Highpiled – Free Block Stacking Mini Game Made in 21 Hours

Download game via the website: Highpiled.com (See how the game name is so close to Hightailed…)

It’s been some months already when I looked into physics libraries for Blitz3D. I started making a small game prototype to test physics, and I ended up testing the physics with shadows and added some tiny details. Today I decided that I could “publish” this small mini game – or game prototype – to public. I made the game quite long time ago (and made a quick website for it today) so I cannot remember exactly how long it took to make the game. If I remember correctly I spent few hours on three different days in a row, and then spent some more hours testing particles (which now are not in the game), and then few hours to test stuff so the final “hours spent” number won’t probably go far away from the 21 hours.

The game music is done by Indiepath and art by FroGames. Physics wrapper JV-ODE wrapper made by DevCode.co.uk. Open physics engine website: ode.org. The shadows are done using Devil’s shadow system, which can be found somewhere at BlitzBasic community.

I’m probably going to publish my thoughts about this mini project some time in the future. Overall it was a fun way to test different libraries by making a small game using them.

Try to beat my score “17.1 meters”: play the game.

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. “Graphic Card doesn’t support Bump Mapping” error message… should be fixed. The code was lying in the 3rd party library, so I don’t know 100% how it works.

    If somebody could test it… and tell me if it works – that would be nice.

  2. The game looks nice, but I haven’t tried it yet because I have this irrational hatred against tiny games with installers :”) Could you provide it as a zip file too, please? ‘Cause I’d really like to try it out and I’m sure some other people might appreciate it too. Thanks

  3. I get an “Graphic Card doesn’t support Bump Mapping” error message. I will try it on our other machine soon, but at the moment I’m on a laptop (which normally plays every game I download, sometimes with a lower FPS or low resolution, but that error completely bans me from playing – which is sad, because the game shouldn’t be in total need of Bump Mapping, I assume ;)

  4. That is really strange. I will let you know if I hear about this problem from others or if I manage to do something about it. Thanks for reporting.

  5. Nope.. The game doesn’t start at all. After double clicking the game icon all i’ve got is this weird error message.

  6. @Sargon: Blitz3D usually simply say “memory access violation” when something bad happens, and I’m sort of get used to expect that when something isn’t right ;)

    I have 2 external libraries: shadow systems and physics system. I haven’t tested neither one, and since I’ve used blitz3d for years (without seeing that 0xc00 error I started to think about external problems). I tried googling and it gave odd sites (like that disk fragmenter, but also some other sites where that error was displayed). THAT made me think it could be some sort of windows problem.

    I also know that your system must support bump mapping (because of the shadow lib – even though I could disable this feature), and I started thinking if that could cause it.

    @Pawel: Do you press ESC, or the window close button (X in the top right corner)? ESC should work okay, and perhaps there’s a bug in my code when pressing close button?

  7. Juuso, why does he get 0xc0000005 error?
    My error system catch any windows error possible to catch, saves the minidumb and allows the user to send the minidump by mail to me.
    However, in these kind of errors the minidump would usually wont help. So it is probabbly caused by some other bug in your software, like accessing an array out of its scope.
    It is very tempting to blame the system, compiler other external software in the bug, but the bug is almost always because of your software and not some other product.

  8. I have Windows XP.
    The link you provided is about some weird problem with disk defragmenter. And actually the problem occurs after closing the app, not after the launch.

  9. >ah, that could have been the Shadow system… it requires newer video card I think. I can make a quick check to see what could cause that…

    I have pretty good card – GeForce 6600, so it shouldn’t be an issue.

  10. I totally agree. Besides – it’s a fun way to learn something new (like in my case I learned about physics and shadows – and how they work in Blitz3D)

  11. Very interesting concept :) I am more and more inclined to work on few small games like this one. This makes your brain so refreshed after months of development of just one title :D

  12. @Micael: That’s allowed – although you will run out of blocks quite soon ;)

    @Sargon: I also know that shadows don’t work 100% properly, but I don’t I’ll do anything about them (and well, there’s not much I *could* do to them since it’s external library ;). I might try to adjust the light position, it might help a bit.

    I left the rotation away intentionally: there’s the platform (and other boxes) you must use to “rotate” the cubes. That way it requires more work and is more challenging :)

    @Pawel: ah, that could have been the Shadow system… it requires newer video card I think. I can make a quick check to see what could cause that…

    Thanks people

  13. Your game doesn’t work on my system. I’ve got a message like ‘Application wasn’t initialized properly (0xc0000005). Click OK to finish’ or something like that. It’s in Polish so I don’t know how exactly should it look like in English.

  14. Really nice. I liked the music and the game is fun.
    Perhaps more control over the cubes, such as being able to rotate them (or maybe thats part of the challenge? to find the right cube?).
    I only reached 16.4 m, because I didnt have much paitience.
    However, I actually wrote this to notify you about some shadow ‘bugs’ I have noticed, perhaps you know about them.
    I can upload an image to image shack if you want.
    Basically the shadow bugs were that on the top cube of the tower there was shadow, not apparent where it got the shadow from.
    Also, the shdow from the bottom cube once seemed to streach to infinity.
    So I am not sure if those are bugs, but I thought I should have notify you about them.

  15. Just a quick note: the content packs are not mines, they are made by Christophe. (I’m the developer of Frogames)

    Honsetly I already had some similar game ideas and I’m pretty sure something really good can be made with a little more.

  16. Looks very nice, I enjoyed it!

    btw: my top score reached 18.6 m.

  17. I bet there would be several ideas like different gravity (“moon gravity” for example) and all kinds of bonus stuff (could “freeze gravity for some time”), multiplayer mode etc. I’ll stick with this for now, but would gladly hear more ideas. Who knows what this might evolve into.. :)

    Oh, and I warmly recommend everybody to check out frogames content packs – they are top notch quality, and very inexpensive. Just right for indie games with tight budgets.

  18. Nice use of our content pack!

    I can’t try the demo yet as I’m on Mac right now but here two ideas for your game:
    – Put obstacles
    – Use of rectangular parallelepipeds could be fun too

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