Looking for level designers / pixel artists / music&sound / playtesters


_wb_

Microbe
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I'm working on a 2D tower defense type of game specifically designed for the Pandora. It is already in a playable state (except that it doesn't have any menu yet, just starts immediately in level 1). I'm now looking for people who want to help with the game. License will be GPL.


Game features: (already implemented)


- 2D tower defense


- no fixed enemy path: the enemies take the shortest route to the destination (this route changes when you build towers; there always has to be one remaining path)


- towers have hp, some enemies attack towers (you can also repair towers)


- some enemies can swim (go through water); some enemies can fly (fly over towers)


- one enemy type is "berserker": it cannot go over towers but will attack whatever towers are in its way until it or the tower dies, taking the shortest route a flying enemy would take


- one enemy type is "crazy": it can go in random directions sometimes


- currently only one tower type, can be upgraded 4 times


- by default, a tower attacks anything in its range. You can put towers in different modes, e.g. to focus on fast enemies, strong or weak enemies, aggressive enemies, etc.


What is needed:


- every level can have its own tileset (32x32 tiles for the terrain and towers; enemies are no tiles) and background music; currently the tiles are placeholders and the music are very short loops, it would be nice to have at least one nice tileset and a few background tracks


- sound effects (there are some placeholders but they suck)


- more levels; making levels is not difficult (there is no map editor but it's just editing a simple ASCII file)


- a theme/story: for now it is just "enemies" and "towers" and "lives left"; would be nice to have something more interesting (maybe something that doesn't sound too war-oriented, e.g. the enemies being bacteria invading your body and the towers being antibodies or something like that would be nicer)


- a name for the game :)


- some playtesting to make sure everything is somewhat balanced and the learning curve is smooth


- suggestions for new enemies / terrain types / towers / game mechanics


What to do if you're considering to help:


Reply in this thread or send me a private message. I will give you the current dev version of the game (probably just a .tar.gz). You can then take a look at it and decide if you want to help.


As soon as something fun to play comes out of this, the game will be released as a PND on the repo. After the initial release, there will probably be updates with new level packs etc.
 

Askarus

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You're great.


First that nice flashlight, then a Tower defence. I'm waiting so long for this.


If I could I would help.


This weak I have my last exams in University so no help from me whithin this weak.


Unfortunately I can't do any coding or that stuff.


I could only help with ideas, testing.

a theme/story: for now it is just "enemies" and "towers" and "lives left"; would be nice to have something more interesting (maybe something that doesn't sound too war-oriented, e.g. the enemies being bacteria invading your body and the towers being antibodies or something like that would be nicer)

I could also think of a theme but bot such a theme. Rather something with magic ;) .
 

_wb_

Microbe
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No coding is needed. Levels are just simple text files: "W" is a wall, " " (space) is an empty space, etc. There are some examples to get you started. It is not difficult.


(however, the game will crash and you might have to reboot if you give it invalid levels, because it does not do any checking atm)
 

_wb_

Microbe
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Here's a screenshot of what the game currently looks like.


The level file looks like this:


Swimmers and flyers


200 // initial gold



5 // nb lives



13 // rows



18 // columns



..



E .. .. E



.. ..



..... ....



..... ....






*






.... .....



.... .....



.. ..



E .. .. E



..



data/music/lazy.mp3



data/tiles.png



16 // number of waves



20 // max number of enemies per wave



MMMMMMMMMM*



MMMN-MMMN-MMMMNN*



SSMM-SSMM-SSSSN*



SSSSSSSSSN*



oooooooooO*



ooOooff*



ooOooOooOO*



MMfMMfMMff*



ffffffffff*



fB-fB-fB-NB*



fffNBSSSSSSN*



ooooO-ooooO*



fffffffffffff*



MMMMMBBMMM*



ffffffSSSSSBB*



ffBBffBBffBB*


screenshot.png
 
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_wb_

Microbe
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Here is an alpha version of the game. I'm putting it here for people who want to help with levels etc.


How to unpack:


- copy the file to some folder on an SD card, probably best not on a FAT fs, ext2/3/4 should be fine.


- open a terminal, go to that folder and type "tar -xsvf tower.tar.gz"


- now type "cd tower"


- now type "./run"


Press H in the game for help, press P to pause, press S to speed up, press space to show enemy paths.


You can edit the runscript to use notaz' SDL (will give you full colors and better speed), just uncomment the line with "export SDL_VIDEODRIVER=omapdss".


Currently the game will just load "levels/level1", when you finish that one it goes to "levels/level2" etc. There's no "game over" or "next level" screen yet. The level files should be more or less self-explanatory, just ask if anything is unclear.


The tiles are in "data/tiles.png" (or any file your level points to). Tiles are 32x32, and there is one tile for every ASCII character with a number between 32 (space) and 127. Only a few tiles are used at the moment; if you use anything new, it will act as a wall by default.


