We are on the verge of change, my friends.
Another week meant another meeting with Matt and Ross, the course tutors and masters of feedback. Their analysis of the game indicated that while we are on track as far as assets and programming are concerned, the game is still lacking where fun and dynamic gameplay is concerned.
At this point in the process, it's a question of improving what we currently have rather than adding new features. So after much debate and discussion over a few hours, these are what we have narrowed them down to:
1. Allowing the player to easily dismantle and rebuild traps. This allows for error on the player's behalf. The game will still encourage careful thinking of trap placement, by only 'refunding' players with half the amount of goo that they had to spend to make the trap.
2. A point that was brought up by Matt was that the player doesn't seem to have many opportunities to see the fruit of their work. Due to the way the camera works, the player needs to be standing very close to an alien in order to see it die. As a result, the camera should focus on the last alien of the wave dying (possibly with slo-mo).
3. A peashooter/projectile type trap. This has been animated in the past, just never implemented.
4. Points that need to be defended for certain stages. In this case, one of the levels will have electricity boxes that power the house. Players need to them back on if they are deactivated, but if they are all deactivated, it's game over.
5. A counter telling the player how many aliens are left. It gives players a more definite goal rather than having them believe that their efforts are aimless.
6. Pre-set hiding places. Although the new grapple mechanic makes the hiding trap that the player can set down feel useless, we still want to keep the option of hiding open to players. This will come in handy in one of the levels (sneak peek coming soon!).
7. A single-use trap that kills all enemies in a large radius.
8. Fix for traps to trigger when the centre of enemies reach the middle of the trap. This lends more meaning to concepts like 'the Fido alien is too fast to be hit by the Drop trap', etc.
9. Use of hammers to close doors. Again, the full implications of this will be revealed in our levels preview sometime in the future.
10. Player should not be allowed to run through aliens as it makes avoiding them too easy.
11. Making supply stations that allow the player to regenerate health. Especially useful during longer levels.
12. Allowing the player to instantly drop traps. This allows for greater movement of the player.
13. A trap with the purpose of attracting aliens. We particularly liked the idea of it being a model of Timmy.
Here's to a cram session ahead!