Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register.  • Help
SMF Underground
+ SHMUP-DEV » RAPID PROTOTYPE SESSIONS » Older Sessions » Session 10
|-+ the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

Pages: [1]   Go Down
0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic. Topic Tools  
Read March 02, 2009, 06:05:28 PM #0
the2bears

the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

I might have an idea or two that can be worked into a game. 

Update:  Ok, here it is...

How to Play
-----------

This game was inspired by Star Castle, a classic vector game by Cinematronics.  Oh how I remember it fondly.  Arrow keys (or WASD) for movement, the mouse to aim, left mouse button to shoot.

My intention with the theme was to have each wall "type" be usable by the player for a special bomb.  So you were to somehow "create" bombs from each type of Citadel wall.

For instance, the Red walls, with their beam weapons, were supposed to be sensitive to your shots.  You could "push" beams together (two in adjacent walls) and the resulting super beam would shoot off one side, emerge on the opposite side and shoot towards the middle.  Didn't get that far.

The Green walls emit homing mines, which were supposed to undergo a change at some point and stick to other walls.  They could then be shot for a big explosion dealing damage to all things close.  I tried this out, but it was too flakey.  Likely could be fixed and would be pretty good.

The Blue walls actually do have their "special bomb".  For this, if the ship is out flying around you can shoot its base.  If it arrives back at it's base, it can't "recharge", and explodes big time taking out close things to it.

One out of three Citadel walls can act as bombs.  Sigh.  But I did have a lot of fun
developing this one.

Known Issues
------------

There are some funky graphics bugs, particularly with the beam cannons when the wall moves outward.  Scoring was not implemented.  The game ends when the boss is destroyed, there are no further levels.

I'm sure there are quite a few funny little bugs still in here.  Sometimes the rotating walls seem to slow down.  Something seems to bump them as well.




Bill
« Last Edit: March 24, 2009, 07:10:16 AM by the2bears »

the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 09, 2009, 02:44:31 AM #1
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry

Guess it's time to show a little progress here, too.

Once again I find myself dipping into the Cinematronics catalog with inspiration from Star Castle.  I've wanted to do something with this for a long time.

The idea is that you need to somehow use the enemies to create powerful bomb-like weapons.  Each colour will be a different enemy, graphics to be enhanced sometime this week.  There will, of course, be the boss in the center too.

kdmiller3 got me thinking of overlays the other day.  I swear, if I ever implement a game with head tracking, the first thing I'll do is create some vector overlay emulation such that the overlays appear just slightly in front of the game vectors  Grin



the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 09, 2009, 02:50:38 AM #2
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry

You should have the overlay tint the dark-grey background slightly.  Grin
Offline  
Read March 09, 2009, 03:28:09 AM #3
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry

You should have the overlay tint the dark-grey background slightly.  Grin

Definitely, though I'm not attempting any overlay at the moment.  Surprisingly enough, the circle around the player's ship looks a little like an overlay... but it's just a debug representation of a collision shape.

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 09, 2009, 04:22:18 PM #4
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry

Ah, okay.  That would make sense.

I swiped the debug rendering code from Box2D's testbed application since it's occasionally useful, but compiled it out with an #ifdef.  The core debug rendering infrastructure is cheap enough that I should just enable it permanently: start a drawlist before entering a simulation step, capture any debug rendering calls, then render that drawlist as a screen overlay.  I could then enable debug renderers individually with console commands.
Offline  
Read March 16, 2009, 12:01:49 AM #5
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry

As always, I'm in crunch mode.  Why do I never learn? Smiley

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 16, 2009, 12:29:01 AM #6
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry

"If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done" Grin

It's going to be a tight squeeze for me, too.  I spent most of the last two weeks putting together engine technology, and I think I now have all the pieces I need.  I don't know how much of a level I'll be able to get together by the end of the day tomorrow, but I'll do what I can.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2009, 04:16:47 AM by kdmiller3 »
Offline  
Read March 24, 2009, 07:11:32 AM #7
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

First post updated with some instructions and the download link.  A fun game to program, but still buggy.  Bit off a lot this time and didn't get as much done as I wanted to despite the extension of a week.