Just ask me if you need help with anything. If you have made something, post it in this thread or send me a msg.
 

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_wb_

Microbe
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Haven't tried that one yet, but in general, I don't really like 3D TD games since they're typically 2D game boards rendered in 3D, and I prefer to have an overview so I always set the camera to look down on the entire field if possible.
 

pmprog

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Here is an alpha version of the game. I'm putting it here for people who want to help with levels etc.
Looks good. Hopefully give this a play later on; and maybe look at trying to put together a level for you.

Vorship was good. The only thing that I didn't like was rather than a couple of "maps", it was just one that got longer and longer - and it became boring watching the units travel vast distances

I also might be owrking on an other 3d tdport ;)
Sounds interesting ^_^
 

Askarus

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then a Tower defence. I'm waiting so long for this.
http://repo.openpand...ail&app=vorship doesnt cut it ?

I also might be owrking on an other 3d tdport

I don't want to hurt you but the game definitly not what I'm looking for.


I want some classic tower defence. With towers that look like real houses or wooden towers, or somethig like Final Fantasy Chrystal Defenders.


I want to clear one wave, then place my towers, then press a button to start thghe next wave.


Also some medieval theme with arrows and spell caster is important :) .
 

_wb_

Microbe
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I'm currently going for the microbe theme. Changing the theme is just a matter of using a different tileset and changing the code a bit to use tiles for the enemies and bullets (they are currently drawn instead of using tiles). Perhaps I'll make everything more customizable so you can have level packs with totally different themes (but the basic game mechanics would remain the same).


If you can give me the graphics and sounds for a medieval theme I will start working on this flexible infrastructure. You can already have custom tilesets for each level (so e.g. you could make different season versions of the graphics etc.), but of course you'll also need different graphics for the enemies and bullets - semitransparent boxes as enemies and towers that shoot lasers probably don't make a lot of sense in a medieval theme ;) .


I'll upload a first alpha release to the repo this afternoon. Hoping that will attract some more attention from people who want to help.


Edit: uploaded it to the repo.
 
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Askarus

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^ Changeable themes? Great.


Let's try out your alpha version :) .


Edit: Testing done.


OK, here is my first impression.


This in definitly not what I was looking for. It's something else and it's great.


I expected fix paths like ordinary tower defence games have.


Usually I don't like those flexible paths over a free field.


Your idea of making them visible is GREAT. I like it so much. Please mekt this a great game.


Something useful now:


Controlling everything with buttons is hard for beginners.


It will be even harder if there are more units.


Please make a small semi transparent menue on the bottom of the screen.


I also don't like that real time stuff.


I want the possibility to pause the game and build/upgrader towers with no enemy moving. You could make it oiptional for those who need the real chalenge.


If you make the game pausable the levels may also be more chalanging because there's more time to think of a good strategy.


Music is nice.


Theme is also nice.


Changing themes like "The Maze of Galious Remake" would also be great.


For gameplay:


As you suggested bevore you vould also make flaing anf swimming enemys.


Different types of towers would also be nice.


Different possibilitsy of upgradinng them would be great, too.


Tifferent types of terrain is also something to think: Sand which makes enemys move slower or poisened area which constantly damages them. It would be nice to force them to walk inside if such stuff.


Some idea that might change gameplay a llittle:


What about closing all ways?


Those useless barricades could be used to close all ways. Enemys would have to attack them first to get to theire goal.


This might change gameplay more to a real time strategy than to a tower defence.


You could make this optional if it's not to hard to make those two gamestyles.


Simply to test it.


That's all for now. I hope I could help a little.


Only wish I have: Pause mode. I want to build Towers and have time to think of what i'm doing.
 
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_wb_

Microbe
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OK, here is my first impression.


This in definitly not what I was looking for. It's something else and it's great.


I expected fix paths like ordinary tower defence games have.


Usually I don't like those flexible paths over a free field.


Your idea of making them visible is GREAT. I like it so much. Please mekt this a great game.

Thanks!

Controlling everything with buttons is hard for beginners.


It will be even harder if there are more units.

At some point I'll add touch screen support so you can at least select a position directly.

Please make a small semi transparent menue on the bottom of the screen.

Not sure what you mean with this.

I also don't like that real time stuff.


I want the possibility to pause the game and build/upgrader towers with no enemy moving. You could make it oiptional for those who need the real chalenge.


If you make the game pausable the levels may also be more chalanging because there's more time to think of a good strategy.

Well, you can press P to pause, but I guess that's not really what you mean. I'll try to implement something like what you want (freeze/unfreeze time while you can still build)

Music is nice.

Thanks (I made it myself), but the loops are way too short, they get boring very quickly.

Theme is also nice.


Changing themes like "The Maze of Galious Remake" would also be great.

Already did some work to allow flexible themes. Every level can now have its own tileset and set of enemy specs (and enemies can be sprites from the tileset too now), also its own sounds and background music. Now I just have to de-hardcode the tower techtree to make it changeable as well. I'm thinking of having arbitrary tech trees, where you sometimes have the option to upgrade a unit to different specialities (like in Wesnoth, mage -> red or white mage etc.).

For gameplay:


As you suggested bevore you vould also make flaing anf swimming enemys.

They are already there: in the current theme, "viruses" can swim (through the blue tiles) and some of them can fly too (HIV and Ebola).

Different types of towers would also be nice.


Different possibilitsy of upgradinng them would be great, too.

Yes, considering that. I don't just want different towers that just do the same thing but with different graphics. I want different behavior. I'm thinking of a heal tower that automatically heals surrounding towers, a boost tower that increases the power of surrounding towers, and a slowdown tower that slows enemies. Maybe also different kinds of weapons (e.g. splash damage instead of single target, maybe railgun).

Tifferent types of terrain is also something to think: Sand which makes enemys move slower or poisened area which constantly damages them. It would be nice to force them to walk inside if such stuff.

Poisoned area is a cool idea. Maybe some "smart" enemies would try to avoid it; some could be immune to it, maybe some tower would make enemies take extra damage from poison, etc.

Some idea that might change gameplay a llittle:


What about closing all ways?


Those useless barricades could be used to close all ways. Enemys would have to attack them first to get to theire goal.


This might change gameplay more to a real time strategy than to a tower defence.


You could make this optional if it's not to hard to make those two gamestyles.


Simply to test it.

Barricades are not useless at the moment: they have a lot of HP cheaply, so you can use them e.g. to keep berserkers at a safe distance while your towers shoot at them (e.g. in extra range mode).


Maybe I could add an option to allow some levels to close all paths; this would essentially put all enemies in berserker mode (which is actually easier to implement than regular mode since you don't have to recompute paths all the time). It is pointless to have enemies that don't do damage in such a mode though, unless they can fly.

That's all for now. I hope I could help a little.


Only wish I have: Pause mode. I want to build Towers and have time to think of what i'm doing.

Thanks for your feedback!


What I mostly need now is nice tiles and sound effects, so if anyone can help with that, it would be much appreciated.
 

Askarus

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OK, let's clear up some stuff :) .

Controlling everything with buttons is hard for beginners. It will be even harder if there are more units. Please make a small semi transparent menue on the bottom of the screen.

What I ment with that is following:


If you set the curser on one of your units on the right side is a menue which shows you all options you have (B does XXX; X does XXX).


I would prefer if you press X/B on a unit you'll jump into the menue on the right and choose an option with a curser. It's not as fast as you do it with buttons but it'd be more user friendly for me ;) . It also opens up more options than 4. Think of what wil happen if you have more than 4 towers with different ways to upgrade: It'll be button chaos.


I'd like to havea build button if I select an empty field. Then I want to go into a menue and select the unit I want to build. If I press that (or a different button) on an existing unit there should open up a menue which shows the possibilitys I have (upgrade, destroy...).


This would improve controls a lot.


Forget the last sentence. Didn't know how to express myself ;) .


It's ment to say something like I said above. It shoukd be cleare now what I want to say :D .

Well, you can press P to pause, but I guess that's not really what you mean. I'll try to implement something like what you want (freeze/unfreeze time while you can still build)

I know I can pause the game. Yoour guess was right :D .

Already did some work to allow flexible themes. Every level can now have its own tileset and set of enemy specs (and enemies can be sprites from the tileset too now), also its own sounds and background music. Now I just have to de-hardcode the tower techtree to make it changeable as well. I'm thinking of having arbitrary tech trees, where you sometimes have the option to upgrade a unit to different specialities (like in Wesnoth, mage -> red or white mage etc.).
Yes, considering that. I don't just want different towers that just do the same thing but with different graphics. I want different behavior. I'm thinking of a heal tower that automatically heals surrounding towers, a boost tower that increases the power of surrounding towers, and a slowdown tower that slows enemies. Maybe also different kinds of weapons (e.g. splash damage instead of single target, maybe railgun).

Yeah, great, that's what I want :) .

They are already there: in the current theme, "viruses" can swim (through the blue tiles) and some of them can fly too (HIV and Ebola).

Sorry. Haven't noticed that yet. Died in the 3rd level. Tomorrow's my last exam in University. I'll test more on Saturday :D .

Yes, considering that. I don't just want different towers that just do the same thing but with different graphics. I want different behavior. I'm thinking of a heal tower that automatically heals surrounding towers, a boost tower that increases the power of surrounding towers, and a slowdown tower that slows enemies. Maybe also different kinds of weapons (e.g. splash damage instead of single target, maybe railgun).

