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Read June 06, 2007, 06:41:25 PM #0
omicron1

UR: completed (Hopefully final update)

UPDATE NEWS: Re-added particles; added indicator of current options; spiced up level 1.

UR is finished. From now on, the only things I'll be adding to this project are bugfixes.

I harbor no hopes of winning this contest - there's too many good games out there - but I hope you like what I've done anyway.


The final product is somewhat of a "serious sam" treatment of the shmup genre; that is, it's a game about the weapons, and about killing masses of enemies. I really didn't know what a shooter was supposed to be like when I started this contest (My shooter experience is limited to getting 103,000 points on Geometry Wars) - and I still don't, really. But I hope my approximation thereof is close enough to the mark to work.

The game is four stages long, with each stage being about ten minutes in length. But, lest you think that this is an hour-long game - it's also quite difficult. It includes eleven normal enemies and four unique boss enemies; twelve option types; and plenty of purchasable items.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2007, 07:11:01 PM by omicron1 »
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Read June 06, 2007, 07:12:59 PM #1
cactus

Re: UR

Lookin really nice for such an early screenshot! Are you using GM's d3d commands, or did you tinker up some 3D of your own? I'm really looking forward to playing this. Good luck in the competition  grin2
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Read June 06, 2007, 09:11:55 PM #2
Five Damned Dollarz

Re: UR

Awesome background, nice effects, although the 2d ships look kind of out of place in that image embarrassed2 but thats just my opinion, continue on, hope to play this Smiley
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Read June 06, 2007, 10:53:29 PM #3
omicron1

Re: UR

->Cactus: I'm using GM's d3d.
->FDD: The ship graphics are HIGHLY temporary. So are all the other graphical effects, as a matter of fact.
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Read June 06, 2007, 11:33:42 PM #4
monoRAIL

Re: UR

Nice looking bullets!
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Read June 07, 2007, 05:26:21 PM #5
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR

Welcome to the compo, omicron1.  You are definitely accepted, and I want you to do your awesome best on your contest project here.  Wish you the very best of sheer success here!!!  Grin !
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Read June 08, 2007, 01:56:47 AM #6
omicron1

Re: UR

A set of new "effect" shots...

(Note that, especially in the case of the latter image, these images show far more effects than wil be visible at any one time ingame. (It runs too slowly)

This is one of my favorite weapons. It basically creates a "black hole" bullet which sucks up enemies and bullets - the enemies are destroyed, but the bullets are released - when it reaches capacity - in a shower of destruction.



This is another interesting weapon. It "zaps" any enemies near your cursor for massive damage - good versus individuals, but not so much versus large groups.



Planned design details:

Stage length: (Straight through, no resets) 18 minutes
# of stages: 10 (plus a "random" stage
3 difficulty levels will add extra replay value, and a custom stage creator could be included. (Due to the format of my levels, stages can be created as simple 31x512 bitmap images)
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Read June 08, 2007, 03:20:09 AM #7
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR

In terms of the look of this game so far (telling from the two new screenshots), I’d say that is an excellent start, omicron1!!  Just make sure you have some awesome gameplay and play control and we’d be all set, you know now?  Grin=b
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Read June 08, 2007, 03:46:36 AM #8
pixelizr

Re: UR

Quote
It "zaps" any enemies near your cursor for massive damage...

Please excuse me from making this comment I cannot resist making... but does your roster of enemies include giant enemy crabs? grin2
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Read June 08, 2007, 07:04:09 AM #9
cactus

Re: UR

It "zaps" any enemies near your cursor
I assume that this means you're likely making an arena shooter? Or at least a mouse controlled game?

Quote from: Adigun A. Polack
Just make sure you have some awesome gameplay and play control and we’d be all set, you know now?
I'm not sure that I'm interpreting this correctly, but it sounds like Adigun is giving you a hint that mouse controls might not be the best idea. If you look at the previous contests, you can see that no mouse controlled game has won so far. I think a lot of Shoot 'Em Up fans have a strong preference for keyboard controls only, to boot.

I'm not confident enough to tell you that you should switch subgenre, but generally speaking, vertical or horizontal scrolling shooters with keyboard controls seem to be the safest bet if you want to win.

The new screens look really good, though. You seem like you're able to do quite a bit with GM grin2
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Read June 08, 2007, 07:36:34 AM #10
motorherp

Re: UR

Quote
It "zaps" any enemies near your cursor for massive damage...

