- game mechanics
- enemy spawns
- map generation
test playing the new turn based tower defence game which I have not yet dubbed and shall refer to as TBTD for short I came to the conclusion that levels were too easy. Adding more enemies is the first thing that popped into my mind but that doesn’t make the game interesting, it only makes it tedious. In the first round of the prototype I had the targeting set to all neighbor tile at a distance of 1 tile. So diagonal attacks were possible. Changing this rule to only cardinal directions increased the difficulty quite a bit. Also I came up with the following mechanic: The player has 2 types of attacks. Ranged and melee. If you are standing next to an enemy you default to a melee attack. You cannot use a ranged attack. If you are not next to the enemy it’s a ranged weapon attack (if you have one). Since ranged attack will not displace the enemy it becomes a tactical decision to use a ranged attack and keep you mech safe or go up to the enemy to displace it. This did add a variety to the tactical decision needed. GO refactored the attack code into a weapons class, so we have the foundation to add different types of weapons into the game. The pilot weapons are the Punch and Autocannon with different damages / ranges.
As the turns progress new enemies spawn. The current method for doing this is a probalistic method and the chances to spawn an enemy increase with each turn that an enemy is not spawn. If an enemy does spawn, the chance reduces. So if the game drags on your chances of clearing the level decrease quite a bit which forces the player to act quickly. I’m also thinking of adding a turn counter to make some levels survival mode levels.
One feedback I got was that the levels become repetetive after a certain while, especially if there is going to be the concept of permadeath, which I actually find appealing. Random level generation is out of the question as random is random, and not nice to play. So going through some procedural level content designs, I came up with the idea of constructing the levels in chunks. Each level consists of a combination of 4 chunks to choose from N. This can yield different level topologies and game play. We’ll need to test this to see how it goes.
We discussed the concept of salvaging enemies at the end of each level (looting) for better weapons and upgrades. This also looks like a promising mechanic. For this to be meaningful, I will also need to implement some kind of procedural weapon generator which I need look into.