So! There’s more news to share. Two games in particular I’d like to talk about.
TIGJam, Game 2: Crap Dancing Game [working title]
Another game I started at TIGJam, and a second collaboration with Terry Cavanagh.
This is an RPG, presented in Colecovision. It plays out in the world of Danszen, where everybody’s dancing all the time, even in their sleep. You play young Shimmy who, under the forceful encouragement of his mother, must rise to the top of the ranks, defeating the experts in the three ‘ways’ of dance: Rock, Soul & Electro.
From there, an adventure awaits beyond his wildest dreams…
I’m super excited about this project, it’s using the RPG engine Terry’s been building for his latest project, Nexus City (with Jonas Kyratyes). I’ve always wanted to make an RPG, Terry and I frequently wax lyrical about our love of the Persona series, and Final Fantasy of course. So as soon as Soul Brother is out, and Terry’s schedule is freed up a little, we’re gonna plough into this.
It’s not going to be a massive game – I just want something that’ll have an interesting atmosphere & scenario, hopefully inspiring some of the feelings The Catamites’ Space Funeral gave me (one of my favourite games of the year.)
New Secret Project: Legend of the Starmen [working title]
Based in part on Trip:One, the scrolling gravity-‘em-up I abandoned last year, this is my latest love. I’m so into this project right now – let’s hope that feeling stays with me!
Legend of the Starmen is an action RPG. You play a space mercenary, from a race of people who are born and die within their suits (although they may change and modify them, their religion forbids them from seeing what is inside.) You belong to a government-run group of soldiers who harvest ‘Starmen’ from planets long-abandoned.
Starmen are nomadic beings made of pure star-energy. They land on these deserted worlds and build basic societies from the wreckage left there. They are considered not to have rational thought or feelings, although they will protect themselves when threatened, by inhabiting nearby machinery.
They are also the most valuable commodity in the galaxy, because they can be converted to astronomically powerful energy, used to fuel weapons, ships, and all the necessary gear to survive in outer space.
This is why your group exists. But is there more to Starmen than just the energy they contain?
I don’t want to spoil too much more about the game – I doubt it’ll be out until the end of the year at the earliest. Suffice to say this is my main focus, and I will do all I can to finish it. I’m basing the mechanics squarely on Demon’s Souls, one of the greatest games of all time in my opinion.
Starmen act as currency and a means to upgrade oneself. Dying (and hence dropping them) will only give you one chance to return to get them, or they’ll be lost forever. Each level has no checkpoints, and must be completed in one go, else the player must return to their base to save. In addition, the player has an energy bar which functions much like stamina in Demon’s Souls, so it won’t be a case of simply spamming the fire button – choosing when exactly to use one’s energy is key!
To round it off, you can change and upgrade suits, find and carry multiple items, both weapons, secondary-effect-items such as shields, or simply healing items, any of which you can upgrade too. This should give the player a lot of variety in play-style.
Anyway, that’s the plan, let’s see if I can actually make it now!
And things never go exactly as planned when you do plan, it’s more a case of – let’s see where it takes me…
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