Shmup Development (using XNA and C#)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

New gameplay video and screenshots

Bullet Hell Tactics Demo is about 95% complete and this is what it looks like!

Better than the inspiration?

The inspiration sources for this game has been "Zero Gunner 2" and "Ikaruga" (and some others). These are the two best shoot'em'up games I know. Last night I played some "Zero Gunner 2" for Dreamcast to remember how they implemented the aim/rotate thing. I quickly felt that compared to "Bullet Hell Tactics" it felt slow and not as good looking graphics as I once thought. "Bullet Hell Tactics" actually felt like more action and better looking effects.

It just felt very cool that after playing "Zero Gunner 2" one can think that hmm... "Bullet Hell Tactics" is not that bad...

The last week I have been working with the graphics, effects and polishing the game a lot. There has been a huge difference just in a few days with the overall feeling of the game.

Today or tomorrow I'll post new screenshots and gameplay video. On Friday I'll go to Italy and when I get back home (next week) I'll build the final test version, and everyone who wants can try it.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Updated graphics and titlescreen

Tonight I worked with some new graphics for player shield and the "energypacks" the enemies drop. Sometimes it's fun to just sit and play around with colors and some filters in photoshop, what a difference - so much better!

Also created a new titlescreen:

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Last 90% of a game

Somewhere I read "When you think you are 90% complete with a game, you just have the other 90% left". It's true.

It was a pretty long time ago this project started (about 8 months) and it's now very near completion. It's a insane amount of hours put in this little game, and remember this is only a demo with 5 minutes(!!) of gameplay. Of course it wouldn't be as much work finishing more levels but I feel that I have soon finished what I started, and I'm satisfied with that!

Right now I'm trying to make what I have as good and polished as I can. This game will not be anything groundbreaking or graphically revolutionary, BUT IT WILL BE A REAL SHOOT'EM'UP GAME with lots of bullets, action, explosions, music/sounds, bosses, 3d graphics and highscores. I'll be really proud of it, finishing a game :-) I have not yet seen many finished games created with XNA, but I guess it will be a lot more one year from now...

In about 3-4 weeks time this project will be done and I will let it go, until I want to make it a full game :-)

Sunday, April 08, 2007

How to play the game

Bullet Hell Tactics demo includes one level. The goal is to kill the final boss and get as high score as you can.

How to play the game
You control a small spaceship and must destroy hordes of evil enemies. Shoot them down with your lasers while trying to evade the bullets they shoot back. When a enemy is destroyed they drop energy, pick these up fill up your own energy. You can also aim your ship and shoot in 360 degrees and not let a single enemy survive.

How player energy works
Player energy is displayed in the upper left corner of the screen. To fill up energy you must collect the green stuff the enemies drop when they are destroyed. You can use your energy in two ways:

  • Spinning shield, makes you invurnable to bullets (this is very important to use, but be careful not to run out of energy)
  • Homing laser missiles, very strong weapon that destroys most of whats in it's way (all of your energy will be used, so be careful!)

How bonus works
You get a multiplier for every bullet that bounces from your shield, and that multiplier is then used to calculate bonus when destroying enemies. If you die, the bonus and multiplier is lost. You collect the bonus when firing your homing lasers.

How to control player spaceship

Keyboard & Mouse:

  • Move - Mouse
  • Shoot - Left mouse button
  • Shield - Right mouse button
  • Aim (set pivot point) - Left Ctrl
  • Homing missiles - Left Shift

Xbox 360 controller:

  • Move - Left thumbstick
  • Shoot - A button (or right trigger)
  • Shield - B button (or left trigger)
  • Aim (set pivot point) - Hold X button
  • Homing missiles - Left/right shoulder button

Monday, April 02, 2007

Beta testers wanted

Would you like to help me beta test Bullet Hell Tactics? These are the requirements:

Please respond to this post with your name and email, "yourname at website dot com" (so spammers ignore). You can also send me mail to [address removed].

If you decide you want to help me, you will get more information this week. Thanks in advance!