Adventure Time is an animated television show which airs on Cartoon Network. It started life as a short created for Nickelodeon which became a viral video hit on the Internet. Pendleton Ward then created a full series about a human boy named Finn and his best friend Jake, a dog with magical powers. The success of the TV show has led to several games based on the series to be made for the Cartoon Network website. One of which is Adventure Time Game Creator.
Anyone can play the games on Cartoon network, including Adventure Time Game Creator, but you’re nagged to create a profile, and certain features are locked until you do so. With Adventure Time Game Creator those features are being able to play the games you created yourself and sharing them with the community. Creating a profile means you’ll start earning points, earning badges, and moving up the ranks on the Cartoon network website, so it is definitely worth doing.
Upon visiting the Adventure Time Game Creator page you’re presented with two options (after watching the 30-second video ad). The first invites you to, “Play games built by other players just like you!” and sees you taking on the challenges forged by other members of the community.
You’re dropped into a random game, and after playing that you can browse the ‘Top Games’ or simply click on “Play a random game.” Each has a name, a difficulty level and a rating out of five. When you finish playing one you’re presented with a selection of other games it’s predicted that you will enjoy, which makes it very easy to carry on playing long after you know you should have stopped to do something much more productive, even if that more-productive activity is creating your own game for others to play.
Each game features one character from a selection of three, and their special ability is pre-determined. The controls are the same for all of them, with the Left, Right, Up, and Down keys moving you in those directions, a double-click on Up making you jump, and a press of the spacebar launching an attack. This keeps things simple and means you don’t have to relearn controls every time you choose a new level.
If you’d rather create than consume you’re invited to, “Build your own game and send it to the gallery for everyone to play!” While this is called the Adventure Time Game Creator, and we’ve been referring to the “games” that others have created, in reality these are more like levels all based on a theme and around a core concept.
Building your own game is a six-step process. You begin by choosing the initial layout of your level; either a blank canvas or one of a set designed to give you a headstart. You then choose a background from a selection that will be familiar to fans of the Adventure Time TV show. You then choose your hero, which has to be either Finn, Jake, or Marceline.
That’s when the fun begins as you start to build your level, starting with the goal. This can be one of the following: Get to the door, Collect all gems, Battle all enemies, or Collect all gems and battle all enemies. Then comes the actual level design, which sees you placing all of the elements which will eventually make up your unique Adventure Time game in the grid provided.
All you need to do is click on the element you want to place and paste it into position. There are walls, floors, objects such as gems and potions, and hazards such as enemies and lava. There are also air and water squares to add environmental effects, and an eraser to ensure you can delete single elements without needing to start over from scratch.
Once you’re happy with your level you need to test it out by playing it yourself. This is an essential and unavoidable step as you’re not able to submit your game without first proving that it’s beatable. If you find it’s too easy you can go back and add some extra peril. After that it’s a simple case of choosing a poster and a name for your level, and you can brag that you’ve created your own simple platform game.
Practice, Patience, Perfect
You’ll be able to play the games others have created in a matter of seconds, and apart from the obvious cheats — when you’ll get shot and killed by an enemy by doing nothing other than standing still at the start of the game — it should only take you a few minutes to be an expert. But then I’m talking from the point of view of an adult and not the young children this is primarily aimed towards.
Creating a game is also easy to come to grips with, but to actually create something that not only works without bugs but is actually both fun and challenging to play will take some time. The key to getting the most out of the Adventure Time Game Creator is practicing using other people’s creations, having patience when building a level, and perfecting each level until it’s as good as it possibly can be.
Despite being much older than the target demographic I thoroughly enjoyed the Adventure Time Game Creator. Playing other people’s levels is a fun way to waste five minutes (at a time) online, and creating your own levels is surprisingly satisfying. The simple nature of the whole thing is a blessing, as it means anyone, young or old, can be both gamer and game creator in a very short space of time.
Feel free to let us know what you think of the Adventure Time Game Creator in the comments section below.