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Droopy

Interesting Twist on the Top-Down Shooter?

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Hi everyone, I'm looking at some free time in the near future, and consequently, lots of programming! Huzzah! I was thinking about a new game I wanted to work on and I started to notice a major difference between first-person shooters and top-down shooters (my personal preference from a programming point of view). Generally in a top-down view, the player can see everything within the size of the game frame, while first-person games of course can only see in front of the player, and the view is obstructed by objects. I decided before I went any further with the storyline that I have in mind, to write up an engine in which the player would have a field of vision and any objects in the area would block the player's view. My game is intended to be sort of a dark, sci-fi/creepy sort of thing, so imagine the vision as a flashlight being shined in a dark room. Part of the story is going to include the player having some form of mutation that will expand his vision, and eventually allow him to see in 360 degrees, like an insect's compound eye. Here is the prototype that I am currently working with. Yes, the images are my work and yes, they will be gone by the time I get anywhere near done with the game. http://www.heroesofearth.net/Compound.jar Controls: WASD- Movement Mouse- Look/shine flashlight Left Click- Shoot (Pistol by default) Right Click- Examine objects (presently walls and doors are the only things to see). Click again to close the view. Space- Open/Close door Issues that I know about: Shadows when the player is not fully on one side of something or the other may display incorrectly "Cracks" or very thin slices of light when looking at walls Walking diagonally into walls will stop you completely The artwork is bad Any other thoughts you have on the prototype or the idea in general are appreciated. This may be something that's been done before but I haven't seen it in my limited experience. Thanks all!

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Can't seem to get the Jar file working... could be my JRE.

Aside from that, I like the idea of not being able to beyond the actual FOV. One thing to do (which you might have done) is have the player at the bottom of the screen (or just above) so the player can't see behind as that is the edge of the screen. The controls would have to control the background rather than the character (like an FPS)

What would also be interesting to tie in with this is things like peripheral vision. Maybe stuff that wasn't quite in the FOV would be greyed out or blurred. You could see SOMETHING moved, but you are not sure what. This would tie in nicely with the scary theme.

The light is another good idea - users may be confused why half the screen is black - but a light would explain it nicely. Also, use other light sources that flicker, I always find that quite creepy! :P

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The things you are proposing sound good.

They all feature in 'Counterstrike 2D', the player has a tile based line of sight (similar to those of the enemy on a 'Metal Gear Solid' radar).

It works like a fog of war, you can still see the dimmed terrain - but nothing else so that it simulates you knowing the map layout from memory, but not knowing where the enemies are.

I think some 'Soldat' games employ a similar idea too.

There are lots of improvements to be made to the CS2D version, it is very blocky for a start - probably a symptom of the game's tiled graphics.

Also, my opinion, for what it's worth is that you could really nail the creepy sci-fi thing with this idea. I was thinking that instead of using it as a field of vision, you could use the same formula as a light engine - so the lighting in the game casts proper shadows.

Imagine a light bulb swinging from it's cable, the shadows it casts would sway from side to side along with it - perhaps only revealing an enemy for a second at a time, forcing you to guess it's position and heading before you shoot (This idea is partly inspired by the end of the movie 'Heat' if you've seen it).

Pair this with the field of vision of the player and you'd have some pretty nail biting stuff me thinks.


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The whole idea screams "Alone in the Dark" horror to me. Sci-Fi mixed in would be great as well. A good light engine and the allowing the player to still see terrain they have explored would be a good improvement.

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Thanks guys

I was thinking about using fog of war, since it's usually more interesting than staring at a window that's mostly blacked out. Being myself and wanting to get the cool stuff working as fast as possible, I stuck with just blackness for now, but I think I will look into that as I get further into the work.

I also really like the blurry peripherals and the swinging light ideas, those are definitely worth some thought as well.

Also, thk123, did the Jar give any specific message for not running? If not you could try running it through the command line (java -jar Compound.jar). If that still doesn't work, here's a screenshot to give you an idea of what I have so far

[Edited by - Droopy on November 18, 2008 8:23:08 PM]

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"Invalid or corrupt Jar file" is the error message. Also, can't see a screensaver... Nothing seems to be working today lol!

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It's saying:

A user name and password are being requested by http://66.232.119.78:2082. The site says: "cPanel"

Whatever that means...

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