Traction - a Truxton (Tatsujin) homage shmup!

Hi there! I’ve finally gotten around to making a link for the game I’ve been working on (after a lot of faffing), allow me to present:

Traction Title Screen

Phwoar, now that’s information-overload!

Ahem, it’s a proper homage to one of my favourite childhood shmups, namely Truxton (or Tatsujin in Japan), and as such I wanted to emulate a lot of the supposed feel of the game into this one. Hopefully it’s not too far off, but not a blatant copy either!

Traction In-Game Action

It’s a game where the intrepid captain, ‘still-waiting-for-a-name’, has one mission - to exterminate the oncoming alien hordes threatening Earth! …Original, eh? Haha, regardless - the game currently only has a single level, but I’m quite chuffed with how it came out!

The bars on the left side of the screen show the player’s health, weapon level (collect 5 P’s to increase the weapon’s strength) and charge cannon meter! Forgot to mention this in-game, my apologies!

I’ve seen some issues while playtesting, namely the buttons on-screen seemingly work when the game’s paused (not intended), as well as a few other things, but I’ve learned a heckuva lot of things from making this. As such, I’ll probably remake the game moving forward from the ground up for my next shmup attempt!

It also features controls for PS4 and Xbox controllers, touchscreen (if a little finicky) buttons and keyboard controls, just to see if I could handle programming it. I think they’re set up correct…heh!

GAME LINK: (Please note, the game has no audio at present!)

I’m quite nervous but I hope you can give it a whirl and lemme know what I can improve! Don’t hold back either, I reckon there’s a huge amount that can be done!

Thanks for your time! Ulqiuo.

It plays fairly well, well done. What you need are nice looking ships and backgrounds. :space_invader:

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Dude your game is already better then anything iv ever tried in!!

Its pretty awesome! 10/10!

Keep working on it, give it some juice, like particle effects and sounds and its gonna be a massive hit!

Love the old school arcade!! :smiley:

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Seriously man! Awesome game!

I love it! Its already pretty addictive and fun as it is with the arcade feel, but if you want to make it more “home use”, you could start thinking about a progression system, or a shop for upgrading your ship, or buying new ships, that kind of jazz :smiley:

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@Ambytar and @MagicBiscuit - Firstly many thanks for taking the time to play it and to leave your thoughts! I very much appreciate it!

Aye, that’s 100% true - I definitely need to improve my art game haha! To be frank it started as grey-boxing but I admit I rushed to get it finished, but in the future I’ll use no excuses!

I highly doubt it’s that good though MagicBiscuit! You’ve certainly made my day though, many thanks for the compliment! I’ll be bearing in mind your suggestions for a shop of some kind, the sounds that it 100% needs and I’ll look into particle effects too - having juice like that’s something every game needs, really! I’m thinking things like the weapon level that’s in this demo will be permanently levelled up once the player upgrades them, so they can take 'em across levels…hmm, inspiration!

Hopefully I’ll get some time over the weekend working on a draft for a revised version of the game - when I was in work this morning I had a brainwave of a story idea, I’m eager to jot down some notes n’ things! …But first, gotta go shopping, blugh.

Thanks again to you both!

You dont need to improve it, i think it looks pretty awesome as it is, you dont need high quality shinny sprites.

Your art style reminds me of old school space shooters, but made new.

If you simply add effects to them, its gonna look amazing.

Dont try to redo your game, simply add sounds made with JSFXR built in GDevelop and use particle emitters to make your shots and explosions pop out more.

You really do have an awesome game there, add some more love to it and its gonna blow up! Trust me :smiley:

Good job man!

Thanks for your continued input! Aye, I must admit if I was going to improve (which I’ll definitely try to do) the art I’d make them like…16bit at best, like the Sega Megadrive graphics at the time, they’ve always had a place in my heart rent-free and it’d be a dream to achieve that level of detail while remaining faithful to an arcade-style visual.

I’m just thinkin’ of redoing it as such because it’s my first ever project and, understandably, I made a lot or performance-related errors with bulky coding - I figure it’ll be better to rebuild it with the experience I’ve gained than to carry on…but rest assured! I’ll update this one with some test particle effects and hopefully some sound effects before moving on, this’s like my baby at the moment haha!

I’m getting kinda pumped now, probably the first time since trying to start game development! If the weather permits later I’ll grab me notebook and do some brainstorming. Cheers again for your response!

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Yeah, it’s quite good. The retro style isn’t too bad. If you want to give it a more “modern” look, that’s up to you. I’d probably go for the “nes era” look. Pixel art that’s retro but not too old. But that’s just me. It’s totally your call as to which type of art appeals to you. Besides, you can never please everyone. Might as well make it something that you yourself would be happy with.
The inability to move diagonally though is what’s kinda bothering me. I don’t know if it was supposed to be that way, considering the enemies are able to move in all directions. And it sometimes kinda sticks when I try.
Oh and speed. Are you planning on implementing some kind of speed mechanic? You know, like how pacman and the monsters all start off slow and with every new stage they go faster and faster? Or perhaps did you want to make it into an upgrade system?
But anyway, yeah, overall it’s got good potential.

