Author Topic: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)  (Read 2440 times)

Offline x4000

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Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« on: December 04, 2015, 12:17:57 AM »
Starward Rogue is the name we finally settled on for our roguelike/PDL shmup-like... thing.  It's really fun, but video is better at describing it than I am.

The game is currently in alpha version 0.2, but we're looking for more volunteer testers all the time (email arcengames at gmail dot com).  It's still in early form, but quite fun.

Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline Misery

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2015, 01:15:57 AM »
This entertained me way more than it probably should have.  :D

Also based on the way Crystal Mother sort of died at you, it needs more HP.  Had meant to do that, totally forgot.


Do you intend on doing more of these over time?  I was kinda surprised that this one is as short as it is.

Offline x4000

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2015, 01:19:11 AM »
I do intend to do more, yes.  And it is hilarious that you were that entertained by it, given you're so central to so much of what was shown.  Then again, watching other people play against your stuff is a big thing for sure. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline tombik

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2015, 06:13:51 AM »
I dont know what is the difference since I did not try the last version yet, but it really looks better now, and I also can see what you are aiming for better.

Please do more of these :)

In the second floor, boss room was right next to the entrance. I guess this will be tweaked later.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2015, 06:16:43 AM by tombik »

Offline Shrugging Khan

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2015, 06:53:34 AM »
Overly critical immersion-related nitpicks incoming!
Don't take any of it to heart. I'm writing this down as I watch it.

  • Movement looks too responsive. I get that this is a necessity for shmups, but it really just seems completely non-lifelike - especially the instantaneous changes in facing and velocity.
  • Enemy death effects bear no relation to the manner of their death, most obviously in the explosions - enemies suddenly explode when the explosions visual effect hasn't even reached them yet, and the enemies' debris is unaffected by the explosion.
  • The general visual style is unappealing. Too many lines, too many details, in an already messy game. Can we get an alternate visual style that looks more like zoomed-out AI War icons?
  • Sound effects are all placeholders, I take it? [Ah yes, they are!] I like the ones on taking damage, though.
  • This really is primarily TLF Battles The Standalone Roguelite, isn't it?
  • There is no cost for firing weapons, is there? Will there be an autofire toggle? Christ, I hate what shmups always try to do to the player's fingers...
  • Enemies are unaffected by environmental hazards?
  • Movement speed upgrades really sound like traps, given that there never seems to be much room to move in anyways.

When I hear "Space-based", even if it's within a larger spaceship, I want to have at least some actual space mechanics and not just a few stylised stars in the background. But all this probably really is just my beef, as one of the relatively few people who did not like TLF's battles or the post-early-AIW visual style in general, so don't be disheartened by my grumpy ramblings. I'm sure you'll make a great game regardless!
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Offline Misery

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2015, 08:15:35 AM »
Overly critical immersion-related nitpicks incoming!
Don't take any of it to heart. I'm writing this down as I watch it.

  • Movement looks too responsive. I get that this is a necessity for shmups, but it really just seems completely non-lifelike - especially the instantaneous changes in facing and velocity.
  • Enemy death effects bear no relation to the manner of their death, most obviously in the explosions - enemies suddenly explode when the explosions visual effect hasn't even reached them yet, and the enemies' debris is unaffected by the explosion.
  • The general visual style is unappealing. Too many lines, too many details, in an already messy game. Can we get an alternate visual style that looks more like zoomed-out AI War icons?
  • Sound effects are all placeholders, I take it? [Ah yes, they are!] I like the ones on taking damage, though.
  • This really is primarily TLF Battles The Standalone Roguelite, isn't it?
  • There is no cost for firing weapons, is there? Will there be an autofire toggle? Christ, I hate what shmups always try to do to the player's fingers...
  • Enemies are unaffected by environmental hazards?
  • Movement speed upgrades really sound like traps, given that there never seems to be much room to move in anyways.

