Archive

Posts Tagged ‘7drl2014’

DataQueen – 7DRL Success

March 23rd, 2014 6 comments
DataQueen screenshot

Destroy the gridbugs, protect the data!

Last week I completed DataQueen, my 4th successful 7DRL. It’s a hex-based roguelike with a number of unique mechanics that makes it very tight and tactical without ever feeling too overwhelming. The feedback I’ve received has been immensely positive, so I may work on polishing this more (and have had the generous offer of someone drawing a tileset for the game). You can download the game here:

[Edit: Note there’s currently a little bug when you first run it that might make the game hang. If you restart the bug disappears forever. Yes, I’m confused too…]

The big concept I wanted to try in the game was from the board game Hive, where you only die if you get surrounded. This seemed like a cool idea to port to roguelikes! So enemies can’t attack you directly, and movement is very important.

DataQueen combat screenshot

You can set up several attacks to trigger at once.

At the same time you have a wheel of special abilities called the “hex wheel”. For each hex direction you move in you have a special attack that hits in that direction. You can gain new hexes and place them on the wheel as the game progresses. This gives a range of tactical options all tied to just the movement keys. Every turn the wheel spins, meaning you have to plan moves and positioning if you want to chain attacks together. The abilities have all been designed to combine in interesting ways, encouraging the player to make multi-turn attacks.

Movement itself is made more interesting by giving you free movement on green grids. This lets you reposition yourself for different attack directions very easily. Moving onto blue grids converts them to to green, but enemies will do the opposite, quickly eating up your useful tactical space. This cuts across all the mechanics in the game and adds a lot of tactical depth. To progress you need to connect pink grids up with green grids, so the war with enemies is mostly one of terrain (and not dying).

DataQueen upgrades screenshot

Upgrades! The UI artwork was done by daftigod.

The base enemies all have unique abilities which can challenge the player. Most enemies die in one hit, but they can be a huge problem in mass numbers. Each level there is a boss, and each of these requires special tactics to overcome. It makes for a challenging game that hopefully never feels unfair.

I’ll be doing a developer Let’s Play video of it soon, talking about some of the design choices and how the game operates. For now you can hear me discuss the game a bit on the latest episode of Roguelike Radio, alongside discussion of lots of other cool 7DRLs! Let me know if you have any comments about the game, and anything you’d like to see changed – feedback is hugely appreciated.

7DRL Incoming: 8th to 16th March

February 24th, 2014 2 comments

It’s now less than 2 weeks to the start of the 2014 Seven Day Roguelike Challenge! This my personal highlight of the year, and I can’t bloody wait for it to start :D

This year I’ve set up mailing list for people wanting to subscribe to updates about the process. This is for developers, players, media, whoever. Just enter your e-mail address if you want to be kept up to date this year and in future years.

Also, Unity have repeated their offer of 1 month trials of Unity Pro for 7DRL entrants. E-mail me if you want a code!

As for my own plans… I’m hoping to make a complex game with a hacking theme (868-HACK being a big inspiration). You move on a hex grid, with “connected” nodes being easier to travel around, and connections are created by your movements. Enemies destroy connections and hinder your movements. You die if you get surrounded by enemies – so it’s a no HP game, with movement being key. Building on Mosaic a little bit, but I’m hoping it’ll be more tactical. Bumping into enemies will trigger special attacks against them, but which attack type is triggered depends on the direction of attack, following a “hex wheel” of assigned powers. The hex wheel rotates each turn, so you can’t keep spamming the same attack in one direction.

My biggest challenge is coming up with interesting enemies and bosses, and maybe some sort of progression system. Also a good name… Hexhack? Hacktics? I’ll think something up…

Ooh, and in other roguelike-y news be sure to register for IRDC! The International Roguelike Developers Conference is in Berlin again this year, from 9 – 11 May, hosted by the distinguished Ido Yehieli.