We are now past the initial flurry of progress and ideas that is the prototyping phase. The basic game idea is proven to work and is fun. Now the goal is to keep drilling down on that fun factor and make it bigger.
When doing prototyping most things are just thrown together. You do want to keep in mind how things will be later but only for a few moments. The point of prototyping is to get something working good enough fast enough to know if its worth doing. If you spend too much time planning you wind up months into something probably making tools. Step away and all you have made are tools!
The initial game concept for ‘Taia Arcana’ was running after a week. It was a dirty mess with not even programmer art but you know what did work? The basics for moving and shooting things. What you will spend 99% of your time doing. We spent the next week smoothing things just a bit mostly with controls and bullet patterns to see if it stayed fun.
Now that the prototyping phase is done you can start working on the game again with more tact and hopefully better scope. One thing to do at this phase is take another look at what you think you actually need to make the game (fun). This step should honestly be repeated as many times as possible without getting on the way of progress.
So the biggest point of a bullet hell/shooter are the bullets. Flying all over looking cool and being scary. When I started working on a bullet editor I thought I could handle it without much planning. The first few levels of complexity went okay but I soon found I was out of my element. I had never done a crazy math oriented bullet shooter before. I looked around at some other alternatives. Unity being as modular as it is with its Asset Store and community I started shopping around. There are a few options but none that satisfied our needs. Some gave insight into what a better system would look like though which was really helpful.
I set out to redo my initial design to be easier to edit. If its not quick and painless you can’t play with numbers and effects to just see what looks cool or feels right. This by the seat of your pants feel is something suggested many times by other successful shooter games.
Posted by uwee