Doesn't deserve MOST of the crap it's getting
First, a message to the haters that are voting it down just because there are other games like it: Welcome to Newgrounds. Top-down shooters are a staple of the site, and frankly, most of them work exactly the same way. Get over yourselves.
Personally, I thought the face system (having 4 weapons equipped at once) was pretty cool, and the artwork is really suited for the genre.
That said, there WERE issues. First, and foremost, the game is wayyyy too prone to lag. I changed the quality to low, turned off the sounds, and optimized my CPU, but something in the programming is still super power-hungry, maybe the clutter of having too many complicated enemies onscreen at once. And having the gun-toting robots fly all over when they got hit was funny at first, but got really annoying when they would just fly into ME. I got most of my kills in one level by just having enemies slam into me, decreasing the fun of the shooter. And, while I enjoyed the face system, cycling through the weapons on at a time during combat felt cumbersome. Lastly, the lack of a pause feature in a game like this is ridiculous.
My main suggestion is to incorporate an inventory system into a pause screen. That way you can change your entire weapon loadout at once, without simultaneously worrying about dodging enemies. Also, get rid of those spinning enemies (or make the action smaller) and see if you can simplify the code to get rid of the lag, since it's not the graphics alone.
Overall, this is a solid game with some interesting spins, but it needs to be polished to make it more playable. Good work.
Better versions have been done
This is a nifty little streaming radio gadget that has what it needs to have. You put in the randomizer, links to a song's page, even a button to download the song. Functionally, it does what it needs to.
That said, you're not the first one, and likely not the last to make an Audio Portal radio. The best I've come across is from Dissolute Productions (They made Chaos Faction among other games), which has about everything that you have here, plus a lot more playback and informational options. It's much less clunky than yours and you can download it as an external program (viewing your radio even in a popup window required some awkward scrolling to fit it exactly, making an .exe would probably help)
The biggest problem for me was that the one feature that I DON'T see on most radio gadgets, the visualizer, did not work at ALL. I tried changing some of my flash settings around, tried all of those visualizer settings, and loaded 20 different songs, and all I got for my troubles was an empty black box with an FPS monitor in it. My advise is either to fix that (unless its just being temperamental just on my computer for some reason) or take it out and streamline the rest of the playback and informational options.
Otherwise, it's a decent radio, but not the best one out there.
The visualizer is the main thing that separates this from EON's radio. I'm mad that it doesn't work correctly.
Decent, but lacks the continuity of the first...
Overall this is a very strong game. Interesting puzzles (albeit a bit simple) and sweet graphics make this game worth playing.
My main complaint, though, actually revolves around your decision to label this as a prequel to "Little Wheel." I loved Little Wheel. Even though the puzzles were easy, I enjoyed exploring that post-apocalyptic world and advancing the story. Each scene was tied to the next in a clear cut way (either by cable car or elevator, for instance). In Mogo-Mogo, however, it appears the story and continuity have been sacrificed completely in favor of a password-based save system and a couple art liberties. Instead of this "level" and "portal" based puzzle system, I would have rather had each level directly tie in with the last. Instead of being in a forest, jumping through a portal, and suddenly being on a whale, I'd have rather walked from the forest to a seashore, jumped into the ocean, and found the whale swimming. I know that the idea is a dream world with different levels, but I think you could have kept the motif while still having scenes flow seamlessly (without "Level 12" screens or passwords; it's a short enough game to finish in 20-30 minutes for an uber-casual gamer) to make it one big adventure, like Little Wheel was. Otherwise, keep this as a standalone game, unrelated to Little Wheel.
Hmm. Where to begin. First, I must say that I was frightfully excited when I saw this pop up; I'm a HUGE fan of the first game. Generally, you kept the core of the game alive. I enjoyed knocking down enemies and stabbing them, and the addition of platforms that you can jump to and from was a very good touch, getting rid of the monotony of some of the levels.
That said, I have a few major problems with this installment. Launching enemies into the air rarely worked for me, even when I went into the frozen time mode to try and draw it perfectly. That's a big feature that you put in that doesn't work well enough to be useful. Second, the final boss was awful. I died 4 times, mostly because either its attacks or one of the minions would stun me, and then I'd be flying through the air, unable to dodge the next 30 attacks. A midair recovery technique would make the fight considerably more fair, allowing us to concentrate on figuring out how to kill the bosses. Also, the place where you fight on platforms over a "cliff" or whatever--albeit a cool idea--showed some glitchiness in the slashing technique that otherwise wouldn't have been a problem. I'd draw my line from left to right, and my samurai would run to the right side and slash the other way, often sending him tumbling to his doom.
