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borgar

New game uploaded: Petaxian

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Petaxian

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I had been lurking on the forums for a few months when I found Prog8 and though this looked interesting. I.e. I could learn a new language and test out the emulator.

I recently saw some good demos using C64 emulator but just based on PETSCII graphics and I though this looked surprisingly cool. Then I remembered the old Galaga game on the C64, the one using just (a few) petscii chars. I thought making something similar would be a nice challenge.

The game is continuing to move toward what I consider a complete (but short) game. There are now 12 levels at which point the game will end in victory (bonus points for lives remaning). I am currently inclined to thinking that it's ok to end up with a fairly short and "completable" game. I still need to add some sort of simple high score handling. And there are always places that could use a bit of extra polishing but perhaps it would be better to spend that effort on another game.


 

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I've uploaded a new version of Petaxian. Lots of updates since the first version

  • More variations of enemies and movement patterns
  • Simple sound effects
  • Actual "score" counting 
  • Joystick control (though the NES keyboard stuff is causing some issues)
  • And lots of various smaller adjustments and optimization of code etc. etc.

Just be warned that the NES keyboard emulation seem start up with joystick byte 1 set to 0 (= all buttons pressed) instead of 255. That causes the game to autostart the first time. I could work around this using a non-NES keyboard key to start the game, but since I added joystick support that seems inappropriate. Everything works fine if the game is started with -joy SNES (or NES).

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Posted (edited)

Did a quick update of Petaxian with a workaround for the NES keyboard emulation (thanks to desertfish for pointing out that this was pretty trivial to add).

Edited by borgar
typo
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A new update of Petaxian has been uploaded with the following main changes :

  • Added random "attacks" for enemies (with increased bomb frequency)
  • Updated to non-uniform waves. Remixed to 12 stages.
  • Add stage start "announcement"
  • Add stage completion time bonus points

Unsurprisingly there is a lot work left after the basic gameplay mechanics is implemented. It certainly makes one appreciate all the other non-coding work that goes into games (I certainly see why having professional level designers and testers are necessary).

I want to add some sort of proper "game end" (and show current high score) but after that I suspect updates to this game will slow down. I have a couple of other game ideas I'm considering (none especially original).

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Very nice game, very playable. I reached level 6 🙂 With some more enemy types it would be great, perhaps bigger one, composed of more than 1 character.

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2 hours ago, msx said:

Very nice game, very playable. I reached level 6 🙂 With some more enemy types it would be great, perhaps bigger one, composed of more than 1 character.

Thank you. There is actually a slightly bigger enemy (though marginally so) that appears at stage 9 and later. I guess you just have to practice 🙂 to get that far.

BTW, the enemies are actually 4 (2x2) characters in size. I support movement "within" the characters using the 16 PETSCII characters that cover all the variations of 2x2 "sub bits". I was inspired by PET/C64 Galaga (which this is basically a clone of).

I don't currently support any larger enemies though that is of course completely possible, e.g. Galaga had a 3x2 char sized enemy. It is something I have noted down as a possible improvement.

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After the initial burst of work on this game to a reasonable looking state, things have as expected slowed down. Only a few things added this time 

  • Changed game over to defeat/victory with score "calculation" (bonus points for any lives at end of game)
  • Some enemies have a chance to drop seeker bombs (slower bombs that move toward player)
  • Made credits more like other info pages

 

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