Looks awesome for something made in 6 (5?) days! You're a pro =]
Post Mortem - Devtober 2021
So here's the post-mortem for my entry for Devtober 2021.
Unfortunately I was caught up with Ludum Dare for most of this month so I basically only heard about the jam on the 25th and then actually started making something on the 27th.
So I started very late but in the end, I am quite happy with the game I made in that timespan. I'll admit it isn't perfect and could definitely use some balancing, but as far as what my vision for the game was before I started, it's pretty bang on ( If I say so myself ).
So here's what I think worked well wrt Razerblast's development :
-> Settled on the main mechanic fairly quickly which was a twist on a shoot-to-move. The dash to reload part sort of came out of experimentation and wanting to give the player a reason to dash beyond just dodging an enemy's attack. It also makes the game extremely fast-paced which was exactly what I wanted.
-> Making it a boss rush was definitely a goal from the beginning though. I myself love boss rush games ( FURi, Shadow of the colossus, etc. ) and bossfights in general. It had basically been a long time since I made a boss rush so I was basically itching to make one lol. I think we can all agree that making a game is the most fun when it's the type of game we love and not just an idea we thought of for a jam cus of the theme.
-> I've been doing the 2.5D look with a simple colour pallete for a while. Having a good visual style you can rely on is always handy for jams since it makes making choices about art or graphics in general much easier. Though I don't completely recommend it since you may find yourself locked into a particular way of making your games ( I'm already too far down this rabbit hole of 2.5D that I honestly can't do normal 2D anymore. I gotta have that Z-axis as well )
-> Music on the game was great and I have one of my friends to thank for that. The music is actually from another game he helped me with in the past which is currently no longer available. I wish I could do everything for my games completely by myself but it's just not possible if you want things to actually be really good ( unless you've had a lot of practice wrt every aspect of making a game in a jam. Guys like SinclairStrange (https://sinclairstrange.itch.io/) do it beautifully and I wish I knew their methods lol)
-> I kept the boss designs mostly simple. They're not really designs you've never seen before, but wrt the context of the main three actions of the player which are shooting, dashing and knowing where to dash, they constantly ask these questions quite well. One main design choice about this game was that I didn't want the fights to be traditional bullet hell dodge fests, which is also why dashes don't give you i-frames to bullets like in other bullet hell games and why bosses don't really spawn too many bullets. I did want to incorporate some bullet hell elements but more importantly......
I wanted every fight to feel like a duel. You have to plan on the fly where to position yourself, when to attack and when to dash just like in most melee based action games and I think I mostly achieved it.
So that's what worked. Here's what I feel didn't lol
-> The game's SFX are bad if I'm honest. Some are fine like the SFX for the ship, but the rest could be a lot better. No one has really pointed this out so I suppose it ain't really an issue, though it's definitely an aspect I ignore a lot wrt gamedev.
-> The game is unbalanced in a few places. I think I know the major reason why though. There are two control schemes you can try with the game
- One handed where you just use the mouse
- Two handed where you have the left hand using the X and C keys and your right hand on the mouse
I'll admit I did not really test the game much with using only a mouse simply because the two-handed control scheme was more fun for me. In the future I guess it's better not to test your game only with a particular control scheme if you're offering more than one to the player lol. Unfortunately I think a lot of other people were using the mouse-only one-handed control scheme. The game is definitely playable with only a mouse, but not as balanced as it could be for that playstyle. I guess all this could be solved with re-bindable controls, but wrt game jams that's the last thing on your mind, especially with time limits kek
-> Tutorial could be better but then again there isn't too much to explain other than what you're invulnerable to while dashing. It helps if your game has mechanics which are easily graspable as well ig.
That's about all I could gather from this game then. I guess the only real update I'd put out for it if I ever came back to it is something to balance the bosses a little. Either way, I love it when jams allow me to do whatever I please and it was cool to finally satisfy my itch to try out this mechanic and also to make a boss rush.
Not often that you get to hit two birds with one stone.....