March 17, 2013

Dangers of Overthinking Addendum

It's early so I'm not quite celebrating yet and while I'm still waking up I thought I'd share what I was working on the last couple days. An important note on what happens when you over complicate things that should be simple. I was making a cyberpunk themed turret defense game. I somehow managed to find myself brushing up on trigonometry and finding ways to program velocity and trajectories on something that should be so much more simple than that. Some of the wild complexities I'd written down to accomplish make me wonder what got into me at the time. Though that's not to say I stopped working but I took a step back and decided to make things a bit easier on myself.

If you're interested in the details of the game continue reading otherwise that was essentially the post.

It's a free form path builder where you create the maze that the creeps follow and it's 2.5d in that it's technically 3d but you only see it from one perspective making it vaguely 2d.
You don't use the towers to create the path though rather I have an actual path tool which you can use at any time and is free to do so which means you can build the entire maze from the get go.
the path can overlap one tier as long as it's not sequentially meaning you can't simply retrace the entire map under itself however you can have sections that cross without creeps taking the shorter path.
the maze itself has some properties you can upgrade such as slowing effects and damage per second however they are minimal and you'll never kill a single creep outright with it.

a tower upgrade is worth 2.5 towers of the same level at 75% of the cost of 2 such towers consuming only a .5 power increase over it's previous level.
most upgrades are based on an algorithm so I didn't bother to put a cap on it, as long as you have the resources for it you can do it for the most part.
there are special towers that influence surrounding towers in various ways and each tower also has accessory slots for upgrades separate from the main tower upgrade.
each tower requires power from "the grid" which means you have to build "power towers" to provide power to each tower in an area. Each station is initially limited on the number of towers and how much power it can provide. Each tower has a slider determining how much power it consumes which effects it's base damage for most tower types. Towers also have multiple settings also with sliders for range, rate of fire, and other similar stats.
Towers can be configured with 3 savable profiles unique to each type and and be quickly changed individually or in groups with a master switch to switch all towers of that type.
towers can be powered down when not in use and can be done so automatically to allow for fewer wasted resources since you don't have to waste them on building more power stations.
The grid also has "stress" levels which indicate if too much power is going through a given area at a time which can choke towers or if it overheats can shut them all down so you have to build stress relievers to prevent that.
There are also power extenders to allow greater range for a given power station without building an entire new station.

creeps gain 25% more health per level and gain .1 to their speed every 5 levels. There are no flying creeps however there are some creeps that are immune to certain towers. The number of creeps spawned and the rate at which they spawn increases every couple levels. By the rate I mean the number of creeps per second so while you might start out seeing them in a chain one after another they'll slowly get closer together and then you might start seeing them side by side and then more of them until it looks like a liquid flowing wave of endless creeps. You gain resources from killing the creeps and gain an additional bonus % calculated over time rather than per wave.

Creeps travel to multiple objectives which you're required to connect to and depending on your difficulty you may be required to have multiple entry points. Each central objective is responsible for various properties of the maze and towers and losing one can greatly change the grid and everything on it. You can recover these objectives though as long as the final objective isn't lost yet. Recovering these objectives is hard though as they provide bonuses to the number of creeps spawned, their speed, and health, etc.

And that is the basic setup of the game. Not much to add to it as of yet and the majority of it actually isn't completely finished yet however I do have most of it up and working. The path system, the creeps, the towers and most of the power system minus the stress which is what I'll probably be working on tomorrow.

If you have anything to add feel free, I'm always up for hearing how people would change a given game for the better.

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