Marginalia hero — medieval one tap game


Marginalia hero — it is an arcade game with RPG elements in medieval marginalia setting (strange and weird drawings from illuminated manuscripts). You are about to fight creatures and monsters, which were painted by real medieval artists about 5 centuries ago.


Here are some examples how does marginalia look like:


I am a big fan of marginalia because of the large spectrum of emotions depicted there: from comical-ridiculous surprise / fear / sadness to absolute calm / appeasement / humility or relaxation.

Just look at this!

uuuh, its pretty awesome!!!


I didnt have money to pay for artist’s work so i decided to try vector graphics and draw my game by myself. I think i spent much more time on drawing rather than on coding :smiley: . It becomes more funny when i say that im computer science student… hmmm… did i choose my future profession correctly? :sweat_smile:

Sooo i started to redraw charecters from illuminated manuscripts:

After a while, i got some drawing skills and became able to draw simple things by myself. So GUI elements, icons and equipment sprites were created without medieval artists’ help.

And now im about to show you screenshots from my game:


Gameplay lies in the fact that a player needs to perform attacks exactly at the moment when the sword moving in a circle is above the target. Gradually new sword’s and target’s behaviors appear ( movement towards one another, transparency changing, acceleration and deceleration, rebound and swinging). When enemies are conquered, the main hero can upgrade his weapon and shield, buy pets and charms which give him not only visual customization but different bonuses for his abilities. Therefore it makes sense to collect different equipment sets for a certain enemy or level.

Key features

:white_circle:️ unique looking graphics style
:white_circle:️ addictive and challenging gameplay
:white_circle:️ 70+ items for customization and upgrading
:white_circle:️ 200 levels with strange and weird creatures and monsters
:white_circle:️ one finger/tap/click controls
:white_circle:️ atmospheric background music
:white_circle:️ heroic challenges and bossfight levels
:white_circle:️ 50 achievements for every taste
:white_circle:️ daily gifts and rewards


Google play: (web) :


I really love Defold and its friendly community! You are awesome! Thanks! :heart:


At this moment im thinking about what i should do with the game next . This project’s goal was to create interesting looking small game from scratch and release it on app market. And now its done, yeah! :smiley:

Im inclined to think its almost impossible to promote game on app markets with no budget or get published with no development experience (i am a novice in gamedev and programming. Its my first finished game) :thinking:
So probably i should leave this game as it is, get some rest and start creating a new one. Hmm, what do you think about it? Am i right? Or maybe i didnt take something into account? :thinking:


Really nice! How long have you been working on this game? Do you think about releasing the game to iOS as well?


I would be constructively critical, though remember I’m admiring your game and I’m amazed about the graphics style. For me it’s too hard, especially at the beginning, when you have one fragile life and the sword is spinning so fast :smiley: and I don’t think of myself as a casual player :smiley: Maybe think about balancing it? Because in mobile games, you have only few seconds to catch someone’s attention. In my case I was also more and more focused on the tapping and the circle instead of the beautiful monsters you created. Maybe before every combat introduce somehow if a new monster appears? I was also thinking about adding some quick intro, a trivial motive, even saving a queen from the dragon :wink: Unlockable items and charms are awesome and I’m also thinking about introducing them a little bit earlier :wink: If you are good at crating dialogs and snappy retorts, why not try one at the beginning of the fight? Even in medieval elevated style? If it comes to marketing, your game is great for visual representation, so take care of posting screens from it on other forums, try to reach some reviewers that could post graphics, or even let’s players on YouTube :wink: Spread news not only among players but also medieval and marginalia fans :wink:


/r/trippinthroughtime on reddit would love this as well.


Omg, your aesthetic is so cool! I played it a bit and the first bit of feedback that comes to mind is that I felt like I couldn’t focus on the beautifully drawn monsters because I had to look at the circle at all times.


I agree with the feedback you have already received - the game is beautiful and very original but the gameplay makes it hard to appreciate the beauty. Also I feel the gameplay is somewhat similar to a rythm game, but instead you get fooled because the music and tapping have no correlation.
Have you tried taking the game to a publisher? Preferably someone who publish games with aesthetic focus (like for instance Anapurna Interactive)? They might be interested enough to help you iron out the wrinkles because it is a truly unique game.


I can see myself getting as addicted to this game as I was with Knife Hit. Although in its current state it is too hard. Maybe reveal several targets on the circle at once and let the player hit all to make an attack, then pause and let the player enjoy the visuals. Then repeat.


For about 6 months including drawing. I have no ios devices to test the game, so for now i don’t plan releasing to ios


Wow! Thanks a lot for your valuable feedback! I really appreciate it! :heart:


yep, that’s the problem… Thanks!


I got you, thanks!
Okay, its worth a try to show the game to publishers


Okay, thanks for feedback!
When Ketchapp games player says that the game is too hard, i can’t ingore it :grinning:


This is something I learned back when I was making maps for Warcraft 3 - what you as a creator consider easy might feel nightmarishly hardcore for a new player, and it’s better to err on the side of it being too easy, especially at the beginning.


This is great—ingenious use of art style, and really well-executed too :raised_hands:


Really impressive and polished! :smiley:


Nooooo, I found the difficulty perfect! However, I agree that the (pretty hard) gameplay takes focus away from the wonderful aesthetics.


maybe put this game to the internal and public Defold newsletters, @Axel-old-account?

I will also do some SMM for you @rbcv
Also let me inspire you write a devlog with pros/cons and overall your Defold experience. Since this was the first Defold game for you, to my knowledge.


Most recently the difficulty was decreased by 20%, and now players say it’s better


Yes, and it’s also my first finished game at all. I’m a novice game developer and honestly i don’t know what a valuable experience i could share :hushed: