So long dear PSP.
After testing a new control scheme, I finally decided to stop support the PSP for my game and fully embrace twin stick control. It makes shooting at things a lot more precise and controllable and removes any of the previous frustration. It's a lot more fun to shoot stuff around.
My current controller layout is as follow:
Left stick -> move ship in screen space
Left shoulder -> switch altitude plane
Right stick -> shooting direction
Right shoulder -> intended to be used for weapon change, not yet implemented
So basically, movement control on the left side and weaponry on the right side. Sounds simple enough.
Note that I do not plan to use secondary shoulder buttons as these do not exist on the VITA, and I want my controls to be as universal as possible. So I'll use the common denominator of all current (and hopefully future) platforms.
Ditching the PSP incidentally makes life much simpler in term of development because the PSP was in my pipeline the only console to not support programmable shaders, and it was also a lot less powerful than the newer platforms cpu-wise.
I will now have to write a basic Cg shader that will be used during my early development stage and replace the old fixed-pipeline shaders with this one. Remember, the eye candy will come later, so will the fancy shaders :)
I have to say it saddens me to stop making this game on the PSP, it's such a great little platform. I will keep working on the PSP for teaching at the school though. I will post soon some of the latest stuff I've done on it, mostly for fun.
Level building improvement
As I said in my previous post, the only thing missing for a flexible level building pipeline was to support layers in Tiled, that's done now. I also support various tile sizes (through support of different tilesets) so now I can add large pieces to my environment. This will be useful for creating huge natural environment (Canyon, mountains... you name it).
You can see I can now superimpose objects to the ground elements, which allows for many combination. For instance the new fire element can be placed either on small or large ground tiles.
Second loop: Mid-term gameplayNow that the the Toy is working just fine, I need to start thinking about the player's mid-term objectives. This will be the main theme of my second loop:
- Develop others and more rich enemy behaviors so that the player can use his skills at controlling the ship, and use the environment elements to his advantage
- Create mid-term objectives, such as saving humans or collecting special items
- Implement success and failure conditions to develop a real sense of accomplishment
- Implement 'story' mode with level dependence and progress through a series of levels
- Develop new dynamic environment elements such as doors
- Manage level boundaries
- Integrate difficulty levels
Oh, and next post, I'll try to have some video of the game up and running. Thanks for reading and happy Easter.