Horizontal Shooter HD ( working title )

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Post » Sun Nov 14, 2010 10:00 pm

Hi there,

So i've started working on new game. I'm aiming for commercial release.



I would like to ask you to check how this boss fight plays in your opinion and give me feedback please! :)

Thanks!

file
http://www.box.net/shared/hevmvledhl

Controls:
Arrow keys, movement.
Hold Ctrl: laser
Z: Bomb
To activate a fight with boss press Q

Counters:
Yellow: bombs
Red: Armor Energy
Green: Shield Energy
(n)C: number of available energy shield containers
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:08 am

Instead of having the entire boss be damageable maybe try giving it specific weak points to destroy?

I like the look of the ships and you have some varied enemy attacks, which is good. The control feels strange, though... most shooters instantly accelerate you to your maximum movement speed the second you press a direction, and you then stop in your place as soon as you let go of the key.

Anyway, nice demo.
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:13 am

[quote="Caspis Sinclair":2sdkp8xe]Instead of having the entire boss be damageable maybe try giving it specific weak points to destroy? [/quote:2sdkp8xe]

Yeah, yeah, i was thinking about it. If not this one, definitely other bosses. I might use this one as first one.

[quote="Caspis Sinclair":2sdkp8xe]
I like the look of the ships and you have some varied enemy attacks, which is good. The control feels strange, though... most shooters instantly accelerate you to your maximum movement speed the second you press a direction, and you then stop in your place as soon as you let go of the key.

Anyway, nice demo.[/quote:2sdkp8xe]

Thanks. Will tweak controls for sure! :) But do you mean that these controls are bad?
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 1:24 am

[quote="megatronx":hrjhcdg3]Thanks. Will tweak controls for sure! :) But do you mean that these controls are bad?[/quote:hrjhcdg3]

Not bad... just different from what I'm (and probably most shooter fans are)familiar with.

Non-instant acceleration/deceleration does add a bit of challenge, so I guess that could be a plus for some.
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:16 am

[quote="Caspis Sinclair":2fg2gi0i][quote="megatronx":2fg2gi0i]Thanks. Will tweak controls for sure! :) But do you mean that these controls are bad?[/quote:2fg2gi0i]

Not bad... just different from what I'm (and probably most shooter fans are)familiar with.

Non-instant acceleration/deceleration does add a bit of challenge, so I guess that could be a plus for some.[/quote:2fg2gi0i]

Would it be a plus for you?
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:31 am

If you want to make a commercial shmup with the goal of making money, sadly I've heard from experienced devs that the PC is a miserable platform for it. Not only do they generally require a game controller to be played properly, which PCs don't come standard with, as I hear they don't sell well either.

However, if you're still determined, then here's the review.

Ditch the acceleration deceleration of the ship. Shmups are the twitchiest of twitch games, and if I press up, I expect the ship to go up instantly. It's not realistic, but it plays much, much better and in these games gameplay is king.

All bullets, bombs and lasers need to be easy to spot at all times. Use high contrast to make them easy to spot (watch videos of Ikaruga to see what I mean). Also, the particles from the explosions hide stuff like the lasers too much. Render threats on top of everything else like explosions.

As I mentioned about twitch gameplay, the controls need to be razor sharp. The same frame the button is pressed the bomb should explode, saving the player from what was about to hit them instead of moving to the center of the screen first.

Serious overuse of particles.

Add some way to adjust movement speed while playing. Einhander was awesome that it could be adjusted without powerups.

Periods of way too much waiting while the boss simply sits there.

Needs more impressive weapons (I assume you simply haven't made them yet).
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:59 am

[quote="Arima":3vbi8227]If you want to make a commercial shmup with the goal of making money, sadly I've heard from experienced devs that the PC is a miserable platform for it. Not only do they generally require a game controller to be played properly, which PCs don't come standard with, as I hear they don't sell well either.

However, if you're still determined, then here's the review.

Ditch the acceleration deceleration of the ship. Shmups are the twitchiest of twitch games, and if I press up, I expect the ship to go up instantly. It's not realistic, but it plays much, much better and in these games gameplay is king.

All bullets, bombs and lasers need to be easy to spot at all times. Use high contrast to make them easy to spot (watch videos of Ikaruga to see what I mean). Also, the particles from the explosions hide stuff like the lasers too much. Render threats on top of everything else like explosions.

As I mentioned about twitch gameplay, the controls need to be razor sharp. The same frame the button is pressed the bomb should explode, saving the player from what was about to hit them instead of moving to the center of the screen first.

Serious overuse of particles.

Add some way to adjust movement speed while playing. Einhander was awesome that it could be adjusted without powerups.

Periods of way too much waiting while the boss simply sits there.

Needs more impressive weapons (I assume you simply haven't made them yet).[/quote:3vbi8227]

Thanks for your review!

That's really bad news that they don't sell very well :< I was actually considering making it for an iphone, but my circumstances pushed me for solution that is quick to realize. Let me ask you a question than: what would be the best selling 2d games on pc atm?

I'll take your advices regards to controls, bombs and lasers. However i do like that amount of of explosions. I might reduce amount of shoot particles thought, and I'm planning on using textures.

I'm planning on implementing shop system where you're buying better gear, so by buying better engine your speed will increase.
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Post » Mon Nov 15, 2010 4:53 am

Casual games are huge, and have an established audience. They're also smaller in scope, but that doesn't mean they're a cinch to make!

To be honest, I feel somewhat uncomfortable giving advice on the subject as I don't have any first hand experience in the market. All of my knowledge of the topic comes from lots of research, and the only consistent theme I hear from small developers is that most at best only sort of know what they're doing and even the successful ones are often fumbling around trying to determine what will make them more successful. You read some of their blogs about like advertising or something and they give stats, only to mention in the next paragraph that the stats don't necessarily mean anything for whatever reasons.

The advice I feel comfortable giving: do your research beforehand, make sure an audience exists first before making a game (but make sure it's still something you want to make! If you make a game you don't want to make, it'll show). You don't want to make a game only to find out afterwards there's no market for it!

For example, the audience for hidden object games is very large right now, but then again it's probably not a good idea to make one because the result of that is the market's getting saturated and so developers are throwing more and more money at making them to stand out, making it hard to compete.

The whole thing is very complex and I really don't want to give you bad advice. However, if you want brutal, honest business advice there's a lot of good info on the indiegamer forums, and some on TIGsource as well.

Oh, yeah, one more piece of advice. Just because someone says something doesn't mean it's true or that the person knows what they're talking about! Look at what they've worked on to see if they're talking from experience or not. Can't tell you how many people think making whatever type of game is easy before they try it...
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Post » Tue Nov 16, 2010 7:58 pm

Thanks for your advice. I've asked around but not many people replied. I'm thinking about giving up this project now. It might sound harsh and not very indie but i need to make some money thought. maybe if i would add some achievements and unlockables? Thinking what could i do that i could make fast.
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Post » Wed Nov 17, 2010 3:58 am

I don't think it's a lost cause
you just have to make it something ridiculous rather than a straightforward good old style shooter
like if you made it look as busy as Gratuitous Space Battles
zooming in and out like Spore cellular stage as you suped up your ship to insane proportions
using the full power of construct to have complete visual overwhelming insanity all over the place
and make the powerups get awesomer and awesomer until there's tentacles coming out of your ship and grabbing nearby ships and hurling them to the ground, while miniature ships fly out of the back of your ship to circle around and support your ship, it might be a cult hit

but if it's just a great old style shooter without some fanservice exaggerated insanity
I agree it probably won't sell well

I do think the art style looks great btw
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