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Alien Siege

rated 2.08 / 5 stars
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Action - Shooter - Horizontal Flight

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Credits & Info

Mar 8, 2014 | 4:00 AM EST

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Author Comments

Alien Siege is a modern space invaders style arcade shooter, in which an alien spaceship attacks Earth. It is advanced enough to make it to Earth and equipped with laser cannon to wipe out human civilization. As the aircraft floats across and down, player’s objective is to shoot lasers and destroy buildings. Once the city is leveled the spaceship landing is secured and users can proceed to the next level. Unique score for lives trading system is incorporated at the end of each level which allows players to be more strategic in how they play the game. Game-play is simple and fast paced as players battle their way through different levels.

Alien Siege is a multi-platform and cross-browser game that explores minimalistic design and resolution independent game-play. Its design is sleek and utilises landscape and portrait responsive formatting so it is compatible on any device. It uses a compact JSON representation of the game animation, which is rendered using SVG, HTML5, CSS3 and Javascript. Link to the game source files is also provided.

The game itself was supposed to be a Space Invaders clone entirely conceived and developed with Canvas and CSS3. The technical challenge was also to recreate a smooth Flash experience using only HTML5, CSS3 and Javascript without the need of any web plugins. Than I thought I should try a modern and organised approach in game architecture and push the boundaries and come up with a fresh and innovative game design rather than something retro - there is more than enough of blocky and pixelated 8 bit clones. I decided to replace Canvas with SVG although I knew this will seriously impact the memory requirements of the game, but I felt this was the best way to create resolution independent vector graphics game. Certainly I was fully aware that SVGs aren’t necessarily the best solution in all situations.



Rated 1.5 / 5 stars

Not bad or good by space invader standards. I would have liked more variety as i played, as it quickly became repetitive and boring.
Unique designs for each stage and better sound effects would make this game much better in my opinion.


Rated 1.5 / 5 stars

This game is... really boring. It's kinda odd how you say this is cross platform without the need for plug-ins yet my browser asked permission to use a unity plug-in.

I don't think you manage player expectations that well. You say it's like Space Invaders from the Alien's point of view, but then it's not like that. Then you say you want to make something innovative and not retro. By the way, it IS possible to be retro and innovative.

The music tried to be all mysterious and alien and cool, but it just comes off as boring and lifeless. While I think it's cool you can use a touch screen and a mouse for the same game, the User Interface has a big problem.

That X in the pause menu wasn't intuitive to me, and I clicked it out of curiosity. Sent me back to the menu and wasted my progress. Made me kind of want some text to appear when I hovered over it, but I guess that's personal.

The controls felt painfully unresponsive. Sometimes he would shoot and sometimes he wouldn't. After messing around, I found that you gain the the ability to shoot after the last shot hits a target. So it IS like space invaders but not at all... It's infuriating to shoot between 2 buildings and have to wait for it to hit the ground. Since it IS tougher to shoot between then, why couldn't you do something cool with that? Shoot down the middle 2 or 3 times and both the buildings collapse, but in the meantime, make sure they don't hit you on your way down. Or you could have this shave off 1 floor from both the buildings...

The aesthetics and visual style don't do anything for me. There seems to be a LOT of gradient here. Why?... I thought that was bad for frame rates.

The displayed frame rate goes all over the place, but hovers below 30 fps. Like 24. Frame rate fluctuations can kill a game like this that requires precision. If you're going to make the buildings so square, then why not use pixels? It might work to mix that with vector trees. I get that you think the technical side is so important because you're a developer (and it kinda is), but the people don't care that much.

When you said it was reverse Space Invaders, I thought I should focus on the sides so they don't move down so quick. Silly me. There is a technical quirk that gives a sliver of strategy.

When a building goes down (after it's animation), it checks if there are any more buildings and if not, you win. If you take out 2 buildings in a row, it's the 1st that confirms the win, so you land quicker. I try to focus on the buildings farthest to the right. Otherwise, I drop down before I win and I lose points.

For a strategy game, there isn't much strategy. You can buy shields at the end of the level... but the price goes up every level. And I get bigger and bigger packs of money per level. That means buy ALL the shields you can because your money is about to be worthless. Why would I ever sell a shield? If the price went up and down, then there'd be a reason. Buy cheap, and sell when it's expensive. Like a stock market game. But no.

It'd be awesome to get more alien pods to shoot with you so you can grow up to be space invaders. (Could my frame rate handle that?) When you win a level and land to make a new alien base, you could buy more aliens (I guess you would actually just make more but whatever).

The game gets kinda tough, but not really fun. No power ups, no alien buddies, nothing to change the game play. No progression, except the linear progression in the useless monetary system. No really fun building designs or different building types. Why can't I shoot down a hot dog stand? No humor. No over the top action stuff. The level design doesn't have any good psychology behind it. And the only narrative the levels have is that jerk move when there's a high building right when you start and there's no way you can reliably hit it. ...What is this supposed to be?

