Platformers are out, Clothformers are in. Well, that's what the developer of LAZR wants you to believe with an impressive tech demo release of their in-development title.
Stop right there, what's a Clothformer? Well, it's a pretty much an action platformer with added "realistic cloth simulations with full destruction" which developer Garrick Campsey thinks makes LAZR unique. Is it though? Well, going by the tech demo I've played through I was certainly very impressed with it.
Since this is only a demonstration of what you can expect, it's somewhat limited. However, a longer demo is coming in January 2020 with more levels, a mode7-styled overworld and hero mods/loadouts. They're also planning a Kickstarter campaign sometime around that advanced demo release.
As for the full version, they're planning to have:
- 64 different types of loadouts allow you to customize your hero - from fully auto laser fire, to lighter and more acrobatic shells, to being immune to explosions - the choice is yours.
- Massive single player adventure - explore various districts in a sprawling futuristic city, beautifully presented in a Mode7 style overworld map. From the seedy housing districts deep below the surface, to the printed, polished, and private floating corporate islands soaring through the sky.
- Multiple inter-connected storylines - Contracts that you complete affect relations with other corporations in Alpha City One. You'll have to choose who to keep happy and who to work for to stay alive.
- There's a Holographic Dog. Yes, you can pet it - you can even play fetch with it! Next level 2d dog AI ensures HoloDog always follows you and stays by your side. Good HoloDoggo!
- Cloth - Lazr has been designed around never before seen realistic cloth simulations with full destruction. A completely new and unique type of game mechanic!
- Unique Enemies - fantastic cloth based enemies and bosses will absolutely destroy you and leave you questioning deeply held beliefs such as "do I enjoy playing video games?". No, seriously, you're gonna die, alot. So get some bandaids for your thumbs and some tissues for your eyes - it's gonna be a hard journey to the top. Are you ready?
I made a real good mess of it as you can see below, good fun though and the cloth physics simulation certainly does make it interesting. Especially with the bombs attached, when you go near they explode which can set the cloth on fire and fall apart making it quite tricky to get around.
If they add plenty of fun uses of the cloth sim like this, we could be looking at a seriously fun game. I'm especially curious to see how they will handle cloth enemies as that does sound exciting.
This is definitely a good way to get my attention for crowdfunding campaign. Think of a well-known gameplay genre, throw in some clever mechanics and actually provide a demo of it try out first. Worked perfectly too, although it's using the cross platform MonoGame framework so it's not too surprising.
If this proves popular, I've no doubt we will end up seeing a lot more like this.