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"Vertically-Scrolling Shooter Inspired Game Idea" Topic

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1,392 hits since 21 Nov 2015
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa21 Nov 2015 2:43 p.m. PST

I started a mini-mech project awhile back and decided that in the absence of cash I'd cobble together some scenery from scrap materials. As is often the way its side-tracked me into another idea and that's to build a tabletop game around the concept of the vertically scrolling shooter computer games such as 1942, Xavious, Lightforce etc etc. I've got a few of the plastic Silent Death ships, which will do for the lone hero. Terrain bits are under construction. The first crop of turrets are bit big IMO so I'll have another crack at those. I'm planning to manufacture the ubiquitous waves of drones from beads and other oddments. My GZG and Risk mechs and some 1:300 tanks I've got kicking around will be the ground vehicles. But if anyone can suggest cheap (the budget is pretty much zero on this one) spacecraft/drones and other oddments that might make good turrets please pitch-in! So inspired idea or madness? As for rules I probably cobble something together based on FUBAR.

Oh, and I need to make a few end of level bosses…

Rubber Suit Theatre21 Nov 2015 4:55 p.m. PST

Some templates are necessary for the genre – lots of packaging has acetate that will work well. Hand out a number equal to the craft's smart bomb capacity and surrender them as they're used.

Stogie21 Nov 2015 6:45 p.m. PST

Might I suggest some ideas for modeling cannon systems:
1. Turrets off of old naval ship model kits.
2. Electronic components, where the leads could be your cannon barrel:


3. Toys at a garage sale.

I like the Blizzards. You can pick up the sprues for a few bucks over at A sprue is inclusive of twelve different ships.

TheBeast23 Nov 2015 11:14 a.m. PST

So, were you thinking of actually 'scrolling'? Pulling the table cover off/down one side?

Not sure what I can suggest; you're obviously a talented devotee of repurposed trash! For spaceships, I've already gone on, ad nauseum, on the uses of disposable razor handles, plastic cutlery, used-up pens, and the odd bit of hardware. Wire twists and mollie-bolts, for instance…

For missiles, I've been impressed/amazed what some folk are doing with simple pipe cleaners.


Jakar Nilson23 Nov 2015 2:42 p.m. PST

There would be a random table for what comes on board?

ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa24 Nov 2015 10:59 a.m. PST

Don't think I'll try literally 'scrolling' the table! I had considered using card mechanism like that used in some night-attack games I've seen published in magazines, but I think I will set out the table as a single 'level', with hangers and turrets having reaction zones.

TheBeast25 Nov 2015 7:10 p.m. PST

I was kind of teasing, imagining terrain crashing to the floor, but have to admit Jakar's idea of surprises coming in has a certain appeal.


ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa14 Jan 2016 3:22 p.m. PST

Finally got the second batch of buildings done and the first two turret designs. Along with drone hangers (behind the taller turrets) and marker for hidden turrets.

Still need to work up a missile turret, sensor stations etc. Of course I couldn't resist working up something else for the project at the same time…. basically the type of thing that stooges up behind you about 2.5 minutes into a level and unleashes an outrageous beam attack or a spread of missiles. There are another two on the slips. It still needs some detailing done and some filler so very much a WIP.

Logain15 Jan 2016 8:22 a.m. PST

Seems like silent death would be a great rule set for this project. Nice buildings.

Ad Astra News15 Jan 2016 8:43 a.m. PST

What are the pieces on the sides?

ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa15 Jan 2016 11:58 a.m. PST

Going to use re-jigged FUBAR rules (I've nicknamed Deathspiral) for speed and simplicity – ultimately I want a game that flows very quickly and smoothly and can be picked up equally swiftly (I am trying to simulate an arcade game on the table top!). The two major changes are creating zone of activation for opposing units to reduce the ability of the opposing player to swamp the lone fighter-craft with turret fire and waves of drones the moment it appears on the table and adding arcs of fire / movement. Obviously there will be a range of special weapons for the lone fighter!

The pieces on the sides of the big craft are the very top of the type of cap you get on resealable kids juice bottles – which also form the basis of the turrets mounted on the grey bases.

TheBeast15 Jan 2016 12:57 p.m. PST

Haven't seen those, may be a cross-briny issue, but I've seen close enough to know what you mean.

Lovely; reuse is ALWAYS the most sincere recycle. ;->=


Zephyr115 Jan 2016 9:58 p.m. PST

Reminds me of Zaxxon… ;-)

sean6833316 Jan 2016 12:00 p.m. PST

This looks like a great idea. When you get your rules together, I would love to see them.

Grignotage18 Jan 2016 7:33 a.m. PST

I think that's a great gaming idea! Please do share your rules when you're done.

Will there be power ups?

ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa02 Feb 2019 6:39 a.m. PST

Three years later… gives you some idea about the speed my gaming projects move at! Anyway last autumn I finally found something ideal for the waves of drone fighters I need, which didn't require either a miniatures purchase or hours, which I don't have, tediously scratch building a couple of dozen identical fighters.
They lack any surface detail, but are hard plastic so adding gribbly bits, like underwing store, shouldn't be too difficult. Also cutting the head off should produce a small 'light drone'. Currently WiP since my attempt at adding yellow transfers to add some detail seems to have failed for a couple of reasons.

IIRC I paid about a £1.00 GBP a pack for them from Ryman's.
I can also see using them as 15mm drones and micro-scale grav tanks.

TheBeast02 Feb 2019 12:19 p.m. PST

Crickies, that's awesome, including the major thread-o-mancy!

I think I'd almost go with tiny barrels coming out of the eyes, and claim they're itty-bitty ball turrets…


Personal logo Parzival Supporting Member of TMP08 Feb 2019 11:52 a.m. PST

So is the giant Mech in the background the final Boss? ‘Cause that would freak the players out when it shows up, especially if you do some sort of "random scroll" mechanic as came up previously in the thread. evil grin
Will there be any "pick up power ups" for the fighter player?

Love the bee drones idea, too!

ROUWetPatchBehindTheSofa09 Feb 2019 10:03 a.m. PST

No the mechs, large and small, are just innocent bystanders from other projects! At least initially I was thinking of something flying for a boss, see 14 June 2016 post, or may be some ludicrously over-turreted giant tank.

Rules-wise I very recently got my hands on a copy of the First Person Shooter version of FUBAR and some FUBAR mech rules which have given me something to think about. Power ups are a given though so far I've not really thought that hard about the mechanism I might use yet – counters randomly distributed under buildings would be simple.

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