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November 8, 2009 12:00 AM   Subscribe

Elona Shooter - a fantastic castle-defence-shooter-RPG in Flash. Warning: insanely hard.
posted by catchingsignals (19 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
If you find yourself struggling from the start as I did, you may want to try Casual Mode, turn on the laptop difficulty mod, and choose Hunter for the bowgun, which makes things quite a bit easier - at least for a while. Have fun!
posted by catchingsignals at 12:39 AM on November 8, 2009

I was thinking about posting this game too. There are a lot of workable strategies, which is nice. I recommend hiring a Sheriff and pumping a lot of points into the Doc Holiday skill. It multiplies damage/spread of shotgun blasts for the sake of accuracy. By the 40th night, they essentially lay down a flak barrage.

The game gets waaay easier as you collect more badges. It's not worth using the special continue option as it limits your badge accumulation.

Much better than that zombie night survival game.
posted by Telf at 1:22 AM on November 8, 2009

Oh wow. It's worth mentioning that this was derived very loosely from Elona, which is itself a graphical roguelike which has a time-warp effect of the "It's already 3 am?" variety.
posted by Saydur at 1:28 AM on November 8, 2009

Was also thinking of posting this one. Have been enjoying to the detriment of everything else recently...
posted by patricio at 7:07 AM on November 8, 2009

There are a lot of problems with this game:
  • The AP generation skill Active hardly ever goes off, so you're generally limited to 4 AP per day. Assuming you're raising chickens (since the money system is screwed) you really only have 3 AP per day, and it seems like the best usage for it by far is dinner (for an xp boost).
  • When you get past day 20 or so, the "taxes" become ludicrously high, sucking up almost all of your money every day. If you made the mistake of not raising chickens, or otherwise not heavily investing in money producing things, you will make 200g per day and be utterly broke.
  • This is a serious problem because you have to buy seriously costly upgrades to get more followers. (20k for the 2nd follower, 50k for the 3rd) After a while, you can't expect to kill everything on screen yourself.
  • However, the follower AI is pretty bad, even after you've leveled them up for quite a while. You can't count on them to kill any one particular enemy, which makes the whole thing a big die roll.
  • Weapon choice for everyone is paramount, and there are absolutely some trap choices: I find that anything with a low rate of fire is a complete loser on your main character.
All in all, it seems like a game that can be mastered, but after a while you realize that the difficulty curve is just broken and (even worse) completely random. It is a nice game other than that, though.
posted by TypographicalError at 7:10 AM on November 8, 2009

The difficulty curve is a bit much, but I did get past 100 days on the second playthrough - the Active skill started working for me later on (though it was still pretty frustrating when it didn't), but I rarely if ever used dinner as the xp was rarely worth it. The NPCs aren't great, but give them guns with leech mods (particularly gravity guns) and they can be pretty awesome.

I think it's a good idea to just experiment on first playthrough to get to know everything and get some medals - the second time round, you learn to wait for certain weapons and mods, and treasure the leech mods. The villa seems to make a big difference for me too. There does seem to be quite a few workable approaches though - though really we should ask Telf, who seems to have found it much easier than us. :)
posted by catchingsignals at 10:27 AM on November 8, 2009

I thought the game was worth playing until I saw that you could buy "little sisters" who you could use as suicide bombers. Then I closed the window.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 2:09 PM on November 8, 2009

The active skill is somewhat good... as long as you can get it to show up at some point in your skill list.

My main issue with the game is that about 80% of the options are hideous traps.
posted by TypographicalError at 2:30 PM on November 8, 2009

I did think that whoever made the game was needling their sister, but it didn't seem like it was a hateful thing - it was too cute, and the sisters never actually die. Tasteless, admittedly.
posted by catchingsignals at 2:33 PM on November 8, 2009

I can't seem to survive beyond day 3, even with casual + laptop mode on (I'm a casual player on a laptop, hey!) ..
posted by Alterscape at 2:34 PM on November 8, 2009

Maybe the little sister thing is a Bioshock reference? (No idea--I've never played either game.)
posted by box at 3:46 PM on November 8, 2009

I have the impression it's just the author's particular sense of humor. In his RPG, the first thing you are instructed to do in the tutorial is eat "corpse of beggar", which then gives your character the Elona equivalent of Nethack's "Confused", "Stunned" and "FoodPoisoned" states.
posted by pravit at 4:57 PM on November 8, 2009

What the hell do they mean that I have to upgrade my house before I can get more helpers?
posted by Astro Zombie at 5:02 PM on November 8, 2009

What the hell do they mean that I have to upgrade my house before I can get more helpers?

Tents aren't good enough for them. They expect prime real estate.
posted by bh at 5:16 PM on November 8, 2009

NPCs are dramatically awful unless you get ones who start with decent Work Rate and Aim Rate. Don't settle for less than 5 at the very minimum - this does mean booting the little girl out of your party asap if you started with her - though free, she has work rate and aim both at 1 and improves very slowly.
posted by stelas at 6:43 PM on November 8, 2009

Regarding the APs, there is that AP mod that guarantees you 50% of the active bonus every time. That makes a huge difference. Eventually, you will be able to count on 9 AP a round. That allows you to harvest your eggs and attack the museum. Once you get a lot of the badges, your museum will start to produce more money with the upgrade. You will have the option of hiring a henchman and still netting 1000 gold after each round.

I think the game is playable with low rate of fire weapons. The sniper is a decent class, but you will need to rely on your allies later in the game. I've been using a rifle and simply reload it after every shot. This lowers the snipers adrenaline, so watch out. The disarm skill is great for negating the tanks and robot dragons.
posted by Telf at 7:17 PM on November 8, 2009

Got to around day 10 but hit detection is a bit sketchy. If I can't even take down a chicken with one shot, how am I supposed to take on robot dragons with nothing but a slow-loading rifle and a little girl to help me out?!
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 7:26 PM on November 8, 2009

BlackLeotardFront: you want at least one more member in your party by day 10 - I generally start off by saving money to get all 4 members of my party as soon as possible (while staying alive). I haven't had much trouble with hit detection, but yeah, it's pretty ignominous having your castle defence breached by a chicken.
posted by catchingsignals at 7:46 PM on November 8, 2009

One thing I've noticed is that the badges you earn carry over from game to game, making subsequent starts a bit easier. This is more than a little frustrating, but does help in the long run.
posted by valkyryn at 6:44 AM on November 11, 2009

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