The Secret Posts - Bloody Windows

(Written 20/02/2008)

Just over a week to go now. Good thing too, because I’m running out of steam with this project. There are some really obvious problems with the game at the moment that are insurmountable within the time I’ve got left. Chopper movement isn’t right - it moves too fast given the available screen space. The graphics are too large - I overcompensated for the GP2X’s screen dimensions. There’s nothing in the game so far that works as a “hook”, like Hellfire’s four-way shooting system, to keep people playing more than a couple of minutes.

Annoyance of the day is Windows. Every time I start up the Windows build of Chroma-X the OS starts monkeying about with the focus. It flicks other windows to the front of the display, shifts the focus to other applications, and generally annoys the hell out of me.

Some progress, though. The chopper gun now makes a sound when it fires. It’s not quite the sound I wanted, but it’s close enough. (Sounds are another problem area with the game - I don’t like the current sample set at all and it gives me a headache.) I’ve had to limit the gun to a single sound channel, because allowing it to choose the first free channel meant that it used all of the channels up (since new bullets are fired before the last bullet’s sound finishes) and broke the rest of the sound system.

The extra life and shield power ups are done, and I think that’ll do for the time being. I need a powerup sample, but the only reasonable ones I can find on the net are Creative Commons-licenced, not PD or GPL. There doesn’t seem to be a repository of GPL sound samples on the net, which is a shame. Powerups can be dropped by any enemy when it blows up by toggling a switch in the object, but I’ve limited them to UFOs.

Things to do:

  • Life display;
  • Title screen quit option;
  • Plane firing sample;
  • Powerup sample;
  • Enemy firing patterns;
  • Enemy movement patterns;
  • Level scripts.