- possibly there could be an option in audio to turn the computerized
voice off, since sometimes i find it annoying

- it'd be fun if the second analog stick could be used to change the
camera angle in the level select screen

- i don't like that when you die, you're still there (if you know what
i mean); the model for the player still exists even when it says 'you
died', it'd make more sense if it had some type of exploding
animation; overall i think the feeling of being hit by an enemy and
dying needs work, since it doesn't feel visceral enough to me when i
die, often leaving me with the feeling 'when did i die? how many
seconds ago? i didn't even notice'. it needs like a big megaman-esque
explosion radiating from the point that you died or something of the
kind

- the close range attack meter is harder for me to see actually; i
don't even know where it is, i tried looking for it by using the close
range attack over and over but couldn't see anything that was changing
to indicate anything

- on a more technical issue, why is there both an mp3 and an ogg of
the same piece of music (one 13mb, the other 8mb)? it seems a bit
wasteful of space. there's also two oggs with nearly identical names
and sound similar (you can't stop him.ogg and you cant stop him.ogg).
and yeah, this is just a beta, so it's forgiveable of course, but it
does increase the beta's dl size

- there's an issue with the particle effects coming out of the center
of the screen on the stage select: because the camera doesn't totally
center the player/level selected all the time, sometimes the particles
appear to be coming out of the level, and sometimes just out of the
center of the screen; it'd be more fun if either the camera always
centered the player, or if the particles compensated for the camera
angle and still came out of the level selected instead of the center
of the screen

- i think the game needs some more story; not cutscenes or a lot of
text, but something at least that lets the player know who he is, who
he is fighting, what he is fighting for, something like that. cause
just shooting things without knowing what they are feels strange to
me. perhaps some type of intro at the start of the game that explains
it.

- in that vein, perhaps a list of enemy types somewhere, with
descriptions of the behavior each. like a bestiary.

- if possible, disable the screensaver when playing the game (since
screensavers don't detect joystick movement, so mine becomes active
even *during* play if i only use

- typo: under your achievements descriptions, you have "loosing a
life", it should be "losing a life"

- probably too late to change this, but i feel that the powerups spawn
too quickly for their variety, there are only a few types, but you get
so many of those few types over and over again. so either being
spawned less often or a greater variety of them would feel more
balanced

- possibly you could display the names of the levels on the stage
select screen, because, say, flower power' is more memorable than
'wave 8a'; i know they're displayed when you select a level, in the
level details, but probably they could also be displayed by just
moving onto a level

- i don't understand how to pass level 15a, it just says 'wave failed'
all the time no matter what i do in it. i couldn't get past this level
so i just stopped here for now; if you let me know how to get past it
i'll continue my playtesting report.

*

- it may be a good idea if the player knew which waves are 'opened up'
or not when selecting a new wave to proceed through, perhaps a 'new'
message under the wave choices indicating that you've never been to
that level. that might help when deciding where to go next if one's
goal is to unlock every level.

- this is probably in the works or been recommended before, but the #1
suggestion that i think would improve the game drastically would be an
online high score table (for each individual level and for the game
itself). preferably with the option to compare it to the high scores
of one's friends (on facebook or whatever), but even without that it'd
add a lot of motivation to trying to get the highest score one can.

- it's not clear why some levels give you 'power down :(' and some
don't (unless every level does and i didn't notice, in which case, why
mention it? it just feels discouraging to be told your power is down
rather than to expect it)

- the game crashed for me on wave 10, twice, right when the timer hit
0. i don't know which version of wave 10 (a/b/c) but it was wave 10
(it having a timer should help you narrow it down if you don't know
which i mean). no crash message, just an immediate exit. i can't seem
to make it past wave 10 due to these crashes when the timer hits 0.
edit: i just remembered, it's the wave with a 'grid' of lasers that go
on and off, in a tic tac toe 3x3 scheme.

