Playable Alpha of Pathogen Purge (my Laser Defender clone)


#1

To do list:

  • more audiovisual feedback near death
  • animated enemies
  • settings and persisting them into a file
  • credits screen
  • tutorial level
  • more enemy types and wave patterns
  • boss waves
  • fixing full screen scaling
  • pause

#2

Hi Balázs,

This is really nice. I really like the sprites but more than that I really like how the sprites and the HUD all work with the theme of the game - the thermometer was a great idea.

I had to zoom my browser out down to 50% in order to play the WebGL version but that is obviously because of the aspect ratio used for this project - you could potentially offer a WebGL version which doesn’t require this.

I like the list of additional features you have created there too and would suggest that the first item would be a great one to add. When I played the first game the thermometer was just off of the top of the screen so when I saw the yellow stars I thought they were things I could collect. When I flew over them they disappeared, great I thought, then I died. :smiley: Partly this is I think because the yellow stars, as a sprite, are often seen as a positive / collectable in games, but it was the lack of visual / audio when I “collected” one that led me to think I could collect more.

I also thought you inclusion of the keys to press as a brief overlay at the beginning was a nice touch.

9,000 is my highest score so far, I will do better!

Thanks for sharing and I look forward to seeing any further updates you make on you game :slight_smile:


Updated Thu Dec 06 2018 12:30

21,200! :wink:

Just spotted the behaviour of the pink pathogen also, very nice.

Without a lives mechanic, it occurred to me that you could use your thermometer health bar in both directions, e.g. its raising up as the player takes damage, but perhaps, it could gradually reduce over time also, self-healing as it were, would kind of fit with the nature of the game and also give the player the ability to play for longer without introducing a lives mechanic. Just a thought.


#3

35K :stuck_out_tongue: (and could go on almost indefinitely)! Unfortunately I’m not that good, just found an exploit where I could just sit near the starting position and shoot continuously. Moving the pink ones spawning point to the side seems to remedy that, and makes their homing behavior more apparent (they were meant to harass the player anyway).

I wonder what other design flaws the play tests might reveal. Your assumption about the yellow stars is completely valid, I have to think about color and shape (and the combination of them) even more thoroughly to avoid confusion about the purpose of items. And give more feedback to the player.

I have tried my best to ‘flex my designer muscles’ with this project, just finding the font that suits the theme took more hours than I care to admit :smile:. So I’m really glad you like the results.

Slowly regenerating health crossed my mind as well. Ice shields could grant invulnerability for a few seconds. To balance these, enemies slipping through the bottom could also deal damage (as originally intended). I like the current mechanics with inevitable death as well, so I’ll definitely keep it as a hardcore difficulty.


#4

lol - are you throwing down the gauntlet here :smiley:

just found an exploit where I could just sit near the starting position and shoot continuously

Yeah, there were a couple of spots I found where enemies overlapped and it made it easier to clear a wave, I moved around a bit though to keep it fair :slight_smile: I’ll assume your 35k is from exploitation of this glitch :wink:

and makes their homing behavior more apparent (they were meant to harass the player anyway).

It’s a really nice feature

Your assumption about the yellow stars is completely valid, I have to think about color and shape (and the combination of them) even more thoroughly to avoid confusion about the purpose of items. And give more feedback to the player.

I suspect you could change just one of two things and it would make a significant different, you could, for example, make them an angry red rather than the soft/appealing yellow - or, make them perhaps spikey instead of rounded - both of those simple changes would indicate more along the lines of danger rather than “collect me!” - many things you could do but one or both those would be fairly simple to test.

I have tried my best to ‘flex my designer muscles’ with this project, just finding the font that suits the theme took more hours than I care to admit :smile:. So I’m really glad you like the results.

Its definitely worth investing the time as you have demonstrated. One thing regarding my feedback, it is obviously singular, so should be taken with a pinch of salt, just because I for example thought the yellow stars were collectables, another player may think “ooh, stay away from those projectiles”, the more people you can get feedback from the better and then look for the patterns. If you ask 100 people and 97 say “They look like collectables” then they probably do… the opposite can happen to, as you don’t want to design a game just around the one person that might have chipped in some feedback.

GameDev.tv does have both the Facebook groups and also the Discord channel, so if you haven’t already you could post in those areas too and ask for some feedback, always handy if you are trying to get some specifics too, e.g. “What do you think about X” and so on.

Slowly regenerating health crossed my mind as well. Ice shields could grant invulnerability for a few seconds. To balance these, enemies slipping through the bottom could also deal damage (as originally intended). I like the current mechanics with inevitable death as well, so I’ll definitely keep it as a hardcore difficulty.

It sounds like you have some great plans for this game, and I hope, as much as you’ll want to push on to other sections of the course, you’ll still invest further in this game because I really like what you’ve started with here and I think it has a lot of potential. Well done again :slight_smile:


#5

An angry red, five-pointed star may be even more ambiguous, depending on the country the player is from :smiley:.

I’ll definitely polish this project until it can be called a proper game that people enjoy.


#6

That’s very true, hehe, good point (excuse the pun :roll_eyes: )! Experiment, maybe pop up some screenshots of alternatives and see what the consensus is, or, if you add the affordance via the player themselves, e.g. a wobble, particles, audio you may not even need it, chances are the player will only make the mistake the once before realising :slight_smile:

I’ll definitely polish this project until it can be called a proper game that people enjoy.

Great! I’ll be sure to keep a look out for the next update :slight_smile:


#7

How about this shuriken/sawblade shaped projectile?
shuriken


#8

Hey,

Yeah they looks good, the less friendly curves on them make them look less appealing from a collectable perspective I think. I think when they are rotating also they will look more menacing :slight_smile: