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SAGE 2023 - Demo Éclipse The Cat (SAGE '23 Demo)

General Information

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STORY

Éclipse is an alley cat who lives in the Meow Town dump with his friend Rabizoudouk. Their quiet life changes completely the day Princess Coquelia, leader of the Coquelus (alien body snatchers), launches an attack on the city.​


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Work in progress


CONCEPT
Éclipse The Cat is a semi-linear platform game that focuses on the variety of situations. Over the course of 26 fast-paced levels, the player will unlock power-ups (running, dashing, flying, etc.) that will help them defeat the game's many bosses.​
Setting three difficulty modes, I want the game to be as much fun for players looking for a straight adventure, as it will be for hardcore players addicted to score and speed play (yes, that split is hard to balance).​


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ORIGINS
The main idea of the game is to rehabilitate the mascot-like heroes of the 90’s, and see if they still can be relevant today. Cheerful and optimistic, Éclipse will go through classic types of levels (the street, the forest, the volcano, the laboratory, the sewers, etc.) updated with a 2020’s twist that will impact gameplay and pace as well as themes the game tackles.​


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INFLUENCES

Although I'm a big fan of Mario games, I’m more influenced by Master System, Megadrive and Saturn games such as Alex Kidd, Shinobi, Dynamite Headdy, Silhouette Mirage, Rocket Knight Adventure and Megaman.​

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PROJECT STATUS
The demo cover the first world of the game, 4 stages (on the final 26). I've been working on the game for a year and a half now, and I'd like to release it (fingers crossed) in 2024. So far, 60% of the core levels have been produced, with a lot of graphics, sounds and music still missing.​

HOW TO PLAY THE DEMO

Unzip the file wherever you want on your computer and click on "EclipseTheCat_SAGE23_Demo.exe".

# IF IT DOESN'T WORK AND ASK YOU FOR MISSING DLLS #
Click "Install_DLL.exe", the game will be installed on your PC with all necessary Dll files.

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- IMPORTANT -

In order to avoid controler conflicts the game start on a "controler calibration screen", if you use a game pad (which I recommand) press the START button on this screen or press ENTER if you're playing on a keyboard. This first input will determine which controler have the priority on the other (gamepad or keyboard). If you skipped this screen to fast, restart the game in order to redo the calibration.

LANGUAGES - ENGLISH / FRENCH
The game is by default in English and will detect your Windows language. So if your windows is set up in French it will boot up in French. In advance, I'm sorry for the probable translation errors, I write the game in French and I translated everything myself into English without proofreading. This will not be the case in the final version of the game.

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Work in progress


WHO AM I?
I have been working in the video games industry for the last 20 years, during which I have released action games like Gauge (iPhone / PC) and Zorbié (iPhone) on my own.​

You can follow the progress of Éclipse on my twitter page.


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Work in progress
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THANK YOU FOR READING, HAVE FUN!


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Latest reviews

Excellent demo...The spritework is really good and the animation is even better in motion.

I like how things are gradually introduced...despite the similar level themes in the first world I was always eager to see what came next

Some of the controls seemed a bit unresponsive, though it's hard to pinpoint it... the popup instructions for each powerup broke the flow of the game I think
ÉtiennePérin
ÉtiennePérin
Thank you ! If at one point you understand what is unresponsive, I'll be more than happy to take it in consideration, I still change stuff in my controls, (yesterday I changed the walk speed and the power ups range for example, not in the demo only in the main game though).

As for the popup instructions... For the capacites like punch / fly etc. I probably won't be able to change that, but for the items (power ups / shield / bomb etc.) I probably can put an option to disable them, I'll add that to my todo list !
Eclipse The Cat is an amazing action platformer that feels very much like a true torch barer of the great titles of the genre from the Genesis/SNES/GBA. Eclipse is such a fun and lovable mascot and the world he inhabits is full of characters who are just as memorable. The art style here is something quite remarkable as well, the characters are really unique and distinct. I can tell the artist/dev had a lot of fun creating them. The levels all feel well crafted and are pleasing to the eye as well. As much as the art and characters are stellar, the real star of this show is the game play. Eclipse is given many abilities gradually through out the game that greatly expand Eclipse's capabilities, without overwhelming the player. I look forward to revisiting this demo once SAGE is finished!
There's a bizarre bug where if you play the game on Medium difficulty, or hover over a save file with the Medium difficulty in the main menu, all sound will completely cut out. I got around it by playing on Easy. Haven't tested it on Hard yet, but still, what a strange oversight.