Please excuse me from making this comment I cannot resist making... but does your roster of enemies include giant enemy crabs? grin2

Hahaha genious.  I thought people would have forgotten about that one by now  Grin


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Read June 08, 2007, 02:27:44 PM #11
omicron1

Re: UR

Hmm...

Problem is, having keyboard-only controls makes weapons like lasers and lightning, and even just plain-fire satellites, a lot less interesting. I mean, what's the point of having two weapons with infinite range and high damage if they aren't somehow different?

The current control scheme I have set up is WASD for movement, constant primary fire (fast, but limited to straight up), and mouse left-click to direct your satellites' fire towards the cursor.

"If you look at the previous contests, you can see that no mouse controlled game has won so far." - Maybe it's time for a change, then.

"Hahaha genious.  I thought people would have forgotten about that one by now" - I don't get it.
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Read June 08, 2007, 02:35:10 PM #12
pixelizr

Re: UR

"Hahaha genious.  I thought people would have forgotten about that one by now" - I don't get it.

Hmmm. Before I answer that, will your planned game have real-time weapons change? grin2

-----

Well, ok let me explain before things get out of hand. Those are from Sony's PS3 talks at E3. A lot of people weren't impressed, so snippets of the speeches ended up as "all your base" internet memes. smiley2
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Read June 08, 2007, 02:49:06 PM #13
motorherp

Re: UR

If you think mouse fire control is the way to go for you to realise your game then go for it, it's your judgement call at the end of the day.  If you're interested though here's my opinion on it.  When I play shooters I tend to stay focused on the area not too far ahead of the player ship, the hot area.  I'm trying to analyse the bullet patterns as they approach to find the safe spots which I then move into using my knowledge of where my ship is and my peripheral vision without having take my attention of the hot area.  The same applies for tagetting enemy ships, I use my peripheral vision and knowledge of their positions from previous play throughs to line up or rotate my guns to hit them.  The problem with mouse control is that it takes a focused effort to move the reticule around and aim it which takes your site and attention away from the hot area and can confuse your almost sub-concious knowledge of your ship position.  In my opinion this detracts from the playability.  If games like this usualy get marked low it's not because we have a grudge against mouse control but just because mouse control makes for less enjoyable games.  Perhaps though you'll find the right balance and make it all work flawlessly.

Oh and -> Giant Enemy Crab! Massive Damage mix

PS:  Another thought on mouse control.  In my opinion its important to make the control mechanism as transparent as possible to the player to absorb them in the game.  I think this control style with mouse and keyboard however suffers somewhat from 'rub your tummy and pat your head simultaneously' syndrome just because they are too different and comlex to combine (at least for this style of game).  Forcing the player to think about the control scheme pulls them away from the game experience. 
« Last Edit: June 08, 2007, 03:06:01 PM by motorherp »

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Read June 08, 2007, 02:57:51 PM #14
the2bears

Re: UR

...The problem with mouse control is that it takes a focused effort to move the reticule around and aim it which takes your site and attention away from the hot area and can confuse your almost sub-concious knowledge of your ship position.  In my opinion this detracts from the playability.  If games like this usualy get marked low it's not because we have a grudge against mouse control but just because mouse control makes for less enjoyable games.  Perhaps though you'll find the right balance and make it all work flawlessly...

Getting mouse control right in a shooter is extremely difficult.  There have been only a couple in the last few years that I've seen that even came close.  Just a warning  Grin

edit: Unless you lean towards an arena shooter style...

Bill
« Last Edit: June 08, 2007, 02:59:34 PM by the2bears »

the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 08, 2007, 03:10:19 PM #15
relsoft

Re: UR

"All your BASIC(freebasic) are belong to us!"

I guess I'm doing my entry in C++.


Hello
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Read June 08, 2007, 03:13:26 PM #16
Olick

Re: UR

I think mouse control for some aiming is a good idea myself. The only challenge is to make sure that the button config isn't such that it asks for a 3 hand layout, one hand on arrows, one hand on attack keys, and one hand on the mouse.

Personally I think FPS's do it pretty well with the aswd keys, using the numpad for weapon changing, keys near aswd for control, and the shitft and space keys for movement abilities, since your pinky and thumb kinda hovers over those spots anyways.

Also: I am jealous of your special effects.
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Read June 08, 2007, 03:23:01 PM #17
omicron1

Re: UR

You change weapons either when your satellites (options) run out of charges, (at which time they revert to their base form) or when you collect "powerups" which enemies drop, which give your options different weapons. Your main gun can be upgraded between stages, for a price.


