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Cart #mcg_ssg-0 | 2022-09-18 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | License: CC4-BY-NC-SA

Hello, everyone! This is my first PICO-8 game, started on an airplane with no wifi and finished as a fun little shmup toy while I was out of steam working on my main project.

Spiffy Spaceguy is an endless 80's-style side-scrolling shooter. Powerups will either switch your weapon type, power-up your current weapon (if you choose the same powerup style as the weapon you currently have,) or heal you. Different weapons have different strengths and weaknesses; play with all four to find your favorite!

While this is technically a work in progress, it's pretty complete. Have fun!

(PICO-8 is a delight to work with. I could see never going back to making larger games...)

P#117622 2022-09-18 20:17

Got up to 62100 in score, @MagicChopstick. Didn't see anything further in the game ?

P#117626 2022-09-18 20:40

@dw817 It's an endless shooter (and still WIP-ish). Enemies get palette-swaps and become tougher at higher waves, and the bosses get larger and tougher, too.

I might add an ending/end boss at some point, but I'm also kind of digging the endless shooter aesthetic...

P#117643 2022-09-19 02:28 ( Edited 2022-09-19 02:28)

I decided to see how far I could get with the orange weapon. It got me this far.

With maximum upgrades, the orange weapon chewed through almost all of the regular enemies with ease, but the balance seemed fair in that it the other weapons are easier to target boss components with.

When a boss inflicted damage on me, I would destroy all but its last component and then sit around waiting for powerups to appear to bring me back to full health and weapon power. If you make any further changes, you might like to think about what should trigger powerups appearing, such as:

  • Time (as I gather it currently does)
  • Distance
  • Destroying all enemies in a wave
  • Having specific enemy types that contain the powerup

I'm not certain that any of these would be an improvement, just things to think about.

Nicely crunchy sound effects and a good variety of enemies, too. Gold star.

P#117644 2022-09-19 03:31

Phew, after couple replays I could get this far:

I thought it's gonna be similar to other shmups but I noticed that the bosses have different turrets on them giving different challenge on each run.

I lasered my way through my last play so maybe I'm gonna try using other weapon next time.

P#117650 2022-09-19 13:02

@Cowirrie: Thank you! I've been messing about with the various powerup levels and timings. I've landed on "make them come less frequently the stronger your weapon gets" as a good balancing point: it makes it easier to ramp up when you lose powerups from damage, but harder to heal if you've got a good weapon at your disposal, forcing you to balance healing vs. power.

The "hang out with a weak boss" strategy is one that I've used myself, too, and I'm toying with stopping powerups during bosses as a result (though that also doesn't feel quite right.) Needs more thought.

@Bloodbane: thank you! Yeah, I had fun laying down the procgen for the bosses. It's fairly lightweight, and (if you can believe it) this is the first time in my 35-odd-year-long gamedev life that I've ever used the marching squares algorithm (I used it to draw the outline around the boss, which really cleans up the look of it.)

P#117909 2022-09-24 17:22

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