Thrust II Reloaded

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pgimeno
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Thrust II Reloaded

The 30 anniversary of Thrust II is approaching. This remake renders tribute to it. One major problem though, is that most graphics are ripped from the original. I've smoothed a few including the orbs and the backgrounds, to get them from doubled 16x16 to actual 32x32. BUT the intention is to completely replace the graphics, and possibly the map, and I need your help to do that. It's unacceptable to keep the original artwork, for two reasons. First, even though the author gave permission for distribution of the original game at least to one specific site, it's unclear whether he may claim the rights; second, the obvious one: the game was made almost 30 years ago, with that resolution and means, and they are in urgent need of a replacement. Unfortunately, my artistic abilities are zero, which is why I'm asking for help.

Basic gameplay is in place. Some features are still missing. like most sounds, a decent status panel (I really didn't want to borrow the original one), enemy explosion animations, and the planet explosion when the orb timer expires. Most importantly, the game ending animation is not finished yet.

There are two aspects that differ substantially from the original. First, it uses a tractor cable, not a stick. I think that that adds a bit of realism. Second, shooting affects a circular area around you, rather than what's visible on the screen, since the viewport is bigger (probably even more in future) and could therefore potentially spoil part of the fun by killing enemies farther than in the original game. In addition, the handling is a bit different; somewhat more realistic physically IMO.

How to play

Your aim is to collect 16 orbs from the holders and carry them to a special area in the surface, where you will build a laser machine that will clean the pollution (the red dots on the top). To do that, you have a ship that can carry one orb at a time.

To pick up an orb, get within range (see image above for the cable length) and press and hold the Pickup key. The cable will appear. Once the cable is taut, the orb will detach from the holder and you will be carrying it (you no longer need to keep the Pickup key pressed). You then have to take it to the platform in the surface, and deposit it in the flashing square (but not too fast).

Like in the original, orbs have different masses, which affects the manoeuvrability substantially.

To shoot, you first need to pick up a chemical agent from one of the boxes scattered around the map. Each box kills one specific kind of robot.

Keyboard is redefinable. Original keys are Q, W: left & right, P: thrust, L: pickup, space: fire. Additionally, these keys have special meanings and can't be used:

keypad +/-: Used to change volume (mouse can be used too).
F10: Used to save the game.
F3: Used to restore the game.
Pause: Used to... yeah, that.
Esc: Quit game (same as closing the window). You get a confirmation dialog to prevent accidents.

Also, Ctrl+Break (Ctrl+Pause) during the game will stop it and return to the menu.

License

The code is licensed under the MIT license. The original artwork is unlicensed copyrighted material and is in the process of being replaced. The new artwork made by forum member Cucurbitacée is used with permission.

Two parts of the code were borrowed from other authors: the JSON serializer/unserializer, which is Copyright (C) 2010-2013 David Heiko Kolf and licensed under the MIT license, and an anonymous snippet for deep copying of tables, which I was too lazy to write myself. For development I'm using strict.lua (author and license unknown).

Download

Here's the .love file. A .tmx made with Tiled 0.12.3 is included. The .tmx file is not actually used by the code; it just mirrors the data that the code currently has.

ThrustIIreloaded.love

It works with 0.9.1 and 0.10.0. If there's something that doesn't work with a later version please let me know.

The code (without the unlicensed images) is now hosted on NotABug.org, https://notabug.org/pgimeno/Thrust-II-reloaded - as images are replaced they will be added there.

Contact

Do you like this game? Are you willing to help with the design of new graphics or adding sounds? I can be reached by email, or by PM. My email address is kept in my homepage for spam reasons:
http://www.formauri.es/personal/pgimeno/
Last edited by pgimeno on Thu Jun 07, 2018 4:50 pm, edited 5 times in total.
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

qubodup
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Location: Berlin, Germany
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Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

Wow, this is hard!

https://youtu.be/A9ayK5cnLdQ
lg.newImage("cat.png") -- made possible by lg = love.graphics
-- Don't force fullscreen (it frustrates those who want to try your game real quick) -- Develop for 1280x720 (so people can make HD videos)

pgimeno
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Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

Yeah, it takes a bit to get used to the inertia and learn to control the orbs, that's part of the fun!

I recommend to assign the thrust button to a different hand to that for left/right. I believe it helps.

Thanks for the video!

Here's a little hint: the screen is connected left and right, pretending to be the surface of a planet where you can turn the whole way around. The map is 4096x2048.
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

JohnBobSmith
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Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2015 9:17 pm
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

Hello,

I'd love to help with this project! I can help with all area's of sound, programming, and artwork. I don't really have an order of what I'm best at, call me a jack of all trades.

