So perhaps the name wasn't the most clever, but the 3rd installment to my
series of Christmas games was designed to be a monster. Armed with an
level editor, multiple paths to victory, and 2-player Contra style game play,
"Elf Force" was going kick the crap out of my last two games - and
it'd have more robots (see below).
For anyone keeping tabs, however, you'll realize that Elf-Force never saw the
light of day. Engine design took priority on this one, leaving no time to
get the game's content made. What was the lesson learned, you ask?
The lesson is "Don't set your heights too high." I had
envisioned a huge game but left myself only 2 months to complete it. Even
with Flash's simplicy, making the game I was hoping for was beyond any one human
being (mostly with all the GalCiv work being wrapped up at the time).
What did get finished, however, I was pretty proud of. People could use
the map editor to create, save, and play a level (for which I had to learn the
wackiness of Flash's XML handling). I got a pretty decent side scrolling
engine working within the Flash environment, plus I learned a lot about
game-flow and triggered events
This is the basic map editor. Nothing much to look at, but it gave a
nice bit of flexibility to map-creators. Below is a playable room from a
lava-level I whipped up using it.
Again, the visuals are pretty painful (you're fighting larger versions of
yourself) but the game-play had promise. I just wish I could have got it
done in time. Luckily, after learning the importance of keeping
side-projects simple, as well as starting early, I can say that work is quickly
wrapping up on "Northpole Showdown". This year's Holiday Game borrows
the game-play of Quarter-Munchers such as "Double Dragon", "Final
Fight", and "TMNT: The Arcade Game", and adds a Christmas
flare. That should be released next week, but in the meantime, here's the
most recent version of "Elf-Force" for anyone to download.
Player One Controls: Movement Arrow
Keys Jump }
Weapon \ Key
Player Two Controls: Movement A S D
W Jump 1
Fire Weapon ~ Key
Get to levels on the "main map" using the arrow keys to roll
over a red dot, then press the jump or attack key. You can break green
boxes in the Lava Level, and you have to collect 30 packages in the Polar Bear
level to beat that one (make sure the 30th gift is on the ground to get a
pelvic-thrusting "level completed" animation ). Again, its
nothing special, but it's an interesting look into how game's look when time
just runs out.