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Old 02-28-2010, 06:13 PM   #1
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Default Laser Dragon Defense

Greetings.

It is my pleasure to open the Laser Dragons map for general testing! This map is in what I consider to be the last stage of testing before release. If you will help me test it and provide feedback, I would be happy to include you in the credits in the list of beta testers!

(1) Laser Dragons
Laser Dragons is a one-player survival game. You control an immensely wise and powerful Laser Dragon from one of the five dragonflights, charged with the duty of protecting all living creatures by preventing pesky curious gnomes from destabilizing the twisting nether.
Practically speaking, this means you need to prevent flying machines from flying through space into a black hole. If too many succeed, the fabric of reality is rent asunder and, well, that's bad. Your goal is to last as long as you can.
On the bright side, you get lasers! This adds a touch of realism to the game.

Hopefully any other questions you have will be answered in the game, maybe even during the Star Wars IV homage opening. Please provide thoughtful feedback and don't hesitate to ask any questions you have, as it will help me to make the Help section of the map more robust. Also, please tell me what the highest level you reached is and what dragon/laser combination you used to get that far!

Now get going! That Dragon isn't going to wait forever!

EDIT: NEW RELEASE March 24, 2010. Added:
Moar powerups, including Multi Laser, Frag, and CRAZY.
Boss fights every 5 levels!
Dodgy buggers!
Whelp health indicators.
Increased rate of awesomeness!
Numerous tweaks and polishes.


EDIT: NEW RELEASE April 5, 2010. Added:
Tanker ships, slower but tougher to kill.
UI improvements, such as a percent floaty whenever a life is lost, timer between rounds, etc.
Updates to intensity; the dragon responds quicker now and the difficulty ramps up faster
Starcraft increase speed each level
General fixes.


EDIT: Consolidating download links. Find it here!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Splashscreen BETA.jpg (557.6 KB, 49 views)
File Type: jpg Laser Dragon Desktop.jpg (623.4 KB, 65 views)
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Pantokrator Maps forum.
LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
"The perfect is the enemy of the good." Voltaire
"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis

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Old 02-28-2010, 06:13 PM   #2
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Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)

Approved Map: Call to Arms

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Screenshots.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Cinematic.jpg (340.7 KB, 47 views)
File Type: jpg Dragon Selection.jpg (391.4 KB, 47 views)
File Type: jpg Laser Selection.jpg (397.4 KB, 60 views)
File Type: jpg Gameplay01.jpg (355.9 KB, 50 views)
File Type: jpg Art.jpg (227.8 KB, 44 views)
File Type: jpg Camera and Selection.jpg (415.0 KB, 37 views)
File Type: jpg Dragons Eye View.jpg (188.2 KB, 43 views)
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Pantokrator Maps forum.
LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
"The perfect is the enemy of the good." Voltaire
"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis

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Old 02-28-2010, 07:13 PM   #3
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Reached level 12 with black dragon and blue laser.

First of all, the loading screen. IMO, the dragon looks too retarded and clustered. The flying machine and zeppelin are distinguishable, but besides the wings it's too hard to tell it's a dragon personally. Of course, this is just a simple cosmetic, so no need to change it.

One strange thing I realized during playing was the starcraft shooting me. The message at about level 8 said "Starcraft will not begin shooting!" or something similar, but that didn't happen. Even at level 12, I was always at full life. The only thing that changed was the added meteors and of course more starcrafts.

Finally, the spells. I've played this once, and from what I've seen, the black dragon's spells are almost useless (besides the added blue laser spell. That was great). This is because of their stats (which have mediocre effects), but mainly because they are so hard to cast. Everytime I press E for the area of effect spell I see the circle cursor and it gets cancelled. I guess this is programmed in the game since it is clear spellcasting keeps getting cancelled, but this makes it so that casting spells are actually really hard. I need to spam buttons, and if I missed something, please tell me if there's another way of casting spells conveniently.

Also, if there could be a way to check on your whelps' life that would be great too :D
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Old 02-28-2010, 07:19 PM   #4
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Reached level 11 with Black Dragon and White Laser.

I also didn't get the impression that I was being shot at.

I think a faster turn rate might be nice (read: make it easier), since it's touch when you get surrounded and you can't turn fast enough to shoot dem gyrocopters down...
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Old 02-28-2010, 07:19 PM   #5
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Your spell is getting canceled? That's really strange. Can you tell me more about it? You're not trying to right-click with the target circle, are you? I haven't had that problem at all.

Re: the starcraft firing on you, they have a shorter range than the dragon does, the goal being that you can keep from taking damage by being fast enough to gun them down. So when you start letting them get closer, they'll start firing rockets off at you as they close with the void.

It's my hope that the abilities will be useful but not game-shattering. I will put upping the power of the Black Dragon's Withering Strike on my list of balance considerations!

Thanks for testing the map, and for the feedback! I appreciate it!
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LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
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"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis
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Old 02-28-2010, 07:21 PM   #6
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@Rao Thanks for testing! The turn rate is something I'll consider changing, although I've been playing with that in particular quite a bit (since enemies come from all 360 degrees) and I'm happy with it. Hitting starcraft when they're plenty far away is how you get enough time to maneuver your considerable dragonly girth.

@Anopob The whelps can't have life bars because of the Locust ability that makes them uncontrolled by the user. Would putting a whelp life average in the scoreboard be a good solution?