Just some clarification on the control scheme:
* WASD are your primary control. They control the ship motion.
* Your main gun fires automatically (I mean, if it's one-directional, what advantage could there possibly be in NOT firing?)
* Your options fire towards the mouse cursor when you left- (or right-?) click. Since many of the option weapons are quite powerful, this means that, for the most part, you don't have to worry too much about your ship's safety while you have them.


...And now I've probably said too much.


I think it might be a good idea to do a minor release to let you experienced people experiment with what I have set up. Then, I can make sure that the control scheme in the final game is popular.
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Read June 08, 2007, 03:29:38 PM #18
motorherp

Re: UR

* Your main gun fires automatically (I mean, if it's one-directional, what advantage could there possibly be in NOT firing?)

In some games the aim isn't always to destroy everything as fast as you can.  It really depends on your scoring mechanism.

Quote
I think it might be a good idea to do a minor release to let you experienced people experiment with what I have set up. Then, I can make sure that the control scheme in the final game is popular.

Excellent plan.  Releasing alphas and betas is an excellent way to get feedback on your games for tweaking and you'll also get some bug testing thrown in as a bonus.


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Read June 08, 2007, 03:54:56 PM #19
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR

I agree with motorherp here, omicron1.  I think an early release is not a bad idea to do at this point, because it gives us a surefire chance to sample the play control of your entry.  That way, we won’t get mired deep in the quicksands of awkward game mechanics... especially once the controls have been improved and all polished up, you know what I mean?  So I’d say just keep the controls as simple and easy-to-grasp as you can for the player... remember, it is the PLAYER we are thinking about!!  Grin

And motorherp said to make the control mechanism as transparent as possible to help immerse the player into an enjoyable game experience... and you know what?  That’s right.  Wink=b !
« Last Edit: June 08, 2007, 03:57:10 PM by Adigun A. Polack »
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Read June 08, 2007, 07:42:32 PM #20
omicron1

Re: UR

Ok; added a bit o' polish and modified the control scheme again.

Here's the "pre-alpha" demo - only two enemy types, 5 weapons, no upgrades, one 1/4-length stage, and one "easy" boss.
It also includes some music from Newgrounds that I thought went well with the game.

download it here

Note that nothing in this demo is final. There's no optimization; the demo is far easier than the game will be; upgrades and powerup-spawn rate are set too high; etc., etc. Just test it and tell me how you like the control scheme and concept.
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Read June 08, 2007, 08:09:13 PM #21
the2bears

Re: UR

As an aside, why not upload the file here?  It's a lot more user friendly than filefactory and their ilk.  I had to squint and hunt for the free link on their site  Smiley

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 08, 2007, 08:10:23 PM #22
motorherp

Re: UR

Cool.  Them weapons and effects are very nice, although I'm finding the extreme parallax of the background pretty off putting.  With regards to the mouse control, I'm finding it really difficult to target what I want whilst concentrating on the action.  I think the problem comes down to the fact that the amount of angle change you get in your weapon tragectory for each unit of mouse movement is a function of the distance from the mouse cursor to the ship with this style of control method.  Since your moving the ship and mouse around all the time its really hard to gauge your mouse movement.  Of course, instead of trying to gauge angle change you can instead try hover the curser directly over the thing your aiming at but trying to do this alone is hard enough with moving targets, no matter when your trying to dodge bullets at the same time.  If I was to implement mouse control I'd get rid of the cursor all together.   Instead I'd have it so that moving the mouse left and right rotates your turrets directly instead of rotating the turrets to point at the cursor.


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Read June 08, 2007, 08:15:22 PM #23
the2bears

Re: UR

I like the visuals alot!  Of course, I like these too Smiley  Yours looks much better!

Anway, I don't like the controls.  Sorry.  2 things, not sure if they're contributing to each other or separate, but there's far too much inertia for my liking on your ship.  And motoherp describes nicely the trouble I had with mouse aiming. 

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 08, 2007, 09:21:44 PM #24
cactus

Re: UR

I can't say a lot about it, since it ran at about 10 fps on my can. But the2bears' and motoherpes' (sorry, couldn't help it) comments sounds about right from what I could tell. The graphics do look pretty spiffy, although I think the 3D could look better with some of GM's lighting effects Tongue
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Read June 08, 2007, 09:36:00 PM #25
omicron1

Re: UR

How do you upload through this site?


Anyways, second trial. I remapped the firing controls to use the arrow keys, and managed to make all the weapons functional using the new setup. See if you like these better?

(As an aside, it's definitely harder (for me) than with the old setup. I don't know if this is a result of my lack of experience with sh'mups or simply that I have been using the old system for a while.

