Sunday, June 9, 2013

Long time posting.

It's been a while since I posted up here, so I have a lot of updates to talk about. The biggest one: it works on Android phones with very few problems. Before, I had gotten it to work on the phone, but there were screen size issues, and, moreover, the game played pretty badly. On the computer, the game has been about using the arrow keys to barely dodge enemies. On the phone, I switched input so the germ moves towards your fat finger. This is much less accurate, and often times you can’t see what’s going on. I’ve been trying to correct for this through significant changes to gameplay, designed to favor more fluid play less about fine dodging and more about choosing where to go. I’ve also made a few changes which help the “fat finger” be a little more precise.

The first update was getting rid of boundaries around the screen. Instead of confining the player to a small square, the camera will now follow the player as he moves. This gave the player a lot more breathing room, as he can no longer get caught by the edge. It also opened up interesting chase gameplay, where the player can pursue a red germ or a specific pill long after it would previously have left the screen. To facilitate chasing, I also added a dash which lets players move faster, but only in a straight line. It’s a pretty interesting risk.

It’s more difficult to move up/down than left/right, because your finger gets in the way. So I set the page orientation to always be landscape (horizontal), and made all enemies come from the left or right. I also made the screen size smaller, so enemies are larger and easier to dodge.

Finally, I’ve added particles! These add no gameplay value whatsoever, but they certainly look pretty!

Next up is to add a little more structure to enemy spawning. Rather than pure random spawning like currently, I’m going to make enemies spawn in certain patterns, like a line or a circle, and then all move in the same direction. Also, potentially making enemies follow paths across the screen. That should be good for the new follow a specific direction gameplay.

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