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I got this assuming there would be a steam key. I sent an email but I realise this might be a more appropriate place to ask. Should or can there be a steam key? Thanks.
Game is lit. Infinity/10. Love it!
I haven't noticed any major issues, currently just a small visual bug where the stage intro can overlap with the game title if you exit to title at the start of a mission.
Another small issue: at the start of mission1, if you don't choose to restart from the first checkpoint, when the first enemy appears, the meter is still not full. To make the meter full at the start, I had to restart from checkpoint every time I start the first mission. I suggest making the meter full starting from the beginning. Or make sure it reaches max before the dialogue ends.
Lastly, regarding the autofire. I still prefer it disabled from the start. It feels a bit awkward when playing with autofire, and I prefer having more control over my shots. On a beginner's standpoint, I'm sure they've also played other similar games where the player ship does not fire automatically. In the attract mode the player fires manually, so I think it might better if it is left off as default. People can always navigate to the options to turn it on if they feel like it. I've read the Rock Paper Shotgun article and it mentioned that autofire is meant for more focus on taking risks and dodging, but in actual play, it didn’t turn out as I expected. Just my person preference though.
Edit: It seems the game has no icon on the taskbar... It's pitch black XD maybe add it later? Nothing major anyways ;]
Edit 2: When I was viewing the extra images included in the deluxe version, I noticed the first boss's old design, and got reminded of the old demo. I regret deleting the old one lmao... And there's nowhere I can find it. File recovery didn't help. It's still fun when I think about that!
I totally enjoyed the game. Despite a few minor issues (it's just the first day after release, so it is understandable), this is definitely a very enjoyable experience.
Just played this Amazing game Demo now, seriously cant wait to purchase & play the full version of this wonderful shoot em up, some nice original touches as well & keep up the great work guys, both thumbs up from me :) SHOOT EM UPS 4 LIFE!!!
I played your game at ACen this year and i loved it! I can't wait to get my hands on it! the sprite work is fantastic and it's got a really great feel.
Thanks a bunch! Glad you were able play! About to post the ACen build (minus mission 3) in a few minutes.
Your game was advertising for its heavy Risk = Reward -based system and I got what I wanted. Will wait for the full release.
Some feedback now:
Great value system. Grazing offers direct gameplay reward, not just score. Losing 1 health chunk per hit but requiring 9 health points (from destruction loot) to recover a chunk makes taking damage critical. It also matches the pacing of a game where you destroy 90% of the time and get hit 10% of the time.
I'm still not sure what to do if my Barrier Breaker gauge is full but I'm not in direct danger. Usually I would keep it for later, but maybe there's a bonus score if you destroy even simple units with the Barrier Breaker.
I hadn't noticed that Barrel rolls increased fire rate (as mentioned in a comment), but I guessed it increased grazing reward because it fits Risk = Reward. I'll play again with more rolling but I fear I'll end up spamming them up and down for some extra fire on a precise target.
Simple controls, the keyboard default has a nice symmetrical feel.
As mentioned in other comments, some common gamepads don't work so I won't say more on this.
Keyboard works fine and is enough for a game that doesn't require aiming at given angles. However, the keyboard configuration screen is hard to use: it is a bit old-school and forces you to pick all the keys for each action in order instead of letting you choose them freely. But more importantly, it doesn't let you leave the screen until you're done (Escape input is captured, but ignored as it is an invalid input, so it does nothing). You should always be able to leave a config operation in the middle and cancel it.
Epileptic effects in both the menu and in-game are still a problem. The warning at the beginning is the minimum but the problem remains (for legal reasons even games with not so hardcore FX end up with the warning, so when I see one in a game I tend to ignore it thinking it won't be that terrible).
I would say that unless you have a very good reason based on art direction and world immersion, you should avoid epileptic effects at all cost, and even when using them add an option to deactivate them. For non-epileptic but disorientating effects, a toggle option would be enough (unless it's VR).
Here are 2 examples:
- In a movie, a dysfunctional neon in an abandoned shop that switches on and off gives a sense of uncertainty and incomfort. The character may be attacked from the dark or find a corpse. Removing the neon would diminish the experience a lot. The scene is still short, and the neon switches from times to times, not at high frequency. OK. Watchtest with different people if you're unsure.
- In The Last Story (Wii), the camera rolls when inside a sailing boat (immersion), but it can be deactivated in the settings (to avoid motions sickness, or just for gamers who like things straight).
In your case, most effects are not critical for the experience.
- The faces in the radio dialogues don't need to glitch unless you want to mean there are interferences.
- Menus may glitch a little for aesthetical effects, but the current on/off at high frequency effect doesn't make the menu more beautiful or immersive. It you want to evoke CRT, old OSes or mil
- Muzzle flash is a bit tricky because it's a diegetic effect. Personally I wasn't disturbed by in-game effects so much, probably because I'm expecting them in a shooter, I'm focused on my ship and FX help me identify potential threats quickly. So flashy effects have a gameplay and aesthetical purpose. But you can still playtest with a variety of people to see what's fit and what's not. You can also compare to other shooters to see how they manage to show muzzle flashes without being epileptic (like showing a sticky flash, blending, etc.).
Also, remember that adding those effects cost you a little each time. Removing them in the end will be cheap, but you would have lost the initial time spent on them, so design them wisely from the start, or start with basic effects leave the details to the polishing phase. You wouldn't want to make great gameplay inaccessible to some people because you put the wrong FX.
Thank you so much for the in depth reply/critique. That was incredible. I'll try and respond close to the order of what you posted.
Yes, Barrel Rolls do increase the rate at which you absorb energy and just over double the ships rate of fire. Another application is that if you graze a shot at any point during the barrel roll you retain charged status for the remainder of the roll so you can deliver charged shots anywhere via stunts.
On the configuration menu, what went on there is partially due to using an ancient engine and the way memory had to be serialized meant state changes had to be handled very very cautiously (which is why quitting out the key config via escape is locked if you haven't finished the sequence). The game is undergoing a port which will allow us to not HAVE to do that, (we'll also be able to tell which buttons the player is pressing on a given controller as that was actually impossible in the old engine and was also the reason we didn't have access to all buttons on every pad.)
On the epilepsy front, it does all serve an aesthetic purpose in regards to menus and transmissions but I'll tone it down on the transmissions as you aren't the first person to mention it (definitely influenced by the vision of the future from the 80's, things not being very reliable, prototype ship etc.) Menus are likely to see a makeover during the port as well. The effects in game are meant to communicate information at a high speed so instantaneous binaries that are there are very deliberate. There used to be more effects that worked that way before we updated the look of the game for a more hi-bit aesthetic specifically so we could take advantage of other means of communicating information that wouldn't require flashing.
Thanks again for playing and the input.
Thanks for the reply! I have not checked the game status for a while so I'll be glad to try the new version.
I see how glitches are part of your art direction now. As you said, there should be other ways to convey the feeling of an instant and disrupted communication, such as after image and visual noise, as well as playing with the audio.
Good luck for the release!
Hey there, lots more has changed since even the last demo upload we made. We're waiting on our new engine port to be complete before posting it but many more changes have been implemented including a way more user friendly custom control set up.
Had to play with keyboard because my 360 and DS4 wouldn't work (360 worked at first but then the fire button kept bringing up the menu again). Really fun once you get the mechanics, I couldn't work it out until I saw the rolling demo in the background of the title screen was an, "Oh right!" moment and the barrel rolls etc. made total sense. Only thing I found a bit annoying was the wait between failing a boss battle and starting again and having to hear the dialogue/boss alert. I know it's a very small (and maybe intentional to give a breather) but I imagine as it gets harder this could be really frustrating especially since there's the trial and error element to boss fights. Of course it's entirely possible that I was just too rubbish at it to see what I was meant to do when the bosses launched their big attacks!