Please test the new controls
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Read June 08, 2007, 10:10:58 PM #26
the2bears

Re: UR

How do you upload through this site?

Reply->Additional Options...->Attach

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 08, 2007, 10:15:37 PM #27
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR

Ahh, I can see that you have improved the controls, omicron1.  Good start!!  However, I should just remove the “floaty” movement mechanics of your ship altogether, because it just makes your game more of a chore to play rather than fun, taking away the experience from the player rather than immersing one in it.  sad1 !

What I would do is to replace the “floaty” movement mechanics of your ship with the simple and time-honored mechanic with which you move a certain direction upon hitting a key, but then when you let that key go, you come to a *complete* stop unless you hit another directional movement key to move in another direction.  It has been done in such COUNTLESS other games as Darius Gaiden, Warning Forever, and Blue Wish Resurrection to name a few.  Wink !

Just my advice, as I am not trying to be mean or anything like that.  I just want your game to be better and better... that is all.  cool2

« Last Edit: June 08, 2007, 10:24:23 PM by Adigun A. Polack »
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Read June 08, 2007, 10:18:20 PM #28
omicron1

Re: UR

There is no mouse in the second demo.
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Read June 08, 2007, 10:30:43 PM #29
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR

There is no mouse in the second demo.

That is what I just now found out, omicron1 ( Wink )... which is why I have just updated my previous post in this thread here.  Still, I’d take away the “floaty” ship mechanics (because the inertia of your ship forces the player to be slammed right dab into enemies and their shots).  If you can do that, then you have the potential of putting your game into top shape!!  Go for it!!!  Grin
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Read June 08, 2007, 10:33:36 PM #30
omicron1

Re: UR

Hnh..

I removed the inertia right after you posted, then ran through the game; slammed myself into half a dozen bullets during the boss fight. Again, maybe I'm just used to the previous mechanics; but maybe not. I don't know.

Anyway, thanks to everyone who helped test the controls.
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Read June 08, 2007, 11:05:22 PM #31
the2bears

Re: UR

Tested it again, second control scheme (still with plenty of inertia) and I think you've improved it alot.  It's key, but the secondary shots are directional now, rather than positional (the mouse cursor) and it makes a big difference for me.

Anyway, still have to say I like the graphical style you've got.

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 09, 2007, 01:55:10 AM #32
pixelizr

Re: UR

The demo ran very slowly on my Thinkpad X31, so I wasn't able to test the controls fully. I have a thing to say about inertia, though: All of the serious, hardcore shooting games I have played have zero inertia (when you release the controls, the ship stops moving). If you want to promote movement accuracy and precise dodging in your game, I think this is the way to go.
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Read June 09, 2007, 05:46:33 AM #33
relsoft

Re: UR

The demo ran very slowly on my Thinkpad X31, so I wasn't able to test the controls fully. I have a thing to say about inertia, though: All of the serious, hardcore shooting games I have played have zero inertia (when you release the controls, the ship stops moving). If you want to promote movement accuracy and precise dodging in your game, I think this is the way to go.
I second this. Physics is nice but not on Shmups.


Hello
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Read June 09, 2007, 06:08:34 AM #34
Five Damned Dollarz

Re: UR

The new control scheme makes it extremely hard for left handers (like myself) to play the game as I use my right hand for movement, which results in my hands criss-crossing over each other which is hard to keep track of, it lags slightly on my nVidia 6200, so it's not gonna take to well on the nVidia 6150 of one of the judges Tongue
The options are nice, I like the ideas you have so far Smiley
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Read June 09, 2007, 08:51:26 AM #35
motorherp

Re: UR

Yeh, if you can find the time in the finished game a key remapping option is always a good idea.  Not only does it make it easier on people of opposite handedness from the creator but not all keyboards have the same key layout.  In the mean time Five Damned Dollarz, if you want to play you could use a joypad and run joy2key to map the keys to whatever buttons and d-pad directions you find comfortable.


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Read June 09, 2007, 01:35:43 PM #36
omicron1

Re: UR

What you're seeing in the "control test" demo is:
1. full of little "special effects" such as the traffic lights in the background and the cel-shaded 3d buildings; which will be able to be toggled down to save on speed.
2. Completely unoptimized.
So the speed is a lot slower than it will be.

->A whole bunch of people: Ok, ok, I got the idea. Inertia is gone from the final game. (Don't worry about the state of the control test demo; when something with content comes out, things will be fine)

->FDD, MH: I'll be sure to include that, then. Thanks for the suggestion.


