Sunday, September 25, 2011

Project Helium Beta 0.8.5

This last week was extremely busy for me. I finally got to work at my job, so that kept me pretty busy all week. The good news is that I felt inspired this weekend, enough to make two new updates to Project Helium. I have decided to rename the current app Project Helium Beta and I did add some new screenshots on the Chrome Store. But those are just minor details.

I have introduced a new canvas size: 480x800. This does mean that anything smaller than a Cr-48 won't be able to play the game very well, but there will be a standard edition by the end of the beta, as well as a mobile edition. The current incarnation will become known as Project Helium HD, and will be the primary focus, since it has the most room to add cool features to. Besides changing its size, I've also added more enemies at once, doubled enemy paths to 20, levels now add another enemy to the screen (ie level 1 has 8 enemies at once, level 2 has 9 enemies at once, etc).

The second update changed the keys to the arrow keys and the space bar. I originally wanted to use these controls, but was unable initially to keep the browser from scrolling around when the keys were pressed, which was what lead to using aswd and j keys. But that's now in the past! From now on the defaults will be the arrow keys and space bar, and I may add custom keys later on.

Finally, I also added experimental support for the fullscreen javascript api. This means you can play the game without any of the other web page elements getting in the way. This is especially useful on Chromebooks and other 1280x800 screens. If you choose to play in this mode, please keep these things in mind: it only works in Chrome 15+ (this is the earliest version of chrome to have the api, so I don't have any control over this), pause currently won't work while in full screen and neither will clicking to continue after a game over, and finally, you will need to hit F11 (full screen button on Chromebooks) to exit fullscreen mode. I will be doing more tests and try to make fullscreen mode an integral part of Project Helium in the near future. For now, if you have Chrome 15 or higher, please try it out and give me your thoughts.

As always, I welcome feedback of all kinds to help me improve this game. Look forward to another big update next weekend.

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