Hi all! Some exciting news, my game Planet Wars is out now on Xbox! This game is a couple of years old now, and it was my attempt at making a slightly retro top down shooter with a huge amount of variety in the weapons. It’s been out on mobile devices for some time, but it’s only just been now properly converted for Xbox.
It’s had an awkward life– originally it was to be a PC indie game, then I started developing it for iOS instead as I wanted to dabble in that market. It works OK on a touch screen, but really the controls were much more suited to Xbox. As a result the Xbox version is the best version by far, not to take anything away from the other versions. I also took the time to implement 4 player local co-op, which after a few tests with my mates, was definitely worth it. It’s a lot of fun to play in co-op– if you like stuff like Borderlands, then you should definitely check it out!
As a reward for reading this, here are some promotion codes for the Xbox version:
It’s been quite a busy week. I’ve been racing to get the latest updates out for the original MegaCity. I’ve gone back and added some more content- this time 2 extra levels/unlockable buildings, a secret unlockable building and 10 more achievements! There are also some other nifty minor changes. The update is in review for iOS, and will be coming to android at roughly the same time (hopefully next week). The xbox version has also had a much, much needed update. Windows phone & flash updates will follow.
I’ve had one or two cool new ideas for the sequel too. At the moment I want a system based on the roads to dictate the influence of certain buildings. I may of worded that badly– it’s hard to describe, but I think it might be cool if this works well in conjunction with the building cluster system I mentioned a few posts back. We’ll see how this turns out because a lot of ideas at this stage remain untested.
I also want to get started on the graphics soon, as this will be a significant amount of work in addition to the engine. It would also be nice to have something to show instead of just posting about ideas here every week!
What’s new this week?
Firstly, there’s a new minor update out for Android MegaCity, which I hope will fix a problem some have been having with their sexy Samsung devices not running the game properly. If the problem still persists, email me and I’ll carry on searching for whatever’s causing that. The MegaCity XBLIG update is on it’s way too, currently in the traffic jam of review processes that is XBLIG.
Now to the dev blog stuff.
I haven’t posted a snippet of what MegaCity 2 currently looks like this week, because frankly it looks like a mess. It’s looks like a clown puked tetris blocks everywhere. But it’s coming along pretty well. I’m getting my head around the scoring system and deck system right now, and I’ve finalised the prototype design for both. Meaning I’ve settled on a concept I think will work, but is subject to change once I have built a working prototype and have had time to test it.
I’ve come up with a turn-based system where there are 4 decks of building type to choose from, plus a 5th ‘special’ deck which is unique to each player (and customisable). In my head this seems like a good balance between balance and customisability. We’ll see what happens in practise. I’ve also implemented a system where you enlarge each card or ‘blueprint’ to have a look at it in detail like in the Magic the gathering videogame.
As far as the art is concerned, I’ve had some thoughts on that too. I do want to take it in more of a pixel art direction, but I don’t want to loose the fidelity and intricate detail of the original, so I’ve got something fairly unique in mind which you’re going to have to wait to see.
This is what MegaCity 2 looks like right now. Exciting huh? Those green blobs will eventually be the building clusters or blocks, or neighbourhoods. Whatever you want to call them.
This is my new system which will expand on the grid system in the first game. You will be able to build buildings of the same type next to each other, and they will effectively join together (up to a yet-to-be-decided limit, here it’s 5). Once joined together, the buildings will behave as one, allowing for more surface area to collect precious + points. I used the phrase ‘Tetris meets Simcity’ in the description for the first game, this description is going to be even more appropriate in the second game.
Basically I wanted to move away from the square grid system. Or expand on it is perhaps more fitting as each building is still a square tile. As a result, the gameplay should create a more interesting and unique city. I’m dabbling with the idea of crossing some elements of the management genre into the game, the challenge here is balancing the new ideas with the simplicity of the original.