Online Gaming Engines & Box2D
As online gaming comes of age with more developers taking up to various game physic engines, Id like to take a look at some of the up and coming developers in my next few articles. One of the old favorites of mine is Maciek and his creation 'SandCastle', a medieval castle defense game wherein you defend your fortress against the onslaught of the arriving enemy war ships, available on y9. The game physics of sandcastle is such that you will have to arc your cannon curve right in order to hit a ship. If you hit the ship at its bow end it may tilt but will not sink. The fun part is you should not hit the ships that have sunk else you will have that ship arise again and will have to defend yourself against its onslaught. The game has a good irish tune to it filled with war time bagpiper music.
The game is a scoring game and you will be judges on the time taken to sink the entire fleet. The top scoring times are close to three minutes to defeat the fleet and the best times seem to be with thirty odd seconds.
The game has two control points the angle at which you aim the cannon using your mouse and the power you select from the power guage with which the cannon will be flung past the arriving enemy. Interestingly if you misfire you can cancel the shot before the ball hits the surface, you can activate cancellation by pressing the spacebar. The game allows you to earn points and game money which can be used to by more effective weapons. The cheapest of the upgrades are pencil pellets that come at about six dollars of game money, then you have the banana rocket available for about eight dollars a bullet. You may further upgrade to the pebble bomb for about seven and the tennis ball for five. The last option of the upgrade is the soap bomb for about five. The best option though is the tennis ball, it is fun to see the entire castle open like a bonnet to launch the tennis ball.
The objective of the game is to use the right mix of ammunition at your disposal and spread your money across the variety of available ammunition to sink the fleet in the shortest time. You will find that the pencil bomb will go twirling like a pencil towards the target and is more effective for hitting the mother ship and sinking it in one shot. The banana rocket is very missile like in structure and performance enabling you to hit your enemy when they're at a distance. Th pebble bomb actually launches a spoon that hurls a lot of pebble like rocks thus ensuring a sure hit of a ship that is very close to shore. In the end it is up to you to decide which weapon you want to use against the enemy ships depending on your judgement of power, speed and distance...have fun with this one.