BulletRage: A journey into the world of pure co-op arcade insanity
When BulletRage first sparked as an idea in my brain, I knew it was going to be explosive. A game that would keep you on the edge of your seat, a game that would make you sweat.I felt that many recent games had lost that old-school arcade intensity – they focused more on replayability and progression rather than pure intensity, and I was about to change that.
Many games now use procedurally generated levels, stat building RPG elements, complex mechanics and things like that as part of the core mechanics. Don’t get me wrong, those things aren’t bad – but for BulletRage we wanted gameplay action that is pure BULLET RAGE!!!
I focused heavily on the arcade adrenaline factor – room scale bosses, hand crafted room and battle designs, and a recklessly fast game pacing.
Next were weapons. Must be epic. That was the golden rule. But at the same time, I wanted the players to feel progressively more powerful, without the player having to grind for hours. So we implemented 5 tiers of weapon power, similar to old school arcade shooters. But if you die, you lose it all!
Harnessing your RAGE!
As the name suggests, RAGE is your most important asset, after bullets!
With each normal weapon already feeling powerful, I added Ultra Attacks that went even beyond that, like the super attacks in the arcade classics. Ultra Attacks fill up the entire screen with death and destruction. Managing resources ‘Mana style’ is not something I wanted a player to think about, so these attacks use up your entire collection of Rage energy.
You have to choose your moment carefully, and there is no going back. Apart from epic destruction, there are also some tactical uses for your Rage, such as the Dash Attack, which can be used either tactically or violently, or both!
Unique Character Roles
One thing that I was very consciously careful about, was to make each character play differently. I did not want to simply go with a basic re-skin route, I wanted different people to be able to enjoy different playable characters based on their gaming style. This turned out extremely well, as our early testers all had different characters they preferred to use! Mission accomplished!
When it comes to power-ups, I wanted powerful effects that had a large visual impact, and gameplay alteration that opens up opportunities for players during battle. One my favorite uses of power-ups was in Bomberman – the variety of both good and bad effects and they way they greatly changed the gameplay dynamics was delicious and made each round it’s own experience – and I think we have incorporated the best of that into BulletRage.
Local Multiplayer Co-op
We didn’t plan for multiplayer when we first began BulletRage, but once we started sharing the early demo with players, it was clear that needed to happen! Apparently there are quite a few couch-coop players out there feeling neglected these days. After some serious effort, we included local multiplayer support and new multiplayer mechanics, and the results were astoundingly fun. With multiplayer, the potential of the game exploded! When combined with the power-up ideals we had already established, the multiplayer experience really takes BulletRage to an endlessly replayable zone – without having to sacrifice any hand-crafted aesthetic or design by using things such as procedural level generation.
We even have ideas for future game modes to take it even further! We’re really excited by how BulletRage is developing, and would love to get some players as excited as we are! If it sounds like a game you might enjoy – stay tuned. There is LOT of information we want to share with everyone about why we love BulletRage!
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Get your RAGE on!