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      Game Development

      Bite the Bullet - Dev Log 1

      Bite the Bullet - Dev Log 1

      Run & Gun, and...eat?  Saw through flesh a new-fashioned way or drill through enemies with fast-paced gunslinging with Bite the Bullet. This game combines some of our favorite game elements, ever, with some fun platforming, skill shots, power-ups, and fast gameplay.  Also, cannibalism.

      Story

      In the 2Xth century, urbanization and pollution caused food and resource shortages. Humanity was able to adopt through technology, devising biologically-implanted nodes which allowed them to consume and metabolize any material, living, or inorganic.


      This necessity sparked a trend in biological manipulation, and soon mankind split itself into two species – the Celestials, who embraced bio-mods and expanded across the stars from their new lunar home; and the Ghouls, descendants of humans who never utilized the consumption nodes and remained behind on earth, poisoned and twisted by the conditions there.


      The strife between these species has caused mistrust, suspicion, even war, and their planetary conflict has attracted the attention, and ire, of a being that is beyond all mortal Flesh.


      Now, two champions - half-caste offspring with parents from both species - will attempt to save humanity’s future by fighting through its past on a desolate and perilous world.

      Features

      Bite the Bullet is a biopunk run and gun action platformer featuring:

      • The choice to destroy or consume enemies, turning their biological matter into many upgrades.
      • 10 levels infested with bladed drones, flame turrets, lightning geckos, blimp rats, and helmet squids.
      • Turn enemies into defenses or weapons, like the Gurtha swarm blowgun, lightning gecko on a stick, or turtle shell plate armor
      • Save up all that consumed flesh and metal in the bio-meter to activate Zombro mode, and pound your foes into smoking ash and bone dust.

      Characters

      Vill and Dart

      Two soldiers of the Lunarian forces who have a shared Purebread and Ghoul ancestry. They manage to keep their Ghoul genes hidden but still carry the bio-implants which enable them to consume all manner of organic and inorganic material


      Garands

      Most Ghouls are content with eking out a meager existence on the husk of a planet Earth has become. Others intend to take out their human cousins by force, joining ranks under the Ghoul revolutionary leaders.


      Lightning Geckos

      Reptiles that have evolved bio-electric survival mechanisms. They are often hunted by Ghouls as both a source of power and for designer leather boots.


      28s

      Sometimes, consumption nodes decay over time and infect other organs of the host. These speedy Ghouls have significant brain damage, which affects their higher cognitive functions.


      Dire Puffer Fish

      Before the great lunar migration, many animals were developed for sports activities. Mechanically altered pufferfish was one of them, as they provided a deadly challenge to typically peaceful activity.


      Sappys

      The Purebreds left plenty of explosives behind on their journey to the Moon. Sappys intend to make this refuse into the instrument of the Purebreds demise.


      Mega Mind

      The consumption nodes were created in a bioware lab which was the bleeding edge of technology for its time. Long abandoned, the dispossessed bio-material and implants in the facility begin to cohere. Now, a central, seething mass looms at the core of the laboratory, and its tendrils can be felt throughout the building like a pulsing nervous system.


      Chunks

      These large ghouls have several bio-modifications which provide them with superhuman strength, allowing them to wield suppressive fire weapons which are normally mounted on vehicles


      Blimp Rats

      Inflatable sacs in these creatures enable them to float into low hanging trees to gather fruit and leaves. Breathing in the gases stored in these sacs can cause nausea and hallucinations, making these animals short on natural predators.


      Eltons

      Hand-picked by Ghoul forces for leg strength and bone density, these individuals were given special implants that allow them to control tiny muscles, allowing them to stabilize and withstand the recoil of their mighty weapons.


      Hamster Squirrel

      Mutant rodents with acidic saliva, teeth as hard as granite, and a dangerous nether region. If they were not so volatile, some say that they could be domesticated…


      Buckshots

      Internal filtration membranes keep these Ghouls safe from the harmful effects of the drug of choice but do little to protect their enemies from the spread of their deadly weapons.


      Here are some updates from the last two weeks:


      Early Ham-Ham implementation: https://gyazo.com/86f0f62dd2460b52b0a423cd3764f47c

      Ghoul Character: https://gyazo.com/852336a8db44009c8c8ce66a0d898dfd

      Implementing rockets: https://gyazo.com/489bb48cd932bdca397bed9dee592a1b

      Kill cam: https://gyazo.com/d37b717d2f0ba6ae493e040fefdefb0a

      Critter cannon: https://gyazo.com/760e9934598ebee44e35cc1b72aa4646

       

       

      Wow, we've come a long way! See more and wishlist Bite the Bullet on Steam!

      Want even more updates? Join our Discord!




