Up until recently I’ve been using placeholder imagery for the enemies and haven’t really put much thought into their designs, either visually or mechanically. I’ve been avoiding getting to grips with how to properly control the animations and how they all interact with each other and the player.
So I decided to get stuck in a couple of months ago with this ‘Shield Spawner’ idea. I wanted something that would encourage the player to land on the ground a bit more often, so this enemy can only be killed from that position. It also spawns shields that make it harder to access the power-ups contained in the blue dots.
This enemy was an effort to bring a bit more life to the animation, as at this point I was just dealing with simple triangle enemies which were kind of sucking the energy out of the visual style. So this simple bullet sponge type is bigger than the others and just sits minding it’s own business until you assault it. I think the explosion needs a bit of work, and maybe the spawn animation, but I’m happy with it otherwise.
These are some really simple ‘popcorn’ enemies for the player to just plough through, but again I was going for more energy in the animation. I also spent a bit of time on the enemy spawning and formation system so that they can appear around the player instead of always coming in from off screen, as I was doing before.
These squiggles replace the simple triangles I was using before for the horizontally moving enemies. I tried to inject a bit more energy into them and I think they’re working much better now - I really like how there’s a bit of a reaction to the player if they’re shot or if you get too close.
These enemies will appear throughout the level and give you a nice score bonus if you destroy the whole chain, or I might change it to a power up drop if I ever do power ups. I'm not really happy with the whole context of this idea, seems a bit random and maybe needs a rethink.
This one is a slow moving, fairly harmless squiggle until you kill it and it releases it's babies! This'll probably be a fairly rarely occurring enemy as the little guys are a bit aggressive, but I'm thinking of making a differently coloured variant that doesn't spawn them to add a bit more variety.
These guys move up and down, and I've done a variation that go left and right - they can form quite nice patterns in different, more dense formations and are a bit trickier to shoot when they dodge about.