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StarFlyer Proof of Concept

Discussion in 'Made With Unity' started by careyagimon, Feb 17, 2008.

  1. careyagimon

    careyagimon

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    So, for the last thirty days or so I have been working on a StarFox like game. The purpose was to make a scalable rail shooter that uses only one button and has low system requirements. Additionally I wanted to focus as much as possible on making reusable code. Here's the link to the game.

    http://Careyagimon.googlepages.com/UnityPlayerweb.html

    The controls are simple, point at things and left-click to shoot. Point to areas away from your ship and you will move there. Hold down left-click to charge up shots that track targeted enemies. To target an enemy, charge up a shot and place the crosshairs over them. You can target as many enemies as you want. Release the left-mouse-button to release a charged shot at all targeted enemies.

    Obviously this is not a complete game. The art, models and sound are almost all placeholders. Many parts of the game are just things that I wanted to do to learn some of the Unity API. There hasn't been any attempt to build actual levels, balance the weapons, or tweak difficulty. There's about another ten pages of uncompleted/roughly hewn ideas I could mention.

    That being said, there are a few things that I really like about what I have put together.

    The simplicity of control. Point and click only.

    I worked out a trigger system that progressively loads and unloads the level. Conceivably the levels could be as long as you wanted with very little overhead.

    I like the flight mechanic. It's very simple, and yet responds well to collisions. I think I only spent a few hours working out the details while I was learning the API. Unity made this idea really easy to implement.

    I love the way the ship/enemies explode when they die. Plus, the script for it can be dropped onto any game object with multiple meshes for the same effect.

    While everything in my game is very simple and not very pretty, it was fun working almost entirely in Unity to make all the game objects. Pixen was the only other program I used.

    Anyways, I would love to hear any feedback. Be gentle, this is only my second month with Unity. If you are interested in how I did something in the game, please ask and I would be happy to share my techniques. Also, if anyone would want to donate some art/models/sound assets, I would love to polish it up a bit with something pretty. Almost everything there could be replaced.

    Cheers,
    Carey
     
  2. Dragon Rider

    Dragon Rider

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    Cool! This is very well done. I'd say the only thing left is art/sound creation and you've got a cool game.
     
  3. Eric5h5

    Eric5h5

    Volunteer Moderator Moderator

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    The art etc. may be placeholders, but somehow the heart of it has a polished feel to it, which is the important part. The controls seemed slightly awkward the first time for some reason (maybe it was just simpler than I was expecting ;) ), but by the second time I got the hang of it and it was fun. Make the buildings fall over when you shoot them instead of just disappearing. :) Excellent start.

    --Eric
     
  4. Jessy

    Jessy

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    I love StarFox, and think this is an awesome homage. It evens runs at a much better framerate than does the real StarFox (SNES and N64, anyway), which makes it look pretty even at this stage.

    However, what bugs me about this is something that seems to plague a lot of Unity games. It does not work with a graphics tablet (Wacom here). Considering that is actually the ideal kind of controller for this game, I am not pleased to have to switch to something else. Tennis Stars Cup is another game which is absolutely perfectly suited to a tablet, but it doesn't work there, either. Any attempt is met with "Click Here to Lock the Cursor". This is not a problem inherent to Unity. I made a connect-the-dots type of game that functioned just fine with a tablet.

    I know that I am still in the minority of game-players for using this as a control device, but with the success of the Nintendo DS (and Wii, which has a tablet-esque control option: see Metroid Prime 3 for the best FPS controls ever) and newer cheap, stylish tablet offerings nowadays, I don't think there are grounds to exclude.
     
  5. Marc

    Marc

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    The controls give me flashback to diablo days dunno why.
     
  6. KlaRo115

    KlaRo115

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    I like it! :)
    Nice game!
     
  7. careyagimon

    careyagimon

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    You are amazingly correct :D . I would love to develop for some less than standard devices. Currently though, my only other input devices are a microphone, an iShock II and a webcam(which I successfully made work in a pong-game). I will be certain to touch back on that when I get a tablet. It would be very easy to have an option in the main menu that lets you select your input type. Thank you for the idea.

    I also like the idea for suggestions of games that have similar controls that are well executed. It would be cool to put together a database of input-"genres(?)" and games that use them well. It's such an important part of a game and yet it would take decades(and lots of cash) to sort through all the crappy implementations throughout the ages. Does anyone want to start that wikipage? :wink:


    It is prolly the in-depth character customization. :p No, I noticed that too. Currently the clicking isn't very meaningful. I think I have the simplicity honed down, but there isn't much variety yet. I'll try to handle some of that with level design.


    Thankyou very much. Since I don't have any solid art goals with it yet, I have mostly just focused on learning what I can do in Unity. You can do A LOT :D. One of the things that I have loved with Unity is that while I might have spent a couple days working on a graphical effect, I could now reuse any of the techniques in under five minutes and still give them a unique look.

    -Carey
     
  8. careyagimon

    careyagimon

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    Oh yeah. I forgot a funny bug that happened while I was making this.

    I started out making a script for a particle based gun for the player's ship. Then I copied it to a new script for the enemies. After some tinkering, they now were firing just like the player ship. However, I noticed that the game sometimes slowed down dramatically and it was much much much more difficult than I thought it should be. They enemies were shooting dozens of times more often than they were supposed to.

    "Okay, that's prolly just something a wrong number typed into their timers. No, that checks out. What the heck is going on?" *two hours of debugging*

    Long story short, I had left in the enemies version of the script "If mouse button clicked then fire." Hence every single enemy in the entire level would fire any time the player fired.
     
  9. Herabec

    Herabec

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    Wow, that feels really great. I love the simplicity, but a second firing mode would rock. You know, like bombs, or missiles or something. You wouldn't have to use a second button, just, for example, a double click.
     
  10. drJones

    drJones

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    cool idea - i think the controls feel good as well. would love to see some canyon / tunnel levels ; )