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FRACTiLE Games

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A member registered Jun 25, 2015 · View creator page →

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I grew to like the red crosses too but they were confusing to many and a lot of new players mistook them for health pickups (that you couldn't pick up).  This was a hard decision.

I tried to come up with an alternative less confusing indicator that would still be visible in the dark and fit the art style.. but none of them fulfilled all three requirements.

Do you think something like this would help with sunlight visibility? If I make the walls brighter entirely, it would make seeing the enemies and items harder.

I have to admit that this is a problem I haven't even thought about. I assumed adjusting phone's screen brightness would be enough. I'm not sure how much simply increasing game's brightness would help as that would effectively lower contrast. But a sunlight mode with somehow adjusted textures is definitely worth exploring.

I will see what I can do.

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Holy ****, this is nice! The game looks good and the art style is clear and consistent. With perfectly fitting  music, the atmosphere is just right. Most importantly, the gameplay _feels_ good.

The order of the control keys felt a bit weird to me (I don't play platforms that often). I forgot the see if they can be reconfigured..

Edit: I played the game on Linux using Wine. Worked flawlessly.

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By twin-stick controls I meant gamepad controls where left stick moves the player and right stick aims. Usually on PC these games use WASD keys to move the player so that A always moves left and D always moves right.

Here A and D keys _turn_ the tank. I have to look at the tank to see which direction pressing W will move it. Not really a problem at all, just took some time getting used to.

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It's fun to play and I like the consistent look. Feels very polished for such a simple game.

I would have liked some sort of knock-back animation on enemies to make hits "feel" better. Then again, it's not that important in an RTS game where this is coming from.

I'm so accustomed to twin-stick-style controls (player moves to WASD directions) that using driving controls with my left hand was surprisingly hard :)

I played it on Linux using Wine. Worked flawlessly!

Glad to hear you like it!

The rail gun is my favorite weapon too. Luckily it's a relatively common power-up. Its sound and visual effects could still use some minor tweaking. I don't think it _feels_ powerful enough..

Congratulations on the #1 high score! I don't think I can reach those numbers myself :D

This is amazing! So much detail in so few pixels. Now somebody just needs to remake Warcraft 1 with this.

The visual style and the atmosphere is just awesome.

Now that I took a closer look at my code, I noticed that using multiple joysticks  should already work! You can bind inputs from multiple joysticks in settings. The UI just doesn't show which device each button belongs to but it still works.

Please try this in alpha 0.0.9 and report back if there's something (other than the UI) that needs fixing.

The end of the level would be a good place to reward player but I'm not too keen on using time as the condition. I have so far intentionally avoided all time limits and time rewards. Also, determining the actual time limit for the reward would be tricky because the levels are procedurally generated and unique.

Someone suggested simply restoring the health to some minimum value on level completion/start, so that the a level would never start with near-zero health. I kind of like this idea but perhaps I should limit the total number of times the health would be restored.

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My excuse for not doing the same is that it would make balancing the difficulty more complicated. I will have to do some more testing on this.

It might be a good idea to add a possibility to regain some amount of  health along the way, I would just have to adjust the difficulty to compensate for this. Randomly appearing rare health power-ups are not an option because that would introduce too much randomness to player's success and final score. Perhaps the enemies could drop  items that would give a minimal amount of health to player. But this should only happen in certain conditions..

Thank you for playing and for the feedback!

1. I might adjust this when/if I add more enemy types. Currently new enemies are introduced on levels 4, 8 and 12. If I introduce them much earlier, the later levels would get boring as there would be nothing new to expect.

2. If you mean the round "mines", you're absolutely right. They have already been redesigned for the next version. They now trigger when they see the player for long enough time and explode sending fragments towards the player. They are still stationary but now they actually pose a threat.

3. There is a shield power-up that lowers the damage taken on hit but there is no way to recover your health. This is a design choice. The game is designed to be an endless high score shooter where the player eventually dies and avoiding damage is the most important thing.

4. That's a good point. I could make the enemies aim a little smarter at higher levels. Currently they only get tougher and shoot more/faster. 

5. They are drones in zero gravity, guarding their designated positions. I don't see why floating makes any less sense :)

The reason why most enemies don't move and none of them actively follows the player is that I want the player to always be able to retreat to safety and relax for a while. I also wanted to enable more careful play style where you can sneak behind corners and trust that enemies don't sneak behind your back. This is also why there are no time limits or time score bonuses.