      Mega Cat Developer Juice Guide v1.0 (08/23/17)

      Mega Cat Developer Juice Guide v1.0 (08/23/17)

      One of the most important elements of implementing a feature or mechanic is ensuring it looks and feels good for a player to interact with. In this way, as a developer, programming a game to work and meet the functional requirements laid out for you is only part of your responsibility. Improving the look and feel of a game through added programming efforts represents the idea of "juice" to a developer. Developers can " juice" things up by exaggerating, emphasizing, or otherwise drawing extra attention to certain events in the game through various means such as:

      • Spawning added graphical elements
      • Modifying existing graphical elements
      • Implementing Camera/screen effects
      • Adding/modifying sound effects

      Impactfulness / Feel

      Developers often want a certain element in the gameplay element to feel more "impactful". This refers to adding "weight" and "feel" behind something taking place, such as an enemy or player receiving damage, the player character landing after a long fall, or a missile exploding. To juice something up to feel more impactful, exaggeration and emphasis are your tools to get the job done. For example, when an enemy receives damage, you could do the following to make it feel more impactful to the player:

      • Apply a shake or jitter to the enemy sprite’s position for a brief moment
      • Make the enemy's sprite frame flicker on and off every few frames
      • Knockback to the enemy, even if only slightly
      • Particles spawning at the hit location (e.g. blood for a human, nuts & bolts for a robot, etc.)

      Simply playing a damage animation for the damaged enemy or player alone is not enough to emphasize the damage.

      Where should we focus on impactfulness?

      Generally, the activities that the player performs the most should be made to feel the most impactful. For example, in a side-scroller beat-em' -up, the player’s primary focus is on hitting enemies. Therefore, hitting enemies should be the top priority on the list of game elements to juice up, and to make impactful. Here are some general rules for things that a developer should focus on juicing up to feel more impactful:

      • Enemy receiving damage
        • Enemy knockback
        • Enemy position jitter/shake
        • Make the enemy's sprite frame flicker on and off every few frames
        • Particle spawn at hit location
        • Screen shake that is stronger than if the player attacked but missed

      Example of enemy position knockback, blood/impact particles at hit location, enemy sprite frame flickering

       

      • Player receiving damage

        • Knockback
          • Be careful, can negatively affect balance or feel depending on the context
        • Make the player's sprite frame flicker on and off every few frames
        • Particle spawn
        • Camera shake


      Example of player knockback, sprite frame flicker, blood particle spawn

       

      • Enemy attacking
        • Shockwave on impact
        • Quick Sprite shake on impact
        • Dust cloud poof on impact
        • Screen shake if the attack hits the grounds/walls
      • Player attacking

        • Shockwave on impact
        • Quick Sprite shake on impact
        • Dust cloud poof on impact
        • Screen shake
      • Enemy defeat (especially bosses)

        • Explosions if appropriate
          • Make sure to include smoke if so
        • Extra particle spawning similar to receiving e damage
        • Screen shake
          • If it’s a big enemy falling over/exploding

       

      Example of extra particles on Overlord hit, screen shake and chromatic aberration on hit/defeat, and tractor beam movement on enemy death

       

      Obtain a powerup or item

       

       

       

       

       

      Examples of juices upon powerup pickup

       

      • Obtaining a reward

      • Gaining score

      • Moving a menu selector / confirming menu selection

        • Play sound effect
        • Apply transform/scale/shader animation to selected menu element
        • Change highlighted item's sprite to an alternative one

      • Changing to a new menu screen

        • Have old menu elements fade out or /move off of the screen
        • Have new menu elements fade in or transition in from the off-screen

       

       

      Example of menu fadeout and elements moving

       

      • Beginning/exiting a level/stage

        • Transition fade in/out
        • Sound effect
        • Particle effect local to the camera
        • Player character animation

       

      Example of transitions, player animation effects

       

      Shoot em' up/Run n' gunner juices:

      • Explosion

        • Screen shake

          • Base the amount based on explosion size

        • Smoke clouds which linger and slowly dissipate after the explosion

        • An extremely satisfying explosion sound effect

        • Spawn/despawn light source to imitate a flash of light light

          • Quickly doing this creates a flash of light

          • Good for short-lived explosions

      • Projectile/Bullet impact

        • Particles on impact

          • Sparks

          • Broken projectile

          • Etc.

        • Sound effect based upon the surface hit, examples

          • Different sounds for hitting stone

          • Different sounds for hitting the dirt

          • Etc.

      • Gunfire

        • Muzzle flash

        • Lightsource spawn for a brief moment on each shot to simulate muzzle flash emitting light

        • Smoke particles drifting up from muzzle during firing

        • Bullet casings or shells falling from the gun on shooting or reloading, appropriately

        • Character knockback while shooting

          • Should be subtle if present at all

          • Could be significant for very slow and powerful weapons