Hi all,

I’ve uploaded a little preview version of Irukandji 2 for you all to try. I’m super interested to know what you think, especially about the mouse controls. I happen to think they’re surprisingly easy to use, but it’s all horses for courses, innit?

This actually started out life as a test app for working out aspect ratio correction for Scoregasm. I guess i got carried away!

There’s only the one level, and it loops endlessly. Plus there are a few other slightly dodgy bits, but it should run on just about any machine. It runs full speed on my laptop, and that thing is a heap of shit, so in theory it should work well enough on any machine ~5 years old or newer.

There’s a readme file included in the zip, which explains how to play and how the scoring works and all that stuff, so i won’t go into too much detail about it here. I will reiterate how to change the resolution though; there’s a resolutions.txt file in the game’s directory, change the numbers in this file to any other screen size your monitor supports to run the game at a higher resolution. The game was designed to be played at high res, so the higher the better! I’ve set the default to 800*600, because it’ll run on pretty much every machine. Fullscreen only at the minute though i’m afraid, and if you’re on a laptop with an Intel GMA chip, don’t get too ambitious ;P

Here’s the link, the zip contains executables for Mac OS X (probably 10.5+), Windows XP+, and Linux. You’re mileage may vary with Linux, you’ll need to have hardware accelerated graphics enabled, and you’ll likely need to set the executable bit in order to run it.

Linky: http://www.charliesgames.com/Irukandji2Preview.zip

Here’s a video that’s older than the version you’ll download, so it’s not all that similar. You might recognise a few bits.

Please let me know what you think in the comments below, or send me an email. If you like it, why not check out the original Irukandji, or make a donation? Any $1+ donators get a free copy of the original Irukandji, and i’ll bung in a Scoregasm pre-order for any one who donates over $10, how’s that?

Cheers
Charlie

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48 Comments

  1. Posted May 14, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    I really like the preview. Had to speed up the controls, but otherwise it’s great. I’d say it’s even more enjoyable than the first Irukandji, cause the boss is a lot easier to kill (all hail the boss energy bar!). It runs a bit slow at times on my netbook especially when there are a lot of bullets and enemies on screen.

    I really hope this gets finished ;-) .

  2. Posted May 14, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    Cool, glad you like it :)

    Cheers
    Charlie

  3. Posted May 14, 2011 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    Looks nice! I liked the first one and I’m sure the sequel(s) will be much much better. You could end up making multiple sequels… that’d be cool.

  4. Linus Sjögren
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    Unfortunately doesn’t work for me on 64-bit Debian Linux. I get the following console output:

    waitpid(): No child processes
    Assertion ‘s’ failed at pulse/simple.c:256, function pa_simple_free(). Aborting.
    Aborted

  5. fait
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    The first thing I thought when I fired up Irukandji 2 was that the game goes a lot more smoothly with the mouse than I thought it would. I’ve never been a fan of mouse shmups, but I2 changed my mind and I do hope this game gets finished! It is even easy to play using a laptop touch pad!

    I have little in the way of a bug report, but one idea suggestion (which I’ll leave to your interpretation) I have is to give the player additional ways to risk getting hit. Grazing bullets is one thing, but players might miss a lot of the fun if they aren’t very good at bullet scraping.

    Good luck and I look forward to I2!

  6. Posted May 14, 2011 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

    Bah, Scoregasm doesn’t work for you either does it? Have you got the video drivers installed correctly?

    Cheers
    Charlie

  7. Posted May 14, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Glad you like it. I quite like the mouse controls too, i think they work surprisingly well.

    RE more ways to die, i was thinking other levels should have some obstacles to avoid as well as bullets. I’m keen on keeping it fairly easy on the first level though.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  8. Posted May 14, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    The mouse controls are absolutely outstanding, Charlie – especially when the sensitivity is cranked up a few notches. I actually much prefer it to twinsticks! The added responsiveness makes bullet grazing a lot easier to pull off.

    No bugs to report, runs like a charm on my M15X.

  9. Hank
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    Played through fine on my system-
    vista 64 radeon 4850 1680×1050 res
    like the mouse controls, like the boss health meter
    like that the bomb mechanic is a life of last resort, but wish the bomb explosion feel a little more epic
    any thoughts to assigning the 2nd mouse button a separate function? maybe a force push power so if you are trapped in bullet hell, it can provide a small, expansive cushion (picture a blowfish) to temporarily give some breathing room as it pushes away bullets. It would encourage taking risks to increase the proximity bonus and allow more scaleable difficulty. Just thinking out loud, don’t know how hard that would be to code or if a power like that would break the game.
    Looking forward to the final build.

  10. Ivan
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    Very nice, works like a charm on Linux x86. I’ll make sure to buy this one too :)

  11. Ducky
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Doesn’t work for me sadly on Ubuntu 11.04. This is the output -

    2
    1.00000000:1.00000000
    Segmentation fault

  12. Ito
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    @Linus Sjögren: to fix the pulse error, you obviously must have the pulseaudio daemon installed and running!