I played a few minutes, and here's a couple of things I noticed right away:
-The very first main menu should have something that says "Press enter to start" rather than making the player guess. The second part with pressing 1 to play and 2 to setup keys is good.
-Lack of a good UI. Even something like a timer that shows how long you have to hold the pickup key down for would be great; you actually really wouldn't need much else.
-Maybe a minimap would be cool to have? Then again, searching for all the orbs and drop off spots blindly might be more rewarding then knowing where they are from the start.
-The pickup time needs to be reduced, especially because of the close quarters areas. It feels like 5 seconds (I haven't sourced dived that number just yet). perhaps 2.5 or less would be better, but definitely not under 1.5 seconds.
-If possible, perhaps using a Box2D rope would be better than a rigid line. That would make the craft easier to control, but it would still be challenging to maneuver, as there would be a lot more freedom of movement with the rope/line, and the orb would be more likely to hit stuff.
-See above point, the craft seems a bit hard to control, but still do-able. Although I like the way it is, either the orbs or something else seem to kind of throw the craft weirdly. Maybe this is just me.
-The pickup rope/line should be able to increase/decrease in length, like a winch's cable. One key to pull rope into spaceship, one to extend out.
-Sound effects. A nice latch sound when hooking onto the orbs, and a detach sound for un-hooking. Such audio queues can also help the player. For effect, a player explosion sound + visual effect, and some thruster noises would go a long way to making the game more juicy.
-The artwork seemed okay, but if copyright is an issue, it definitely wouldn' t hurt to re-make all of it. This would be good for two reasons other than copyright: 1) modernize the graphics by using larger resolution images and 2) add your own unique touch to it. Maybe this is a desert sandy planet instead of a winter one. That would make it more interesting.
-Speaking of being unique, perhaps the player also has a re-fueling mechanic. Run out of fuel and the craft becomes hard to steer, eventually losing all thrust and falling until it hits something. This could be added maybe in a hardcore mode or something.

Hopefully you can digest that wall of feedback and suggestions, lol. Let me know what you think of all of it.

What I'd like to start work on in regards to this project is the sounds that I mentioned earlier. They are the pickup attach sound, pickup detatch sound, and thruster sound to start with.Whether you use them or not is up to you, I won't take offence (but constructive feedback would be nice!). I'll post them publicly for download when I finish making them.

I'll also send a PM your way too. Email is not my thing.
I'm a catholic and I like code.

Code: Select all

if god.isReal() and god.recievedPrayers() then
god.endPoverty()
god.endWars()
god.answerAllPrayers()
else
prayer = human.prayFor(poverty.end(), wars.end())
table.insert(god.prayerStorage, {prayer})
end

pgimeno
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Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

Thanks for the feedback and for the offer to help! I'm excited. I was preparing this video while you were posting, so let me add it first and I'll reply in the next post.

I think this video better demonstrates normal gameplay:

https://youtu.be/lNM0yYEAQ6M
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

pgimeno
Party member
Posts: 1441
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

Ok, let me address your points in order.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-The very first main menu should have something that says "Press enter to start" rather than making the player guess. The second part with pressing 1 to play and 2 to setup keys is good.
It has a relatively short timer and accepts any key. Anyway, it's certainly trivial to add a sign somewhere in the screen. And I'll make the timer even shorter. Thanks for the suggestion.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-Lack of a good UI. Even something like a timer that shows how long you have to hold the pickup key down for would be great; you actually really wouldn't need much else.
Yes, one of the things that are pending is a decent status bar with score, timers (both orb and agent) and shields (lives).

Also, judging by this and a later point, it seems that you're missing that there's no pickup time. You just have to get the rope taut, and the orb will detach immediately. For the agents (weapons), you have to be exactly above it, and within a certain distance.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-Maybe a minimap would be cool to have? Then again, searching for all the orbs and drop off spots blindly might be more rewarding then knowing where they are from the start.
A minimap probably wouldn't be hard to implement, but I think that exploring to discover the structure of the tunnels/caves without knowing what's ahead (until you've learned their layout) is funnier.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-The pickup time needs to be reduced, especially because of the close quarters areas. It feels like 5 seconds (I haven't sourced dived that number just yet). perhaps 2.5 or less would be better, but definitely not under 1.5 seconds.
See above.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-If possible, perhaps using a Box2D rope would be better than a rigid line. That would make the craft easier to control, but it would still be challenging to maneuver, as there would be a lot more freedom of movement with the rope/line, and the orb would be more likely to hit stuff.
If you mean to give it elasticity, I can try it. Note that it's not using Box2D; I finally implemented the physics myself because it felt a bit closer to the original game's feeling, which I've attempted to reproduce. I have to try with elasticity to see how it feels like.

My main goal was to make a game that felt the same but wasn't so frustrating. In the original ZX Spectrum game, the viewport is too small to see ahead, and the scrolling is too slow and vibrating to feel a continuity. Also, as there are less enemies, the speed increases, making it much harder to control, because you turn much faster. I wanted to get rid of these two sources of frustration, while keeping the same idea.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-See above point, the craft seems a bit hard to control, but still do-able. Although I like the way it is, either the orbs or something else seem to kind of throw the craft weirdly. Maybe this is just me.
It's all about getting used to controlling it, with and without orbs. Without orbs it's easier, but the ship is very lightweight and the thruster pushes it a lot, so you have to apply thrust in very short key presses. With orbs, being conscious of the displacement of the center of gravity while carrying an orb helps a lot. Rather than trying to go the opposite way to counter the oscillation, which tends to increase it, you have to learn to either let it fall without moving, or pull in the opposite direction to let it stabilize. It's very rewarding when you finally know how to stabilize it and can do it without much trouble.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-The pickup rope/line should be able to increase/decrease in length, like a winch's cable. One key to pull rope into spaceship, one to extend out.
Perhaps for pickup, but once you're carrying an orb you should not be able to decrease the length. Some of the passages are designed to be challenging for that length, and the height is carefully chosen. The orb carrying part should be challenging even without enemies, because otherwise once you destroy them all you're basically left with a boring transport game.

