Just a quick development update on Star Fusion HD. Overall it’s progressing well. It is however proving to be more of a challenge than I anticipated since I’m identifying and improving upon a number of weaknesses in the original game design.
I didn’t expect the addition of waves to be trivial but it’s certainly challenging me – I’ve already been through half a dozen custom systems. I messed around with the concept of a pattern creation system that enables me to manually control what you see on the screen. I’ve now scrapped this and moved back to a more dynamic system that lets the program decide what to throw at you – its currently fairly dumb but that can make for some interesting situations. I’m adding layers of complexity to this system to ensure that there is enough to keep you progressing through the waves. I’m also looking into tying wave progression to the scoring system (and therefore making progression a result of player skill).
I’ve modified the core mechanic slightly to include a mathematical element. This makes the game significantly more difficult but has the added effect of keeping you engaged. I think this slightly changes the target audience but it feels like its for the best – In fact I think I’m going to play off it in the marketing. I’m spending some time ensuring that this mechanic fits nicely and provides an enjoyable challenge.
I’ve integrated OpenFeint to handle scoring and achievements. I’ll share some of the achievements with you as the game nears its launch.
Powerups are an important part of the game and will definitely make the final release. I have a number of ideas for them but I haven’t implemented anything so far – I want to get the core game balancing right first before I throw in these wildcards (and balance them).
Something I’m also contemplating is the addition of bosses – a sure sign of feature creep if ever I heard one. Its likely that I’ll look at including this in a future update or expansion.
The graphics have gone through a huge amount of change in a short amount of time. I’m stretching the limits of my photoshop skills but I think the result is well worth it.
My current soft target is to have the game launched some time in September/October. I’ll look to post my marketing activities and results on this blog so you can follow me through the ups and downs of releasing the game.
…More soon, so stay tuned.