When I hear "Space-based", even if it's within a larger spaceship, I want to have at least some actual space mechanics and not just a few stylised stars in the background. But all this probably really is just my beef, as one of the relatively few people who did not like TLF's battles or the post-early-AIW visual style in general, so don't be disheartened by my grumpy ramblings. I'm sure you'll make a great game regardless!

Going to give a few specific responses here in an attempt to be helpful and non-confusing, based on the points you gave, which I'll number:

1.  The movement system, originally it actually WAS a "pure" shmup style movement setup.  Totally instant start and stop on a dime, that sort of thing.  That option is actually still there for those that want to use it.  But a system with at least some momentum was often requested by the testers to give the game a better "feel" to it.  The original settings though were.... well, let's just say there was alot of crashing into things.  The current settings were figured out really freaking fast (I think it was maybe about an hour or so before he made the video?) and the visual aspects and those settings are still very early.  But what's interesting is that once the momentum was in, and the ship was zooming and rolling all over the place, some of the additional visual effects were ALSO in, and it turned out that those alone contributed to a huge amount of the "feel" of the controls.  Someone, I forget who, pointed this out after trying it when I was rambling about it, and said "Yeah, dont be afraid to really gut it" since the visuals changed it up so much.   

....also he's using 8-way movement there (WASD) so it's gonna look a bit jerky.   Proper analog isnt ready to go yet, for controllers.  For video purposes, that'll look MUCH better. 

But yeah, it'll improve as time goes on. 


2.  Yeah, explosions and such look a little bizarre.  Particles like you'd see in most of Arcen's games are not really there yet.  Sub weapons in particular look a little bizarre right now.  Should look muuuuuuuuuuuch better later.  I've always really liked how the particle effects in Arcen games look.  Bullets however, wont change much, but more types may be added.

3. Aw, you dont like the graphics of it?  Well, nothing wrong with that, certainly subjective.  Some of that is probably subject to change too, but... I do think some parts of it look better when actually playing for yourself, rather than in the video.   Part of why gameplay videos just bother me sometimes.  If you do have any specific suggestions for this aspect of the game though once you see some more of it, by all means, feel free to suggest it via Mantis, just to make it easier for the devs to see that particular feedback.

4. Yep, placeholders.  POP and CRACK are not usually sounds associated with space combat, hah.

5. If I recall correctly, the idea for doing a game of this type actually came up during the major engine change that occurred for TLF during it's development.  The original game, not the expansion.  That being said, it plays *nothing* like it.  The only things that are the same is A: some of the bullets, and B: my design style.  Though even that is manifesting differently in this than in TLF's expansion with the Obscura.

6. Oh yes, there is autofire.  I'd have made like a 30-page festival of complaints if there wasnt.  Being that this is a "twin stick" type game (or whatever) autofire is a MUST, particularly on controllers.  However, the idea of a toggle for mouse-based firing had not occurred to me at all (though it may have occurred to Chris, I have no idea).  Currently you just hold the button down.  I might suggest the option of a toggle to him, that's a good idea.

7. Enemies used to be affected by some environmental hazards.  This led to derp.  Which is seriously the best way to describe it.  So now, they are not.  It's mines, specifically, that dont damage them now; the lasers never did.  There were actually certain specific rooms where the best way to beat the room was to simply move towards a specific spot to wake up dormant foes, and then just sit there for a couple of seconds as they all exploded themselves.  Pretty hilarious, but not really the best idea to leave it that way...

8.  Yeah, I agree on this one.  I think movement speed is probably going to be alot like range powerups in Isaac; it's THERE, but possibly the least important thing in the game that, really, you just dont need.


Anyway, dont worry about making grumpy ramblings as you put it, heh.  Any feedback of any type whatsoever is very useful.   Besides, if anyone's going to be the super complainy negative one, it's me.  I complain about my own damn creations.  Frequently.  Yes, I know this doesnt make sense.  Try not to think about it too hard.

