On rare occasions, we manage to find some interesting indie game projects with a lot of potential. This week our team got in contact with a Lithuania-based team Codyfight who introduced themselves as a small team of tech geeks.
For some time now, this team has been working on a very interesting and original project that is better described as a competitive coding game. According to the team, Codyfight is a game where the player has to create his own AI robot and battle against others. Seems a bit complicated? You’re not alone!
To help us unwrap this mystery, we talked with Andrius Jaškauskas, the author of this project who shared his vision and told us a bit about this new game.
Tell us, how the idea about Codyfight came to your mind?
So, one day I was walking with a friend who’s also a professional programmer and somehow we started talking about how fun it would be to test our coding skills and compete with each other. And of course, we didn’t want to compete by completing some tasks or developing a system – the things that programmers do every day. No, we wanted to compete in a game form – an immersive environment. We tried searching for something like that on the web but nothing really caught our interest – the games were either super educational or too hard to get into. Then I thought: why not create one myself? And then spent the whole weekend coding. I’ve created a demo of Codyfight and showed it to my programmer friends. Everyone was super hooked and had lots of fun – we ended up playing it till 4 AM!
So I stuck to this new game idea, Danas Girdauskas immediately joined the project. We formed a small team of tech geeks, started developing basic system logic, and now the game is successfully advancing.
We probably read through all of the available descriptions of the Codyfight but are still a bit confused about it. How would you describe this game for anyone hearing about it for the first time?
Broadly speaking, both for programmers and non-programmers, it’s a turn-based multiplayer online strategy game. Of course, there are nuances of how to win and how to collect points, but the main goal of every turn is to choose the most intelligent robot movement direction (left, right, up, down, stay) which leads to the winning point. Robots are awarded points for caging a special agent – the Pig or leaving the map first through the exit. These rewards dictate the metagame between two different behavior patterns: collaborate or defect.
To explain Codyfight to new people, first of all, I would ask a person one question: are you familiar with programming or not? And depending on that, there are two answers.
If a person is familiar with programming, I would say that it’s a game played via API with a few different requests. It’s a game for programmers where you can create your own robot and compete with others. Codyfight is a brand new API with a very simple game control (no annoying polling or sleeps on a client-side) – every programmer will quickly understand it after checking the documentation and performing their first request.
On the other hand, if you’re a non-programmer, I’d say that it’s a game where humans and AI robots compete with each other. So, if you want to play as a human, you can simply control your robot’s movements via keyboard.
How would you describe your game’s target audience?
Our target audience is segmented. The first segment is tech-savvy people who like coding, gaming, and competition. Codyfight combines all these 3 things, so it should be a true heaven for programmers that are avid gamers. Another, perhaps wider audience segment is casual players who like innovations and trying out new game genres. The third audience is people who want to learn to code. I believe that for some people Codyfight could become a fun way to get into the world of coding without even realizing they’ve started coding.
How many developers are currently working on this project?
Currently, we have a team of four professionals: me and another co-founder (back-end developers), one front-end developer, and a 2D/3D artist. Two of us mainly work with the back-end and servers. That includes the entire infrastructure of the game: communication between internal servers, public game API, and the logic of the game itself. We’ve been working on it for almost half a year now and the basic functionality is already implemented. We also have a clear vision, ideas, and plans of what to implement next. There’s also a front-end developer who has recently joined the team. She works on a new website design and style of Codyfight. Our artist draws all the necessary graphics. Her main focus is on the creation of robot skins and in-game elements.
On your website, you said that in the near future you want to make the game accessible for people with different (or zero) coding skills. Does this mean that casual players will also be able to play Codyfight?
Yes, absolutely. For casual non-programmer players, Codyfight will be super easy to enter. You can see it as a quick and simple turn-based web game to play when you’re looking for a small strategic challenge against another human player or AI robot (this challenge could be similar to the classic chess or checker match). In Codyfight, you’ll have to manually control your robot, move it through the grid map, interact with special NPC agents, and collect more points than the opponent. So, anyone who comes to our website will be able to play the game – whether you’re a casual player, programmer, or one who wants to learn to code. You can control your robot in real-time via keyboard or create a code that will make decisions for your AI robot. Of course, we don’t know yet who will perform better – humans or robots. So we’ve decided that from the first launch, one of the game modes – the competitive arena will be open exceptionally for AI robots. Maybe later we will let casual players in as well – we’ll see.
What’s your ideal scenario for the future of Codyfight?
Our goal is to evolve the game into a platform where many different types of players and creators find exactly what interests them. Casual players compete with each other, programmers create robots, share ideas, and even sell their best-performing robots. Visual lovers search for the craziest skins while artists around the world design them. So, in our vision, Codyfight becomes not only a fun game but also a new market to trade AI robots (source code) and skins (artistic 3D models), letting users earn real money. This would also build a creative community within the game. You’ll be able to bring your own AI robot and its skin to the game. It won’t be easy but it would create a very interesting variety – something that’s unusual in today’s gaming world. Ultimately, we would love to see Codyfight becoming the way-to-go platform where programmers and modern artists create for joy and value.
However, Codyfight is still in the development stage. So for now, we invite you to follow our news on Facebook (and other social media platforms). In addition, everyone can already subscribe to an early access invitation at www.codyfight.com – only the most eager players (limited amount) will be called to play the early Codyfight version.
You seem to be passionate about gaming. Do you consider yourself a hardcore gamer?
I wouldn’t call myself a hardcore gamer (just because I don’t have enough free time for gaming) but a passionate gamer – absolutely yes!
What games do you like to play when you’re not making one?
Currently, Fortnite is my number one because I like competitive games. I also play PokemonGO because it fits very well in my free time as I like long walks and exploring outside. Another game I love is Magic: The Gathering (MTG) which is a collectible card game with multiple strategies, plus it has a very interesting metagame. I could say that MTG’s complexity inspired the idea of Codyfight and our vision of what it might become in the future: a metagame between complex different robot strategies. So, from all these games I mentioned there are three key points that appeal to me the most in gaming: competitiveness of Fortnite, collectible nature of PokemonGO, and complexity of MTG.
We thank Andrius Jaškauskas for his answers. Be sure to check out his game!