The Pickup Artist

May 13, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

After my lazy weekend working on the high score stuff, which I ultimately shit-canned trying to keep the game in scope, I got my head down to finish up the pick-ups and power-ups in the game. I’ve been working on in-game pick-ups the past couple of days. Pick-ups are bonus items like secondary weapons, power-ups, and points, that various enemies drop or get spawned by the game arena.

I don’t have an artist for this project, so I’m doing all the art myself. When I say “art”, I use the term very loosely indeed. If you knew me better, you’d understand why this is actually hilarious. There are a few special people out there who can do multiple things well. All singing, all dancing, plus juggling too.. “Triple-threats” or those unique one man bands who can draw and code and design in equal measure. I hate them all, because I can only do one thing well, and that’s code. I used to say that I pissed code when I was younger, because it flowed out of me so well, I guess. Now I’m old and things are slower and more mellow, I like to say I can code til the cows come home.

Anyway, what the hell has any of that go to do with pick-ups and power-ups, I hear you ask? Well not much actually, so lets get back to the point.

The game has a primary weapon, which is upgraded through power-up that the actual game arena will spawn. The player can rush to collect these, increasing the utility and power of their primary weapon each time.

There are collectible secondary weapons that are dropped by enemies the player kills during the game. These include a shield, homing missiles, gravity well, slow-mo, and “Death Blossom”. There are an equal number of offensive and defensive (CC) secondary weapons and they’re upgraded by collecting the “Power Crystals” that enemies drop when they’re killed. For example, each time the homing missile is upgraded, the number of missiles fired increases by one (up to a maximum of 4), with the final upgrade making the missile’s explosion have a blast radius that will kill multiple enemies, rather than just the one it hits. Additionally, there are pick-ups that will clear the warp and weapons cooldowns, bonus points, and “Super Power Crystals”, that give a big boost to your secondary weapon.

All of this work is complete (99%), and is ready to go into the game, and so the rest of this week is all about secondary weapons, because I need to code the weapons that the power-ups give you 😀 I’ve been looking forward to coding these for a couple of weeks because I think they’ll be fun to do and to tweak to get right. So next up is the “Wingman” weapon, which gives you a number of semi-intelligent helpers that protect you and help kill stuff too. A “Slow-mo” weapon that, well, slows everything down for a time. A “Gravity Well” weapon that bends bullet trajectories and swallows unwary enemies. And a “Death Blossom” weapon that is a weapon of last resort, and can only be used if you’re about to die. Obviously an homage to The Last Starfighter.

Gonna be a busy couple of days 😀

Category: Dev Blog, Game Dev, Indie Games, Programming, Stuff and Nonsense

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