My name is Kenneth Rougeau & I'm an independent artist and video game developer, among other things. I currently live in Portland, Oregon in a crappy basement apartment (like so many other indie artists and game devs). My latest projects include an arcade game based on Plan 9 From Outer Space and a point-and-click adventure game based on Night of the Living Dead. I have a ton of other game ideas in mind as well, and not all of them are based on old b-movies :) For more information, please visit my website (or just ask!).

Report article RSS Feed Game Dev Diary #1: Plan 9 From Outer Space

Posted by krougeau on Oct 5th, 2012

Plan 9 From Outer Space - saucer and alien planetAlright, so rather than drive myself any crazier worrying about whether or not the Kickstarter campaign for Plan 9 is going to fly (among other normal worries like, "oh crap, rent's due tomorrow!" and "did I remember to eat today?"), I've decided to just work on the game itself and get things a little shinier.

I fixed a few minor things in the demo binaries earlier today and played through it myself on various difficulty levels about 1/2 a dozen times... I'm going to poke around and improve at least a few things that are bugging me...

Plan 9 From Outer Space: The Game (2012)
I've never been thrilled with the "Pez" looking laser the player fires (although I do dig the little fire trail particle effect) and have been meaning to improve it... I also think the level phases (planet changes) switch a little too slowly, especially at the beginning... so... I'm going to try to speed up the transitions a bit.

There is also a major problem with the player respawn setup... I'd wanted to implement a "temporary invulnerability" for the player, giving them 2 or so seconds after they croak before they can be hit again, but the current implementation isn't working correctly... Even worse, I've realized that you can still move and shoot even though you're respawning... Let's face it, that's just not right...

All in all, it's a pretty simple list of fixes to take care of. The hardest part will probably be getting the screwy laser to look the way I want it to, and that mostly because there's so little useful information on the new Shuriken particle system in Unity 3D... I'm (once again) left to trial and error. That's cool. I'm used that that :)

I'm steadily envisioning the next level of play... I've got the transition from the end of the demo down to Earth itself figured out and just have to put it together... I've got this great cloud system and airplanes that look pretty much like the one(s) from the movie... I've been working on the parody versions of film studio names and have a pretty fair concept of how I want things to look/work in the "Destroy Hollywood" level... I'm planning on making it so that you can raise zombies from the graveyard, but you'll have a chance of raising a "special" zombie... Vampira! Bela*!, and of course TOR!!!! I'll keep you posted as I work on it over the next couple of days :)

The Bad & Good Bela's from Plan 9 From Outer Space * - with Bela, I think you should get a 50/50 chance of getting the good, useful Bela or the crappy cloak-over-face dentist Bela -- thoughts?

If you have any suggestions for game play, I'd love to hear them! If not, nuke yourself a bunch of popcorn and watch Ed Wood's much loved/loathed Plan 9 From Outer Space. If you've got a few bucks in your pocket, you might even check out the RiffTrax version (you'd know them & love them from MST3k fame), which you can stream directly from their site. It's absolutely hysterical and definitely the most fun you'll ever have watching a bad movie. It's the best "not quite but almost" four bucks you'll ever spend.

Have fun!!!
- Ken Rougeau

Muahahahah! Plan 9 From Outer Space

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