By the way, I'm also right-handed, so...
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Read June 15, 2007, 02:06:07 PM #37
omicron1

Re: UR

Just a small update on progress.

I've completed all the Option weapons (balancing's still up in the air, though). I've added a between-level shop, which allows you to upgrade your ship in exchange for large amounts of points - a difficult decision to make for those trying for highscores. In addition, I've created several more enemy ships, started work on a second level, added a control configuration screen and begun work on a second "background theme": Factory District (replacing the background for Industrial, which is moving to Residential)

Coming up soon: A 2-level "difficulty-gauge" demo - for you to tell me if the game is too easy or too hard.
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Read June 15, 2007, 03:06:00 PM #38
Shoot-em-upper

Re: UR

Those are good ideas, but the weapon shop is really hard to get right.  Just look at Jets 'n Guns.


I came, I saw, I posted.
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Read June 15, 2007, 03:25:17 PM #39
the2bears

Re: UR

Those are good ideas, but the weapon shop is really hard to get right.  Just look at Jets 'n Guns.

Well, to be fair Jets 'n Guns failed long before you ever hit the weapons shop.  Tongue

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 15, 2007, 05:01:41 PM #40
motorherp

Re: UR

I know what you're saying though Shoot-em-upper, weapon shops can be a double edged sword.  On the plus side it creates variety which increases the games replay value.  Also if your weapons are sufficiently unique to make you tackle the game in different ways depending on how you're equiped it also adds an element of exploration and stragety trying to find the best weapons for each level.  On the downside though it can make game balancing difficult.  Consider that the aim is to create an engaging challenge for the player no matter their skill level.  This is were ranking usualy comes into play.  The better you are the harder the game gets but when you start loosing lives etc the game difficulty drops to compensate.  Weapon shops can suffer here because good players will likely be able to afford the best weapons making the game easier thus removing the challenge, and not so good players wont be able to afford to weapons they need to keep up with the increasing difficulty of the later stages making the challenge too much.  I'm not too sure how I'd try and tackle the downside to weapon shops.  Perhaps rank should be effected by which weapons you have so that if you go for the more powerful weapons the game gets harder thus maintaining challenge for better players and keeping the rank low for not so good players.  The trade off would be that bigger weapons give you more scoring potential thus rewarding the best players and discouraging them from sticking to weaker weapons to make things easier.

Edit: Aha I've just re-read your post.  You plan to make players buy weapons with points.  This actualy could make for an interesting solution since if you want to go for score you've got to stick with the smaller weapons thus making the game more difficult.  Of course if a by product of using smaller weapons means your scoring potential is reduced this could counter act this mechanic.  It also reduces the desire for big weapons which could detract from their very purpous which is to give the player variety.  It'll be a difficult one to balance but could make for some really interesting decisions if you get it right.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2007, 05:18:58 PM by motorherp »

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Read June 15, 2007, 05:57:27 PM #41
omicron1

Re: UR

The way I have it right now is, you start out with a weapon lineup quite similar to that in the previous demo. If you spend points (decrease your score), you can upgrade weapon speed and number - but you'll have to choose between increased firepower and a lower score.

Your Options can also be upgraded, both in number (from 2 up to 5) and with temporary (you start the level with them, giving you an early boost) weapon addons.

Finally, you can purchase health point and speed bonuses.

My hope is that the shop will add some strategic value to play; but we'll have to see what happens in this regard.


As for difficulty, it's really as hard as you make it. The harder it is to play, the more score you wind up with. Sure, you can buy the best stuff to give you an edge in play; but with upgrade costs ranging into the hundreds of thousands of points (Very difficult to obtain, by the way), you'll have to forgo the upgrades, which will result in a more challenging game.

My goal with difficulty is to make it pleasantly challenging for the player who upgrades everything normally; while making it increasingly difficult for those who don't.
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Read June 15, 2007, 06:18:07 PM #42
the2bears

Re: UR

My hope is that the shop will add some strategic value to play; but we'll have to see what happens in this regard.