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 24, 2009, 02:42:40 PM #8
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

It's definitely a good start, if a bit incomplete.  Amusingly enough, that control scheme is exactly what I would have ended up with had I been tasked with making a Star Castle game.  Grin

I've been planning to make a Star Castle boss for the better part of a year now, so maybe it's time to sit down and make it.  I would need to rethink my game engine architecture, though, since it's been getting in the way more than it's been helping...
Offline  
Read March 24, 2009, 03:15:52 PM #9
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

It's definitely a good start, if a bit incomplete.

Sad but true.  My "TODO" list was still rather large when I realized it was 11pm and I better package something up and soon.  Then that last bug, concurrent modification exception, crept in...

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 24, 2009, 03:33:10 PM #10
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

I'd like to see how the finished version turns out, if you're willing to keep working on it.  Smiley
Offline  
Read March 24, 2009, 03:38:49 PM #11
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

The idea for a Star Castle game has been brewing for a couple years.  The problem with this version is it requires too much concentration.  This would be worse if I had 3 "bomb" mechanics, one for each wall type. 

If I finish it, I'll rethink a lot of this... return it to its "roots" Smiley  No reliance on bombs, but perhaps still some spectacular explosion chains.  Something more along the lines of a pure shoot/dodge game with interesting super shots emerging when continuously expanding walls overlapped.  Or something inexplicable like that Wink

There are a few of the session games I'd like to finish, but then the next session rolls around... but usually I find myself bored and ready to move on. 

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 24, 2009, 03:47:10 PM #12
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

That's what happens to me as well.  I barely have time to work on engine technology between sessions as it is because I spend about a week recovering from the combined work/session crunch time Smiley
Offline  
Read March 25, 2009, 04:48:33 AM #13
Slackluster

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

I had fun.  I tried about 20 times and came pretty close to killing the boss.  It crashed a few times.  Then I decided to try some exploitative strategy and flew right up to the boss at the start and stayed right over him while firing.  It took a few lives but it was pretty easy to defeat him in this manner.  Is there anything you can do about how it takes over control of the mouse cursor?  Kind of makes it hard to comment while I am playing it.  I think maybe the boss and walls should be smaller so there is more space along the outside edges to move around and stuff.  Sometimes I accidentally wandered over the edge and got killed on the other side.  Also I don't know if I'm missing something but where are the bombs?
Offline  
Read March 25, 2009, 05:02:16 AM #14
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

Glad you had fun Smiley

@exploitive strategy: There's usually something like this in each of my games that I miss because I'm too focused on development!  Nice find Smiley  I'd have to fix that, obviously, if it goes further.  Actually, now that I think of it I was supposed to register collisions between the boss and the player.  Obviously lost that on my todo list!

@mouse: A difficult one, as I hate it in flash if you move out of the window.  For now, 'P' pauses the game, then a simple "alt-tab" moves to another window.  Not ideal, though.

@more room:  Yeah, there should be some more room... and I never documented the arena roll-over from left-right, up-down

@bombs: I rambled a bit at the top about this.  I wanted the user to somehow interact with each wall type to create bigger explosions.  As it is, only what I call the "CoreBase", the blue walls, are usable as such.  The little enemies fly around, and (according to my inner story) they need to recover after their flight.  If you destroy their base, then they'll explode once they return.  The resulting explosion deals quite a bit of damage to the surrounding entities... including you if you're too close.

Bill
« Last Edit: March 25, 2009, 05:04:00 AM by the2bears »

the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 25, 2009, 03:52:41 PM #15
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

Actually, now that I think of it I was supposed to register collisions between the boss and the player.
You could just put a collision shape in the center area to keep the player out.