    I like very much the preview, it works flawlessly on my archlinux box :-)

  13. Posted May 14, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Ito, maybe that’ll help him with Scoregasm too….

    Cheers
    Charlie

  14. Snowblind76
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Well, it seems we have another gem here! I really liked the finest controls, and the scoring system based in the bullet scraping is a must! This reminds me games like Psyvariar, and that´s awesome. And for be an alpha, works flawless in my M11X.

    What i wish? More levels, more bullets, more music themes, more bosses, more backdrops, more awesomeness, more… Well, i´m sure i´ll buy this game.

  15. Posted May 14, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Ducky, does it fail to open a graphics window? You might need to change the numbers in resolutions.txt to a screen mode your monitor supports.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  16. Ducky
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Ah yes, I changed resolution.txt to my native resolution and it worked fine.

    Looks great!

  17. Brian
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    When is Scoregasm scheduled to be released? I remember it mentioned it was supposed to be ready January 2010.

  18. Posted May 14, 2011 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    @Brian, I remember when it was late summer 2009 ;p

    I’m working on the last major part of the game now (online scores), so i’m hoping to get the game into release candidate mode before the end of this month.
    I’ve given up with estimated release dates. As you may have worked out, i’m not very good at them. The official line is Soon.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  19. Posted May 14, 2011 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Great, glad you got it to work :)

    Cheers
    Charlie

  20. Mark
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Permalink

    Really enjoyed the preview. :) I felt the controls worked a treat, although personally having a gamepad option too would be nice. I just prefer that type of controller for shoot-em-ups – even if it ends up handicapping me. I’d probably switch between them depending on what mood I was in.

    Also I really liked the special weapon – it felt properly meaty.

  21. Dan
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    Very nice! I too like the mouse controls but agree that the default speed should probably be bumped up a few notches. Have you thought about tying the speed control to a mouse wheel (or side buttons) as well? I like the idea of not having to use the keyboard at all.

    Anyway, keep up the good work, it looks and plays great!

  22. martin
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    get segmentation fault on Kubuntu 11.04
    Kernel 2.6.38-8-generic #42-Ubuntu SMP Mon Apr 11 03:31:24 UTC 2011 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

  23. Posted May 14, 2011 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

    @Martin, Have you tried changing the resolution in the resolution.txt file to something your monitor supports? You’ll need the 32bit compatibility libs to run the game on linux.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  24. Adriano ML
    Posted May 14, 2011 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    I also can’t play because I don’t have Pulse Audio in my Linux box:
    Assertion ‘s’ failed at pulse/simple.c:256, function pa_simple_free(). Aborting.

    Is there some way to select another backend like Alsa?

    Or at least some way to disable it, so I can take a look at the game :D

  25. Posted May 14, 2011 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

    Right, it seems pulse is an issue on some Linux distros. Will investigate alternative audio drivers.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  26. Goh Mifune
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    Good Job! I play with a trackball and it works like a dream. While I’m posting, consider raising the upper limit on bombs and weapon upgrades? Even if it is just one “ship”. It would be extremely gratifying to have 10+ stacked powerups, though there is a limit to how useful it would be in some situations

    Also, please have a similar endless mode to this demo, would be great for practice.

  27. martblek
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    hi,
    gameplay and speed is ok on my laptop asus 1201N.
    Archlinux 32bit and NVidia driver.

    Only mouse movement is slowed down a lot if i use Bomb.

  28. martin
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    @charlie
    I have ia32-libs installed.
    I have two monitors with different resolution, i tried both but nothink work. I must disabled one monitor to get it to work.

    Greetings
    Martin

  29. Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    @Martin, that’s an annoying linux quirk. I have the same problem with my dual monitor setup. the only work around i’ve found is to change the res to the same size as your twinview desktop, stretching the game over both screens, which is obviously daft.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  30. Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    @martblek, the mouse is supposed to be slower when you use the bomb, so it sounds like it’s running fine!

    Cheers
    Charlie

  31. martblek
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    Yes,
    Still around 60fps in 1366×768.
    But I’m dead if i use bomb.
    I can’t fly out of 3800+ objects on screen if my mouse is lazy :)

    PS: Some nice animated background in progress ?

  32. Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:45 am | Permalink

    @martblek, you can adjust the mouse sensitivity with the left and right arrows if that helps, maybe turn it up a few notches?. You’re invincible while you’re bombing too.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  33. onexused
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    There are a number of reasons people wouldn’t want to use Pulseaudio (sometimes causes problems with wine, p.i.t.a. to set up on Gentoo, etc.), so I agree it would be a good idea to allow ALSA or no sound.

    This is a pretty fun game to me, though I’ll be happy to see more levels and ships. About 0.95 is the best speed for me right now, if you’re interested. I appreciate that you can adjust it.
    The bad:
    - It seems when I die with two bombs left, I lose both of them, rather than just one (the readme sounds like it would just be one).
    - When I get a successful bullet scrape, the font you used makes it look like “+7″ rather than “+1″ to me.
    - The game lags a small but noticeable bit when I bomb (not auto bomb). I’m running the game at 1400×1050 with an nVidia GeForce 8600 GT card w/ 512MB vram and a 2.4GHz dual core CPU on 32-bit Arch Linux.

