Author Topic: Feedback for Starward Rogue  (Read 1652 times)

Offline DavionFuxa

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Feedback for Starward Rogue
« on: April 05, 2016, 10:22:29 PM »
Greetings all, first time posting to the board but I figured that after playing Starward Rogue as much as I have I should drop some feedback. Also, for those who don't know me, I'm one of the Let's Players Pepisolo referred too. My Let's Play content for Starward Rogue can be found here:

DFuxa Showcases - Starward Rogue

The Game:

Overall I like Starward Rogue quite a bit. It looks beautiful and the enemies are diverse, and for those who may have had issues playing Binding of Issac, there isn't any 'blasphemous' issues that need to be worried about here.

Much like the enemies, the ways of killing them is extremely enjoyable. While for the most part it came down to 'shoot straight' at the enemy until they keep over in some aspects, there was at least some differences in how all the weapons worked in regards to shooting through walls or as a heavy railgun shot that could change how you could tactically use the weapons.

There are something things that irk me a bit sometimes - such as the colors of some bullets and background blending together a bit too much that makes distinguishing their locations difficult; but I think that the hectic nature of the game and getting an unforgiving hit here and there is fine perhaps.

The Difficulty is another thing. Playing on Normal Difficulty, everything is mostly fine - maybe apart from some enemies and bosses being annoying in some aspect or another. Jumping to another difficulty though feels like a huge difference however. Hopefully it can be adjusted in the future perhaps - I might do a couple let's plays on Hard if I think I can survive a few levels somewhere down the line (though likely far down the line, I have other stuff I want to record at the moment).

Game Progression is another - sometimes you get to a room that seems to jump up massively in difficulty compared to other rooms, and you go from full health and shields to half in like 3 seconds of entry.

Progressing through the levels is another thing where as the players gets stronger, the enemies seem to just keel over, and I partly perhaps blame this on being able to pile on damage boosts or critical boosts when leveling. It might make sense that if you got a 10% boost in damage when leveling at some point, you shouldn't be able to get that specific boost again (maybe you could get at 20% boost, but not the 10% boost). Might require more leveling bonus ideas to exist so players always have choices when leveling up, but I wouldn't mind more choices myself.

The Mechs:

The six different mechs offer a lot of diverse play and approaches to the game. Some of the Mechs I enjoyed playing quite a bit, other mechs not so much. Thoughts then on each individual mech:

White Gloss - Simple, but effective, White Gloss is a  'Balanced' Mech due to its high health allowing it to pick up Health Sacrifice Items as the player wishes - even if they occur on the first level. While there are other Mechs I would rather use myself, this was an excellent Mech for playing the game initially with and learning the ropes. The Secondary Weapon I didn't really use much but that may be due to my propensity to only really use Energy Weapons versus bosses - and preferably with Energy Weapons that will make the boss fight easier.

I suppose I should drop a recommendation for the White Gloss, I would maybe recommend it starting with an extra shield pip like the Flame Tank. Maybe that might unbalance it a bit but I think it would do well to help newer players more since it would offer more forgiveness on what I see as the newbie Mech.

Flame Tank - Perhaps even more simple then the White Gloss, the Flame Tank is the 'Kick Ass, Chew Gum, Out of Gum' Mech. While it's health leaves something to be desired and the energy really prevents players from doing much with a secondary weapon, there can be no questioning the effectiveness of the Flamethrower in just simply decimating all opposition. The Guardian Blaster honestly seems a bit out of place on the Mech - being that it feels less simple in nature compared to the rest of the Mechs flavor; note though, this isn't to diss the Guardian Blaster, I do like the Secondary Weapon quite a bit.

I'd maybe recommend giving the Flame Tank a different Energy Weapon and raising the Energy Amount. I don't know what Secondary Weapon I might suggest for it but maybe give it the Precision Railgun to round out its arsenal or give it that Secondary Weapon that puts up a shield in front of your Mech to guard you against incoming shots - since you are an up close and personal Mech.

