I'll post what's done of The Damned online. It's all work-in-progress so don't come crying to me about this and that not working, these graphics are crappy, etc.

There will be constant updates so keep checking in. Working link is on the right.
Okay, a quick post.


Check this out

New demo I've been working on. The physics behind it are all sound, converted from some online projectile motion mathematics I found to code. However I haven't quite equated how to get the arrow to rotate properly yet.

My inspiration for this little diversion came from the game Bowman Prelude which is by far my favourite Flash game on the net - the only Flash game I could play for hours and hours instead of five minutes. In the game you have to defend your castle by firing a variety of arrows at an attacking army and you can also destroy their castle. After every victory you can use the cash you earned destroying enemies to buy better, more powerful projectiles and other types of army. It would be perfect, well, more perfect if only for a couple of teeny little issues.

Bad Points

*No bonus cash for destroying the enemies castle
*Capturing the flag carries little incentive save making the levels shorter.
*The enemy can conjure all sorts of cool baddies but you're stuck with the same basic groups for your armies.
*Graphics do the job but they're boring.
*Repetitive sound loop gets on your nerves after the first hour (though you can turn it off).
*All the levels look the same.

In fact, while we're on the subject let's discuss my favourite Flash games followed by my analysis of just why they are so good.



Guardians of Altarris is my second choice for best Flash game on the net.
If you're into Final Fight clones, you'll love this. The graphics and sound are some of the best ever seen in a Flash game, IN FACT me and most other Flash games hobbyists I know were like "Shit is that really Flash?" when we first saw it. If I ever come across the guy who made the ambient music for this game I'm going to lock him in a room and force him to do the stuff on all my games. His stuff is that good.

Wow. The gameplay ain't half bad either. Though it isn't Aliens VS Predator, it's of a high calibre and stands head & shoulders above pretty much all other fighting games out there for Flash. As it is, it wrestles for the crown with Dad & Me (next review) for best fighting game on the net. With a bit of work on the fighting engine, it could easily be the best Flash game, period. The engineer behind the game (Scott Stoddard) in my opinion is probably the greatest Flash games programmer out there at this point in time. Not in an outstanding technical sense - though his games are obviously well-programmed - but rather in the way that every game he makes is sweet. I played his latest prototype over on FlashKit the other day and it's as addictive as hell.
Certainly a benchmark setter for us other wannabee legends.

Bad points
*Takes a looong time to load (kind of unavoidable for a quality game)
*Kind of slow at times.
*No weapons. Health icons, etc.


Dad & Me
is a highly stylised beat-em up. I love everything about this game from the slick presentation to the comedic touches. I mean Tom Pulp and his lot sometimes go over the top with their twisted sense of humour but has genuine moments of hilarity such as boyscouts in front of buses and throwing lawnmowers at punks.

This is the best game on Newgrounds (after Bowman), and I often wonder why they didn't take this one to the N64 or whatever it was instead of Alien Hominid, which was nothing special. Though it can't beat Guardians of Altarris for graphics Dad & Me more than matches it in style and has a more responsive/flexible fighting engine that incorporates some nice physics. Also very well done is the soundtrack, which keeps the same melody throughout and yet changes depending on the environment.

Well, check it out! 6000 almost exclusively positive reviews on Newgrounds can't be wrong.

Bad Points
*Too short



Hmm....
If I was going to make a walk-along-beat-em-up I'd probably make my game more like Spike Out. There are two games I still consistently play in video-arcades, and never get tired of over here in Japan, StreetFighter and SpikeOut. Both are old games, though they contain the kind of perfect gameplay that never gets tiring. Good beat-em ups are all about the timing.
SpikeOuts strength lies in the multiple power meters which require perfect timing to operate. Once you've mastered it though, you can pull off some amazing floating combo's and progress through the game further than before. The bosses are genius, and kind of timing needed to defeat some of them separates the casual gamer from the expert. But if you're good enough, you can literally play the whole game through on one credit.

If you don't incorporate the necessity for good timing in a fighting game, it will never become a classic. Even Final Fight gets boring after a few levels. Aliens VS Predator is a good beat-em up that works not because of the skill level involved to play it, but because of the unique variety of moves available to each character.


Right well, I'm going back to the archer demo now, catch you later.

p.s. Just saw SAW III and it was awesome. Almost matches the first one.
Temporary hosting that is. One kind bloke I know from my other website "Young Dudes Guide to Japan" offered to help me out since I'm having such a bugger of a time getting a visa card over here in Japan.

I want to show you dudes the game- it's just that it's too close to completion now.
However, you can check out my first ever YouTube post, a render test for Usagi Yojimbo, the main character from Samurai Warrior.



Nothing flash (pun intended), but it's only the bare bones so far. I haven't even decided if I'll remake the game (Samurai Warrior) for sure yet. Pretty likely though.


I finally solved the sound doubling problem I had with the Damned. Turned out I was using two Mouse listeners instead of one. Like an idiot, I thought that you needed to declare different variables for every state, ie onMouseDown, onMouseUp then make a listener for each. Nope, one listener takes care of anything the mouse does after you initiate it. Stupid. This is very cool though because really now the only problem I have now is getting my external loaders to work. And I know why they don't, because the AS is all on the first frame, and all the movieclips are dynamic.

Will post some pics soon.
Well well, back again, if only for a quickie.

The Damned is very close to Beta stage now. Not only are all 3 levels complete, with new death-scenes and a few extra tweaks, but they've also been tied up to the main menu swf, which now loads them as external files. The menu swf file keeps track of the amount of continues you have left and everything. However, I really, really, wish I had done this fromt the start because it's been an absolute struggle to get the swf levels working smoothly now that they're external. I had simply shitloads of problems, everything from setIntervals continuing after the level had ended to enemies not appearing at all.

In fact I am utterly stumped by one tiny, annoying little error with the gun sound object retriggering on every instance of an external swf being loaded (in other words, every time I load a movie/level, the sound of gunfire 'doubles'). I've a hunch it might have something to do with the function for firing being triggered by a _global variable, instead of a local one. It's such a pain in the arse having the game this close to going live and yet not making any progress because of some idiotic little malfunctions in the code.

In my burn-out time I've been working on some other stuff. You might notice a new 2d engine demo posted on the blog. That was a tricky bugger to pull off at first, but isometric is my bitch now. This might well be the engine used to the Friday 13th game I have planned, or a remake/remix of the Last Ninja (another one of my aspirations)- you heard it here first. p.s. if any of you folks out there who read this are big fans of either game and think you could render up some sweeeet iso graphics for me to use, send us a mail. I won't hold my breath though...

I've got big hopes for The Damned. It's my first game, so it's not supposed to break any new ground in terms of coding excellence or gain much of a fan base, but I do hope a few folks out there enjoy it enough to anticipate a bigger and better second version. Now that I've laid down a concrete engine for the game, I know that the next one will be so much better.

I at least get some kind of a good starting rep in the Flash world. I am very excited that finally for the first time in my life I have the opportunity and the capability to make the games I always wanted to make. Call me a nerd or whatever, but it's almost like my highest ambition to be on the same ladder as the older generation of games makers. Individuals like Rob Hubbard, Matt Gray, Archer MacLean, and the folks in teams such as System 3, Thalamus, Sensible Software, CodeMasters --agghh..like movie stars to me, man! I want that! So if you like the game when you play it, remember that a lot of love went into this baby, and a lot of respect for those who inspired me to become a game author.
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