The sprite work is incredible though, much moreso than I was expecting for a game of this kind. Pretty chill game overall. Looking forward to the full release.
ÉtiennePérin
ÉtiennePérin
Thanks ! The begining is quit chill, but it's getting harder after. Though, my objective here is not to make a "die and retry" game like many games today, the pleasure of the adventure first, I really want that every body can enjoy it.

As for the sound bug, I noticed that, but it was to late, not sure if it's linked to the difficulty, it's more a question of bad luck, sometimes it happen, some players told me that the bug was "auto-fixed" when you get on the map screen (after the prologue), which is logical, that's where I make a lot of sound manipulation). I'll dig that.

Anyway, thanks again for playing it !

Comments

This seems all right. The movement speed could be faster, and the keys seem awfully random, especially in the future when space is going to be run. Everything feels a little abrupt, like the areas don't really have enough room to breathe before they're over. But the graphics are good, and bouncing on enemies is good, and digging for items is a cute conceit.
 
This seems all right. The movement speed could be faster, and the keys seem awfully random, especially in the future when space is going to be run. Everything feels a little abrupt, like the areas don't really have enough room to breathe before they're over. But the graphics are good, and bouncing on enemies is good, and digging for items is a cute conceit.
Thanks for the comment, I'm not very glad of the keyboard controls either, and I must admit the game is more thinked for a game pad. My big problem here is that, the soft I use to make the game doesn't allow me to make a "remap button" option. I'll try to improve that anyway, but if you have suggestions, it'll be more than welcome.

As for the speed and the "room to breath", I guess it especially concern the "rooftop" stage. I see what you mean here, it's a bit intentional, the level design is evolving a lot on this part as you unlock new capacities. The game structure will make revisit the 1st stages with theses new capacities, like in Metroid, allowing you to run, dash, and totaly replay it in a more dynamical way. Unfortunately I couldn't show that in the demo.
 
This project right here is mighty impressive.
The art is fantastic, and basically feels like I'm playing a trial of a game ready to be released in the wild.
-And it's not even done cooking yet. I'll keep my eye on this one; bravo to you!
Some minor things:
  • The game was forced in fullscreen for me
  • Some remap settings would be nice
The game did a great job of drip feeding you new techniques.
It was cool to preview the expanded toolset at the end of the demo, but I could already feel it being cumbersome trying to make use of all my moves in the heat of gameplay. I'm sure you've thought of how to gradually incorporate new skills as the game difficulty ramps up; I just hope it all doesn't get too overwhelming by the end of the game.
Peace
 
This project right here is mighty impressive.
The art is fantastic, and basically feels like I'm playing a trial of a game ready to be released in the wild.
-And it's not even done cooking yet. I'll keep my eye on this one; bravo to you!
Some minor things:
  • The game was forced in fullscreen for me
  • Some remap settings would be nice
The game did a great job of drip feeding you new techniques.
It was cool to preview the expanded toolset at the end of the demo, but I could already feel it being cumbersome trying to make use of all my moves in the heat of gameplay. I'm sure you've thought of how to gradually incorporate new skills as the game difficulty ramps up; I just hope it all doesn't get too overwhelming by the end of the game.
Peace
Thanks ! Unfortunately, the tool I use to make the game (pixel Game Maker MV) doesn't allow me to add a remap button option ( or at least I didn't find a way to do it properly, still it's a wonderfull tool), but I'm gonna dig this question and try hard on it. As for the power ups, yes you'll unlock them during ~75% of the game, and the stages will be shaped to learn you how to use them.

The biggest difficulty in its developement is to maintain the accessibility, and by accessibility I mean : playable by casual AND hardcore players, recently I added the option to change the game difficulty at any time (you can access an option menu by pressing start on the map), it was a big mess to do (it implied a lot of adjustments). Anyway, the game will need a lot of play tests before its final release. ;)
 
This project right here is mighty impressive.
The art is fantastic, and basically feels like I'm playing a trial of a game ready to be released in the wild.
-And it's not even done cooking yet. I'll keep my eye on this one; bravo to you!
Some minor things:
  • The game was forced in fullscreen for me
  • Some remap settings would be nice
The game did a great job of drip feeding you new techniques.
It was cool to preview the expanded toolset at the end of the demo, but I could already feel it being cumbersome trying to make use of all my moves in the heat of gameplay. I'm sure you've thought of how to gradually incorporate new skills as the game difficulty ramps up; I just hope it all doesn't get too overwhelming by the end of the game.
Peace
Ho ! And I forgot but for the Full screen mode : you can press F1 to switch to windows mode, but be aware that when it's windowed the game suffer from frame rates drops sometimes...
 

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ÉtiennePérin
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