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I have though about secondary weapon power-ups. The laser beam was supposed to be the first one but I added it as a primary weapon replacement so that I didn't have to add another touchscreen button in the mobile version. The logical secondary fire button (L1) on gamepad is also used already,

I would like to add some missile weapons but it would need changes in the controls. It might happen, but I'm not making any promises  :)

I will see if I can add support for multiple joysticks. I've never tried a  HOTAS setup myself but I imagine it would be a great way to play this game.

I had anti-aliasing disabled. It's good to hear a native Linux version is coming, I will wait for that!

This looks very promising!

I tried playing on Linux with Wine but got black screen with UI on top (stats, cross-hair) although the intro worked just fine. Not blaming anyone, just tested my luck :)

Nice. Great atmosphere.

About this post: https://fractilegames.itch.io/polychoron/devlog/218525/polychoron-009-alpha-upda...

It's type is "major update" and it shows as such in unfiltered devlog listing. If I set the filter to only show "major updates" (and sort by most recent first) it does not show at all. In fact, the first devlog it shows is from 15 days ago.

Is this a bug or just something I'm doing wrong?

I will have to think about that. I see your point and I kind of agree but I'm worried how that would effect gameplay. This might lead to game runs lasting a lot longer for the best players because a single mistake per level could no longer lead to death.

Perhaps it could regenerate health slightly at beginning of levels but only if it's below some (low) limit. And maybe this could only happen once per game or require some rare power-up.

Thanks for the feedback again!

Hmm.. what do you mean?

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I haven't tested this with Xbox controlled but based on your description I assume the triggers show as both buttons and axes.

For each movement you can bind one digital and one analog input, so now that you have mapped the LB/RB as digital roll inputs, you should remove the RT/LT analog bindinds. But having said that, I realized there is no way to remove a binding, other that binding that input somewhere else.

While trying this myself I found another issue: When reassigning one analog axis direction it removes previous bindings to both directions :|

I'm happy to hear you liked some of the changes :D  I will address these binding issues in a maintenance update sometime soon..

BTW, that start-up sound IS the sound of an old hard drive starting with a bit of other stuff mixed into it.

Thanks! 

Butler is great, makes things so much easier. I should have start using it earlier :)

I'll put that issue on hold then and get back to it if I can later reproduce it myself.

The mouse wheel control problems have been "fixed" by removing it completely. I didn't know it can warp through walls but the huge acceleration spikes from it caused all sorts of other problems.

Thanks for the help again! By the way, I have a big update almost ready with some of your suggestions implemented :)

Hi again, I'm trying to reproduce that random black box issue but I can't see any. Do you remember if they were there already at start of level or after playing a while and destroying things?

What OS are you using and on what kind of hardware?

I don't use zip for Linux release because it doesn't preserve file permissions on executables.. at least I thought it didn't.

I actually already added an item to my to do -list for finally checking out Butler :)

I initially wanted to make all the upgrades and power-ups persistent but then the difficulty would have to go up much faster too and it would make it even less predictable due to the random/procedural nature of the game. This could easily lead to unexpected situations where a really good player could keep on playing indefinitely or a the player would face an "unfair" difficulty. 

I have some power-ups planned that have limited usage and those will probably stay between levels.

That black box is likely an unused cube mesh instance.. I though I fixed that bug a long time ago but apparently it has returned. Thanks for pointing that out.

I used to have all game files in a sub-directory but I had to change that for the Itch.io app. I'm not sure if that is needed anymore, though.

Thank you for the feedback again!

There's one more enemy type coming after that. It has the same model for now,  but very different behavior ;)

One item  on my task list is to experiment with decals to add variation to walls. At one point, I tried differently colored wall "themes" used for certain parts of  the level to add variation and help with navigation, but I never got it to look good enough, so I removed it.

The isolated and claustrophobic feel is sort of intentional. I haven't really made up my mind about where the maze is located but space is one option. Now that  there are no windows, I don't have to choose :)

Thank you for the feedback!

As for the variation, I'm planning to add secondary weapon power-ups and I might add some new enemy types too. I initially planned to generate varying sizes of levels but then settled for the current relatively small size to keep the average level completion time short.

How far did you get? If you got to level 8, then you probably saw all the enemies there are.

The game is being developed on Linux too ;)

Thanks for pointing out the missing input methods. I had forgotten to fill any of the metadata for the game.

Unfortunately no. I once had a test build for Raspberry PI 3 during my arcade cabinet project but I didn't keep that around (didn't run well enough due to GPU).

Are you sure that would even work? The game requires "desktop" OpenGL and your phone likely supports only GLES.. unless the emulator does some magic.

Played the Windows version on 64-bit Linux with Wine (didn't want to install all those i386 dependencies) and it worked flawlessly.

