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ooze playtest and & suggestions


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#1 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 2:24 PM

Ok, I finally got a handle on the various issues with the ooze game, and the alpha 2 compiler issues.

If you all would not mind, give this a playtest. I'm looking for bugs like the unshootable pixel present in the last version. There is no score yet... (Sorry) But, there is cool sounds!

What I am really after is gameplay suggestions. How to end the game, scoring, etc???

Edit: If you download this, grab the one at the bottom of the thread. Much more playable.



Attached File  ooze_v2.zip   1.42KB   194 downloadsAttached File  ooze_v2_src.zip   1.45KB   183 downloadsooze_v2.png

Edited by potatohead, Sun Jul 31, 2005 9:07 PM.


#2 vdub_bobby OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 3:20 PM

But, there is cool sounds!

What I am really after is gameplay suggestions.  How to end the game, scoring, etc???

Really cool sounds/music. Fits very well.

Scoring: points per piece of ooze shot. If possible, more points for pieces of ooze that are higher.
End of game: make it possible for ooze to reach bottom of screen; game ends when ship touches ooze.
Difficulty: should have ramping difficulty; easiest would be to slowly increase speed at which the ooze appears; this has the added bonus of increasing the tempo of the "music" which would add to the intensity.

#3 vdub_bobby OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 3:23 PM

Couple of bugs...all tied to the RESET switch:

hitting RESET during the title screen seriously messes up the display. Also sometimes locks (blank screen) the program.
hitting RESET during game play returns to title screen (good) but doesn't remove ship and bullet from screen (bad, I assume).

#4 attendo OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 3:36 PM

pretty cool game!

#5 jussts OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 3:46 PM

Ok, I finally got a handle on the various issues with the ooze game, and the alpha 2 compiler issues. 

If you all would not mind, give this a playtest.  I'm looking for bugs like the unshootable pixel present in the last version.  There is no score yet...  (Sorry)  But, there is cool sounds!

What I am really after is gameplay suggestions.  How to end the game, scoring, etc???

Attached File  ooze_v2.zip   1.42KB   194 downloadsAttached File  ooze_v2_src.zip   1.45KB   183 downloadsooze_v2.png

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There don't appear to be anymore problems with indestructible pixels... there's no way to die in this version, correct?

First off, I really love the music/sound effects. The way the descending ooze makes random pitches that create a sort of melody is great (what would be really cool is if it was accompanied by a steady drum beat behind it, further reinforcing it as the 'soundtrack' and not just the sound effects). The title screen is also cool.

One suggestion though, you might want to make the ooze pixels twice as wide (see attached image) as it's sort of annoying to have to nudge your spaceship around ever so slightly just to hit something. Not only will it look more like a wall of advancing ooze, it'll be a bit more forgiving when things get going really fast. You could also just make twice as many columns of ooze (this would preserve the 'wall of ooze' look and the difficulty of the current version... it may even increase the difficulty).

I'd also like to see a way to beat back the ooze entirely. Like, if you destroy a column of ooze it won't come back for a while... that way, if you're quick enough you can destroy all the columns and that would be the end of that particular wave... and then it's on the next wave with faster ooze. The occasional power up item would also be cool (like bombs or laser beams that take out more than one column of ooze).

All in all, this is a wonderful starting point and could be taken in a lot of directions... I can't wait to see what you do with it.

Attached Thumbnails

  • ooze02.PNG


#6 kisrael OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 5:26 PM

NICE!

I don't have any additional comments that people haven't made already...

Except that it made me realize that Davie's idea of Ooze is like a simpler "Squeeze Box" ;-)

But the use of sound is very good, and the whole package is shaping up very nicely.

#7 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 7:15 PM

NICE!

I don't have any additional comments that people haven't made already...

Except that it made me realize that Davie's idea of Ooze is like a simpler "Squeeze Box" ;-)

But the use of sound is very good, and the whole package is shaping up very nicely.

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Good comments folks. --Thanks for the game ideas. The creative juices are flowing now. Exactly what I was looking for. Appreciated.

