Trying out a rhythm game

Posted Feb. 2, 2014, 10 p.m.
tags: Prototypes

I thought it would be fun to try making a rhythm game. Most rhythm games are about pure execution (DDR, Bit Trip games, etc.), but I'm intrigued by Crypt of the Necrodancer's approach to the genre. Rather than telling you what to press, the game lets you know visually and audibly when to press. The rest is up to you. Crypt is a rogue-like, so your options are mostly using a D-Pad. Staying on the beat is important, but since the game doesn't tell you what to press you have to make a bunch of quick decisions. Using your brain for tactics and rhythm matching is tricky, but I thought I would give it a shot outside of the rogue-like genre.

For this prototype I thought it would be funny to apply rhythm gameplay to an extremely mundane activity - ringing up groceries.

Type the PLUs!

The player uses the Numpad to enter PLUs for customers, who present their groceries to you all at once. Your shift only lasts 10 seconds, but you can slow down time - or more accurately, roll it back by 90% - if you enter the PLUs in time with the music. The tactical decisions come from bagging order. Groceries vary by weight and how durable they are. Bagging in the wrong order will smash the groceries below, resulting in a score penalty.

At this point I'm trying to see if such a project is worth pursuing. All of the art is placeholder and/or stolen from google searches. Try the game out and let me know what you think!