Really fun to play and looks pretty. Surprisingly the difficulty was just right for me. Often games like these require too much split-second timing in jumping and shooting. Controls felt good.

Thank's for making this video, it was fun to watch!

Thank you for the feedback! I think some of these are already there in some form, they just might need some tweaking:

1. I haven't seen this as a problem, but it shouldn't be too hard to make the highlight more visible. Added to my todo -list.

2. I have intentionally limited the menu control to certain players to prevent "menu fighting" as multiple players try to navigate in menus at the same time, either accidentally or intentionally. For keyboard, it's the rightmost player as arrow keys/enter is the logical choice for menu controls. Selecting should work with that player's fire buttons (right shift/ctrl) too.

3, 4. You should be able to navigate the menu using the first gamepad's dpad buttons and X/A button. The menu and controller help overlay should toggle by select/guide and start -buttons. Does this not work?

5. This is already on my todo -list (as low priority item, though).

6. The reason for not using  the "triggers" is that depending on gamepad they can be digital buttons, analog triggers or completely missing. One set (the upper on XBox/PS controllers) of trigger buttons is (almost) always present and digital. 

The controller remapping question comes up often, but it's unlikely that I would add that. I have instead tried to add alternative buttons for things that annoy people the most. The reasoning is that this is supposed to be a party game where players change often. If the controls could be changed, most of  the time would be spend in menus tweaking  controller settings instead of playing.

7. I'm not sure if I understood the problem.. Right stick only turns without accelerating.

I uploaded the controller app APK to the game page here. Let me know how it works.

I did not submit the app to f-droid, but might reconsider that later on.

That's a good idea. I will look into this..


Hyper Ultra Astronautics is an intense space arena shoot'em up designed from ground up as party/couch game. It features solo, competitive and co-op game modes, a selection of unique weapons and thruster-based controls. Play using keyboard, mouse, gamepads or use your mobile device as a controller.

Gameplay trailer:

Downloads for Windows and Linux are available on Itch.io page: https://fractilegames.itch.io/hyper-ultra-astronautics

I have been working on this game for nearly four years (yes, I'm a lazy solo developer) and it feels good to finally finish it! I've had quite a few distractions and side quests during the development, including a bar-top arcade cabinet for this game. I will of course continue fixing bugs and I might even add some new features in the future.

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Itch.io page: Hyper Ultra Astronautics

Hyper Ultra Astronautics is at its core a simple space arena shoot'em up  with solo, competitive and co-op game modes and wide selection of weapons. The less usual features are semi-realistic thruster based movement, teleport technology based mechanics and support for up to 16 players on a single PC (Windows or Linux).



Gameplay trailer (slightly out of date):


The game has been in development for a very long time and it is now nearly ready, but I'm still looking for feedback on the beta versions. All feedback will be appreciated!

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After embarrassingly long silence, a new beta version 0.1.3 is now available! Here's what has changed:

  • Recreated game icon with better quality.
  • Changed the in-game font again because the last one lacked many accented characters.
  • Re-show IP addresses listening for remote controllers with F5.
  • Fixed text messages at top and bottom of screen sometimes unintentionally fading out.
  • Properly reset camera state when exiting paused mode.
  • Added command line options for directly starting a match at startup.
  • Added menu toggling by ESC (again).
  • Use view with slowly rotating camera behind menus.
  • Updated to latest SDL game controller database.
  • Don't remember entered high-score name in demo mode.
  • Added support for event (damage, respawn, etc.) based actions in controller apps.
  • Bundled dependencies updated to latest versions (Ogre3D, OpenAL, GLFW, etc).

This time the mobile controller application (Android) has been updated as well (available at GooglePlay shortly):

  • Added sound effects (missile lock, respawn beep).
  • Added disruption effect when the player is hit by EMP.
  • Fine-tuning to background image and damage effect.
  • Changed application font.

I have been using a PS3 controller for testing all the time. Perhaps your's is some different variant. I will add it in the in next version.

I have no experience with Switch controllers, but I will keep this in mind if I ever get my hands on one.

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Thanks! I haven't actually seen their setup live yet.

There is a bunch of command line options for starting the game (listed in readme.txt file), but no option to directly select the match type. Now that you mentioned it, I wonder how they deal with this at the museum and why they never asked for such option. I will add it in next version.

You can edit ~./astronautics/configuration.xml file manually for some extra options like disabling keyboard/mouse controls if you plan to play on phones only.

Maybe you could post a picture/video of your setup here, when it's done? 

Anyways, let me know if you find anything else that would help with setups like yours.