I don't think you made a beloved game here. You just made an engine. And this proof of concept proves it works.

I think of Graphics and the technical side of things like an empty container. You fill it with aesthetics. Aesthetics (what you DO with the graphics) is what people want. The more graphics you have the more Aesthetics you can fit in there. But the empty space in the container is bad. This game feels empty.

I hope you can use the engine to make a truly wonderful game.
But this game... at least it was entertaining for more than 5 minutes.

Wait... This isn't your first game or first set of games? According to your account, you've been making games since 2006. You seem to like making games with terrible controls and slow frame rates. Controls are important to me, so I guess I'm not going to like the next game you make.

If you make the frame rate half of what it was before, can't you just double the movement speed? Your pacing in general needs work. Here's a video that might help.

(The games I looked at from you are Castle Knight, Spud in the Sea, Gario and Bario Brothers, Nerd Zero, Pocket Fighter Tournament, SquirrelFartyPants, Squirrel and friends, Rhinoball, and MatrixOverloaded.)

The laser sound in this game isn't an awful sound affect, and that's good. Try making an engine where players can do more than 1 thing at a time. (Like moving forward and punching, or moving forward and shooting.)

Ya know, your weird Mario clone would be much better if you either made the frame rate higher or made the movement variables bigger. Is that why this game implies an obsession with frame rate? The frame rate isn't the goal. The goal is the good game play and the frame rate got in the way of that. Please be aware of that. It IS possible for Flash to detect RIGHT and UP at the same time. I've done that before In ActionScript2.0

Hopefully something I said was helpful...

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didinko responds:

Hi Adam, thank you for your wonderful review here...
If you have some spare time, I have one little exercise for you. Find the 10 worst games on and play them to completion - in fact you can pick my games - they all have very low score, terrible gameplay and laggy fps. This is correct — the worst you can ever find. I’m talking about the real crap. Then write a review for each one of them pointing out what’s wrong with and what’s right. It seems to me you simply don't have enough experience doing so. Anyone can enjoy playing and writing about good games (I wonder what your comment will be about Flappy bird for example), it’s the real professionals who put as much effort into the bad games as the good ones.
Friendly advice thou - don't get too technical when talking about features or functionality - your lack of basic knowledge on programming crops up. As I agree on the frame rate (I shouldn't have placed it on the screen at all) the rest of the points were based on prejudice and no understanding on the game industry in general.


Rated 1.5 / 5 stars

This game plays like Space Invaders (Atari) to be honest. However, I notice that rolls are reversed the the player is in control of the alien spaceship as opposed to the defending force. This is where the good stuff ends and it gets bad quick. One shot, no enemy offensive weaponry, it is just a fixed linear object serving as the player's vehicle and the music loops. I know you can improve this.


Rated 1.5 / 5 stars

going through under judgement, right, and this catches my eye because it has a remarkably low amount of views. so i think, why is that? why are people unwilling to give this the time of day? so i click it, see how it goes.

right off the bat i'm smacked in the face with this HUGE block of text that makes the game seem more complicated than it really is and technical aspects a lot of players wouldn't really care for! i personally do. it is interesting to me because i am learning to program. with how accessible you say this game is going to be, though, the vast majority of the players will not be as interested. at the very least, use paragraphs when introducing new and/or irrelevant ideas! gosh.

okay, with that short rant over, onto the actual game.

while you put emphasis on the use of vector art, there's nothing that really catches the eye! what bothers me the most about this is there's nothing really CHARMING about the way you use this style! it's just regular ol' boxes that vaguely look like buildings with lighting that makes no sense and gradient abuse.

the alarmingly large humans are charming, though! i like them, but i don't see them in the game, so far at least.

the buildings themselves are as stale as they get with no innovative choices or personality or tone or anything. it's just colorful squares and rectangles piled on top of each other, which i guess is FINE for the type of game this is but it's just not very interesting to look at.

the gameplay just brings nothing nothing new to the table! it's like a claw grabber that very specifically destroys buildings by two stories EVERY TIME instead of picking up fluffy plush toys and being rigged!

is the framerate more important than the score because it's definitely more noticeable and larger

also, strategy. there is nothing strategic about this game. there is nothing strategic about buying or selling a very minimal amount of things when the game asks you if you want to.

the entire game is mostly not as advertised, which is a shame.
overall not a very fun or innovative game, but i did like the design of the craft and the enthusiasm of the author.

People find this review helpful!
didinko responds:

So you decided to ramble over some of thegame features and listed all negative observations. The whole review was how crap the game is without taking into consideration anything positive - this is not how you write a constructive review. Perhaps you didn't want to write a good quality review...


Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

This is quite a cool game. Nice new concept being the aliens this time.