Blazing Birds is a game developed for Xbox360 using ‘XNA Game Studio Express‘.
Blazing Birds is a one-on-one, action, sports game modeled after the game of Badminton. My goal is to capture the exciting, frenzied action of the sport without exceeding the natural limitations of human hand-eye coordination in the compact environment of a 2D video game. Several unique features of Blazing Birds achieve this goal.
The game’s control scheme is designed to allow players to optionally lock their finger positions in place. While performing the various functions of the game, the players never need to lift or move their fingers from one button to another. Additionally, there is no redundant button input. Every shot in the game, including jump shots, can be performed using a single button press.
Blazing Birds features advanced artificial intelligence. The AI is designed to allow a slow and subtle increase in difficulty while maintaining a realistic, human sense of inaccuracy.
Blazing Birds takes advantage of its video game environment with the addition of ‘Power Shots’. These super shots are not only visually exciting but also difficult to return. All seven power shots in the game are specifically crafted and balanced to offer new dynamics to the game play.
There are five game modes available.
- Arcade: The single player, arcade experience.
- Quick Match: Set up a custom match between two players.
- Tournament: Round robin style tournament including three to twenty players.
- Rally Mode: Practice your game with no scoring and no penalties.
- How To Play: An interactive teaching and learning environment.
Highscores: Saved automatically and can be viewed or cleared at any time.
Matches can be set up with any combination of Human and AI players.
Knowing exactly how a game is played is extremely important. The tutorial included in Blazing Birds is interactive on several levels. A player is able to perform a variety of key exercises in real time using an AI player to help train their skills. Both text prompts and audio narration are also included making the tutorial experience as interactive as possible.
For me as a developer, audio is just as important as graphics. Blazing Birds includes a wide variety of top notch, hard hitting sound effects and a fully licensed background score.
Finally, an underlying goal of any project I do is completeness. Blazing Birds was developed as a final product and therefore complete from start to finish. The addition of dozens of small animations and transitions gives the game a very “smooth” and “fluid” appearance.