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udderdude

Twin Reaper - Heavily Doom inspired overhead 2D shooter

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I've been working on this for about 2 weeks, and I could use some feedback.

There's actually two games here, the more Doom-like one is Purger, where you play as a marine and kill shit. The other one is Possessor, where you play as a ghost, possess other marines and make them kill eachother.

There's 8 levels for each game so far.

http://rydia.net/udder/prog/twin/index.html

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Pretty cool! I like the concept and it's fun to play. It might be cool to make the different human types a bit more discernable, as they tend to all look similar(in part due to how small stuff is), but great work so far!

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Thanks. I'm not sure what could help to make the humans more distinct, probably just more unique colors or markings.

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It's aight. The weapons are boring (not really enough variation; they all shoot the same projectile, among other things. I'd say keep pistol/shotgun/sniper and dump the other two. The common ammo pool is annoying as well, I say either separate out ammo types or make an 'overheating' sort of thing instead) and the enemies should be introduced faster, it feels a lot like playing a huge long tutorial at the moment. It's probably a bit too easy as well - I played on hard and didn't find it particularly challenging as the enemies die quickly and fire slowly.
The constant HUD messages should probably be dropped; learning enemy behaviour is half the fun of these sorts of things, and I know how I died, thank you, I was there (consider putting in separate tutorial mode or something if you're really keen on these). On that note more info could be provided on other mechanics - what are those other collectables, the ones enemies drop? Mention the ammo limit as well.

Oh yeah I only played Purger. You could probably tell.

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udderdude said:

Thanks. I'm not sure what could help to make the humans more distinct, probably just more unique colors or markings.

I'd try small markings, definitely. Neat game you have here - I was entertained throughout. Art is good too.

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Lance MDR Rocket said:
The weapons are boring (not really enough variation; they all shoot the same projectile, among other things. I'd say keep pistol/shotgun/sniper and dump the other two.


The same projectile graphic, yeah, but they all act differently and have different uses. Possibly I could change the graphics around for each gun type.

Definitely won't be removing any of the weapons, as they all have their uses.

Lance MDR Rocket said:The common ammo pool is annoying as well, I say either separate out ammo types or make an 'overheating' sort of thing instead)


I was originally going to go with an energy meter for each weapon that recharged over time, but it just got frustrating waiting for it to recharge.

I don't see how the ammo combining is 'annoying'. It's supposed to make things more arcade-like so you aren't worrying as much about what weapon has what ammo. How is that any more annoying than Doom's myrad ammo types that you can easily reach the limit of (w/o a backpack) and have to play 'dodge the ammo' in order to not waste any?

Lance MDR Rocket said:and the enemies should be introduced faster, it feels a lot like playing a huge long tutorial at the moment.


Two new enemies per level is too slow? Not sure I agree with you there. (By the way, I'm adding two new enemy types in the next version)

Lance MDR Rocket said:It's probably a bit too easy as well - I played on hard and didn't find it particularly challenging as the enemies die quickly and fire slowly.


The Green levels aren't supposed to be too tough. It's when you reach the Yellow/Red levels that you should start sweating. I plan to throw large numbers of enemies at the player.

Lance MDR Rocket said:The constant HUD messages should probably be dropped; learning enemy behaviour is half the fun of these sorts of things, and I know how I died, thank you, I was there (consider putting in separate tutorial mode or something if you're really keen on these).


The intro messages also serve the purpose of giving the player a chance to look at their immediate surroundings before the level starts. I wouldn't want to remove that. I don't think giving the player info on the enemies is a bad thing, considering how many of them there are and how varied their attacks can be.

As for the death messages .. gotta have something appear when you die. :P

Lance MDR Rocket said:On that note more info could be provided on other mechanics - what are those other collectables, the ones enemies drop? Mention the ammo limit as well.


On the first level, it says they're Enemy Cores. The ammo limit is very high at the moment, not sure it's worth mentioning unless I lower it.

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but they all act differently and have different uses


Yeah, honestly, there's nothing in the demo that induced me to change from the chaingun beyond 'I wonder what this does'. It's accurate, has a long range, is easy to conserve ammo with if you need to and is highly effective against every enemy. I know the cannon pierces and the sniper goes really fast and the shotgun has a spread or whatever, but you either need to engineer situations where they're useful or consider revising the weapons loadout.

I don't see how the ammo combining is 'annoying'. It's supposed to make things more arcade-like so you aren't worrying as much about what weapon has what ammo. How is that any more annoying than Doom's myrad ammo types that you can easily reach the limit of (w/o a backpack) and have to play 'dodge the ammo' in order to not waste any?


Yeah I'm not huge about that in Doom either, but that's not really the point. The common pool means that you're either completely fucked until you can grab some ammo or you have the luxury of using whatever weapon you like, which reduces challenge. Neither situation is as fun as it could be, and besides, running out of ammo for your basic gun is about as unarcade-like as it gets.