Indigo Dipole - Kind of a head scratcher on the 'Magnetism' Mech. I like its style of play with its missile launcher doing something special, and its Secondary Weapon being a mine that deflects shots (or explodes when stepped on). However, I kind of dislike the missile launcher for how it pulls enemy shots towards it - but sometimes may pull shots in ways that makes their location hard to predict for dodging. Maybe some people like the missile launcher and how it works - i personally don't.

Maybe the Magnetism could be reversed on the Mech so that instead of pulling shots in, it pushes them away like the mine does. Maybe the Mine might need to be changed to something else if that makes it too similar in how it works versus the missile launcher.

Green Envy - The 'Treasure Hunter' Mech has a lot to love about it - be it the powerful STG-4377, the generally balanced stats, the highly explosive radius of the missile launcher, or of course its special Treasure Hunting ability. It may level slower but that seems like a rather minor issue to deal with due to all the purchasing power and incredabilities one will be able to use.

Wouldn't really recommend any changes for this Mech, and honestly I can't even think of the slighest thing that would improve it!

Deep Blue - The 'Familiar' Mech is..... in need of a lot of improvement I think. While it is cool that it starts with the Beam Drone, there isn't a lot to like about this Mech in my eyes. A lot of Energy is great on the Mech - once you replace the Secondary Weapon with something worth using, the lacking missile capacity makes me scream inside whenever I see a missile stack of four appear, and Bullrush and Blademorph just make me cry when they look at me due to how weak my minigun is. Not my favorite Mech.

The Familiar is about the only thing I think is worth keeping in regards to how this Mech works - everything else could be improved somewhat. I'd like it if the missiles the Mech can hold is at least four, and if the Secondary Weapon was... anything else. Having a tricky Secondary is fine but it would be nice if it actually felt like it was worth using; rather then immediately replacing with the first thing you find.

Redshift - The 'Roguelike' Mech.... What to say about the Roguelike Mech.... I guess I should note that I don't think the Secondary Weapon should be the same as Green Envy. Outside of that.... I can't really say this is my favorite Mech, it seems out of place for this style of game.

Maybe someone likes the Time Manipulation aspect of the Mech, but personally I can't say I think much of it. Out of all the Mechs, this is the only playstyle idea that I wouldn't mind seeing replaced with something new - if something new could be thought of.

The Enemies

Overall I liked the different mix of enemies in how they work and operate. I also like how some have changed and been tweaked, I think most enemies in Normal Difficulty are about where they should be at in their overall difficulty.

The Bosses - excluding the Warden and Terminus, are also pretty good in difficulty. The changes to Invader were nice too when they got changed, and I don't really have any problem with how the other Bosses may operate either; including Backfire (I hate Backfire).

In regards to the Warden, I liked the challenge he poses. I kind of dislike his second stage of attack on Normal Difficult because it feels REALLY hard to avoid sometimes - even up to now where I understand a lot more regarding how they specific attack pattern works.

And then Terminus.... He feels easier then the Warden in some aspects. The Warden has that second stage of attack which gets me more often then not, but Terminus seems to have no 'gotcha' attacks at all - they all feel really dodge-able.

Final Thoughts

I think I've already said a lot of what I wanted to say at this point - garner what you may from what I've written and in regards to what I've recorded.

Personally at this point I've played the game enough that I'm beginning to burn out a bit from it - and looking to move on. I 'MAY' try to complete a full run again since Rodney has said I've killed enough Wardens and don't need to go all the way back down again, but I think I may hold off on doing so for a while - maybe when I think I might be able to beat a level or two of Hard Difficulty.

Offline Logorouge

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2016, 10:55:32 PM »
You might already know it, but Misery is currently working on the game balance, particularly concerning the Normal and Hard difficulties. His upcoming changes should definitely tone down the amount of rooms where you get jumped at right at entry and give a smoother difficulty curve to Hard mode. That could be a good moment for another attempt at Hard, when those changes are released. But keep in mind, he did say he intended Hard to be a major step from Normal which the player would have to conquer over a longer period of time, as opposed to a mere Normal+1 difficulty like you see in certain games.

Reading through your thoughts on the mechs was quite interesting. Your opinion on them is so polar opposite to mine.  :P

Offline Misery

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2016, 11:13:43 PM »
Thanks for the feedback on the game!  Glad you seemed to have enjoyed it.

