Normally at this point, I have virtually nothing to show for the week yet; I’ve still been brainstorming ideas, and I won’t even start to pin down an idea until sometime on Wednesday. And I suppose that this is true this time, too (although I have some germs of ideas, which I’ll talk about below).
The thing that’s different is that this time, I decided that I might as well spend some time writing the code that I know I’m going to need, instead of leaving all that to the end the way that I often have been. So the codebase already has a reasonably complete set of game modes, including a fully functional credit scroll. (It was embarrassing for me to release Atop without a credit scroll, simply because I didn’t have time at the end of the development to put one in. That’s not going to happen this time!) The screenshot visible here is the a screenshot of the current “Title” game mode.
In terms of game ideas, I’ve been thinking a lot about doing something vector-based, with Asteroids-style controls. Sort of large-scale FreeSpace style “huge combats between fleets which are balanced carefully enough that the player’s actions can tip the balance one way or the other” in 2D, but perhaps where the balance isn’t so carefully balanced; where the player’s side has already basically won the combat before the player even gets there, and is in the process of mopping up, so the player doesn’t actually get to be the hero of the story. Don’t know.
I always feel disappointed with myself when I resort to making a game that’s about shooting enemies. So I probably won’t actually make that game. But it’s the concept which has been in my head the most, today.
Alternately, I could go entirely the other direction and use a similar situation, but make the player not a soldier at all; he’s searching for something; either something serious (the remains of a loved one who has perished in a battle), or something whimsical (which, I suppose, turns that design into the equivalent of Robot Finds Kitten, in space). For a short-duration game being made about a theme which I didn’t get to choose myself, whimsical is almost certainly going to be the smart way to go.
My goal for tomorrow is to pick the game to make, and perhaps to start writing a little game-specific code. Will update with progress and a screenshot around this time tomorrow! And for those who are that way inclined, the source code repository is publicly visible; feel free to follow along there.