The double wide ooze looks good, but introduces a bug involving collisions. Once I get that nailed, I'll start to work on some of the ideas. Lots to work with. Some of what I'm thinking requires another sprite. Anyone think sharing the bullet with that sprite will be a big detraction from the visuals overall. (If it's a bright color?)

I played the fighter jet game. How were the multiple players done? Was some assembly required?

For those looking for interesting sounds, use your existing game loops and counters to control and shape the sound. --That's what I did.

#8 s0c7 OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 28, 2005 7:46 PM

I played the fighter jet game.  How were the multiple players done?  Was some assembly required?


You can do it without assembly (technically it is an asm command, but it is also a bB command). Take a look at the NUSIZ command in the bB help file (look under TIA registers). Basically it just mirrors the player. The value I entered for the NUSIZ command in my source is different from what you see in the bB help, but it works the same way (just used to seeing it like that in the asm tutorials I used to look at when I was doing hacks).

Cool game btw! Perhaps make your ship slowly melt when you lose? (I know the feeling about not knowing what to do - my game has changed several times. Source just keeps getting uglier :roll: ).

Edited by s0c7, Thu Jul 28, 2005 8:01 PM.


#9 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 12:49 AM

I played the fighter jet game.  How were the multiple players done?  Was some assembly required?


You can do it without assembly (technically it is an asm command, but it is also a bB command). Take a look at the NUSIZ command in the bB help file (look under TIA registers). Basically it just mirrors the player. The value I entered for the NUSIZ command in my source is different from what you see in the bB help, but it works the same way (just used to seeing it like that in the asm tutorials I used to look at when I was doing hacks).

Cool game btw! Perhaps make your ship slowly melt when you lose? (I know the feeling about not knowing what to do - my game has changed several times. Source just keeps getting uglier :roll: ).

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I just realized the missiles are working now. That's damn cool and opens up some very interesting game options. I really meant you had more than two sprites on screen, not more than two player sprites. Thanks for posting your game listing, I appreciate it.

#10 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 1:45 AM

Maybe you can borrow some gameplay ideas from Ram-It.

#11 Jess Ragan ONLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 4:32 AM

If you didn't want the ooze to touch the player, my suggestion would be to just add a panic timer to the game... when the ooze touches the bottom of the screen, either the score or your ship flashes red, and an unseen timer starts to count down. You must clear the trails of ooze from the bottom of the screen before the timer expires, or your ship melts from exposure to the radioactive slime ("My eyes... the goggles do nothing!"). When the ooze is cleared from the bottom line of the screen, the timer automatically resets.

I'd like to see moving obstacles added to the game... perhaps the ooze could drip from the trails at the top of the screen from time to time. If a droplet hits your ship, it's instantly destroyed. On the other hand, if you shoot the droplet as it falls, you're given bonus points.

Here's an idea for a wild death scene... when you bite it, have the ooze flow downward, using Batari BASIC's scrolling command. You're buried in an avalanche of slime, a fitting punishment for your failure to destroy the advancing ooze.

You're doing pretty well with this, by the way. The graphics are nice, and you've found a clever use for the low resolution playfield. The sound is cool too... it kind of reminds me of the original Press Your Luck television series, when the contestants would test their reflexes against the wily Whammy.

JR

#12 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 5:29 AM

If you didn't want the ooze to touch the player, my suggestion would be to just add a panic timer to the game... when the ooze touches the bottom of the screen, either the score or your ship flashes red, and an unseen timer starts to count down.  You must clear the trails of ooze from the bottom of the screen before the timer expires, or your ship melts from exposure to the radioactive slime ("My eyes... the goggles do nothing!").  When the ooze is cleared from the bottom line of the screen, the timer automatically resets.

I'd like to see moving obstacles added to the game... perhaps the ooze could drip from the trails at the top of the screen from time to time.  If a droplet hits your ship, it's instantly destroyed.  On the other hand, if you shoot the droplet as it falls, you're given bonus points.

Here's an idea for a wild death scene... when you bite it, have the ooze flow downward, using Batari BASIC's scrolling command.  You're buried in an avalanche of slime, a fitting punishment for your failure to destroy the advancing ooze.

