I'm getting a little worried here after seeing the framerate get choppy in this version, though I must admit my computer has been having some performance issues with some programs as well so I'll investigate further. The debug function has been helpful in this - by the debug frame it's going variable from 63.9 to 57 when smoke effects such as the Stage 1 boss are in use.
Are the black dots where turrets were supposed to be craters or something? I guess this is another one of those graphical things left for later.
Are the weapons supposed to reset to Level 1 when you die? If so, that isnt working as I get full power before my shield gets hit and I die, and then upon restart of the level I still have max power.
I also notice there's a few new bullet types, which is good, though the level of spreading blue bullets almost became too much for me.
That level will need some balancing once you decide on the entire enemy and bullet list.
The use of the shield and ship hitbox makes the game a lot better when it comes to dodging, and the way you've made the second stage boss this is demonstrated well. I'm starting to see a lot more of the Garegga influence this time around, though I felt the first phase of the boss needed a bit more happening and the entire thing should be bigger (an aesthetic nitpick there, Im sure you'll consider all this anyway by v0.4).
One last thing: This isnt apparent in this release but for future releases will you have a scoring system where extra weapon upgrades past max power give you points? In this release I just see them doing nothing, and I understand that.
Overall, its definitely a step forward in development. Could you maybe add a fullscreen mode in the next release? I'm appreciating the debug mode here but fullscreen to test framerate stability would be nice too (my other 'problem' programs run smoothly in fullscreen but not in windowed mode for some reason).
I recognized the choppy frame too late, speak after release. But I wouldn't have fixed it anyway for 0.3. The new particle system engine really may be a performance hog. I've to investigate a little bit with my profiling tools.
The black dots are crater imposters. Just to remind myself to make graphics for them.
Weapon and shield are kept/reset to their maximum for play tests. I wanted players to easily play through both levels. This config renders later upgrades pointless but will survive until I'm focusing on game play and fun. Up to now the game engine demanded to much time to spare some on the game dynamics. I wrote about that here
I'm glad that the new stuff works. You know, I'm just combining random patterns and throw them at you to see how you react.
True game play has a chance now that the engine is done.
The third phase of the tank boss did not make it into the game only because of time. It would have made the whole boss fight a little bit more attractive, speak shortened the first two phases. I decided the tank to be smaller in its first phase for further metamorposis. Finally there has to go some more work into this boss.
The scoring system is absolutely missing. The more I know about shmup design the more I experience scoring as essential part. Most other genres stripped it out when they left the arcades. Shmupers love and want it!
You are lucky, next step is adding support for multiple resolutions. This is going to be tough but IMO its necessary.
Thanks for your thoughts. You're always helpful pushing Nordenfelt forward.