Two new enemies per level is too slow? Not sure I agree with you there. (By the way, I'm adding two new enemy types in the next version)
...
The Green levels aren't supposed to be too tough. It's when you reach the Yellow/Red levels that you should start sweating. I plan to throw large numbers of enemies at the player.


I suppose. It still seems like a long time for the player to be in easy mode (nearly a third of all the levels, assuming the level select boxes are to be believed). And, yeah, seven and eight were reasonably challenging - I'd definitely prefer more like that.

The intro messages also serve the purpose of giving the player a chance to look at their immediate surroundings before the level starts. I wouldn't want to remove that.


You could make it so things are frozen until the player acts somehow. Or at least make it so that pressing any key exits the message, making it easier to skip through (yeah this is a minor thing).

On the first level, it says they're Enemy Cores. The ammo limit is very high at the moment, not sure it's worth mentioning unless I lower it.


This is stuff that should go on the title screen, which does mention the soul things. Why not the enemy cores too? The title screen is the obvious place for this sort of information, and it's where I'm going to look if I'm not 100% sure about something, not the first level pop-up box.
As for the ammo, I was messing around seeing what the guns did and then, oops, out of ammo. If I'd done that without killing all the enemies then I wouldn't have been able to finish the level, which would have been irritating. A more likely situation would be someone playing a few levels and then wondering why their weapon stopped firing before getting killed (and frankly, if this had happened instead of the first thing, I wouldn't have been very happy). If it affects the player, it's worth mentioning.

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Slow player speed. Heavily Doom inspired? Slow player speed. :(

The HUD messages were annoying. I don't want to read text every thirty seconds in an arcade game, and, in fact, I didn't read the text, enemy behavior was intuitive enough to understand. In fact I think having things spelled out like this hurts the game, it makes you look not confident in your game design. Show, don't tell and all that. Having the info popping up if the player dies X number of times in any given section might make more sense.

I didn't find any reason to change from the chaingun and so just used that the whole time. I guess I could see the shotgun dealing more damage up close, but with slow player speed it's a gamble whereas chaingun is accurate and each level I had been in so far didn't take too long to beat anyway.

Running out of ammo and not being able to do anything until I picked up some was odd. Perhaps I could have switched to an infinite melee weapon or something? I didn't try hard.

It was fun for a bit, but I stopped about 10 or 12 levels in. Some kind of catch to grab you in was missing. Like faster player speed! But seriously, it didn't feel like I was getting anywhere, nor did it make me want to get anywhere, nor did the gameplay itself, due to the slow player speed, was entertaining enough to just want to play. So once the novelty effect dissapears, so does interest.

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Phml said:
Slow player speed. Heavily Doom inspired? Slow player speed. :(


You're right, he is still a bit slow. I'll increase the player speed a bit. Don't expect Doomguy-levels of speed, though.

Phml said:The HUD messages were annoying.


Again, I'd rather have a "Get ready for the level" message than the level just starting as soon as it loads.

Phml said:I didn't find any reason to change from the chaingun and so just used that the whole time. I guess I could see the shotgun dealing more damage up close, but with slow player speed it's a gamble whereas chaingun is accurate and each level I had been in so far didn't take too long to beat anyway.


You're right here too, maybe the chaingun needs to be nerfed a bit. Or increase the shotgun's power.

Phml said:Running out of ammo and not being able to do anything until I picked up some was odd. Perhaps I could have switched to an infinite melee weapon or something? I didn't try hard.


Currently there is no infinite ammo melee weapon, that may change in the next version.

Phml said:It was fun for a bit, but I stopped about 10 or 12 levels in.


I would be pretty concerned if this were the case, as the demo is currently limited to 8 levels.

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Updated the demo

- Player speed slightly increased
- 1-2 more enemies in the Green levels
- 2 new enemies, the Dropper and Craze
- Pistol now costs no ammo and gets selected automatically if you don't have enough ammo for other weapons
- Chaingun now fires slower and costs more ammo
- Shotgun spread is tighter
- New weapon in slot 6 - the Blade is a close range (melee) weapon with no ammo cost
- All player bullets now have unique sprites
- Added a transparent light effect
- Added blood pools that slowly dissipate under defeated enemies

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I like it. I didn't figure out how to aim, tho. Playing on a laptop. The firing stopped at one point, I right clicked on the playing area and then got rid of the menu that appeared and then it worked again. It bogged down some on my crappy internet connection, but it was fun.

EDIT: I think I got to level 3: the one with the scorpions. After that level, I would suggest you not give the player anymore hints--as half the fun of a game is figuring out what to do and how to kill the baddies. Or maybe instead of saying what things do be more cryptic like "watch out for the glowing orbs" and "things are really heating up now"

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Glad you liked it.

Unfortunately, you really need a mouse to aim in this game. A laptop touchpad isn't gonna cut it.

I didn't like the idea of hiding information from the player. Later enemy descriptions do get a bit more cryptic, but not by much.

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