So I've been dabbling in Actionscript 3.0 for a while now, and fairly recently I developed a blitting engine so I could take things to the extreme and get the most out of Flash's performance. (No I'm not doing it in C++) Because I like tackling programming challenges and whatnot, I eventually ended up with something that could be used for a shmup game, and I figured why not actually make a game out of this? If not for my enjoyment, then to get my brothers to shut up about me and my passion for games xD
I've been looking at a lot of shmups and indie games to get inspiration on how to build the engine and whatnot. I also want to do some extra mechanic or ability that's beyond "bomb" and basic shot weapons. But I'm not entirely certain which ones I want to do, since I want the game to be enjoyable by many people, not just me. Plus, I'm no shmup expert.
Things I do like:
-- Hyper mode (DoDonpachi Daifukkatsu)
Activate hyper mode to get an increase in power and the ability to countershot most enemy bullets. I'm not entirely satisfied with the current one in Daifukkatsu, but it's a good start. Plus it's more or less a panic button that can be refreshed over time.
-- Hybrid HP and life system (Deathsmiles, Akai Katana Shin)
Not everything has to be the end of you. Let's face it, it's kinda silly that small, microsized bullets can 1-shot you and for game purposes, behave exactly the same as some of the more devastating attacks.
-- Score playing a role to your performance
The most basic thing that comes out of this is getting extends (1up). But in a few cases, such as Battle Garegga, scoring well is necessary to finish the game. But in general, I don't like having something that only sits there looking pretty.
Got hit, but still have bombs? Use a bomb to prevent death instead, but at reduced effect from what a manual bomb can do. This is good when the player isn't good at video games, and it is forgiving on lower difficulty levels.
Things I don't like:
-- Convoluted scoring systems
I'm all for racking up points and getting huge numbers, but I'll be damned if I have to deal with a scoring system that involves doing unintuitive things. It's not like I'm obligated to score (and I usually don't), but it's wasted effort and silliness imo.
-- Item hunts and obscure unlock conditions
Face it, a bazillion bullets, bonuses, and explosions will cover up the screen, you'll always have the weapon button jammed down, and you don't observe everything going on. To cite a specific example, if you destroy a large tank before it runs over a silo, the stage 1 midboss teleports in and fights you (extra goodies). But how would you know to destroy the large tank within a very brief time frame?
-- Options (those satellite things that defend/shoot)
-- Enemy laser weapons (DoDonPachi Daifukkatsu, Akai Katana Shin)
Even with the reddo gauge and mechanics of Daifukkatsu, the lasers felt really inconsequential. The large lasers were fairly overpowering if you didn't know what to do though. However, the lasers in Akai Katana seemed to strike me as the right kind of thing, because while they do damage (not necessarily kill you), they're not everywhere, and you don't have something that's readily available to make them obsolete.
I'm looking for ideas on what awesome things I can do for a shmup game. Let me know what you guys think would be awesome, and why!