View Full Version : ANN: GunRaven shooter; feedback requested
10-11-2004, 09:40 AM
Aggressive Game Designs has been hard at work on its latest top-scrolling shooter, GunRaven. We've got it to a beta stage (without sound), and would like to solicit criticism.
Like traditional shooters, GunRaven lets you control a spaceship in a 2D scrolling playfield, with hordes of enemy fighters and bosses attacking you.
GunRaven is different in its meta-game, where users unlock new missions and new ships in 16 different alien sectors.
GunRaven uses an 800x600 screen, and requires DirectX 8 or better.
Aggressive Game Designs
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10-12-2004, 10:14 AM
Nobody likes shooters?
10-12-2004, 11:32 AM
I like shooters, so here are my thoughts (for what they're worth):
1. It's hard judging a game that's missing many features, including sound effects and music. (I didn't get any audio except for a low hissing and droning.) But overall, the game could use more graphical punch. Better backgrounds and enemies would help.
2. I like choosing different ships, although there didn't seem to be enough of a difference in their abilities to warrant the feature. I only tried out two, though.
3. When I move my ship, I want to see it tilt left or right according to the direction in which it's traveling, not just slide stiffly around the screen.
4. The player and enemy ships move too slowly, giving the game a sluggish feel.
5. I like getting bonuses for multiple kills, but they didn't seem to grant me any special powers.
6. The default weapon is too weak. I don't mind earning extra firepower, but I'd like to either keep it permanently or at least a little longer before going back to the pea shooter.
7. The ''Mission Failed'' and ''Main Menu'' text overlap, making the words hard to read.
8. Mouse control would be a welcome addition, as the keyboard isn't everybody's favorite controller for these kinds of game.
If these things are improved, you could have a fun game on your hands.
10-12-2004, 11:38 AM
Ok, to be straight and honest - I've checked the screenshots (they looked like... ehm... crap...), downloaded it and haven't unpacked it. I thought - oh well, if the guy will really want to hear the opinion, I'll shoot it.
I spent 3 minutes in the game and I see it's quite unfinished.
1) I don't hear any sounds besides some ambience.
2) The game is very slow.
3) Is it another Alien Sky / Galaxian?
4) It's very boring.
5) All the effects look too professional compared to the all other gfx. Is it just my Trident CyberBlade or it really looks that awfull?
Ok, I think this game needs a major touch on the core level of game design.
You should play at least Alien Sky to see what's the good casual Galaxian clone looks like.
Overall - impressions similar to another shoot'em'up (in some sort):
10-12-2004, 04:25 PM
>> 2) The game is very slow.
I'm not sure it you're talkin' frame rate, avatar movement, or enemy flight speed, but I'll adjust all three.
>>3) Is it another Alien Sky / Galaxian?
>>You should play at least Alien Sky to see what's
>>the good casual Galaxian clone looks like.
>>4) It's very boring.
Very similar to Alien Sky, yes. I examined Alien Sky in detail while making GunRaven. But my game is boring and slow, and Alien Sky is not?
>>..or it really looks that awfull?
What's the top three worst graphical parts?
>>Ok, I think this game needs a major touch
>>on the core level of game design.
Speed things up? Add more and more fragile enemies?
>>Better backgrounds and enemies would help.
Thanks for the feedback!!!
10-12-2004, 07:09 PM
I didn't personally find the game slow, but I know where the guys above are coming from. I think the main thing about your game that bothers me (apart from the lack of sound) is that it's not dynamic in any way. What I mean by that is- if you're playing music, there are two ways you can do it. You can simply play what is written down in front of you, note after note, devoid of any feeling. You'll get top marks for getting everything played, but... it'll sound lifeless, boring, and undynamic. However, if you play the notes with feeling, and with flair, you're not only playing the music, but you're also breathing life into the composition.
Your game doesn't reflect this at all. From what I can see, you've crossed all of the t's and dotted all your i's, but there's something passionate still missing, and it's what makes the game feel more boring (or slow) than it should. Speeding things up, and adding more fragile enemies might go some way to changing the feel of your shooter (which has a cool name, btw) but you still won't address the fact it feels a little lifeless.
What makes a shooter great? Isn't it the feeling that you're being drawn into the gameplay, dodging shots and barely escaping with your life, and dealing back blistering weaponry that's a joy to use? I think it is. Tweaking gameplay mechanics and having pretty graphics are important factors, but aren't the ones I feel your game needs addressed to really stand out from the crowd.
10-12-2004, 10:56 PM
Here's my 60 seconds worth of feedback:
1) The backgrounds really do suck. I'm sorry to say that as I'm sure you spent alot of time on them. Toss'em and try something else - with more color or at least less full of textures that look like something you'd get from a "web - art" cd.
2) I really like the explosions and the "magic circles" and those effects - they stand out.
3) The power ups seem to be anti aliased to a black background and you have this wierd black border around them - especially when there's an explosion beneath them (which is often when they appear). If you can find a way to make those barrels or whatever they are more crisp and clean and less anti-aliased, that would help.
4) the Ship and enemies are frankly just not interesting. If you are going to make a shooter, the ship needs to be basically the main character - and the enemies need to be interesting and animated. Yours are just sorta there.
Here's my advice - since I think you really want to sell this game - go to this site Shooters Archive (http://www.shootthecore.com/PClinks1.html) and look at all the many varied shooters. Which ones do you keep coming back to?
10-12-2004, 11:45 PM
SHMUP (http://www.shmup.com/) is the answer.
1) Yes, the gameplay is slow and non-dynamic.
2) If you are looking at Alien Sky, look in the root, at it's predecessors. Look Galaga, feel Galaxian.
3) Backgrounds are the worst missing link, ships are also missing essential part of the SHMUPs.
Explore SHMUP, play dozens of games, feel them. Feel the genre. I wouldn't give you specific "essence" points of this genre, you need to feel them yourself.
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