SE - Floating damage text was clipped
  • Almost insta-death by draning bug solved (Vampire bats were lethal)
  • Android - Crash bug on app exit
  • Android - Cupcake was not supported afterall due to an incorrect minimum SDK version

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Dweller 1.2.1

I found an issue with screen clipping on the latest release when drawing floating combat text on Android handsets. This was a minor issue, but annoying enough that I decided to make a patch release to fix it. I also added a couple of small features as well, but this should still be considered a patch release.

Download instructions here.


  • Added a Buy all/Sell all command
  • A message is shown when you do not have enough money to buy an item
  • Added a low hitpoint warning message


  • Adjusted font height to work better in both landscape and portrait mode


  • Android - Floating damage text was clipped

Monday, August 23, 2010

Dweller 1.2 released - now with support for cupcakes

It is time for another Dweller release again. This release adds backwards compatibility for Android handsets (Cupcake through to Froyo). The release also contains some highly anticipated bugfixes for the J2ME version, some new features, a couple of changes and a bunch of minor bugfixes.

Download Dweller here.


  • Version check at startup to avoid loading invalid saved data
  • Floating text animations above monsters and player when taking damage and upon xp gain
  • Added some stat gain potions
  • Amount of gold shown in the bottom status bar when interacting with the merchant


  • Added some extra info to the saved scores (char level and max depth)
  • Chests, stairs and traps will no longer be created in water
  • Updated the splash screen logo
  • Improved scrolling in menues, especially when using a touch screen


  • J2ME - Exiting the app in any other way than from the game menu did not save any ongoing game
  • J2ME - Some of the default keybindings for navigation conflicted with keybindings for inventory and main menu on some handsets (SE C702 among others)
  • Worg graphics was still incorrect - doh!
  • The game over screen was shown multiple times which caused weird behaviour and multiple score entries
  • When enchanting a wielded weapon it gets unwielded but not wielded again. This was unintentional and has been solved.
  • When enchanting an item you have more than one of the whole stack got enchanted. Only stacks of ammo can get enchanted now
  • It is no longer possible to enchant a quiver of normal arrows as those are of unlimited supply
  • On really rare occasions the game crashed when entering a new level
  • Infrequent crash bug when dying

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Javascript Magic - The JS1K compo

I really dig coding competitions, especially when the rules of a competition give limitations on the contestants and their competition entries. The limitations could be things like thematic (write a shoot 'em up game), input limitations (write a one button game), time limited (within 24 hours), language limited (Javascript only) or size limited (number of characters).

In the roguelike world we have the 7DRL annual competition. Write a roguelike game in 7 days. There has also been 1K competitions with really good roguelike entries.

The most recent competition I came across was the JS1K competition where you have 1KB of Javacode to do something really cool with (minified and all ofcourse). Some of the stuff is truly amazing (there is so much to link to... this one is nice as well, and this and this and this, oh I better stop). There is also at least one roguelike entry, Yellow vs Red.

Friday, August 13, 2010

The next Dweller release and the future

Now that I (hopefully) got rid of most of the serious bugs introduced these last couple of release I hope to be able to work a bit more on (re)playability. I want each Dweller session to feel unique and fun, and the gameplay throughout a game should not be too repetitive. I've learnt over the years that writing new features is not the hard part. The hard part of writing a game is to make the game interesting and fun to play. I have a list of things I'd like to do in future versions of Dweller, but it is far from complete and I am by no means a game designer. Things I'd like to do:

User experience
  • Add more in-game help
  • Make Dweller translatable
  • Add an option to Use Many (for instance use 3 Mushrooms of healing in one go, without having to go in to the menu between each use)
  • Place stairs further apart
  • Perhaps add several stairs up/down, possibly to different branches ("You see a staircase leading down to the sewers", "You see a staircase leading down to a dungeon")
  • Sewers: Add junk that can be searched for items (can spawn monsters and/or cause disease)
  • New map type: Catacombs. Undead monsters mostly. Coffins that can be opened for loot/monsters
  • New map elements: Altar (sacrifice items to gain favors), Teleporter, Fountain (healing, antidote, mutation, poison)
  • Minimap
  • Evaluate Fog of War monster "ghosts" - remove monsters and keep only items?
  • Add some kind of danger assessment to monsters (Harmless, Weak, Even, Dangerous, Deadly etc)
  • Named monsters (mini bosses)
  • Immobile monsters: Statues, Deadly plants
  • Show monster description at first encounter of a new monster
  • More monsters!
  • Monsters should avoid undiscovered traps (they already avoid discovered traps)
  • Other lightsources (fires, torches)
  • Curse (decreases chance of attacking/casting spells or maybe preventing items from being removed)
  • Acid (damages inventory and/or equipment)
  • Improve "game over" screen
  • Investigate if a Rest command should be added (regain HP with the risk of monsters ambushing)
  • Possibly add difficulty levels (Easy, Normal, Hard). Maybe prevent use of stairs up on Hard or something? No starting inventory? Separate highscore tables (or a single one with a score bonus depending on difficulty).

I am very interested in hearing some player feedback and suggestions on how to make Dweller even better. Do you have an idea how to improve Dweller? Please let me know!

Dweller 1.1.3 released

Time for another update. This time it's a mix of bug fixes, graphical tweaks and some changes to the save/load code in the Android version. Changes:


- Monster descriptions are shown upon first encounter


- Underlying floor tile rendered for traps, doors and chests
- Android - save/load code reworked. Should work on 2.2 devices now
- When selling an equipped item you have more than one of you no longer un-equip the item first

- Solved a recently introduced bug with the map generator that could cause disconnected levels

Download and installtion instructions at

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Dweller 1.1 bugfix release

The 1.0.2 release was unfortunately a bit buggy. I didn't have enough time to test all aspects of the release and had to release too early due to my vacation plans. Well, now I'm back and ready to release version 1.1 of Dweller. The new release is mainly a bugfix and balancing release with the following things done:

- The merchant will be named after player who have contributed to the game by submitting bug reports or giving feedback

- Adjusted item prices. No more arrows being worth thousands of gold.
- When you sell something to the merchant you won't get paid the full price of the item

- There was an issue with Scrolls of Recall that left a player ghost on the level you travelled from
- Game over crash bug
- Crash bug when redefining keys
- Some monster graphics were wrong
- Traps and secret doors in the caves are no longer clearly visible even when not found
- Android - Cycle Target set to Menu key
- Going back from the Buy/Sell item list takes you to the correct screen
- Improved touch screen srolling in menues
- It was possible to kill the merchant with ranged attacks

Download and instructions here:

Sunday, August 8, 2010

A new version o Dweller incoming soon

I've had two busy weeks with a lot of summer activities that have prevented me from working effectively on a bug-fix version of Dweller. Some work has been done, and I expect to get a lot done next week with a goal to have a new release out before the end of next week.

I would like to thank everyone who have sent feedback on the latest release. Your feedback is invaluable! As a token of my appreciation everyone who have given feedback or will give feedback in the future will get their name into the game. The merchant on level 1 will be randomly named each game from a list of people who have given feedback. You will come across merchants like Jeff the trader, Mateusz the merchant and so on. Thanks again!