I'll give a few specific responses to this, if my accursed keyboard and it's bloody stupid "windows key" (I'd really, REALLY like to punch whoever thought that was a good idea) can stop randomly deleting this post because I almost touched it sorta maybe kinda possibly.

The Warden:  The second pattern it uses is actually probably the easiest of all of it's patterns to dodge.  It is what I call a "trick pattern", and the more you move, the more it distorts.  A good way of dealing with it can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=27C30DEbZyw

That's the Hard mode video of the fight, but the same strategy applies.  The trick is not to panic.   Originally the Hard mode Warden was indeed the Normal mode version, but Chris (lead developer) deemed it too hard, so it was toned down to what you see in Normal.  I tend to go overboard a bit on these patterns, you see...


The difficulty modes:  Yes, they are very much meant to be a big leap up from the previous one.  The way I phrase it, is that Hard mode is meant for those that have totally mastered Normal.  Misery mode, when it's done (it isn't yet, what's there is a placeholder) will be the same way, a massive leap from Hard.  Just as an example, this is the same fight, the Warden, on Misery mode:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6cGOkBPd1ow

Just a bit nuts, yeah?   Misery mode will become fully available whenever I happen to finish it.

Now that being said, Hard mode has some issues right now; room enemy populations and selections got more than a bit wonky, causing some rooms to become unviable and capable of producing undodgable attacks.  I should have checked the blasted rooms myself as people submitted them.  But currently, I am going through them and fixing each one so that the proper level of difficulty can be had, while always being fair.   This is also why there are so very, very many Bullrush things, and those boomerang ships right now.  That'll get fixed.  So you may want to wait on Hard mode until these fixes have been patched in.  Hopefully, this wont take too long to do.


Player power level:  As you say, late-game enemies tend to just go splat if you look at them too hard.   Right now, the game's difficulty curve is effectively BACKWARDS.  Not intentional, of course.  It has to do with a lot of the math behind everything and the way the game handles stat upgrades (notice that all stat upgrades from items are percentages, that's part of the issue, with HP being the exception).  This is being worked on as well, though not by me, I'm terrible at math.  All those scary numbers...


Terminus:  Agh, this guy is hard to balance.  What made it worse was that I had a REALLY hard time getting feedback on him during development and testing.  People kept just getting stuck on the Warden, or not even finding out that there were more than 5 floors.  So that made it kinda tough.   For the time being, I don't intend on changing him as he is on Normal and Hard.

Now, if you want though, you can try fighting any of the bosses in the "test" rooms; go down to where it says "mods" at the bottom of the screen in the main menu, and you can select from a variety of rooms there; boss rooms are listed in there (all of them) and you can select them, choose a difficulty, and in you'll go.  What adds challenge here is that you have just the White Gloss mech.... with not a single upgrade.  And only 5 missiles.   That's it. 


Mechs:  Chances are, these aren't receiving any further changes.   Redshift is inspired by a game called SUPERHOT (which apparently must always be capitalized like that) where the time dilation is the core mechanic.  That game released recently, it is fantastic. 


Bullet colors and backgrounds:  I cant fix that one.  But there's something you can try:  In the options menu for the game, there's an option to show forcefields; try turning that off, and see if it helps.






Offline DavionFuxa

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2016, 11:25:47 PM »
I think I got the pattern number wrong, I meant the part where he starts putting up that shield and you need to move in close to him to make the shots fan in so you can run out to dodge them. Or maybe you realize I'm referring to that stage since you know where I mostly get hit over and over from watching my videos. :P

But whatever, I obviously know the patterns to follow at this point to beat the Warden.

Anyhow, I look forward to seeing changes in the future. Will try to check back down the road.

Any hey, at least people are making it to Terminus now to complain about him! That must be an improvement to addressing him when you get to it.

Offline Draco18s

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2016, 02:48:39 AM »
The problem with Redshift is two fold IMO (because I'm decent at SUPERHOT but can't use Redshift at all):
1) Time stops completely, there's no "wait for that bullet to pass by in slow-mo and zip through the opening."
2) The rate of fire on most guns means that in order to have time stop you need to stop moving AND stop shooting.  This isn't a problem in SUPERHOT because there's reload time.