    The good:
    - I like seeing a rank/rating at the end of the level, even though I’ve never gotten past “E”.
    - I’m glad to see you didn’t make it too easy to scrape the boss’ whole lines of blue shots.
    - I like the fact that bullets change color when you successfully scrape them so you know which ones you got (when the screen is full, it’s not always easy to tell which ones the +1′s are coming from).
    - I appreciate the notification when I get another bomb : ).

  34. Posted May 15, 2011 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Wow this looks awesome! Looking forward to the final version.

  35. Posted May 15, 2011 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Jake :)

    Cheers
    Charlie

  36. Sparky
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

    Please keep the instant-play setup with the final release also. The mouse controls work really well and complement the idea of instant-play. Maybe a tutorial level like the one in Scoregasm would be neat too.

  37. Pavel
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

    This is pretty cool, but I wish the mouse controls were an option.

  38. Frank Salvatini
    Posted May 15, 2011 at 10:53 pm | Permalink

    5 stars out of 4… This is over the top fun, Charlie.. Finish it and I’ll buy it outright…

  39. Posted May 16, 2011 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    Mouse controls are a good choice, that’s what I really wanted in Irukandji.
    Also: more enemies, more bullets, more dodging, yes! Wishing also for more levels and bosses, pretty please? :) Loved the shoal at the beginning, too.

    Only one real complain: delete, erase, eradicate, forgot about that damn “yes!” sample, it’s so off-putting and nearly makes me avoid power-ups :P

    Waiting for full game and of course Scoregasm!

  40. Neuro
    Posted May 16, 2011 at 2:53 am | Permalink

    Nice stuff! I already like the controls. You know, i actually started working on a nearly identical style shooter using mouse controls a few years ago but never quite finished. This does bring back memories :) !

  41. Brian
    Posted May 16, 2011 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    I just played the preview, and it looks great! The only suggestion I have is changing the appearance or behavior of the small blue triangular atoms (3 circles in triangle formation). I couldn’t tell if they were good or bad since they weren’t ‘bullets’ from an enemy, and when I tried to collect them, a bright red laser emitted from my ship, which I also thought was good. The next time I tried to collect them, I lost a life. So, it was confusing. I suggest either make them repel bullets or destroyable so they are obviously not considered ‘good’, or alternatively not have them trigger what (I think) was the bomb, thus making me think they were some sort of powerup.

  42. Posted May 16, 2011 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    Love the demo, will buy the full game when its out :)

    Mouse control is nice, but still like to have keyboard+pad controls too.
    Love the jellyfish boss!

  43. ANdy_T
    Posted May 16, 2011 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    I gotta say great work man! I’m really diggin’ the game.
    If at all possible, i’m just one of those people that prefer button control on the movement instead of the mouse, so an interchangeable option would by awesome. Also, at first i thought that I was absorbing bullets, but then i realized i was just slowly dying. I really like the whole “use a bomb instead of dying” deal, made a bit confusing at first though. Then it made me think back to playing “ikaruga” from the xbox arcade. Not sure if you know about that game, but I thought that would be a pretty cool feature to have if your jellyship (jellyfish/jellyship, thought it’d be a nice pun) could absorb the bullets since i noticed that some of the bullets were different colors; though, I know it’d be way too much work to implement. If you do use that system you could use that instead of the “use bomb upon death” feature. Just a thought. Can’t wait to see the finished work, you’re doing a fantastic job!

  44. Stefan Posdzich
    Posted May 16, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    Great!

    Wanna preorder it NOW :D

  45. Registered User
    Posted May 17, 2011 at 1:40 am | Permalink

    Looks Good! I love Shmups!

    I agree on the bomb.. needs more maneuverability for certain.

    More Power Ups! :)

  46. Posted May 17, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the feedback everyone! Some useful stuff.

    Cheers
    Charlie

  47. Posted May 22, 2011 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    Great simplist design. Very Good controls.

    I just need indicators about power ups and better display score and chains / scratchs.

    And I will not against an Android version ;)

  48. Posted July 12, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

    very nice demo! i love your games. just yesterday i bought bullet candy&irukandji.

    in this sequel i would like to have a controller-option including a shift-button (maybe “RB”) to switch speed of the ship.
    so depending of the situation you can move fast or slow/accurate.

    any idea about the release-date?

    best regards
    pudelmuetze

2 Trackbacks

  • [...] outfit Charlie’s Games are hard at work on Irukandji 2: the sequel to the critically-acclaimed and visually impressive [...]

  • By Zakstudio » Avant première : Irukandji 2 on June 26, 2011 at 11:05 am

    [...] première : Irukandji 2 25/05/2011 Allez aux commentaires Commenter Share Irukandji 2 est un shoot’em up (shmup) indépendant. Le créateur du jeu nous propose une version jouable [...]

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