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Hi there @Levio ! Many thanks for taking the time out to try it n’ give feedback! That’s mighty fine of ye.

Aye, agreed on the NES style - yesterday afternoon I spent some time in the garden with the teeny bit of sun we had to jot some ideas…and needless to say 16 bit’s way out of my league at the moment, especially from the get-go haha! I’ll be looking into a pixel art guide for sure as I move forward with NES as a catalyst.

You can’t move diagonally…? May I ask which control method you used? I just played it through the link above and keyboard seems to be working fine when holding a vertical and horizontal directions simultaneously, please lemme know so I can correct it! The player should 100% be able to move diagonally each time! I’ll be honest that I kinda…janked all the methods together so there’s probably conflict with multiple input methods/a bug where it’s trying to pick up more than one…either way I’ll check it out! Sorta goes back to what I was mentioning about rebuilding the game in another post haha!

I have a couple goals in mind with speed - firstly I’m hoping to do two things with enemies: Firstly a difficulty select on the menu, higher levels’ll hopefully mean minor increases as well as other mechanics, and secondly as the game levels go on they’ll go faster too, regardless of level, but only slightly. The player on the other hand (in this game) has a couple buttons you can press to increase or decrease the speed at will, from level 1 (slow) to level 3 (fastest) - I was thinking of a Truxton-inspired pickup which permanently increases but I always found at the highest level it was too fast haha! Will probably use a hold-a-button-to-slow mechanic, or toggle of some kind…hmm…

Apologies if I’ve misconstrued your points! Huge thanks again!

I first tried it on pc. Win10, firefox browser, using the arrow keys.
That’s when I noticed the issue.
After having read your reply, I tried it on my phone using the on screen controls. It worked flawlessly. Yeah, it moves diagonally. But I can’t really play it properly on the phone, what with that “feedback” button on the bottom right that obstructs some controls. I mentioned this on some posts a few times before. Well, no one cares about that, it seems. But I digress. Nothing we can do about that.
So anyway, I tried it again on the pc. I found I can actually move diagonally but the issue kinda goes on and off. It often happens when I hold down the spacebar to fire while moving sideways and then suddenly pressing down. I tried it again, and yep, hold spacebar + left or right, then add down button.
There may have been other conditions for it but this is the combination I found to be the most frequent culprit. But if it all works flawlessly for everyone else, then I suppose that makes me the odd one out. Maybe I need I a new keyboard… Though I don’t think that’s the case since I test my projects with these all the time, not to mention other games I have installed work very well also.
Looking back, I must have experienced this early on when I first tried to play it, so it just automatically registered in my mind, “4 directions only”. Weird how the mind works. lol.
And yeah, I don’t think you’ve misconstrued anything at all.
So alright, just keep making progress, it’s all good.

edit: About that speed toggle you mentioned, how about the fire button? Like, hold down fire button, speed slows down while you’re firing, release and you can go faster? Or the opposite of that? Faster when firing? idk… just throwing it out there.

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aaa Spaceship

How bout something like this?

Thats 16x16, way easier to work with :slight_smile:

Im not very good at making spaceships tho, so dont judge me :stuck_out_tongue:

I thought about having a go at it while i was waiting for lunch

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Hi there @Levio and @MagicBiscuit ! Thanks for your continued contributions!

Hmm…that’s a bit of a doozy - I use Microsoft Edge (because I’m a dinosaur and not well into these things haha) and, when replicating your comment - holding space, then left or right, then down also - the ship seems to move diagonally each time…I’m on Windows 11, but I doubt that’d make too much difference…in the next variation I’ll make the control option a proper option to pick the method to move - that way, only the buttons corresponding to the control method will work, should help if this is, indeed, a multi-input-system-going-awry thing. I’m truly sorry it doesn’t work as intended for this game! I highly doubt it’s your keyboard also - I’m very new to this so there’s probably something in the way I did it that’s causing this intermittently. Compounding this thought too is the fact that the controls were done without using the built-in 4 way directional movement behaviour, so aye, it’s veeery likely it’s me haha!

I agree too on the feedback buttons getting in the way - when making this I didn’t realise it too much as the touch buttons were done last minute, but for next time I’ll hopefully make a banner at the bottom, pushing the game up a little (if I don’t get the subscription beforehand haha).

Oh! I remember when playing Jamestown+ that the default (I think) ship had a massive laser and when you fired it the ship halved its speed, made it great for situational awareness as well as aiming! Will look into that. Great tip, and thanks again for taking time out to comment and test it! I really appreciate it!

Ah MagicBiscuit - that ship’s pretty sweet! I really like the clean, clear colour scheme too, and sorry but I can’t believe ya when you say you’re not very good at it haha! Thank you so much for popping it on here! I’ma pinch it for the resources folder!

If i make any more ships ill drop them on here in case you like them :stuck_out_tongue: …and im really not very good, im mostly into bubbly platformer or RPG characters and item.

As for the diagonal movement thing… that might be a keyboard issue, some keyboards use the same connections for multiple keys.

