GMC Jam Void Swarm

Nocturne

Friendly Tyrant
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Presenting...


Story:
The Earth is in ruins after the World War Water and what's left of humanity has flown into the void to find a new home... However evil aliens have other plans!

Guide the mothership through the void and use your swarm of drone attack ships to protect it all the while picking up scrap to build more drones.

Controls:
Game plays with keyboard or gamepad (gamepad recomended!)
Use Arrow Keys/WASD/Left thumbstick to move
Use Space/Right Trigger to Shoot
Use M/(Y) to focus fire
Use N/(B) to chaos fire
Use P/Start to Pause

Screenshots:

Screenshot_1.png Screenshot_2.png
Screenshot_3.png

Dev Stuff:
So, Void Swarm was created for the XXX GMC Jam, and uses the theme of "Sticking Together" to add a twist to the old space-invaders type game. The core idea is that instead of using a single ship to attack, you actually have a swarm of autonomous drones that stick to your ship position and follow it around. When I saw the theme this idea pretty much was the first thing that came to my head, and after a few hours thinking about it I actually had a (more-or-less) fully formed design doc, something that rarely happens and has certainly helped me turn in a polished game prototype!

I won't go into what I added to the game, but the rough workflow was:

Day 1: Design doc and initial swarm mechanic prototyping
Day 2: General game mechanics, enemies, buy menu, some sounds
Day 3: Title screen, menus, more sounds and music, general polishing
Day 4: Polish, test and publish!

I would like to mention, however, a few things that the game is missing:
  • The most important thing that's missing is a more expansive system of buying/upgrading. I really would have liked to be able to upgrade the mothership after each level, so that you can spend scrap on things like repairs, faster movement, a grapple to get scrap easier, shields, etc...

  • Flares! The HUD has a "Flares" section and it just doesn't get used in the game... :( The idea of the flare was that you would fire it, then press fire again and it would explode (or it would explode if it hit an enemy). All the swarm ships would then fly off to the flare position leaving you to move around without them until the flare runs out.

  • More drones to buy. The drone system lends itself to a load extra features... defense drones that just shoot at bullets, healing drones that slowly heal the mothership over time, drones that shoot downwards only, drones that don't do damage but disable enemy ships, drones, drones, drones!!!!

  • A save system. Again, the UI is setup for it, but I just didn't quite get there!

  • Proper level progression... At the moment there are 10 levels which should loop (although it might crash after level 10!!!!!!!) and these levels have little in the way of true progression. It needs more care in the crafting of the waves of enemies as well as much more variety in the enemy types and a few bosses too...

  • Polish, polish, polish... The game is missing several UI tweaks that make things nicer for the user. Redefine-able keys, level messages, a proper game over screen, highscroes, achievements, etc.. etc.., etc...
All that said though, I'm quite proud of how this turned out and it's certainly the most polished Jam game I've submitted for some time! I'll hopefully work on this some more and actually release it as a full and finished game... :)
 
B

BearlyBros

Guest
This was awesome as! I'm super jealous that my brother got to play this one and he had a blast (pun sort of intended). We did end up getting an error message but we still had loads of fun regardless. Good luck in the Jam :)
 

Nocturne

Friendly Tyrant
Forum Staff
Admin
Moderator
Oh wow! Thanks for the video and the kind words! That's great! I expected there to be an error, tbh, as I didn't have time to add more than ten levels and then the game should loop back to level 1 again, but... nope looks like it didn't quite work that way. :(
 
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