Oh boy, oh boy! Finally we, Qcode and me, feel comfortable enough to show off our project! Some of you already knew this was coming as I've dropped a few images or gifs in steam group chat every now and then. But now we're not going to hold back much with showing off new stuff!
So without any more fuss; We present to you: Becky
Video edited by: Turcu Mihai --- Music: 'After Having Coffee by Dashi on Newgrounds.com You might have noticed that this is, ofcourse, still an early work in progress. A lot of things are subject to change and there are some minor bugs we are well aware of (like the quads bleed (the red lines) you see here and there). But fancy flashy stuff aside, what's the plan? Here's everything you need to know:
How it started Quite a while ago I sprited a girl in a running animation for the fun of it. I coined her the name Becky and in the back of my mind I imagined a game she would feature in. It's something I usually do when creating a character. I stated, with the character as I posted it, that I would consider making a game with her if anyone would be up for it. I didn't really think anyone would bite. But instead Qcode did. Rather quickly Qcode programmed the basics and I had a few new sprites ready for Becky. We progressed, then things fell quiet for a while and later on we picked it back up... Things went quickly from there. As things started to take shape we both got excited and kept working on it more and more. And here we are now.
General idea Becky will be a fast paced platformer and eight directional shooter set in a world where using all kinds of machines and mechanics is a must to survive. But not for Becky... I'm aiming for a fun but challenging game with a story to motivate you to keep digging for answers. I love a world that you can explore and that rewards you if you do so. So I have a semi-metroidvania world layout in mind. I also have that kind of progression in mind; certain upgrades will enable you to go back and access an area you couldn't before. Visually I aim the game to be lively and fluid. Full of fun and neat characters and enemies. I'll try my best to nail a style of my own and keep building on that to keep original and unique.
The Story I'm not going to spoil too much on the story, since it's a good drive to keep playing as well as the fact that there is a lot to change. But here's a very rough version of the beginning of the story:
Becky is studying and practicing to become a mechanic. As she's tinkering on her new creation, a little helpful drone, she's interrupted by her mentor. As a new step in her study she's let in on a major secret that her town holds. Her mentor takes her down a long and awkward elevator ride. They end up in a narrow but very long, dark hallway. Giant cogs seem to hold up the ceiling, turning ever so slowly. Her mentor explains that this is the machine that keeps their planet turning; The Orbitary System. It enables night and day on what they call a 'dead planet'. He brought her with him to check a defect that was reported by the inspector. One day Becky would be doing this job... He quickly realizes it's not just a defect, it's a sabotage. Right at that moment Becky's drone rings his alarm. AI controlled drones and machines are attacking the village, everything has been turned to rubble. Becky contacts her commander, he tells her that she has to get out of the village and try to get to a safe place, but most importantly try to find out where these machines are controlled or coming from. Becky decides to listen to her commander, she flees the town but with her mind set more on finding out what these machines are planning.
Who's attacking the village with these machines? Was it the same person who sabotaged the Orbitary System? Becky will, later on in her adventures, come to know things are much more complex than she could imagine.
The Gameplay Like I stated in the general introduction I'm planning Becky to be a fast paced platformer with eight-directional shooting set in a semi-metroidvania like world. I'm aiming to make many different encounters with enemies and bosses. Every enemy or boss would be a different kind of challenge. Imagine fast enemies that take skill to take down, or a pack type of enemy that works in groups trying to overwhelm you. Or even a big enemy that has the amount of fire power to defend itself from you. The game is not only going to focus on combat, it's very likely that Becky would also feature puzzle and platforming challenges. Becky will be able to get power-ups. Think of power-ups like new moves, new type of ammunition, new abilities for her drone, etc. We haven't thought this out too much yet as we are focussing on the main aspects right now, but we will cross that bridge when we come to it. I love themed levels and I will try to make the different areas in Becky be different from each other as wel as to stick true to the story and the world it is set in. I'm also thinking of making certain tidbits of story something you can only unravel by exploring and doing optional things. Same thing for upgrades that aren't necessary to progress but are nice to have.
Our Approach This is a hobby project, so we work on it whenever we want to. I rarely have moments of not being motivated, I really enjoy working on this project. But that doesn't mean I can work on it 24/7 unfortunately. I can't speak for Qcode, but he has his own life to take care of as well. However, whenever we have something to show off or have made any progression we'll most likely show it here. It's fun to be able to follow the progress of a game in development in my opinion. I hope the feedback on what we plan and show will be able to keep us on the right track as well as motivate us to do our utter best to make what I have in mind for this project.
Our Goal Simple; Creating a fun and challenging game! We simply try to put down what I have in mind to the best of our abilities.
Frequently Asked Questions I've already had a few people that know about Becky ask me questions, and many of them were the same ones. So to avoid having to repeat myself I've gathered the most asked ones here. If you have any questions that this topic doesn't answer, feel free to ask me here or on steam.
