Nuclear Throne has suddenly gotten addictive

19 03 2016

For the last few days I’ve been getting more and more engrossed in Vlambeer’s roguelike twin-stick shooter Nuclear Throne. This is odd to me because when I first acquired the game almost a year ago I played it for maybe an hour and it didn’t really hook me. Now though I seem to spend on average an hour a day playing it, trying to get better each time. I think I know why this has happened.

In the earlier builds of Nuclear Throne you had access to just about every character right from the get-go. While this was good for figuring out playstyles and ideal strategies, it also paralyzed me with choices and options. However when i restarted the game recently, I only had access to two characters at the start, and had to unlock more as I went. Sometimes this happens through normal progression, and sometimes this happens because you found a hidden area. With this added incentive to play (since obviously reaching the end every time is not going to happen) I find it a lot easier to get into the game and keep playing it. It’s only $12 on Steam and it’s definitely worth it if you like fast-paced shooters and also like roguelike elements in games. It’s also another example of a great game made with Game Maker Studio, joining other examples like Risk of Rain, Undertale, and Hotline Miami.





2013 In Review

19 01 2014

I’ll have some more information about Shuffle Breaker in a bit, for now though here is a YouTube video compiling my work over 2013 into a bit of a portfolio piece.

Also I’ll be attending Global Game Jam 2014 this year cause I got lucky with the way my work schedule sorted out for that week. Should be fun!





April in Review: MBD Dev Blog #2

30 04 2013

So yesterday I finished and submitted my game for the Ludum Dare 26 jam. MBD, short for Mondrian Base Defense is a minimalist tower defense game. Very simplistic, in that you only have two tower types (Laser and Cannon) and three enemy types. Graphics are also pretty simple too as you’ll soon see below. I went with the Commodore 64 color palette this time around because why the heck not.

I had a lot of fun doing this, took me only about 48 hours (not nonstop mind you), and I learned quite a bit in the process. Like how to create individual health bars for multiple objects. Also how to use paths in Game Maker Studio. As for Invaders of the Stratosphere I do have a plan to revive the game as a Defender clone but I need to figure out how to accomplish the sort of screen-warping Defender does in Game Maker.

Download the game here. Screenshots for MBD follow below:

MBD Title Screen

MBD Screenshot

MBD Screenshot 2





Sudden Subject Change: IOTS Dev Blog #3 and MBD Dev Blog #1

28 04 2013

So I’m really bad at staying on topic. Namely because I’ve put Invaders of the Stratosphere on hold when it’s probably like 90% feature-complete. This was a decision brought on by Ludum Dare 26, of which I’m participating in the Jam portion of it. The theme was minimalism, I’d always wanted to try tower defense, and well, things snowballed from there.

Anyway here’s a shot of Invaders as it is now:
Invaders 90% Complete
At least I got the shielded enemies working.

And now here’s a shot of MBD, “Minimalist Base Defense”. The large empty green space is reserved for the interface.
Minimalist Base Defense





Choosy devs choose GIF: Invaders of the Stratosphere dev blog #2

20 04 2013

No screenshots at this point in time mostly due to other life stuff and writing code. But I do have a few animated gifs. First is the second basic enemy UFO:

And here’s the Level 1 boss who is pretty much a Big Core from Gradius:

Hopefully I’ll have more stuff up later in the week.





I am bad at postmortems: Invaders of the Stratosphere Dev Blog #1

13 04 2013

So this month has been quite rough, game-dev wise. Initially I had plans of making a parody of Mega Man wherin you played a tax-collecting robot called Tax Man (yes you see what I did there) but it wasn’t really clicking. Apart from the “lol Libertarians” aspect I didn’t really have a lot going for the idea so I scrapped it; maybe I’ll go back to it next year. I initially thought about going back to Suburban Assault Riders but I wasn’t quite feeling like returning to it either, so instead I decided to just do a horizontal shooter, based on an idea I had back in 2007 or thereabouts. Incidentially this is what I’ve really liked about One Game a Month, in that it allows me to revist ideas that I had in college but didn’t have the time or know-how to work on.

Invaders of the Stratosphere is a horizontal shooter based on 1950s b-movies about alien invasions (and also War of the Worlds). The player controls an F-86 Sabre fighter jet as they fight invading enemy forces across the planet. Most enemies will look like stereotypical UFOs but there will also be enemies resembling more famous alien vehicles such as the “manta ray”-shaped alien craft from the 1950s War of the Worlds movie. Right now I only have the following screenshot but expect to see more as I progress.

Flying over the city





Small Miracles: Ablation Dev Blog #6

31 03 2013

Despite Internet issues this weekend, I finally managed to finish the Beta of Ablation and submit it to One Game a Month, where it now sits on my profile page here. You can download it either from that link or the direct dropbox link here. I’m hoping later this year to come back to it and finish it up. I’ll have a postmortem post up within the next couple days as well as possibly some more video footage, but for now enjoy the 3 level beta and these images a friend made up for the Gold Jackal and Blue Bobcat on the ship select screen:

Gold Jackal

Blue Bobcat





The Way Forward: Ablation Dev Blog #5

25 03 2013

I finally have a video up of the first level being played through…by me. And not very well I might add. But it’s a video all the same. There are still a few technical issues like the maneuvering I added to a few ships not quite working out so well, and that upgrade canister getting stuck in the top part of the screen partway through. But it’s coming along quite nicely (which is good given that I only have 6 days left). This also marks the first in-game appearance of the second player ship, Blue Bobcat.

You can see the video here. Music isn’t for the game itself as I mention in the description; I just decided to throw “The Way Forward” by Richie Kotzen up as a backing track.





Halfway Point: Ablation Dev Blog #4

16 03 2013

Level 1 is all but completed now, as well as the score and other HUD elements:

Fully-powered

Granted I’m still working on some elements (for example, no upgrade level indicator nor is there a lives indicator) but the rest of the essentials are there. This next week I plan to spend on the next level as well as cleaning up some stuff in the back end.





Racking up Points: Ablation Dev Blog #3

11 03 2013

So today I finally slapped some more enemies into the mix as well as added health and score systems. You can check out the results of that here on YouTube.

Granted there are some problems. The score and high score aren’t aligned vertically, it’s still a bit too easy to die, and the level boss shows up after 10 seconds (although that was a test of the timer). I’m feeling really good about where I am at this point of the month though, with 1/3 of it down I have almost all the framework in place to just bulldoze on ahead and make my game.