@both... should I make the starcraft able to strike at you from a greater distance? It will make the game more challenging to be sure.
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Pantokrator Maps forum.
LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
"The perfect is the enemy of the good." Voltaire
"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis

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Old 02-28-2010, 08:19 PM   #7
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1. Hm weird. I just tested again and it works fine (as normal wc3). Must have been my stupid mouse's right click held down or something. I couldn't even attack with the "a" key my first try (had to right click all the gyrocopters), but now I can. Sorry about the confusion.

2. Whelps' life total on multiboard sounds really good to me.

3. I think the game is challenging enough for now (or maybe it was because I couldn't even right click properly)(how many waves are there in total, anyway?). I don't think starcrafts should be able to shoot a too great distance, but perhaps beef it up a little bit.
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Old 03-01-2010, 10:07 AM   #8
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Survived until level 13

Used bronze dragon with white lazer.

Honeslty i think the cooldown reset purchase "I win" button should be an item in the inventory its probabbly easier to control that way and more straight forward. I didnt get the impression it was auto activate upon purchase since the other items, Crystal bombs and exploive payloads were invertory items.
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Old 03-01-2010, 02:19 PM   #9
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@Anopob: I thought of another approach to the whelps. What about an ! or some other kind of buff art on a whelp when it gets within, say, 100 hp of death? It seems like that would be more generally effective than an average on the scoreboard.

@Kinorhynkar: Excellent, thanks for testing!
I made three classes of items, Charged, Instant, and Permanent (and those are listed on the items). I decided that the Cosmic Button would be instant because there are only 6 slots in the inventory and it seemed like the CB among others was less likely to be the kind of item that you might want to stack up (especially since it doesn't drop from zeppelins and therefore you're not stockpiling them already). Once you get to 11 and can start buying the very useful attack speed, loot, and critical attack items, inventory space becomes a premium resource, so some items have got to be instants. Is the CB an item that you were using so often as to make it something you wanted to have in your inventory? Also, arguably it's easier to hit B > C than it is to move your mouse to the inventory space or hit a NumPad hotkey...

@all: What I haven't heard anything about yet is fun. The technical critiques are very useful, please continue those, but I also want to hear about your enjoyment of the game!
EDIT: Critique of the help documentation (F9) would also be cool. Thanks!
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Pantokrator Maps forum.
LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
"The perfect is the enemy of the good." Voltaire
"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis

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Old 03-01-2010, 09:14 PM   #10
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The ! idea is actually much more useful. Average doesn't really tell if a whelp is low on life when you have 2+, but if this is implemented the player will know when to use a heal or two for their whelps.

Entertainment-wise, it was okay. I'm pretty sure it would be much more fun if I tried it fully a second time (because of a stupid personal mouse issue), but later on in the game it was getting repetitive. It was great to get new items and loot, but there were just so many gyrocopters and not being able to 100% 1-hit all of them were pretty annoying. However, since this is part of the challenge, I'm pretty sure it's fine if it stays as such. I'm not sure how to improve it by too much since it does get a little repetitive though.

Haven't read the help documentation yet so I can't critique on that yet.
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Old 03-02-2010, 12:32 PM   #11
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I also noticed theres an error with Green Dragons widow posion tooltip.

Instead of "|n penalties" its mis typed as "nN penalties"

Hence the extra 2 words and the text not moving 1 line down.
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Old 03-02-2010, 09:38 PM   #12
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@Anopob: I'll implement some kind of buff indicator for whelps and put some help text in for the first time a whelp gets near death. That's a solid system. Thanks!

I do want the starcraft to eventually become non-1-hit-kills, although the player can compensate for that by upping damage through abilities, finding the right tomes, or buying the crit strike item (that stacks).

Re: repetitiveness: Here are some things I'm considering:
• Some Starcraft do not fly straight to the void but instead move about faster than the others trying to evade you.
• Boss fights every 5 levels or so. The boss would be much larger and would probably have special abilities and would probably attempt to kill the dragon instead of entering the void. Although if he were lured into the void that would certainly put an end to him...
• Temporary power-up buffs from dropped items, like one that gives the dragon a multi-laser attack or an "enrage" item that increases speed dramatically (perhaps at the cost of increased damage to the dragon?). Also perhaps a power-up that releases a wave of rockets at enemies... visual candy.

Additional ideas about avoiding repetition and other fun-ness are welcomed.

@Kinorhynkar: Thanks for catching the typo! I went over all of the abilities but I knew I was destined to miss one at least.

@all: Hey you were right about the Starcraft not firing at 8. I updated the help text but not the actual mechanic, so they were still starting retaliating at the old value of level 10. Thanks!
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LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
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Old 03-25-2010, 01:00 PM   #13
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NEW MAP, March 24, 2010.

First post updated, download the updated version and see version updates there!
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LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
"The perfect is the enemy of the good." Voltaire
"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis

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Old 04-05-2010, 10:14 PM   #14
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NEW MAP, April 5, 2010.

Getting closer to done! See the first post or this thread for the map and more details.
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Pantokrator Maps forum.
LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
"The perfect is the enemy of the good." Voltaire
"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis
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Old 07-27-2010, 12:10 AM   #15
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Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)Panto is a jewel in the rough (247)

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This map is finished and released! Get it here!
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LASER DRAGONS RELEASED!.
"One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." Wernher von Braun
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"When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." C.S. Lewis
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