Q1: Are you planning on putting this on steam? A: That's basically asking if I would put it up for sale and I can't honestly say that I would at this point. It's a hobby project and I would only put it up on steam if it'd be nearing completion and I think it would be worth paying for. And that's not even talking about how to judge on the pricetag.
Q2: What about crowdfunding? A: I can't accept that for a hobby project. Plus I'm not comfortable making promisses I might not be able to keep.
Q3: Can I help somehow? A: Shake your pompoms and cheer for team Qcode & Jorichi.
Q4: Seriously, I want in on this. A: Well there is one area that we need help with. Sound effects and music. It's not much of a focus for the near future, but it will be of importance later on. If you're seriously interested in being the 'sound guy' then contact me through a PM here or on steam. I'd also like if someone would be able to teach me how to make effects sprites look nice and smooth. So besides this we're in no need of any help, but thanks for asking. We'll let you know when we do though.
Q5: I have a suggestion/idea, do you take them? A: I already have a lot of ideas written down. But if you have some feel free to post them. Any ideas posted that I end up using will be properly credited ofcourse, no matter how small the suggestion or idea.
Special Thanks To Qcode for starting this project. This wouldn't have started without you! You're a joy to work with and you're really doing an amazing job! Maurice and Sašo for their generocity, kindness and inspiration they gave me by inviting me to gamescom three years in a row and for setting up this community. Various people from the stabyourself steam group chat (you know who you are) for their feedback and motivation. Wayforward. Wayforward was a major inspiration for most of Becky and they're likely to remain my favorite development team. Tons of people from Tumblr and DeviantArt They've been a huge motivation for me to keep doing what I love doing and I really hope they'll love this project just as much. The stabyourself community We've had our moments, but I love all of you. Stay Sexy!
Swiggity Swooty Swing that Booty~! Well, if I'm not forgetting something then that should be it for now!
Amazing work you guys! Definitely worth the wait on hearing more about Becky since the last information I saw. Seeing a game like this reminds me so much of what I want to do with the spiritual successor to Turtle Puzzles, a definite motivation booster.
A little late on the reply, but I want to thank you guys for the great responses. It's a major boost to our motivation! Really love that fan-art MM102, thanks a ton!
Big updates on what's new might be a little slow since Qcode's time is limited by obligations like school and such. However, we're not sitting still.
I've been working on how I want combat to turn out in Becky. First things first we'd need to have a health system.
So far you've only seen Becky get hit by stun drones, but we're working on enemies that actually shoot and deal damage. Becky's combat will get frantic, enemies come in groups or have abilities that overwhelm you with gunfire or ridiculous movesets. This means health will be rather important. But instead of being lenient with the health, I'm gonna tie your shoelaces together and watch you fall every few hits you take. Don't worry I'm not that mean...
Let me explain how it works: Becky's health is indicated by cogs. Every cog has three pieces and a ring that they slot into. So Becky can take three hits and only the outer ring will remain. You can pick up extra cog pieces (which enemies will randomly drop or will sometimes be located randomly in levels) to restore the empty cog. However, if Becky would to take another hit, she would lose the 'container' entirely and health can't be restored by picking up pieces. Here's a visual representation of the 'health-bar':
There aren't any enemies that take health yet neither is there health pick-ups yet. But we're working on that as you're reading this. So whenever you take four consecutive hits you'll be "punished" by having to do something extra to regain a cog ring (I have to come up with a better name for that). We've been debating on what this extra thing is and this is what I came up with:
The enemy that took away your cog container thingy will drop a 'bail-bot' upon being killed. A bail-bot is a little bot that contains the core and info the machine has gathered. It will try to flee to preserve the core and information. This bail-bot scatters away if given enough time. All Becky needs to do is flip it over by shooting it or rolling into it and then shoot it's shiny metal ass (its underside). If Becky is able to do so successfully then she'll get her container back. I know what you're thinking though: "What if I lose more cogs in the process or in general?" Don't worry. The amount of cogs you can have at a time are limited, but can be extended with certain upgrades. These bail-bots will also spawn from predetermined enemies or just as preset enemies in the world. I'm also considering adding a "currency" so you can buy cogs at specific places as well as upgrades, power-ups and other things.
This bail-bot thing is not set in stone yet, but we're gonna try it out and see how it works. Let me know what you think of the health system and this bail-bot idea.
One thing I might not have noted is that there will be two types of enemies: The machines you've already seen and heard about but also the unique wildlife of Becky's world. The wildlife has some big hostile creatures that can be troublesome to take down on their own, but some might actually prove useful... If I have worked out something neat I'll definitely let you guys know!
Thanks for reading and thanks again for all your replies guys!