Thanks for the playing! There are 2 potential culprits on the xbox360 controller issue but since it was working and then suddenly started quitting to menu my guess is you might have Steam or Steam Big Picture open/running (which for some reason likes to obliterate/override control schemes in certain games, ours currently included). Turning those off fixes the problem. If it isn't related to Steam I would suggest downloading the most recent 360 drivers, modern windows doesn't bundle 360 controller drivers in regular updates as they want everybody using xbone controllers so at times it is necessary to go and manually download them.
If neither of these things fixes the problem, please do let me know so I can note the problem on the page until some kind of fix is found.
The boss checkpoint placement is indeed meant to give a little breather but in some cases that time can also be used to mount a preemptive attack on the boss before the fight begins.
Thanks for the reply! I think you're right about the issue being drivers or Big Picture mode, I'm a bit scared to change anything in Steam since I finally got the DS4 working for Final Fantasy 15 with the correct button prompts. I remembered I had a wired Xbox One controller for the Steam Link in another room so plugged that in and after configuring the controls it worked fine. So much better playing with a controller, maybe I'll even beat the second boss! I love the feeling of having to move into danger to restore your health, it gives it such a unique feel compared to other shooters. I find myself trying to barrel roll back in the opposite direction too soon which is currently the main thing getting me killed.
So I saw this game at VGM Con last weekend but it was unplayable due to controller complications. I'm glad I looked this game up afterwards b/c this demo is nuts! Really love the visuals of the game and the effects are top notch! Gameplay is pretty addicting and I'm curious to see where this game goes once it's finished. The only thing I'm not really nuts about is the music. Definitely serviceable for what it is but for how aggressive the explosions and effects are, I guess I was expecting something more intense. But hey, that's probably just me wanting shmups to all sound like Tecno Soft shmups haha.
Anyways Great work guys! Can't wait to see more.
Thanks so much for playing! Glad you remembered you saw it at the con. On the music, the game is getting a totally new soundtrack as it's the one part people weren't having a major response to. The initial soundtrack would've worked better if this was a tv series or movie instead of a game so now music that better captures the spirit of gameplay is being made.
An updated demo with new music will be posted prior to the full game.
That’s great to hear. Your game has a lot of polish to it already so it would be great to see every part of it is firing in all cylinders. Also, I understand the initial plan is to kick this off on Windows but it would be killer if you ever brought this on the Switch! That system seems perfect for arcade games let alone shmups.
P.S. okay I just got to know, does firing while doing a barrel roll increase the fire rate? From look and sound it seems like it but I can’t tell for sure.
indeed rolling does increase your firing rate as well as the amount of energy you gain while near enemy fire. There are a lot of mechanics that mix into the roll that actually make it a super powerful offensive maneuver.
On the subject of a switch port, it does seem likely with just a few details to iron out provided there is a decent enough showing on pc.
Awesome game! The effects, fluid movement, style, music... I really love this.
Thank you so much!
Just saw you on ArtEaters twitter. Will need to check out!
Thank You! Been hard at work on finishing the full game and posting a vastly updated demo.
Just a heads up, my Xbox360 and Logitech controllers don't seem work with the game. Window 7. (Setting the Logitech controller to DInput mode does work tho)
Thanks for letting us know.
We will need to note that and see if it can be corrected. There have been a few head scratchers where an Xbone controller will work with the game on one pc and then the same controller on another wouldn't. The current theory is this happens if the player hasn't downloaded the current xbox controller drivers and is using the drivers that came pre-installed on windows7 and 10. This may or may not be the case for you. If you do have the time to download the drivers and give it a shot or if you already know the drivers are up to date & it didn't work, let us know.
And thanks for playing!
Yea, I know they're not up to date beacause I removed the downloaded drivers because of the popup that happened when using the "Xbox" button for reasons some time ago lol(was working on something at the time). So youre probably right and updating would probably fix it.
Thanks for the quick reply. Great game btw.