For example, the orb that is in the roof of the cave to the right of the cave below the starting point, needs to be transported through a stairway. Making the rope shorter would make passing through these passages too easy.
JohnBobSmith wrote:-Sound effects. A nice latch sound when hooking onto the orbs, and a detach sound for un-hooking. Such audio queues can also help the player. For effect, a player explosion sound + visual effect, and some thruster noises would go a long way to making the game more juicy.
Totally agreed. I'm eager to see what you can do in that field!
JohnBobSmith wrote:-The artwork seemed okay, but if copyright is an issue, it definitely wouldn' t hurt to re-make all of it. This would be good for two reasons other than copyright: 1) modernize the graphics by using larger resolution images and 2) add your own unique touch to it. Maybe this is a desert sandy planet instead of a winter one. That would make it more interesting.
Also totally agreed. I'll PM you some details of the current constraints for the artwork (and also to agree on a license so I can finally upload it to GitHub).
JohnBobSmith wrote:-Speaking of being unique, perhaps the player also has a re-fueling mechanic. Run out of fuel and the craft becomes hard to steer, eventually losing all thrust and falling until it hits something. This could be added maybe in a hardcore mode or something.
That was in Thrust I. I think it gained when it was removed.
JohnBobSmith wrote:What I'd like to start work on in regards to this project is the sounds that I mentioned earlier. They are the pickup attach sound, pickup detatch sound, and thruster sound to start with.Whether you use them or not is up to you, I won't take offence (but constructive feedback would be nice!). I'll post them publicly for download when I finish making them.
That's so great! Thanks for the offer.
JohnBobSmith wrote:I'll also send a PM your way too. Email is not my thing.
No problem. I'll send another to you after I post this.
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

JohnBobSmith
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Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2015 9:17 pm
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

Ah, you have to just make the rope taught by moving away. Its not a timed latch at all! XD

Speaking of latches, here are sound effects for you to try out. They are the latch sounds, one with an airlock type effect and the other just mechanical. I banged two chains together and recorded it for the chain hit sound. The air hiss is from http://www.freesound.org, which is a great place to get sounds. The license for that particular sound (air hiss) is Creative Commons 0. Which means I can literally do anything I want with it XD.

For some reason, both .wav and .mp3 files are not allowed as attachments?? I'll find a website to upload the sounds to and paste the link back here I guess...

EDIT: Here are the files. After this edit I'm going to be offline for a bit.
Attachments
thrust2audiosamples.zip
(168.97 KiB) Downloaded 94 times
Last edited by JohnBobSmith on Wed Nov 04, 2015 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I'm a catholic and I like code.

Code: Select all

if god.isReal() and god.recievedPrayers() then
god.endPoverty()
god.endWars()
god.answerAllPrayers()
else
prayer = human.prayFor(poverty.end(), wars.end())
table.insert(god.prayerStorage, {prayer})
end

pgimeno
Party member
Posts: 1441
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

.zip maybe?
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

pgimeno
Party member
Posts: 1441
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

The license is now changed to the MIT license as promised, and the code (minus the unlicensed images) is available on GitHub NotABug.org, https://notabug.org/pgimeno/Thrust-II-reloaded. I've updated the OP accordingly.
Last edited by pgimeno on Thu Jun 07, 2018 4:51 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

pgimeno
Party member
Posts: 1441
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 2:58 pm

Re: Thrust II Reloaded - Designers Wanted!

There's a new version up, with a number of important changes (see OP).

- New splash screen by Cucurbitacée.
- Scroll-in effect in the Get Ready screen, also used on crash and on load.
- On crash, you get a ship crashing animation (thanks to Cucurbitacée) and then a scroll-in effect. That was a much needed pause to let you breathe rather than being immediately on the wild again.
- The orb timer is now implemented, finishing the last bit of normal gameplay left. The planet explosion animation when the timer expires is not yet implemented.
- There's an in-progress game ending animation now.
- Some feedback on load and save: a scroll-in effect for load, and a SAVED sign for save.
- Sounds for the ship crash and the cable latching on to the orb.
- The cable now extends when pressing Pick, rather than only showing up when latching on to an orb.

Still many details pending:

- Many graphics left to replace and many sounds to add!
- Finish the game ending screen, and create a real planet explosion screen.
- Enemies should explode when killing them.
- Decent status bar.
- Score.
Thrust II Reloaded - GifLoad for Löve - GSpöt GUI - My NotABug.org repositories - portland (mobile orientation)
The MS-Github repositories I had have been closed after the acquisition announcement and will be removed in the near future.

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