My biggest issue though is one of continuity and capturing the spirit of the first game, or rather the lack therein. Your first game was beautifully done: combat was innovative and fun; the plot made sense and placed us in the middle of medieval Japan; and aside from the hacking and slashing, there were strategic elements, in BOTH parts. In this game, you dropped everything that made the game nonlinear, you threw in jetpacks and robots with a plot that confused all but the stoned, and aside from the stabbing and poorly executed launching, did nothing to really improve or evolve the combat technique. It seems that the spirit of the series, or what I thought it was, has been completely abandoned. I can accept robot ninjas and jetpacking archers, with completely linear hack n slash gameplay. But not when it completely removes itself from its predecessor in every bad way. You'd be better off changing the motif and starting a completely new series than claiming this as an installment of Straw Hat Samurai.
Unlike many purists on Newgrounds, I don't knock people who use elements from other games (even as far as near-copies). I appreciate how tough it is to make a decent flash game, and even more, to be original at the same time. For what it is, The Swords is a pretty good beat-em-up/RPG with pleasing graphics and some replay value.
However, I do have a few problems that could use fixing. First, as some others have said, the pace of the game is slow: characters move somewhat sluggishly, and enemies take a bit too long to take down (I should be able to kill a chicken in 5 or 6 hits max). I also think that the RPG elements are played down. Yes you level up and kinda get better, but being able to choose skills and attributes to increase would give the player more control. Increasing the number of items in the shop would also allow for customization.
My biggest complaint, which I'm not sure is a broken part of the game on my computer or is completely missing, is the lack of a save feature. After beating the first couple levels and buying some equipment, I went to the main menu and left my computer. When I came back and clicked "Play Game," all of my previous progress was gone. Again, I don't know if that's a glitch or not, but saving is extremely important in a game with leveling, money/equipment collecting, and such replayability. Either fix that if it's a glitch, or put it in if it wasn't there originally.
Overall, a very solid game, but the slowness and the lack of/broken save definitely knocked off some point.
Reminds me of Straw Hat Samurai (using the mouse for sword strikes), but I definitely appreciate the use of WASD to move. Overall, this is a really good game, with awesome art design, upgrades, and a still relatively unused mouse-driven-attack style.
I do have a couple complaints though. First, when you start engaging in more intense fights, the camera moves around too much, often setting off unintentional dash attacks. With such a precise attacking system, you need to be aware of how the camera will affect things. Second, the game is too short. Yes, the upgrades add replay value, but overall, the game takes 15-20 minutes to beat, and I'm not sure I'd play it over and over just to get more powerful moves. You have an intriguing story, so build on it to allow for a longer game.
Otherwise, this is a damn good standalone game, and I look forward to seeing how you build on it in the future.
The camera does not affect the slashing system, but I can understand how you might be unintentionally compensating for it. A fair point.
It's cool that you think it's got an intriguing story even though I left the story out ;) That bodes well! I'd love to expand on it in the future.
A Good Start
The mechanics and basics of a great game are all here, what with all of the different upgrades and whatnot. But I'm afraid I have to agree with a lot of people in that it is simply too slow. These levels, which in a normal-speed game would take a minute or two each, dragged on for way too long. This also made the game a little too easy, since as long as the enemy was far enough away from you, you had PLENTY of time to aim your shots and take them out. That means that the only way to up the ante is to inundate us with massive amounts of enemies, which lags for those of us with crappier computers and just becomes frustrating on faster ones.
Honestly, I think that if you ramped up the speed to the level of other games in this genre, you'd get at least a 4 average easy.
Huge step up from the first BO. Also, unlike some people, I actually like the "one-button-for-everything" function of the spacebar. The one hit kills are pretty sweet, and, for a simple platformer, the physics, AI, and blood are pretty realistic.
Just a few suggestions:
1. As most people have been saying, the jump needs to be sped up, both getting off the ground and in midair.
2. Pause and mute buttons would be nice, especially for sneaking gaming into work/school. Hehe.
3. Just as the crows were an amazing touch, I think you could do more with them. Maybe whenever someone (either you or one of your enemies) gets low on health near a flock, they could swoop down to finish the kill, bringing in a tactical use along with the creepy aesthetic.
As awesome as this game is already, I know you've got a lot of work ahead finishing it up and working out all the kinks. Take your time...but not too long, y'hear?
Great art and animation. I also liked the whole mirrored cursor thing. My only complaints are that some levels only had two or three things to click, and that in most of the levels, the clouds in the ceiling window were always one of the differences. Diversify, my man! Otherwise, bring on a sequal!
Very arcade-y feel and fun for a while. My main complaint, though, is that the difficulty rises very fast, and if you haven't chosen the exact stats to upgrade at the exact right times or won EVERY fight, it becomes impossible to win fights and upgrade more. I suggest a training system or allowing us to go back to places we didn't get 3 stars at to get those extra stat points. But very solid beginning, keep it up!
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