Ludum Dare 32 — April 17th-20th, 2015 — Theme: An Unconventional Weapon

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Guardian Shield

by longshorts - Compo Entry

Difficulty Note

The Hard version is the original compo submission. After playing a few times I decided it was too hard, and then created the Easy version. The only differences are that each gem now regenerates 5% of your shields, as well as an increase in player movement speed. The Easy version was uploaded after the compo submission time however, so you may want to consider it a post compo version.


The year is 2754 AD. You are the pilot of the prototype spacecraft codename GUARDIAN. The ship has no conventional weaponry, and is instead fitted with humanity's first kinetic energy shield. Normally used as a defensive device, the shield can also cause tremendous damage when used aggressively by an experienced pilot.

Apologies for no web version, for some reason the web client only renders a few of the sprites. As soon as I find out why I will upload the web version.

Arrow Keys: Movement
Shift: Speed boost (stops shield regeneration).

Code : Java with LibGDX on Eclipse
Art: Inkscape & GIMP
Sound Effects: BFXR

Downloads and Links




ajopart says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 10:31am

Nice idea. I first though the asteroid with blue gems will restore my shield faster. Question : what does the skull icon represent and how does the bar on right increase ? Congrats for putting all this together in 48 hours.

longshorts says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 11:51am

Hi thanks ajopart. Yes I thought about incorperating shield regen from the gems but thought it was harder without it (and I wanted to keep the game hard). The skull represents difficulty, and directly influences the speed at which the game scrolls, as well as the multiplier to your gem score.

Apr 20, 2015 @ 1:46pm

I actually found this to be a really cool use of the theme. Deliberately running into enemies is a big change from how shooters normally work.

The game as it is was fun, but I can think of some changes I'd really enjoy seeing (I only played the hard mode, disregard this if you've changed any of these for easy mode).

The basic move speed is a little painful in how slow it is, especially when chasing enemies that have slipped past you. Perhaps making a faster move speed as the default but having shift freeze you in place to regenerate shields would make for a more exciting game.

Also, cutting down the ship's hitbox to just the main body would allow for tenser moments squeezing between asteroids, and might make it feel fairer when you do get hit. Dunno if that'd change things too much with how the shield works though.

Overall a very fun little game though!

Iak says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 1:54pm

Who needs weapons if you can just crash into your opponent! Cool idea. Much like. Pretty wellmade, too!

Marcellus says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:47pm

Very nice concept, hard indeed but not totally impossible. This is a nice entry and it fits well with the theme

esayitch says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:48pm

Played the hard version.

Really liked the sounds in this because they reminded of much older games. Art was okay, gameplay was fine. I found that at the start of the game I wasn't using the boost at all, only later on.

If I could suggest something, is that the faster the game becomes, the faster the shield regens. That will make the gameplay more fast-paced as you will want to hit more ships. Now, the faster the game becomes the more I dodge enemies until my shield regens, so I have a sort of "break" from the core gameplay.

Good luck!

Leandrus says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:49pm

Good game. definitely needs music for better ambiance.
Thanks for sharing mate.

ViliX64 says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:49pm

You could have combined those two jars and just ask the player to choose the difficulty. Except for that, nice game :)

mar3k says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:50pm

Cool game, the graphics are just amazing and the game is fun as well. But maybe I would have made the ship a quicker and but there less meteorites and movement for enemies. But otherwise it is really nice game.

haveric says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:51pm

Pretty solid gameplay. Who doesn't like running into things? You weren't kidding on the hard mode being hard, but I like the difficulty of it. Makes you pick your battles over just killing everything. One suggestion for improvement would be to use less gradients. It works in some places, but seems to be overdone.

Overall, pretty nice game for 48 hours.

Hyoga-3D says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:55pm

Cool idea, reminded me of one scene from the Guardians of the Galaxy.

edve98 says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 3:19pm

Nice game. One thing could be better: I would like to controll my spaship with wasd keys too

Headmade says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 9:52pm

I really like the graphics, especially the UI. Nice and clean.
And it's great to see another LibGdx game. More code to look at and learn from :)

I wish the boost had a sound and graphical effect as it is barely noticeable. I would like it to be more powerful to because as is it has little gameplay value. Still a nice game.

MightyToast says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 11:30pm

I like the mechanic of offense and defense being tied together. Fun stuff!

Apr 20, 2015 @ 11:52pm

Hey, I liked this game. I enjoyed the buildup of stress as you get faster and need to avoid collisions. I think it could be better if the difficulty increased faster, and the ship and hitbox were smaller and streamlined. I found it took too long for the game to gather difficulty at the start and weaving through asteroids at low health could feel like you hit things when you think you positioned perfectly. I think that is important because I felt weving was the best part of the gameplay. I didn't try easy mode but I thought with a little work the gameplay could be very engaging. Fun game, thank you.

Apr 20, 2015 @ 11:58pm

This is a great game. Very simple control and fits the theme well. It does not ask much of me but I find that there are a large variety of interesting situations. The randomness is working very well here. The graphics are clean and the colours work well to tell me what is happening. All it needs is some catchy music :)

Aree Vanier says ...
Apr 21, 2015 @ 7:13pm

Really fun game. Challenging, but not impossible. Nice idea using a shield as a weapon

Apr 23, 2015 @ 10:04am

Really good idea for the theme and well implemented. FYI I prefer the harder version!

Apr 24, 2015 @ 10:38pm

It's a fun idea to run into the enemies. I prefer the easy version, once it gets a bit harder/faster.

Frozen Stick says ...
Apr 26, 2015 @ 2:28pm

Very good game.I really liked the game play and the hard mode was a blast!

ianh says ...
Apr 27, 2015 @ 12:31am

The mechanic of running into enemies and collecting things is quite satisfying. I wish it went longer before becoming completely impossible to survive, or that there were some way to survive even when the screen is full of asteroids.

Jungle says ...
May 1, 2015 @ 6:45pm

Very cool game. Need some music, uhn? I like the graphs. Congrats!

nassi says ...
May 1, 2015 @ 6:53pm

Played the hard version. Starts kind of slowly and even after several rounds I'm not sure what I should be doing or what the object is. Do I want to break down the "diamond asteroids" and the enemies or do I just want to go as far as possible? Or moderate the two in order to get a highscore?

Not a bad entry though.

May 11, 2015 @ 6:53pm

Hello, Longshorts! :) This is Taunia.

This is actually really solid for a compo entry. Very well done. The graphics are very clean, you've implemented the idea of "movement in space" very well, but I can't help but feel the game is a little on the slow side. I kept wanting to push the ship to the top of the screen (and ended up getting hit by things beyond the field of view) because I wanted the darn thing to hurry up so I could smash into more asteroids.

I like the idea that you need to harvest gems. I also initially thought that the gems would restore my shield faster. Perhaps you could balance out the difficulty of the game by creating different enemy hazards and upping the travel speed? I could see this game being consistently challenging if you took the time to really balance it, especially when the point of the game is to run into things, wherein most similar games the point would be to avoid things. It really throws you off to begin with, but in a good way.

This is a good, solid foundation for something bigger. You've done really well. The only thing that's really missing is some good spacey background music. :)

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