Offline CaptainTaz

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2016, 03:09:15 AM »
There are something things that irk me a bit sometimes - such as the colors of some bullets

This has been my own personal peeve since I started. Bullets aren't color coded to friendly/not friendly (and as far as I'm aware, this isn't a feature). This is especially annoying when you have little bots with you (I'm looking at you, bot that shoots at the mech and you need to position it).

If there was an option to set allied/your bullets to like, blue or green  (or even custom), and have the rest of the enemy ones NOT be that color, it would make this game so much more playable for me (and I may be able to actually venture out of the easy mode...)

The rest of the game's been pretty fantastic though.
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Offline Draco18s

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2016, 03:25:02 AM »
There are something things that irk me a bit sometimes - such as the colors of some bullets
This has been my own personal peeve since I started. Bullets aren't color coded to friendly/not friendly (and as far as I'm aware, this isn't a feature).

One of the major concerns with the game project I'm working on, as well as sprite sorting order (enemy bullets render on top of everything, even the player and the player's bullets, enemies render on top of ALL visual effects, etc.)

Offline Misery

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2016, 04:14:26 AM »
The problem with Redshift is two fold IMO (because I'm decent at SUPERHOT but can't use Redshift at all):
1) Time stops completely, there's no "wait for that bullet to pass by in slow-mo and zip through the opening."
2) The rate of fire on most guns means that in order to have time stop you need to stop moving AND stop shooting.  This isn't a problem in SUPERHOT because there's reload time.

What if time were to move just somewhat, when you're simply turning your mech while standing in place?  SUPERHOT does that, that's usually what I do when I need to stand there and wait for bullets to pass (I figure, may as well take that time to check nearby spawn areas).  Time moves a bit more during that, not even close to full speed but enough that the bullets going by don't take bloody forever.  I'm glad they have that in there.

And yes the bit with weapons kinda annoys me too.  What if maybe your gun only actually FIRES if you're moving a bit (or turning like that)?  In other words, having the player's gun be affected just like everything else is.  Is that something that's doable?

Offline Draco18s

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2016, 04:19:46 AM »
That might make it playable.  If you get a prototype change in, send it to me and I'll see how it feels.  I will absolutely spend the time away from my project to give feedback for that.

(SUPERHOT I tend to find that the time dilation amount when moving the mouse is too slow to let time simply pass, but otherwise is just perfect; it's fast enough that you can't intercept bullets that are too far away from where your cursor is now, but slow enough that you can generally look around.  But for SR, that level of timedilation would probably work.)

Offline Misery

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2016, 05:37:23 AM »
I haven't the foggiest clue how the time thing even works, so one of the others would have to do it.

Me attempting it would... not end well.

Offline Cinth

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2016, 06:35:01 AM »
There are something things that irk me a bit sometimes - such as the colors of some bullets

This has been my own personal peeve since I started. Bullets aren't color coded to friendly/not friendly (and as far as I'm aware, this isn't a feature). This is especially annoying when you have little bots with you (I'm looking at you, bot that shoots at the mech and you need to position it).

If there was an option to set allied/your bullets to like, blue or green  (or even custom), and have the rest of the enemy ones NOT be that color, it would make this game so much more playable for me (and I may be able to actually venture out of the easy mode...)

The rest of the game's been pretty fantastic though.

This is something you can easily mod in yourself.  It's as easy as finding the image you want and making changes in the XML.  Start up a thread in the mod sub-forum and I'm sure we can get you going there :)

That might make it playable.  If you get a prototype change in, send it to me and I'll see how it feels.  I will absolutely spend the time away from my project to give feedback for that.

(SUPERHOT I tend to find that the time dilation amount when moving the mouse is too slow to let time simply pass, but otherwise is just perfect; it's fast enough that you can't intercept bullets that are too far away from where your cursor is now, but slow enough that you can generally look around.  But for SR, that level of timedilation would probably work.)
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Offline Pepisolo

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2016, 01:55:11 PM »
Welcome to the forum, and thank for the feedback!