While I agree with Shoot-em-upper and motoherp regarding shops I do encourage you to give it a try as well.  You never know how it'll be until you try it out.  Good luck! Smiley

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read June 15, 2007, 06:49:58 PM #43
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR

Wow, that is not an easy balance to follow where the whole weapons/score thing is concerned (not to mention a rather tough task to pull off successfully!), but omicron1, I wish you a lot of sheer excellence with that if that is what you are after.  Make it work properly now!!!  Wink !
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Read June 16, 2007, 09:33:42 AM #44
ReleX

Re: UR

Hmmm... that was a bit, odd... It is a bit chaotic... but not in a good way. I didnt realy see what the enemy was... what bullets I had to dodge and what upgrades I could pick up. Besides that the controls where weard and the shooting was like some sort of random :S ow and everything including the enemy moved with the ship in some way. Now for the good things! Tongue your BG is very cool, and the effects are neat! I guess its still very early in development stage.. but this needs allot of work (I dont mean to nag, I still liked it). Alright thats all... TTYL

ReleX


crowd: "WE ARE ALL INDIVIDUALS!!!"
man: "No I'm not!"
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Read June 16, 2007, 03:01:41 PM #45
omicron1

Re: UR

Ok, difficulty test demo complete.

Full changelist:
* Removed "extreme parallax" effect
* Added several new enemy types
* Increased general difficulty
* Added a second level
* Added a (basic) "factory" background
* Removed inertia effect
* Added a control customization screen.
* Added all 11 Option weapons
* Added between-level shop (temporary option addons don't work yet)

Download from this location.

->ReleX: I hope the changes so far will help with some of the issues you noted.
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Read June 17, 2007, 03:25:57 AM #46
Five Damned Dollarz

Re: UR

Ok:
- No matter what I mapped my keys to 'S' was ALWAYS moving down the screen
- New new background is nice, the fog you added makes it look much more industrial (And I assume to mask the fact that there is no true factory Wink)
- I still find the controls hard to use even if they were mapped to my specs I'd find it hard... It might be easier if you had an 'auto aim' extra in there?
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Read June 17, 2007, 07:40:31 PM #47
omicron1

Re: UR

1. Yes - there's a bug here, although it's NOT with my programming. Either my computer or my development system has ...issues... with that key. At any rate, I thought I'd fixed it, and I now have fixed it permanently. Thanks for the note.

2. Thank you. That's just about the last of the "city" backgrounds - next: jungle or summat.

3. By extra I assume you mean an option addon for autoaim for main guns... I'll look into that for the twelfth.

But as for the control scheme, I don't know why you think it's hard. You can use it similarly to any other shooter if you want - just don't touch the left and right shooting buttons. It'll be a lot harder, but...

What's hard about the current scheme, in your opinion?
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Read June 17, 2007, 08:56:12 PM #48
Five Damned Dollarz

Re: UR

Well, it's probably just me, but I don't like having to use what is essentially 2 d-pads, with game pads that is fine but on a keyboard it a lot harder for me, I dunno, maybe I just don't play enough games this way Tongue
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Read June 17, 2007, 09:20:20 PM #49
omicron1

Re: UR

Do you think it would be better with gamepad support, then?
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Read June 30, 2007, 01:48:59 PM #50
omicron1

Re: UR

It looks like my work has fallen into obscurity again. 'S too bad. But, I haven't given up on it yet - although I have been working on other games meanwhile.

Anyway, progress report.

* Finished stage 2 (no boss yet) and begun work on stage 3. My plan with the various stages is to make them a sort of "variety show" - that is, each stage will feature a different kind of boss. The first stage has a "bullet hell" boss type, while the second stage will feature a "target point" boss (you hit certain areas of it to take out vital functions), and the third stage... I don't know. Maybe a "melee boss."
* There are now seven enemies in the game; some harder than others. All in all, I think the difficulty is a good tradeoff for the chance to improve your ship.
* Reworked the interface to make it a bit like certain other vertical scrolling shooters - that is, there's a blank space on either side of the action. This, I've found, makes it a little bit easier to play all around; the whole-screen version was getting confusing.
* Worked on the Attractor weapon for speed.
* Actually beat the first stage. Woohoo!


The new interface looks like this:
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Read June 30, 2007, 05:02:45 PM #51
Shoot-em-upper

Re: UR

For the third boss, how about having paddles that pop out of the sides to swing down and crush you?  You'd have to dodge them and then shoot them as they retracted into the main body.


I came, I saw, I posted.
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Read July 01, 2007, 06:15:55 PM #52
omicron1

Re: UR

I hope that's not a serious suggestion...

Anyway, as Kairos threw down the gauntlet for graphical effects recently, I feel compelled to attempt to one-up him.




* "storyline" finalized
* Enemy list finalized
* Level concepts finished
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Read July 03, 2007, 12:08:09 AM #53
Shoot-em-upper

Re: UR

I hope that's not a serious suggestion...

Of course not.  Nice flashes.


