Posted by Ross
Fri, 20th Jun 2014
Hi everyone. It’s been another busy week here on Flame Over. So busy, in fact, that Al hasn’t been able to tear himself away from the game to write a blog post, so I’m afraid you’re stuck with me. :)
This past week we’ve been doing a lot of work on the tutorial for Flame Over and we’ve also started work on the Factory Missions, which should really ramp up the pressure in the late game – some very interesting defusing and other exciting stuff to come!
The other big news is that the Steam Summer Sale has now started and for the first time ever one of our games is part of it. That’s right, OMG Zombies! will have a 60% discount for the duration of the sale, meaning you can pick up the PC version of the chain reaction shooter for under $2! So, now there’s no excuse to not pick it up from the Steam Store here. Particularly as OMG Zombies! is still in the top ten PSP games of all time according to Metacritic.
For those of you who never experienced the simple joys of zombie-popping first time around, the zombie virus in OMG Zombies! is the result of a virulent fungus that causes its zombified victims to EXPLODE when attacked. That’s pretty cool in itself, but if any infected matter lands on another zombie then they’ll explode too, causing a chain-reaction tsunami of gore! Wise to this, as a highly trained Riot Cop, you’re able to use your wits to take down hordes of the undead with a single well-placed rifle round.
The Steam release of OMG Zombies! also includes Cloud Saving so you can continue your save games on any machine, plus there are 8 Steam Trading Cards for you to collect :). So why not go pick up OMG Zombies! this weekend?
That’s all for now. I’ll be back next week, but until then you can join us on our Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Google+ pages where we will be posting all the news from Laughing Jackal.
Posted by Al
Fri, 13th Jun 2014
It’s that time again, so let’s catch up on what’s been cooking in Flame Over, Laughing Jackal’s forthcoming roguelike fire fighting game, in the last seven days…
This week we’ve put the finishing touches to the sample environments of our newly-completed Factory theme and they are looking pretty deluxe, I must say!
Above: A fabrication room, where some of Infernal Industries more unsavoury products are assembled.
Above: A typical warehouse environment for Blaze to extinguish. Watch that fuel on the back of the forklift!
The Factory is Flame Over’s last and most treacherous theme. We’ve divided its environments up into various room types, each of which will feature different kinds of flammable materials and hazards (pro tip: watch out for damaged wall vents!) for Blaze Carruthers to survive.
Above: A machine room where chemicals are produced. Beware of explosions!
As well as Factory-related stuff, we’ve made progress in other areas too, chiefly around our mini missions: bite sized chunks of gameplay that pop up every couple of levels. You will be tasked with jobs of varies varieties, helping track down missing items, protecting top secret company data and all manner of other cool stuff to be revealed in the near-ish future! :)
Above: A packing room full of lots of lovely flammable wood and paper in neat, fire-friendly rows...
Outside of all of those things we’ve been taking care of business on the debugging side, squashing some older and peskier issues in between jobs. Soon all of our mini missions will be coded and feature complete, at which point we’ll look forward to sharing them with you! Then it’ll be onwards up and upwards adding our remaining features as we head towards an alpha over the next couple of months.
Above: Printing room that'll be a electrical nightmare, plus lots of lovely burny paper. :)
That’s about it for this week. I hope you like the look of our Factory theme. Needless to say it should be the toughest of them all once work has finished… mwahahahaha! ^^
See you next week!
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Posted by Ross
Thu, 5th Jun 2014
Hello to you one and all,
This week in the world of Flame Over we’ve been working on a few interesting things.
First up, as I mentioned last week all of our Factory theme’s basic assets are now complete and ready to be turned into rooms and by the end of the week we hope to be able to start working on some Factory-themed mini-missions. Yay! ^^
Now the mad rush for assets has abated somewhat we can cast our eyes across the shed-load of other stuff we still have to get done! ;) This has mostly focused on two areas this week: user feedback and control scheme.
Above: Some electrical fires burn away at the top of this screen. Electrical fires start a new ‘regular’ fire every couple of seconds and can only be put out with the extinguisher. The fuseboard Blaze just found can power down electrical hazards!
On the user feedback front, our electrical fire’s visual effects have changed from a nice but very hard to see blue flame effect to a far more conspicuous pillar of dark smoke. Electrical fuel objects now emit this thick, dark smoke for as long as the power to the level remains switched on, instantly spreading fires to surrounding objects every few seconds and generally making a nuisance of themselves. Once you’ve hunted down that level’s fuse box, however, your electricity-related woes will be a thing of the past! Checking your map and hunting down fuse boxes is fast becoming a go-to tactic of mine… ;)
Above: Now Blaze has powered down those horrible electrical hazards his fire hose will be able to extinguish them. Go Blaze, GO!
On now to changes to our controls and I’d have to say that the single biggest change this week has been a change to the way you control Blaze’s aiming and the camera position during gameplay. It’s a change I am very very happy to share with you, as it’s turned out to be completely awesome!
Up until now we’ve struggled with camera control in the game, which ideally you’d want to control manually with a stick. Tough when you’re making a twin stick shooter…
We wanted Flame Over’s gameplay to have an element of hide-and-seek in terms of checking rooms thoroughly to make sure all fire sources are safe. Fail to do so and you could be moving on to new ground while an inferno begins to spread behind your back. So, being able to quickly and easily check your corners was very important to us.
Above: Here in a Executive-themed area Blaze has just thrown a water bomb at the bottom of the screen and is dealing with some closer flames with his hose. Cash is flying towards him for each flame he’s extinguished.
With that in mind, this week I decided the team should dedicate some time to getting our camera and aiming controls working as smoothly and perfectly as possible.
After lots of experimentation, Gavin’s narrowly avoided bout of stress-related insanity, and thanks to some inspiration on Marc’s part from the Zelda-on-N64 era we’ve well and truly succeeded. Now we’re using our right stick to seamlessly control the camera AND aim Blaze’s hose and extinguisher. But how?
Well, during peaceful moments when Blaze isn’t squirting his hose or extinguisher at something that’s on fire, pushing left or right on the right stick rotates the camera, with the speed or rotation depending on how far you push the stick away from centre.
Begin to squirt your hose or extinguisher and the right stick switches to control the direction Blaze’s equipment is pointed, giving you complete control of both elements. Camera manipulation is ultra precise, speedy and simple. It’s a revelation and something I can’t believe we didn’t hit on sooner. Still, we got there and we’re all very happy with our even lovelier new controls!
Well, that’s about it for this week. Over the next week we should have more to share on Flame Over’s progress – hopefully it’s all good.
See you then,