Rapid Prototying Session 8

The archived Session 8 board includes the announcement and all entries, minus attachments.


As the winner of the seventh session, worstplayer chose the theme for the eighth session.

Start Date : January 5th, 2009
End Date : January 19th, 2009
Theme : "Multidirectional shooting in an autoscrolling shooter" ie. ability to change shooting direction in a game that's not arena shmup. Like in Zero Gunner, Gunroar or Under Defeat.

I'd like to add that the excellent Demolition Gunner makes use of "yaw" similar to Under Defeat, as does my own The Iron Council. I myself might try something in a helicopter game again.


Owen Butler won the session with an unnamed entry.

Warp 8

My entry into the session was Warp 8, my first (sort of) vertically-scrolling shooter and my first entry with music.


Competition Build (2009-01-19)

The game requires the Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable Package, but is otherwise completely self-contained. Just unpack the archive into a folder of your choice and run Warp8.exe.





2009-01-09 11:30 PM

While it's different from what I was originally planning, I like how this is turning out. It's hard to tell from the screenshot, but the player ship and test enemies race along at fairly high speed. (I was somewhat inspired by Eighting/Raizing's Kingdom Grand Prix...)

I'm also using a somewhat different control scheme: WADS to move, arrows to aim and fire (Robotron style). It's working reasonably well so far.

2009-01-11 11:20 AM

looks like it will work well with the arena style, way better then with horis/verts, but then again it will scroll according to the theme restrictions. then its actually a arena shmup with scrolling background, like Trouble in CloudLand....

It's true that right now the game is a cleverly-disguised arena shooter, but I do plan to add more directional elements like ships that only shoot one direction, platforms with emplacements, and playfield obstacles.

2009-01-11 7:20 PM

Just a pointless suggestion -- But I think this game would be awesome with some swanky F-Zero type music playing in the background.

Already on it. :D

I replaced my custom sound mixer with SDL_mixer so I could play Amiga .mod files, and picked out some music by 4mat that really add a lot to the experience. It works so well that I'll be reluctant to submit a build after this without music. (I'm strongly tempted to retrofit music into all my previous game prototypes as well.)

2009-01-19 7:21 PM

I haven't been able to work on this much because I've been getting ready to move to Austin the end of this week for a new job. I'll see what I can add in the next few hours, but I may just end up submitting what I have.

2009-01-19 8:34 PM

Congratulations on the new job. Austin is a great city from what I hear!

Hopefully you can pull a rabbit out of your hate before the deadline. Congrats on the new job!

Thanks. :D

I'm currently adding some enemies that emphasize the "scrolling" aspect of the game so it isn't just an arena shooter in clever disguise. I think I'll be able to submit something interesting, if shallow.

2009-01-19 10:21 PM: Release

OK, it's done as it's going to get. :D

2009-01-19 11:07 PM: Release


Move using WADS keys
Shoot using arrow keys

Blow stuff up!

(Updated to fix a few issues)

Note: requires Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable Package.


2009-01-19 10:32 PM

First impression, great fun as usual :)

The music really sells it. :)

Good tunes should not be underestimated.  They get the heart pumping and really add to the immersion.

2009-01-19 11:04 PM

Fun game, blindingly hard after a while!

The music really is killer.  Is it a remix of an old c64 tune?  That first main riff I'm sure I've heard before.  Classic!

The game controls well, and I enjoyed the forced angles of the shooting - made me move about a bit.

The in-game track is apparently a remix of the Sanxion loading tune.  I liked 4mat's version from the first time I heard it, and thought it would be appropriate for the visual theme. :D

I just updated the build since I noticed a few problems with some of the units.

2009-01-19 11:38 PM

Aah yes, Rob Hubbard! Great track.

I was originally going to use a different song by 4mat, but I decided that this one worked better.

2009-01-20 1:06 PM

Nice music, nice graphics.

However, control feels odd [it's backwards!], inertia [eew.], lifebar+lives [eeeeew.], and WAY TOO MANY EXTENDS [when I tried to kill myself by using stupid tactics, like rushing in to the enemies, I kept getting extra lives, and when I actually tried to stay alive, I easily got 2-3 lives extra].

2009-01-20 5:37 PM

i reached 500000 points and had 11 lifes left ;D hten i stopped because i felt the enemies didnt evolve. i saw somw graphic bugs like cannon without the according ship or shots outa nowhere... it has a good shooting mechanic and the scrolling bg looks nice... the music is nice but cant keep up with the frantic onscreen action.

ai seemed kinda dumb first, cause all gathered in bulk, dunno if it is intended, though. then they appear outa nowhere what was kinda annoying for me.

is there scraping? how does scoring and extends work anyway? developes difficulty along the lines of scoring or vice versa?

after all i find it an ok shooter, i only miss powerups and fledged out scoring mechanics/increasing enemy engagement

so long...

I should have recalibrated the extends to 20K, 50K, and every 50K after that.  You can try it that way by editing the level file and changing the player attributes from:



firstextra="20000" extra="50000"

The game is very simplistic right now, with straightforward scoring, time-release enemy spawns, no specialized play mechanics aside from the multi-directional firing, and no new enemy types appearing after the large spread-shot ship.  Once things settle down, I'll try to incorporate more variety to make it more interesting.  It's more a sketch of a game than an actual prototype.

Enemies popping up in the middle of the screen, ship missing parts (and vice versa), and shots from nowhere are all bugs that I didn't have time to figure out and fix.  Part of the problem is that the enemy units aren't aware of the edge of the screen, and sometimes blunder outside of the physics world.  I need to add better support for traditional forced-scrolling screen-oriented gameplay, since the engine is currently geared towards a free-scrolling world-oriented model.

2009-01-20 6:13 PM

As for the enemies seeming dumb, it's more a matter of them having a bit too much wander.  They do gravitate towards firing positions, with mine-dropping units trying to get ahead of the player ship and forward-firing units trying to get behind.

2009-01-21 10:53 PM

This is very good! The game feels very classic in an 80's way. Very nice job.