You're doing pretty well with this, by the way.  The graphics are nice, and you've found a clever use for the low resolution playfield.  The sound is cool too... it kind of reminds me of the original Press Your Luck television series, when the contestants would test their reflexes against the wily Whammy.

JR

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Thanks, BTW. This is pretty fun actually. I've actually looked forward to getting some time to play with this today.

I'm liking these ideas. Drawing the ooze, using one byte to represent their vertical state, is too expensive... I've only got a few bits left for other things. I think I'm either going to have to make the gameplay ending something really simple, or recode the ooze representation to fit two ooze columns into one byte. Tried this once and didn't have any luck. Maybe it will be easier the second time around. --Or give up ooze resolution and or size...

Here is a version with solid ooze. The yellow bar on the right is the drop rate. Color & BW switch works as do both of the difficulty switches. Left controls ship speed, right affects overall drop rate. The flashing missile at the top is probably going to turn into something that drops. (maybe lose the bar and use both of them for dropping obstacles.) I was thinking along those lines when I read your post. I just put it up there so I would be thinking about it while I debugged other things.

Ooze touching player is an interesting problem. I'm using the hardware collision to detect player to ooze collisions. There is another bit for that condition, so I can do that for the ship too. Could have three lives or something. I can easily move the ship up a notch and use playfield pixels to represent those. Three times and your out kind of thing. Maybe get an extra ship for every few drops avoided. Not against that at all, once I clear some RAM for it.

What I have done so far is solid. Plenty of room in the Rom for fun stuff yet.

Still no way to die in this one yet, but you can watch the flashy stuff and count your points now. On the harder setting, it's really tough to keep all the ooze at bay.

Anyone have any quick 'n dirty methods for packing numbers into and out of bytes that does not take a million cycles?

Attached File  ooze1_bin.zip   1.71KB   169 downloadsAttached File  ooze1.zip   2.37KB   163 downloadsooze_v3.png

Edited by potatohead, Fri Jul 29, 2005 3:17 PM.


#13 s0c7 OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 9:38 AM

Thanks for posting your game listing, I appreciate it.


Share and share alike. Your user's guide is what got me started. The more info shared leads to better programs all around.

#14 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 3:14 PM

Thanks for posting your game listing, I appreciate it.


Share and share alike. Your user's guide is what got me started. The more info shared leads to better programs all around.

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Cool. I'll have to update that for Alpha2. Batari, if you are reading this, about how long do we have until Alpha3? No pressure, I still have not pushed the boundaries of Alpha2 yet. --Just wondering if the update will be worth it, that's all.

#15 batari OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 3:24 PM

Thanks for posting your game listing, I appreciate it.


Share and share alike. Your user's guide is what got me started. The more info shared leads to better programs all around.

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Cool. I'll have to update that for Alpha2. Batari, if you are reading this, about how long do we have until Alpha3? No pressure, I still have not pushed the boundaries of Alpha2 yet. --Just wondering if the update will be worth it, that's all.

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I hope to get it done in about a week, but this may be optimistic with all the changes I still need to make. There are lots of new features for Alpha 0.3, so with it may come with as many bugs too, so I'll need to make Alpha 0.4 a maintenance/bugfix release, most likely.

#16 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 3:47 PM

Thanks for posting your game listing, I appreciate it.


Share and share alike. Your user's guide is what got me started. The more info shared leads to better programs all around.

View Post


Cool. I'll have to update that for Alpha2. Batari, if you are reading this, about how long do we have until Alpha3? No pressure, I still have not pushed the boundaries of Alpha2 yet. --Just wondering if the update will be worth it, that's all.

View Post

I hope to get it done in about a week, but this may be optimistic with all the changes I still need to make. There are lots of new features for Alpha 0.3, so with it may come with as many bugs too, so I'll need to make Alpha 0.4 a maintenance/bugfix release, most likely.

View Post


Ok then, I'll target the Alpha 0.3 release. That will give me some time to maybe get this ooze game finished and polished. Then it can become some better docs and tie into the users guide. I was kind of hoping to document a fairly polished game written in Batari for motivating and helping others along. Even as limited as this is, a lot of gameplay options are possible. (Hoping we see more interesting gameplay scenarios appear.)