I came, I saw, I posted.
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Read July 21, 2007, 02:01:56 AM #54
Five Damned Dollarz

Re: UR

Awesome flashies
Gamepad support would rock Smiley
Remember;
- movement on left thumbstick
- shooting on the right
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Read July 28, 2007, 02:50:07 AM #55
omicron1

Re: UR

Just a little update.
I've decided to change the graphical style of my enemies to prerendered models, while keeping many stylistic elements.
Test renders (May or may not be final):

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Read July 28, 2007, 12:56:00 PM #56
Shoot-em-upper

Re: UR

No offense, but I think that the old graphics looked better.


I came, I saw, I posted.
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Read July 28, 2007, 07:20:12 PM #57
Korenn

Re: UR

I like them both.
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Read July 28, 2007, 08:09:59 PM #58
cactus

Re: UR

The new ones look better than the ones in the demo I played. You could consider making them a bit bigger, maybe?  smiley2

Keep it up
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Read July 28, 2007, 08:44:09 PM #59
omicron1

Re: UR

I can't really make them any bigger, aside from the bosses. They're already quite a bit too large.

Anyway, it looks like mixed opinions on the graphics. I'll post a few screenshots later to show you all how they integrate into the current game.
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Read September 20, 2007, 11:04:53 PM #60
omicron1

Re: UR: completed

Ok, then. After months of tinkering, this blind, lame, crazy backwoods kid of a project is out the door.

As I said in the first post, I don't harbor any aspirations to victory in this contest. If I place at all, that will be more than I expect. But I think I've made a good, complete little game here - and I hope you all enjoy it.

Game download link is in the first post. Please tell me about any bug reports so I can fix them - and have fun.
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Read September 22, 2007, 01:36:58 AM #61
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR: completed

Could you *please* make the frame-rate a whole lot faster for your entry, omicron1?  I found out that it is running at a snail’s pace (like around 10-12fps) on my computer, making the controls so sluggish and unresponsive — even with 2.0ghz and an AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core Processor 3800+ that I have there, which is very sad so far, really.  huh2 !

Apparently, you got the screen refresh frames of your game to crossfade between each and every one during gameplay, so to possibly speed up the game to a more decent speed, could you please remove all of the crossfading frames there?  That is a start, and I really do want you to speed up the game indeed for a reason so that we all can really play it!!  Wink

Thanks so much, and I just had to report a major bug to you.  Cool
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Read September 22, 2007, 01:43:36 AM #62
Five Damned Dollarz

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency...)

I'm in the same boat as AAP with an AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core Processor 3800+, it's very slow on these CPUs despite them being dual core...
I'm also running an old NVIDIA GeForce 6200 as my dedicated Graphics Card [it has 256MB RAM but since I have 1GB of RAM on my Motherboard it actually has 512MB]

So, if you could possibly add an option to turn crossfading off, all those special effects, etc. off so we with older machines could play this at a decent FPS, thanks Smiley
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Read September 22, 2007, 07:06:09 AM #63
Matt McFarland

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency...)

This game doesnt work  Sad.  Running Intel Duo Core 1.8 with 2gigs of ram with nvidia 8800 on Windows Vista

The game intro works.  When the text comes up I had no idea that I was supposed to hit ESC.  I didnt know that I was changing key configuration either (things just arent set clear)

The game itself, doesnt work.  There's a bunch of weird slash marks at the top, and it says "Combo 1,2,3,4" and I'm making all this progress but I can only see water and weird slash marks. 



<a href="http://www.mattmcfarland.com/flash/myFlashSig.swf" target="_blank">http://www.mattmcfarland.com/flash/myFlashSig.swf</a>
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Read September 22, 2007, 07:30:01 AM #64
battlegorge

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency...)

Your game runs with ~30 fps at my comp.
The effects are very nice but the rest of the graphics is too grey.
The stage 2 background is much better!
I think the enemies are too boring.
And they appear in waves randomly. Sometimes theres a 5 or 10 sec break.
You can make the gameplay much better, if you let enemies attack in cool formations
and dont use any random for level design!
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Read September 22, 2007, 01:46:44 PM #65
Kairos

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency...)

Same here, slow, I'm guessing about 15 FPS.

Specs:
2.1 ghz processor
ATI Radeon 9550 256 MB
512 RAM

Not sure why it is so slow. How did you draw your graphics and effects?
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Read September 22, 2007, 06:58:01 PM #66
omicron1

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

->AAP: That computer should by all rights run this just fine. I think it's a compatibility issue - perhaps with surfaces.

-> Matt: That really sounds like a surface compatibility issue. I added an option to remove surfaces in the patch; please try it?