I went on a deep dive about this stuff when i noticed some stuff on my keyboard too, like if i hold Left+Up at the same time, that will block some keys from working like “a” but others, like “s”, work just fine. Its because of the keyboards wiring, thats why if you use mobile controls or a gamepad stuff will work just fine.

One last thing @Ulqiuo …you can just “Publish” your game even if its still in development, everyone does, its not an issue.

Development builds are mostly for you to test a patch before sending it live, the difference is that the “Published” version dosent have the “Feedback” button in the way, so its much nice.

I already had a rant and requested them to move the bloody thing from development builds because it gets in the way of the mobile controls.

So… just use the Publish version :slight_smile: Its much cleaner, and besides… your game is far more finished and publish ready than most stuff on…


That’s still awesome though, I still think you have the knack for art!

Ah, I never knew some keyboards worked that way. I’m still a little narked about the game not working at times though, funnily enough I’m trying a different approach for the reboot - I’m more confident this time around that even if certain keyboards play up a bit, this one’ll be more robust.

That’s really cool though about publishing the game, to be fair I thought that publishing was like…whoosh! It’s finished! …And thought that for this test run I’d do the built-in thingy haha! Very cool to know though, especially about the feedback button being removed, that’s very handy. When I get some time tomorrow I’ll publish it. Cor, that sounds right professional lmao! I’ve started today on the reboot too, got the player’s ship nearly done in terms of looks, once it is I’ll pop a small video on this thread to show it off just a wee bit. Might consider doing like a dev log with a weekly update post or something, is that appropriate for the forum? Would be good for motivation!

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Yeah man go for it!! :smiley: That would be awesome :slight_smile:

Forgot to mention, the feedback button dosent get disabled, its just moved to under the actual play screen, so it dosent bother you.

…and no… publishing should be for finished games but thats not the case.

The way i use the whole thing is, i publish my Game or Demo, get feedback, do some testing and so on… but then when i want to check a new build without updating the main version on, i use the development build to test it.

Publishing the game isnt anything fancy :stuck_out_tongue: its the same as making a development build, but you can make it so people are able to find your game or demo in to try it out, you can also give it a cover image to display on the site, but thats about it :slight_smile:

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aaa Spaceship 32x32

Made a more detailed version of the ship while i was relaxing… i kinda made it a bit too far haha :stuck_out_tongue:

aaa Spaceship skull 32x32

I was going for the “Hot Wheels” feel, so i decided to make a sorta hot rod spaceship :stuck_out_tongue:

Feel free to use these in your game if youd like, consider it a little gift from me :slight_smile:

Its always nice to have more people making proper games on here to share with people! :slight_smile:

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So, I ran a bunch of tests. Magic, you’re right. It’s my keyboard. Dang. I’ve been playing all sorts of games, from diablo 2 to nfsu2 to fallout 4, etc… Why have none of them told me about this!? lol. (though to be fair, most of the games I play very rarely ever use these specific spacebar and arrow keys combination, so there’s that)
It’s probably the 10 year old breadcrumbs underneath… just kidding, it’s just a three year old A4tech cheap model… wait no… the front label has already faded but this is that other brand that I hate… Rapoo! Came free with the purchase along with a crappy off-center mouse. I swear, from the get-go I couldn’t stand that mouse, and here I thought the keyboard was decent… they pulled a sneaky one on me there.

Ulqiuo, I’m so sorry, dude. I just found out. lol. Yeah, there’s probably nothing wrong with your code.

Magic, thanks for bringing this to my attention. The tester got tested… is that some irony or what? Also, I quite prefer the first ship you made. It’s easier on the eyes. The later versions are, well… I agree with you, it kinda looks like it went a bit too far. Though it’s not bad. I think the important thing is it has to work together with all the other art in the game. But then again, the art in my own project looks crap. So yeah, I’m not really good with these sort of things. But it’s all subjective, I guess.

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@MagicBiscuit - Those ships are the bee’s knees bud! Having lots of tertiary designs could be useful if someone’s looking to make a racing game too! I’ve snagged 'em and put them in me folder for safekeeping, thanks so much again! Aye, it’s nice to see people really trying their best, beats doing this alone!

Cheers too for clarifying that about the feedback button, straight after this message I’ll try publishing it, just gotta make a title screen first haha!

@Levio Haha, the breadcrumbs…I’m really guilty of that (whoops)! Not a problemo though, to be honest any potential issue that’s flagged is good news - if it is indeed a problem, it can (hopefully) be fixed! I’m still really grateful that you not only spent time on playing and testing, but also writing these comments, if anything I’m thankful to ya! Cheers!

Agreed on the subjective point for art; making one thing’s grand, but to make it all match (at least a little cohesively)? Blimey, that’s tough!

Edit 1: Oh, I’ll also start a wee dev-log too for the reboot, I’ll get around to it each weekend, won’t be anything too brill though haha!

Edit 2: Published it! The link in the first post here’s been updated. Also removed the (WIP) from the thread’s title as I consider it ‘finished’ now as I move on to the reboot!

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Even newer keyboards work like this, if their low cost that is, mines pretty new but it was a low cost Logitech, so it does the exact same thing :slight_smile:

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