It’s been ages since I’ve posted about what I’m working on, so I thought I’d fix that!
Most recently, I’ve been working on two things, one a random dungeon thingy, one a shooter. I’ll not talk much about the dungeon game as it’s a little further off than the shooter, and I’ve not been working on it too much in the last month. It’s got a nice look and feel to it though, and it’s got lots of little characters in it to talk to/team up with/trade with/fight etc. It’s got a growing feel of community, which is kind of the point of the game, and from a technical point of view it’s been a fun thing to program, getting stuff interacting with other things, making the folks you meet appear to behave with a modicum of intelligence etc. I’m feeling pretty good about where it’s going at the minute! Here’s an out of date picture (i’m on the wrong computer to take a new one!)
As for the shooter, I’d been kind of thinking about how I’d tackle Scoregasm if I were to start it now rather than then, not with any conviction or actual intent to do anything about it though, just thinking. Then Andy pointed @shahidkamal in my direction who, it turned out, liked Scoregasm enough to want to see something like it on the PlayStation Vita, which changed my plans a bit!
So for the last month or so i’ve been working on getting stuff outlined for this new shooter. It’s been going ok so far too! I started by making alist of things that HAD to be in the game. Most notable are:
Seamless world and menu.
Scoregasm had LOADS of transition screens, fades to black and all that stuff. I didn’t really think much of it at the time, but it actually makes things a bit disjointed. So for this one, everything is going to happen in the same 3d space, game, menus, whizzing between levels, the lot! You’ve probably already looked at the video below (i’ll explain that a bit better later), but the swooshy level transitions are already in there! For menus etc. the camera will zoom out and show you where you are in the overall game world and allow you to pick where you want to play.
A side effect of working the game in this way is that it’ll be super easy and quick to get back into the game. I suspect this’ll work out well, as it should mean getting back to where you were after dying or whatever a less time consuming and frustrating thing.
Aside from shooting stuff, your ship (or whatever it turns out to be) has a special ability! Hitting a shoulder button will blow your physical form to bits, and leave only your shiny, invincible spirit floating around. You can’t be hurt by enemies while you’re a spirit, but you must collect a little green pod thingy before too long or you’ll cease to be! I’ve got some cool designs already for levels based around this, and i’m looking forward to seeing what else i can come up with!
There’s load of other stuff i could talk about, but i’ll end by saying i’m aiming to make much better use of 3d than i did in Scoregasm, and hopefully end up with it looking a bit less 90s. I am a bit 90s though, so you never know ;p
Anyway, here’s a video of a quick prototype i put together over a couple of days last month, just so i know how it’s roughly going to work out from a programming point of view. I’ve got some basic enemies in there, the player can’t shoot though, the colours are nice and yes, it’s a real-time cloud effect rather than a static sky box. Plus it super swooshy, just as i’d planned! Hang around at the end of the video and it might switch to one of an experiment i did with a mouse!
Aside from Vita, i’m intending to get the game out on Windows, Mac and Linux too, and because it’s not being written in Blitzmax this time there’s a good chance that i can get it running in some form or other on any platform that can run programs written in C. I’ve had loads of requests from you guys asking for Scoreasm/Irukandji etc. on iOS, Android or whatever, and it’s not really possible without totally re-writing the games. This time i’m hoping i can cover most platforms with the minimum of fuss.
So that’s the plan! Once i’ve got my favourite code ported over to C i’ll be able to start getting the levels in and making things super fun. I’m guesstimating it’ll take a few months for there to be enough levels in there to call it a game. I’m pretty excited to get going!
If you want to help out, please consider buying a copy of Scoregasm or a Mega Pack (which contains most of my games to date, or all of them if you donate over $5). Your money is super helpful, much appreciated and most importantly keeps me focussed on writing the game rather than having to go out and find enough cash to eat/pay bills etc. Living is an expensive business after all!