Great ideas.


Maybe like in some ther tower defence games a "money unit" might be nice.


It'll boost the energy/money/mana you get for every kill on the field or in it's area of effect.
 

_wb_

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BTW, you can go immediately to level 3 if you have reached it, by pressing dpad right in the main menu.
 

_wb_

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I've made quite some progress, soon I'll make an update on the repo. I've implemented a lot of stuff, but still need to make levels to show them :)


- nearly everything has been de-hardcoded now: the techtree (you can have multiple upgrades to choose from; there is a build menu now), the enemy specs, tiles, sounds, background, etc.


- unlockable level packs (the idea is that every level pack has a different theme, only the first/default one is with microbes. But in principle every level can have its own theme). I'm focusing only on the default level pack now, but the idea is to add level packs in wildly different styles: Wesnoth (where towers are elves and mages and enemies are trolls and orcs or something like that), Sci-Fi (towers are laser guns etc), Zombie (enemies are zombies, towers are guns and chainsaws etc), etc etc. Each level pack should have a different tech tree and different kinds of enemies, so the strategies will be different.


- poisoned area: if you build too close to it it'll damage your towers, does dmg to microbes


- healing towers and power boosting towers


Still have to implement the non-realtime game mode you asked for (should be very easy to do) - I'll probably make this a global option.
 

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Microbe
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Update is on the repo. Non-realtime mode is an option now; use P (or START) to toggle between pause and no pause, if you're in non-realtime mode the screen does not go dark when the game is paused and you can build and upgrade etc.


Most of the coding is finished now, essentially it is now a matter of producing the data files (maps, enemy specs, tech trees, tiles, sounds, music). I'll try to make something interesting for the first levelpack (microbes), but I could use your help (whoever is reading this) to make new levelpacks! Contact me if you want to help!
 

Askarus

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Great improvements.


The different ways to build is a good start.


Hope there will be more units.


What does the monocyte do?


It has less HP than the Eosinophil, less range and does less damage.


Thanks for the pause mode.


During the game it's not that necessary but in the beginning.


If you destroy an unit you should get gold.


What do you mean with that?


I don't get Energy if you mean that.


Pressing R/L to change modes?


Dammit, that's BRILLIANT.


I can influence the battle in a more active way than in usual tower defence games.


Some balancing is needed. It's too easy for me. At least the first levels but those have to be easy :D .


Barricades could also be upgradeable


1: Lot of life


2: Not so much life but bigger barricades (2 ways of bigger barricades: Horizontal and vertical)


Your epidemic theme is really nice.


If a wave starts/ends there should be a little sign.


You're on a GREAT WAY.


I'll PM you for helping with some stuff.


My last exam is done :) :) :) :) .
 

_wb_

Microbe
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The different ways to build is a good start.


Hope there will be more units.

There will be.

What does the monocyte do?


It has less HP than the Eosinophil, less range and does less damage.

Ah, but it can be upgraded to a Macrophage, which is a very nice unit because it boosts other units. In the current version it is actually overpowered, will be changed.

Thanks for the pause mode.


During the game it's not that necessary but in the beginning.
In future levels it will also help during the game, if there are much more waves.

If you destroy an unit you should get gold.


What do you mean with that?


I don't get Energy if you mean that.

Should be energy, yes. Will be fixed in the next release. It was a stupid bug: when you destroyed a unit, it would first destroy it and then reimburse you the sell value, but the sell value of an empty square is zero :) . Now it first reimburses you, then destroys it :)

Pressing R/L to change modes?


Dammit, that's BRILLIANT.


I can influence the battle in a more active way than in usual tower defence games.
Thanks, I also quite like this addition. The new release will also have a mode to deal damage to all units in range at the same time (but of course only reduced damage).

Some balancing is needed. It's too easy for me. At least the first levels but those have to be easy :D .
I'm aware of that. I'm trying to make each level more difficult than the previous one. Also in the future I will add a global difficulty setting (it will just change the enemy HP and maybe their speed/dmg).

Barricades could also be upgradeable


1: Lot of life


2: Not so much life but bigger barricades (2 ways of bigger barricades: Horizontal and vertical)
An upgrade with more life is of course easy to add. Bigger barricades are trickier to do, it would break the rule that one tower = one square, which makes things simple. I also don't think it would be that useful (you can just build another barricade next to it). Maybe a regenerating barricade would be nice.

Your epidemic theme is really nice.
Thanks, I hope it is somewhat original.

If a wave starts/ends there should be a little sign.
Maybe a sound effect?

I'll PM you for helping with some stuff.
I'll reply to some of your PM suggestions also in this thread if you don't mind. I think it's cool to document progress on the game in this thread ;)
 
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