Not even going to try to say what I think of the stupid "Mirror" boss right now.  Like a mad science experiment gone horribly wrong.  Kinda tired of that stupid thing....  I'll get it to do what I want eventually.

Offline Shrugging Khan

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2015, 08:59:13 AM »
3. I know a lot of effort keeps going into it, but Arcen's visual style is getting increasingly less appealing to me. It's probably just me being sore because I really liked the way AIW used to look, and things keep moving further away from that. Or maybe because I'm a lazy minimalist who hates unnecessary detail...who knows. Either way, yeah: Entirely subjective. Still keeps chafing for me, but some people will  never be happy.
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Offline Misery

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2015, 09:02:42 AM »
3. I know a lot of effort keeps going into it, but Arcen's visual style is getting increasingly less appealing to me. It's probably just me being sore because I really liked the way AIW used to look, and things keep moving further away from that. Or maybe because I'm a lazy minimalist who hates unnecessary detail...who knows. Either way, yeah: Entirely subjective. Still keeps chafing for me, but some people will  never be happy.

AI War used to look different?   

Huh.  Never seen that, I definitely got into it much later.   I thought it had always looked the way it does.

Offline Shrugging Khan

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #8 on: December 04, 2015, 09:08:12 AM »
AFAIK There's a middle ground between really old AI war graphics that were just public domain stuff (Raid SS for example) and the later ones that largely resemble the style of TLF and SwR. I recall that intermediate period producing the graphics that I liked the most. But that may even be erroneous memory on my part. AIW zoomed-out icons look good, though.

Spire ships, all-white as they are, are a particular nuisance to me. Ugh. Zenith look nice to me. AI installations are, IMHO, the best-looking things in all of the Arcenverse.
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Offline crazyroosterman

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #9 on: December 04, 2015, 03:53:21 PM »
is it just me or does some of the projectile art look really similar to tlfs? especially the missile that looks like the exact spitting imagine of the one in tlf?. ps if I'm right and not going mad I'm going to assume that's to save time/money while developments still going on
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Offline ptarth

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #10 on: December 04, 2015, 03:56:03 PM »
Most, if not all, of the shots are the same.
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline TheVampire100

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #11 on: December 04, 2015, 03:58:56 PM »
Considering this is a sequel to TLF this should be about right. I don't see a problem there. It still looks better than in Ai War (the shots, I mean).

Offline crazyroosterman

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #12 on: December 04, 2015, 04:04:05 PM »
thought as much is that permanent or intended to change? its fine by me if there permanent in fact it would probably be pretty helpful.
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Offline Rujasu

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #13 on: December 05, 2015, 03:12:10 PM »
3. I know a lot of effort keeps going into it, but Arcen's visual style is getting increasingly less appealing to me. It's probably just me being sore because I really liked the way AIW used to look, and things keep moving further away from that. Or maybe because I'm a lazy minimalist who hates unnecessary detail...who knows. Either way, yeah: Entirely subjective. Still keeps chafing for me, but some people will  never be happy.
I would agree that unnecessary detail has been a problem in a lot of Arcen Games' games - AI War dodged it mostly because you spend your time looking at the simplified sprites on a very empty background. Bionic Dues especially suffered quite a bit (It suffered from quite a lot of things, even if I ended up liking it) from actual gameplay-meaningful detail being hard to see because there was so much fine detail in the floor and stuff. Too much noise in the art. The individual details were pretty but that's the silver lining.

Offline Jabberwok

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Re: Starward Rogue - First Video Preview (Alpha v0.201)
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2015, 08:02:38 PM »
Just from watching the video, I wish that the scale of the rooms was larger in comparison to the objects (especially the player). It feels claustrophobic to me. I think I've had a similar issue with other action-roguelikes, and it might be even more pronounced here because of the space setting and bullet hell focus. There is not much room to maneuver, and even just aesthetically, I feel like larger and more open areas would look nice.