… I could do something completely knee-jerk-irrational.

Short version: InterSceptre got a troll review. A particularly odius troll too, happy to spend time digging dirt to cause more problems, but utterly unwilling to provide any feedback for improvements.

An evening of fuming about this and “TrollWhacker” was conceived!

I’ll admit straight off the bat – it’s not pretty code: basically, I’ve taken a copy of AstroSwag and torn it apart in order to get up and running. And there’s a lot that can be reused as it – gamestate management, post-app-start content loading, all the basic handlers, the particle and overlay effects systems. But it’s interesting seeing what’s involved in taking the codebase of one style of game and turning it into something completely different.

So – what is TrollWhacker? In essence, it’s Whack-A-Mole (I wanted to call it “Whack-A-Troll”, but someone already bagged that!), but twisted in a “let’s vent some anger about this crappy review” kind of way – I’m a great believer that you can always derive something positive out of a negative situation.

Basic mechanic: you have a series of “holes” out of which various things pop up and some of these should be “whacked” as fast as possible while others should be left alone. But it’s not a straightforward as tap the thing that has just popped up to whack it – instead, a tap will release a hammer from the top of the screen, which will then fall and – if the player is fast enough – whack the object. This allows for a bit of spice in the gameplay (hammer speed power-ups/power-downs). There are a number of “waves”, comprised either of a number of objects popping up in sequence, and a given number of waves must be cleared before time runs out in order to proceed to the next round (additional waves on top of the clear target can confer a bonus, and also become the basis for a round rank, just like AstroSwag).

Since this is only a proof of concept at the moment, only one pop up type is working – the avatar. These come in six flavours, based around the “forum” theme of the game: “Flamers”, “Trolls”, “Spammers” and “Pedants” should be dispatched as quickly as possible, while “Posters” should be left alone. Finally, “Lurkers” are a gamble, with the player leaving them as long as they dare before whacking them: longer delays before a successful whack will give a bonus. On top of this, all avatars apart from Lurkers will start “posting” a few seconds after appearing – if this starts, the player’s score will rise for Poster avatars, and fall for everything else.

Other ideas include “Injection Attacks” – syringes in different colours that if whacked will incur a penalty or power-down, and bonuses to increase time, speed up hammers and defend against power-downs.

So yes – it’s a silly little 2D game which I’m hoping will be very fast to write – so far, it’s been in build for about four days so similar sort of speed to AstroSwag, but with a lot more of the background work already done.

… because I can.