Gamejam entry: Bird of Prey

My first #7DFPS entry, and my first gamejam where I specifically targeted touchscreen / mobile devices. You can download it for free from voxel.itch.io.

Over the course of a week #7DFPS entrants are tasked with creating a 'first person shooter', preferably with some distinguishing feature. I took out the 'shooter' and made a 'swooper' instead, where the player takes the part of a predatory bird hunting rodent prey.

Bird of prey animation

Initially I planned on some kind of gyroscope control system, playing the game by tilting your phone. In the end having the player calibrate their device each time they played was too frustrating, so I went with a 'two button' control scheme. The screen is divided into left and right, with each side controlling one wing.

Flight

Holding a 'button' causes the wing to push downwards. Release both buttons to glide, flap rapidly to gain altitude, hold both wings in to dive. Turning is accomplished by the not completely accurate method of holding one wing in, causing the bird to bank to the side. The controls are straightforward to learn but do take a little practice to master.

Map

The environment is populated with small skittering creatures that live and hide in the long grass but emerge to feed on the seeds that drop from the trees. Difficult to spot from a distance unless moving, the critters emit a distinctive call when excited or scared to help the player track them down.

Claws

Getting close to a prey creature causes the bird claws icon to appear. Tapping the screen now results in a capture and nomming of the delicious peanut shaped rodent. Yum.