I've been thinking about how it felt playing old shoot-em-up games like Delta and Sanxion on the C64 back in the 80's - in my memory those games are frantic and overwhelming, with a layer of obscurity added on top because I didn't understand English at the time. Seeing them now they maybe not relaxing, but they're a far cry from the rose-tinted images in my memory.
I've played around a bit to try and capture some of that sense of total assault in this little prototype. It's only two levels at the moment but it's far enough along so you can at least give it a go and get a sense of where it's headed.
I decided to design it for vertical game play which is perhaps not ideal on wide-screen displays. The game is in fact locked at a 16:9 aspect ratio. Horisontal style game play might have been more sensible, but I wanted to be able to play it straight on my laptop - no gamepad needed (might add support for that later on). Using the arrow keys for left-right movement feels very intuitive and easy, using them for vertical movement feels very clunky and odd on a keyboard. At least I haven't figured out a way to get good controls on a keyboard for that sort of layout.
The game might feel brutally hard at first but checkpoints are forgiving and I think most people will manage.
It's playable straight in the browser (tested on chrome and firefox), make sure to have sound on and play in full-screen for the proper experience. I might do a standalone version that goes directly to full screen at some point but sharing it like this was just a lot more convenient.
Would be great to get some reactions to this and some of your very learned opinion. It's a bit of an assault on the senses but hopefully in a refreshing and invigorating way!
Play the prototype!