" I guess I should note that I don't think the Secondary Weapon should be the same as Green Envy."

Yeah, this is something that's been bugging me, too. Having two mechs use the same secondary weapon just seems silly. I've been thinking of swapping this out for the Precision Railgun. Given the slower more tactical nature of the Redshift, the Precision Railgun seems like a better fit, as you can take your time to aim and pick your shots. Any thoughts, guys?

Regarding making the bullets colour-coded, that's something that we can do, we just need to make a firm decision that it's something that we want to do. Then it's just a matter changing the colours.

" the lacking missile capacity makes me scream inside whenever I see a missile stack of four appear"

Upping this to four is possible. I was considering upping it to three based on some feedback that complained about not havng enough capacity to take out a power generator, and four is only one more so......maybe.  Any thoughts on this guys?

Offline Draco18s

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2016, 02:56:44 PM »
I haven't the foggiest clue how the time thing even works, so one of the others would have to do it.

Me attempting it would... not end well.

Fine, Cinth or Ptarth can do it. :P

Upping this to four is possible. I was considering upping it to three based on some feedback that complained about not havng enough capacity to take out a power generator, and four is only one more so......maybe.  Any thoughts on this guys?

I made a comment back sometime about one of the mechs having not only the fewest missiles, but also the smallest missile explosions.  So if a standard mech (not White Gloss, that one's explosions are room-sized) takes 1 missile to get a health shard in the middle of a clump of walls, it takes Deep Blue two.

It's like Deep Blue's explosion radius is ~2 blocks, while [everyone else] is ~3.5 (with White Gloss having a 5 or 6 block radius).

Note: I don't recall if this is Deep Blue or one of the other mechs, but there's one mech that has significantly less explosion range and starts with fewer missiles on average.  Whereas White Gloss gets 12 that are bloody huge, one of the other mechs gets upwards of 20 that are average.

Offline DavionFuxa

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2016, 03:27:29 PM »
Welcome to the forum, and thank for the feedback!

" I guess I should note that I don't think the Secondary Weapon should be the same as Green Envy."

Yeah, this is something that's been bugging me, too. Having two mechs use the same secondary weapon just seems silly. I've been thinking of swapping this out for the Precision Railgun. Given the slower more tactical nature of the Redshift, the Precision Railgun seems like a better fit, as you can take your time to aim and pick your shots. Any thoughts, guys?

Oddly enough, you make me want to post all my Redshift videos now. I didn't use the Precision Railgun persay but.... I did use 'a' Railgun weapon when I showed off the Redshift.

Upping this to four is possible. I was considering upping it to three based on some feedback that complained about not havng enough capacity to take out a power generator, and four is only one more so......maybe.  Any thoughts on this guys?

I made a comment back sometime about one of the mechs having not only the fewest missiles, but also the smallest missile explosions.  So if a standard mech (not White Gloss, that one's explosions are room-sized) takes 1 missile to get a health shard in the middle of a clump of walls, it takes Deep Blue two.

It's like Deep Blue's explosion radius is ~2 blocks, while [everyone else] is ~3.5 (with White Gloss having a 5 or 6 block radius).

Note: I don't recall if this is Deep Blue or one of the other mechs, but there's one mech that has significantly less explosion range and starts with fewer missiles on average.  Whereas White Gloss gets 12 that are bloody huge, one of the other mechs gets upwards of 20 that are average.

I thought it was Green Envy that had the Treasure Hunting capability to wipe out a series of blocks to pick up the health shard? This at a cost of damage.

Anyhow, I wonder if it having the smallest missile explosion would mean it also has the most damage?

Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: Feedback for Starward Rogue
« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2016, 04:01:46 PM »
On the redshift, I initially implemented it where shooting did not advance time, it just spawned the bullet (and just the one, since you do actually have a very short reload time). But if you wanted to keep up fire rate you had to shoot, move a little, shoot, move a little, etc.

Perhaps if non-movement actions caused time to advance much more slowly than movement actions, that would help. If you're doing both then you just get the normal movement time speed.
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