Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Return to RetroVaders

Over the past couple of weeks RetroVaders has had some extra love sent its way. The long awaited (hey, someone may have been waiting!) update 1.35 for Windows has finally seen the light of day - removing the 320x240 resolution to prevent crashing on modern versions of Windows.

Although there have been some "unofficial" downloads for this version, it is now available properly at the main site.

I've also been looking at some additional tweaks that will affect all versions of the game (not just Windows) in the next version. This includes removing the 320x240 default screenmode for ALL versions of the game. This has now been replaced with a 640x480 full graphical border, with the game playing in the middle (just like on the old arcade cabinets).

Some other (minor) bug fixes are through as well (such as preventing impossible screen scaling modes from being selected).

This is all minor stuff really. The major point of the 1.36 release is going to be a "One Switch" mode for the game. "What is that," you may ask? Essentially it allows the entire game to be controlled with a single switch. For disabled players this can mean the difference between being able to play a game and just being able to watch someone else playing it.

A good resource for more information about One Switch gaming is which has a wealth of information about games for disabled players, and how to adapt your games to their needs.

Anyway, back to RetroVaders. At the moment when the game is in "One Switch" mode (retrovaders.exe /oneswitch) the space bar or left mouse click is the switch. In game, the switch toggles between three states:

Move Left
Move Right
Stop and shoot

After asking for a bit of advice on RetroRemakes I may also add alternative control schemes, such as:

Move Left
Move Right

Getting the game playable with one switch is one thing. Getting the in game menus working was another challenge entirely. In the end I've settled for the game automatically cycling through the menu options, with the switch selecting. I've set a two-second delay between each menu move to make it easier for those with slower reflexes to select the right option.

There are still a couple of things that I'd like to add to the game to make it more accessible, but we're heading in the right direction!

No comments: