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Yea, I'm the opposite, never played 'sandbox' mode in my life! But I don't mind trying to see if I can cater to your kind of player without breaking the game :)

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Sorry I wasn't clear, I didn't mean no saves at all, I agree that would make eating difficult ;P - just the impossibility of save scumming you get from permadeath. I like the idea of a separate highscoreboard for hardcore, that might be a good compromise. Maybe even no highscores at all for non-hardcore, since those players don't seem to mind about highscores anyway...

Thanks a lot for your input. I wonder how would you feel about allowing permaprogression in one game mode, but also having a 'hardcore' game mode with no saved games, which would be flagged as such in the highscore list to demonstrate the achievement? Would the absence of the 'hardcore' flag in the highscores be enough of a 'bane'?

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Thanks for the detailed suggestions and sorry for the late reply. I'm certainly still thinking about this, partly because I realise a number of other gamers will agree with you, and I'd like them to be able to enjoy the game too. I think my favourite idea at the moment is something like a 'time machine' that can be found within the level, and allows you to 'travel back in time' to the point where you found it if you die.

Sorry, I had just forgotten to update the itch miniature to read Alpha 2, which I have now done. NB the version number is shown on the splash screen so you can check you have the right version after launching. But let me know if you have any problems.

FYI, I aim to release the Steam version in the next few weeks - release schedule partly depends on whether I decide to add permaprogression, as I guess a good chunk of the Steam audience may agree with you about that!

That's odd, I can't replicate that on my systems. Can you tell me more about your setup, was it the PC version and which screenresolution?

Thanks, yes no surprise there as I haven't built for that resolution yet, but I'll look into fixing this!

Hi there, I must confess I think this kind of perma progression would be too much of a change from the original game concept. The idea is for this game to have the kind of  replayability that comes from each run being different (different weapons, items and even different mobs will appear in a new run) and where the player is motivated by trying to get further, with a better build, than on previous runs and so get a new highscore. Permaprogression would make this kind of progress more or less automatic, and therefore remove the sense of challenge. Based on my own playtesting I know it is quite possible to beat the 15 levels of the Alpha 1 without just relying on good luck, so you should be able to get further each time by trying new tactics/strategies - but do let me know if you think this is not the case and the game is just too hard!

However there is another sort of permaprogression I am planning to add, namely Achievements (including on Steam) which naturally can be unlocked over multiple games, so hopefully this will also help give you a sense of increasing progress over time.

Hi, thanks for the question - I've actually had a little bit of a development pause, due to the arrival of a baby boy!  However, things are settling down again now, and I'm starting to work on the next Alpha, which I hope I will be able to release in 1-2 months. I haven't finalised plans for the next Alpha  yet, but I think it will include releasing on Steam (early access), as well as  new content in the forms of more levels, weapons, items and aliens. Hopefully that is enough information to help you decide...

Hi, glad you're enjoying it and thanks for the feedback. The log font size was actually increased for the latest version (alpha 1/ demo 2.3) so interesting to hear you still find it too small. Can I ask what resolution you are playing at? (I expect you found out that you can resize the log area by clicking on it, but this does not increase the font size)

This is really interesting, I think the best settings are the starting ones. 'Input cancels render' is really important to make the game responsive and fast, and 'AI waits for player render' helps to give the player the 'feel' of the individual turns. 'Simultaneous AI turns' and a fast projectile speed are pretty much required if you have 'input cancels render' as otherwise you have the strange situation where you can seem to be able to move the player before the enemy turn has finished.

I think you definitely have the important variables here, but there are also some other possibilities. In Xenomarine I have a game option similar to 'simultaneous AI turns' but the non-simultaneous option only makes enemy attacks non-simultaneous while keeping other enemy movements simultaneous. (I also have enemy animation but no player animation, which gives a subtly different feel.)

You're absolutely right, I should have done that earlier! Glad you're enjoying it.

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Xenomarine is a sci-fi horror themed graphical roguelike in which you play a space marine battling to survive in a vast, alien-infested space station.

Version 1.5.0 of the Demo has been in the pipeline for some time, and has just been released today! It includes some great new features that I think will really improve the game experience:

New User Interface Graphics

  • New splashscreen with procedural animation
  • New user interface graphics
  • New inventory screen and item graphics

Here's an example - the new inventory screen, complete with weapons running out of ammo!


Other User Interface improvements

  • One-click ranged combat
  • Better pathfinding (A*)
  • New main log options (size, detail level)
  • Improved sound effects

Apart from the pathfinding, which makes exploring levels much more user friendly, I personally think the best thing here is one-click ranged combat. The previous scheme for using the mouse to attack at range was actually designed with future ports to tablets in mind, so I had designed a two-click system that would work without any 'mouseover' cues. But I recently realised this is not a good way to design the UI for a PC version, and that I could without two much trouble add a one-click system - so here it is!


Gameplay improvements

  • Larger levels with more varied layouts
  • Improvement to alien AI (more unpredictable movement)
  • New skills: shield block and shield bash

Here's a zoom-shot of the new larger level designs:


What else?

Oh yes, improved support for Linux (tested successfully on Ubuntu!) and also for higher screen resolutions, including 1980 x 1080.

If this sounds like your thing, do try the new Demo! I'm always looking for feedback from players - please contribute to the Xenomarine community page if you have ideas for improvements, or bug fixes, or simply respond to this post!

Glad you're enjoying it, others have mentioned the movement controls too - the next release will have 3 different control scheme options to choose from, and a message directing new players to the controls window, so that should help!

As Xenomarine is still very much in development, please do give feedback on your game experience so far. Bug reports, feature requests and general suggestions are all very welcome.

Hi fellow developers,

I've been working on XENOMARINE, a sci-fi graphical roguelike for about a year now. I recently released a demo version on itch.io., consisting of the first five fully-featured levels. I think this nicely illustrates it's gameplay potential. I've had some fun moments playing it myself, e.g deciding whether to use my last grenade/stimpack/bit of shotgun ammo after getting surrounded by aliens, or just about making through to the next medibay after losing all my medikits!

I now have to complete the design of the remaining aliens, weapons and levels, as well as perfecting the user interface. Any feedback at this point would be much appreciated, and may well help shape the future of the game!

Here is a screenshot:

All feedback very welcome!