- i may be wrong about this, it feels as if my scores and the levels i
opened during that runthrough of the game where it crashed weren't
saved, so perhaps you could also make it so that it saves your score
and which levels you unlocked after every level completion so that
crashes don't take away so much progress.

> It's the multi colored part of the large ring that surrounds your ship. I
> will concede that the game makes no mention of what or where it is at the
> moment. The thing is, it's not really all that important until the screen
> begins to flash red and the alarm sound starts, and I've had a bit of
> trouble coming up with a good place for it to go. Whether what's there now
> is better than the energy bar I had before I don't know, but at least you
> don't have to look away from the ship to see it.

ah, i see it now. i just thought that indicated the radius of the
close-range attack and didn't realize it changed (perhaps because each
close range attack changes it so little). oh, one idea i thought of,
though it may be too late for this: it'd be interesting if the
close-range attack radius was smaller when its power bar was smaller,
that way it'd be more intuitive how far it goes. but that'd also of
course limit its effectiveness exactly when you need it most (when
it's near the red), so it may not be a great idea.

> There's also no game over or complete screens yet, and I've toyed with the
> idea of having these be an extension to whatever minimal story I have in the
> tutorial. I suppose doing this would cement the idea of the game having a
> goal other than just shooting stuff. What do you think to that? I've not
> really talked about it before, but I guess the game is getting to the stage
> where I do need to start thinking more seriously about this stuff.

i remember that zelda2 had 'game over, return of gannon' when you
died, which i liked. so perhaps you could do something like that.
'game over, the x have conquered your people, the y' (only not as
generic).

> I'll think about adding some others, although it is getting pretty late in
> the day for this. Would you say that the frequency of them being spawned is
> more of a problem in some levels than others? Or is it just the lack of
> variety?

the lack of variety bothers me a bit more, yes. perhaps because i'm
used to shmups with 10-20 different types of power ups, that your 4-5
varieties seems small in comparison. but it is pretty late to change
this, so perhaps just keep this in mind for future games or for
expansions/sequels to this game.

> Another thing that I need to make more clear. Around the edge of the outer
> border of the arena are four fuses that you need to destroy. Once you've
> done this the boss will appear. I think I'll either pull the camera back a
> bit, or bring the fuses closer the the center of the screen. Or just have
> the first bit of the level on a timer! That would be simpler!

i managed to beat 15a but it just said 'finished' when i exited; is
that the end of the game? i don't think so because the achievements
mention 'beating wave 30 without dying' and similar. so perhaps that's
the end of the easy path. unfortunately any other path involves
getting another exit from wave 10, and that wave crashes for me every
time the timer runs out. so now i need your help getting past *that*
level before i can continue my feedback!

*

- after you complete a stage, it briefly shows rank "F" no matter what
rank you got, it soon turns into C, D, S etc., but for a brief second
it always shows F, which you probably want to fix

- i don't know if this one is intentional or not, but right after you
lose your final life it says lives: "-1" which is a bit confusing (how
can one have negative lives left?) -- may be better to just not show
it at all if it's below 0

- the game seemed to take a long time to load the first time i started
it up, just with a black screen, no load screen, for about 30 seconds.
but after that, when i ran it again, it showed the load screen
correctly, and loaded much quicker at about 10 seconds each time. i do
notice that in my own games they take a long time to load the first
time after restarting the computer, and then after that are faster
(perhaps windows does something to make it more efficient). you
probably can't do much about this though, since it's just a matter of
how good someone's computer is, but thought i may as well mention it.

- is there any way to automatically detect if a joystick is an xbox
one or not? because i use an xbox one and each time i start the game,
realize i can only fire up and down and not left and right, need to
tell the game that's the one i use instead.

- i run the game at my monitor resolution of 1920x1080, and at that
resolution it's a bit too zoomed out to see anything (even though the
frame rate is fine at 60fps all the time). it might be a good idea to
zoom in for larger resolutions a bit, so that you don't just have a
tiny stage in the center of a wide area of nothing when you use higher
resolutions.

