Shoot em Up: Changes for Contrast and Boss Differentiation

So to start this week’s changes off, I wanted to make the enemies and the player character pop out slightly more. The game I’ve referenced for this is Draw a Stickman Epic, where they’ve made the background mostly quite desaturated in colour. This helps whatever colour there is to stand out.




With that in mind, I popped my current background into Photoshop and tried several different hues, mostly darkening it slightly, desaturating the colour just a bit and bringing up the light meter to make this;




It also made the detail of the grass slightly less pronounced while still keeping the texture, which lessened the noise in the background as well as remaining recognizable as grass.


Up until now, my boss archer had pretty much the same armor and was of the same size as the other normal archers. He had a health bar and that was about all there was in differences. As such, to make the boss more recognizable as a boss, I looked to a few other games such as Skyrim, whereby the chief of every bandit camp had slightly upgraded armor and weapons compared to that of the underlings.



Taking that as a reference, I changed the armor for my boss archer into chain mail and gave him a different coloured weapon. While the weapon itself did not change much, it really stood out against the green of the background and went well with the red feather in which I kept on his hat.



As mentioned earlier, the boss was the only enemy to have a health bar as he had far more health than any of his peers and had more use for it. While mine was there simply for functionality, looking at other games, in this case Rabi-Ribi, I’ve noticed that they’ve made the boss’ health bar far larger than the player’s. This helped give the player an idea of how long and tough the fight can be since they can compare that health bar against their own.




As I’ve added a few new attack patterns onto the boss as well, and I did mention in an earlier post that I would make the health bar larger when I did, I’ve increased the size of the boss’ health bar from being slightly more than the sprite’s own width to about two thirds of the screen’s width.



For anyone who is interested, here is the current version of the game;

Simply download the file and double-click, or drag onto a web browser to play.


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