#17 supercat OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 4:09 PM

Anyone have any quick 'n dirty methods for packing numbers into and out of bytes that does not take a million cycles?


Piece of cake.
store_lsn:; Stores bits 0 to 3 of A into LSN of address X [acc. trashed]
  eor 0,x
  and #$0F
  eor 0,x
  sta 0,x
  rts

load_lsn:; Loads LSN of address X into bits 0-3 of A
  lda 0,x
  and #$0F
  rts

store_msn:; Stores bits 0-3 of A into LSN of address X [acc. trashed]
  asl
  asl
  asl
  asl
  eor 0,x
  and #$F0
  eor 0,x
  sta 0,x
  rts

load_msn:; Loads MSN of address X into bits 0-3 of A
  lda 0,x
  lsr
  lsr
  lsr
  lsr
  rts
Obviously these routines are adaptable for use with addresses computed in other ways.

#18 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 29, 2005 9:31 PM

Thanks supercat. Between those and some other ideas I've cooked up today, I think packing the ooze into 8 bytes is going to be totally doable. I'll have to basically rewrite the core of the game, but it will be worth it. (Was the last time!)

#19 potatohead OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Jul 31, 2005 7:25 AM

Ok, I've got another version of this ready to go. This time it's actually a game. Rewriting the ooze to work in only 8 bytes took hours... I've never been so happy about a few bytes as I have these 8. Now that I have learned how to pack things into bytes better, I still have a few left after adding game features. Every bit counts. (Literally)

This thing is approaching the 4K limit. I've got about 760 bytes left!

Edit: I was using the wrong collision for the ship and ooze. That's fixed now, making the game more playable than it was earlier.

The object of the game is to simply survive as long as you can.

If you touch the ooze, you die

If you run out of fuel, you die.

I don't have a game over sequence planned yet, so keep an eye on your score because it's gone when your game ends.

Your fuel is slowly being used as you battle the ooze. From time to time, a fuel powerup will appear that will add a guarenteed amount of fuel, plus a random additional amount to your tank. This lets you keep playing. Because I have not yet debugged this, sometimes you can get your powerup right out of the gate.

If you don't get the powerup and your fuel is just about to run out, the powerup will scatter it's position about the screen giving you a better chance. This will turn into a super power up mode where all the ooze gets knocked back a bit too. (If I have room, which I think I do.)

If the ooze hits the bottom of the screen, you simply cannot go there anymore. Better hope your next fuel target is in range or your cooked!

The color / BW switch works

Left difficulty controls your ship movement speed, the right difficulty controls the ooze drop rate. Reset starts things over, trigger starts the game.

Have fun and let me know what you all think. Any and all critique and suggestions welcome.

Oh, the one that says ooze_game_bin.zip is the actual bin file.

Attached File  ooze_game_bin.zip   2.12KB   161 downloadsooze_game.png Attached File  ooze_game.zip   3.9KB   175 downloads

Edited by potatohead, Sun Jul 31, 2005 2:06 PM.


#20 Jess Ragan ONLINE  

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Posted Sun Jul 31, 2005 3:27 PM

This is definitely an improvement over previous releases. The graphics are better and the gameplay more intense than before. I've noticed some wonky collision detection in spots... on occasion, one of the rows of ooze gets a gap in it and you can't fire through it.

Still, this is pretty awesome! I was desperately hammering away at the fire button, trying to stop the advancing goo from reaching the bottom of the screen. When you can get a player's palms sweating and his heart pounding, you know your game's got promise. Pretty cool title screen, too.

One suggestion I would make is to let the fuel pod wander the screen a bit, rather than anchoring it in place. Don't have it freak out and jump all over the screen when you're running low on fuel, either... it's kind of distracting and practically impossible to hit. Also, give a fixed amount of fuel for hitting the pod... it's kind of unfair to make it random.

Finally, throw in rounds to give the player a sense of accomplishment and give their thumbs a much needed rest. Make the player survive the ooze for ten seconds to finish the first round, twenty seconds to survive the next, and so on, until it tops out at two minutes. You'll probably need two frame counters working in tandem to let the rounds last that long, though.

JR




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