Quote
@mouse: A difficult one, as I hate it in flash if you move out of the window.  For now, 'P' pauses the game, then a simple "alt-tab" moves to another window.  Not ideal, though.
What I do on my project is release the mouse on pause and grab it again on resume, though it's somewhat irrelevant when running full-screen.  I don't know how easy that is to do in Java, though.

Quote
Yeah, there should be some more room... and I never documented the arena roll-over from left-right, up-down
I wasn't surprised because that's how the original game works, but wraparound doesn't seem to work as well with arena-shooter controls as it does with turn-and-thrust controls.  Increasing the size of the play area or reducing the size of the Citadel will definitely help with playability.
Offline  
Read March 25, 2009, 06:49:26 PM #16
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

You could just put a collision shape in the center area to keep the player out.

It's there, just setup to filter collisions with bullets and not the player Smiley

Quote
What I do on my project is release the mouse on pause and grab it again on resume, though it's somewhat irrelevant when running full-screen.  I don't know how easy that is to do in Java, though.

Yeah, that's simple enough and works I think.  Should probably stick that in to my Mouse code.

Quote
I wasn't surprised because that's how the original game works, but wraparound doesn't seem to work as well with arena-shooter controls as it does with turn-and-thrust controls.  Increasing the size of the play area or reducing the size of the Citadel will definitely help with playability.

It's funny, but the comments regarding this are spot on.  It tends to be a sudden "jerk" to the other side, catching the player by surprise.  It works with the original turn/thrust controls, but not this control layout. 

Bill 


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 25, 2009, 07:46:32 PM #17
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

It's there, just setup to filter collisions with bullets and not the player Smiley
"Well there's your problem!" --Adam Savage

Quote
Yeah, that's simple enough and works I think.  Should probably stick that in to my Mouse code.
I've made it part of the core application, though it feels like a debug feature since it's not just pausing the simulation but pausing the application.  I don't know if a final build should do that, but it's handy enough on its own.

Quote
It's funny, but the comments regarding this are spot on.  It tends to be a sudden "jerk" to the other side, catching the player by surprise.  It works with the original turn/thrust controls, but not this control layout. 
I think it may be a matter of turn-and-thrust controls make you pay attention to your ship, while mouse-aim controls make you pay attention to your cursor.  I was looking at the aim cursor every time I wrapped around the edge, and the discontinuity led me to getting killed shortly after.  Grin
Offline  
Read March 28, 2009, 07:14:03 PM #18
Slackluster

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

The primary advantage of running in windowed mode is the ease of being to switch between different windows and multitask.  If you take that away then you might as well just run it in full screen mode.  I think most players, especially those who are checking out a game for the first time, would prefer it to not take over control of their mouse.  The caveat of accidentally clicking outside the window is a small price to pay for the ease of use.  For advanced users who want a more focused experience, they can and probably will go fullscreen anyway.  I think kdmiller's solution of releasing the mouse on a pause would help but it is often not very obvious how to pause the game.  Also that method needs to take alt-tab into account which brings me to my next point...

Your game should auto pause when it is not the active window.  It's totally impossible for someone to play your game when it is not active therefore it should not continue running if the player can't play.  This also alleviates the problem where a player accidentally clicks off the app window, it will auto pause so they would be likely to recover.  If you add a sleep call when it's not active this will have the added bonus of using hardly any cpu cycles when its running in the background. 

People like to multitask.  Players may be doing other things on their pc like chatting, surfing the net, or commenting on this here board while they are playing.  If your setup was more conducive to that it would increase the overall enjoyability.

- Frank
Offline  
Read March 28, 2009, 09:59:15 PM #19
the2bears

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

Some very good points and suggestions.  I think I might delay the next session by a week, give us all a break and give myself some time to work a bit on these annoying bugs.

Bill


the2bears - the indie shmup blog
Offline  
Read March 29, 2009, 05:07:15 AM #20
kdmiller3

Re: the2bears' entry: The Citadel (done)

I can definitely use some extra downtime.
Offline  
Pages: [1]   Go Up
Jump to:  

Page created in 0.181 seconds with 18 queries.