- when i click 'show online scores', it just shows the audio controls.
it also doesn't let me submit my scores yet. but i imagine this isn't
implemented totally yet?

- for some bosses it's hard to know when they're taking damage or not;
perhaps a 'flash' effect when they are

- it always seems wasteful to me that most times the first power-up
you get in the game in wave 1 is death wave, and only 1 or 2 enemies
die by it; perhaps make it so that death wave power up doesn't appear
so early on in a stage or doesn't appear unless there are sufficient
enemies onscreen for it to be useful

- i like the names for the levels displayed that i recommended,
however, you should probably not display the names for levels that
have not yet been revealed (e.g. ? levels) in order to increase the
mystery; it also doesn't make much sense that you'd know the
unrevealed level's names on the stage select, but not know them when
selecting them after competing a level (since the unrevealed level
names are displayed as ??? at that point)

- sometimes enemies appear right under me and i die; i know there's
usually some kind of warning of this, but it feels as if either the
warning is too brief or not noticeable / big enough of a warning
unless i'm specifically looking for it. perhaps increase either the
warning's time or size, or both. because right now, i'd say 80%-90% of
the time when i die, it's because of an enemy spawning right under me,
which i imagine (if it's widespread and not just my lack of
perception) doesn't give a very good feeling to the player because it
feels as if most of their deaths are from chance rather than skill.

- for a polish issue, since you use the same music track continuing
between stages rather than starting and stopping new tracks for each
stage, perhaps you could experiment with turning the music volume
lower between stages (during the part when you select which level to
go next) and then ramping the volume back up when the next stage
begins

- sometimes it feels as if the game punishes me for killing things too
quickly; for instance in the flower stage, if you kill the flower too
quickly (by running up to it and repeatedly using the close-range
attack until it's dead), it won't spawn more enemies, and you won't be
able to meet the combo goal that will take you to normal/hard levels;
so i guess in order to optimize your score you need to learn which
creature spawn more creatures, and not kill those -- this feels a bit
off to me but i can't make any specific recommendations on what to do
about it, except tweaking it on a case by case basis or by providing
early kill rewards somehow

- sometimes i'm going for unlocking a certain level rather than just
playing through the game, so perhaps an option to retry a level
instead of forcing you to either go on to the next or quit would be
helpful for that (although it'd of course have to subtract the score
you just earned so as not to cause people to repeatedly play a level
to get a higher total score)

- i feel that, since killing things with close range attack is more
'dangerous' than with the normal shot, perhaps you could increase the
score gained from killing things that way (so that perhaps to play
through the game using *only* the close-range attack would be the way
to get the highest score, and a viable alternative way to play through
the game); it need'nt be a huge increase in score, perhaps 1.1x or
1.25x as high for killing with close range attack vs killing with
shots/missiles

*

- bestiary says 'achievements', so does 'achievements', when selecting
it on the main menu

*

one issue: the game kept going between 60 fps and 30 fps for me, no
middle ground. seems like vsync was active, which was detrimental to
gameplay because of the constant sudden shifts back and forth between
normal speed and half speed. i'd recommend an option to turn vsync off
(if it doesn't already have one) or leaving it off by default -- the
sudden shifts in speed are far worse than screen tearing, especially
in a shmup

one bug: i played through the game on easy, always selecting the easy
levels. nonetheless i got #5 on the top score list (this isn't the
bug, but it is weird that i should get so high on the list just
through the easy levels). but the bug came next: i went to 'find me'
and it correctly found me at place #5, however it did not show 1 or 2,
it started with 3. i tried 'scrolling up' to see if they'd appear, but
they didn't, it only showed 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, (and so on down the list);
1 and 2 failed to appear in 'find me'.

other notes: some levels still seem too small in 1920x1080, but i
realize i didn't send you screenshots of this yet so that's my fault.
but particularly level 3, easy mode, was really tiny in that
resolution (the entire level filled only about 20% of the screen
space), so perhaps you could zoom a little closer just for that level;
i'll make screenshots of such levels when i get a chance
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