->battlegorge: Level 1 is only 1/4 of the levels, you know. That's like saying a space level is too black.
Second, the waves are not random. They're preset - and they're built to give rests in between large groups. (And after particularly difficult sections)

->Kairos: Effects and graphics are drawn using textured polygons, drawn to a surface and blended.


In general: There's a "surface-free" patch available - it removes a lot of the nicer effects (such as glowing, blurring, and distortion) - but it might fix the compatibility issues. Please try it and see if it helps?
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Read September 22, 2007, 07:06:11 PM #67
the2bears

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

Works a lot better now, steady 30fps which I assume is what you're after.  Frankly, looks a lot better too Smiley

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
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Read September 22, 2007, 08:16:30 PM #68
Kairos

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

Definitely works better, must have been a real nasty surface issue.
I can actually play now, and I survived more on 30FPS than the old 15 FPS with motion blur. I tried with surfaces again - I suspect something is wrong with the surfaces when I saw that your distortions weren't normal - they were rings of the background and a lot of white squares that shouldn't have been there. Not sure what was wrong, as I haven't experimented with surfaces much except for a distortion effect, but this patch definitely helps.
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Read September 22, 2007, 08:47:43 PM #69
Matt McFarland

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

It works!

with after effects disabled. But it's very repetitive, and I always shoot to the right (sorta) unless I hold down another arrow key.


<a href="http://www.mattmcfarland.com/flash/myFlashSig.swf" target="_blank">http://www.mattmcfarland.com/flash/myFlashSig.swf</a>
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Read September 22, 2007, 08:58:16 PM #70
Adigun A. Polack

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

I too have just tried your new version, omicron1, and it looks MUCH better now on Stage-1, as I can finally sample the many weapons that are on offer for your entry... and they look REALLY great!!!  Cheesy !

Also, I have just made it successfully to the end of Stage-1 with the first boss beaten and onto the second stage, which then has some serious slow-down issues on my computer, even with the after-effects turned off ( Sad )... so if you would remove some skyscrapers off of the scrolling to speed the game up a little more, that would be jolly good for us, you know?  Wink

Other than that, though, GREAT START on overcoming the slow-down issue so far, and keep up the fine job you are doing here!!!  Grin=b
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Read September 22, 2007, 09:06:31 PM #71
cactus

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

Yeah, it ran a lot better on my computer now as well. Which made me notice something you might want to change. The shooting sounds. Whenever my ship fires, it sounds like someone has tossed a very small pebble into a bath tub. Doesn't make me feel very powerful embarrassed2
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Read September 22, 2007, 10:21:34 PM #72
omicron1

Re: UR: completed (Updated for efficiency, part 2...)

->Cactus: Ah, but the sound effects scale. That is, weapons like the Petalgun sound appropriately deadlier than the simple gun. (Which isn't very powerful, really)

->Matt: Check if you have a joystick installed. The game includes joypad support, and that might be causing it.

->Kairos: I don't know why that would have happened -but it's a local problem. My computer doesn't experience that effect at all.

Hmm... I should've just released UR as a beta...

...Anyway, I'll do something to speed up level 2 and get it out the door late today or early tomorrow.

Oh, and I finally beat my own Stage 2.
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Read September 25, 2007, 07:18:23 PM #73
omicron1

Re: UR: completed (Hopefully final update)

This should be the final update. I reworked Level 1 (added a miniboss and less downtime), added a display of all weapons (should make it easier for new players to get into the game), and re-implemented particles (useful for the level 2 laser miniboss).

There are also graphic modifications to levels 2 and 3, including making level 2 less graphically challenging and adding to the background of level 3. Enjoy!
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Read September 25, 2007, 07:48:12 PM #74
Deleter

Re: UR: completed (Hopefully final update)

Nice entry. Like the graphics though its kind of confusing when you have both power ups and weapons chasing you, what do I avoid and what do I hit lol. I'm not saying I don't know just that its hard to figure it out while you are playing. Otherwise nice smooth and polished entry.  Cool
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Read September 26, 2007, 07:41:25 PM #75
omicron1

Re: UR: completed (Hopefully final update)

It's not really a concern. Aside from the final boss, there won't be any actual weapons chasing you. Anything following you around is probably good.
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Read October 18, 2007, 10:16:04 PM #76
charlie

Re: UR

Those are good ideas, but the weapon shop is really hard to get right.  Just look at Jets 'n Guns.

Well, to be fair Jets 'n Guns failed long before you ever hit the weapons shop.  Tongue

Bill

And there i was thinking it was just me who though Jets and Guns was a bit of a stinker.

Cheers
Charlie
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