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 Readme for:  Game » Shmup » overgod.lha


Description: An abstract arena shmup.
Download: overgod.lha       (TIPS: Use the right click menu if your browser takes you back here all the time)
Size: 2Mb
Date: 05 Jan 2010
Author: Linley Henzell, AmigaOS 4.1 port by Hitman
Submitter: Spot / Up Rough
Email: spotup/gmail com
Requirements: liballegro.so, libjpeg.so, libz.so
Category: game/shmup
License: GPL
Distribute: yes
Min OS Version: 4.1
FileID: 5262
Comments: 0
Snapshots: 0
Videos: 0
Downloads: 204  (Current version)
204  (Accumulated)
Votes: 0 (0/0)  (30 days/7 days)

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                       O    O                        O     O
                   o           o                  o            o
                  o             .               .               o
                    .                  .____.        _______   .
 ._______________________.___________  |    |__   .__\__.   \  ____.___________.
 |     __     /   ___    |    __    /__|___ __/___|__ _ |  \ \|    |     __    |
 |    |_/    /    \_|    |    |/   /   ___/ |     __//  |___\      |    |_/    |
 |    ______/|___________|____|\_______|__________|_____|    \_____|_____      |
 |____|                                                              /_________|
                                      F O R                 .____.
       .________________________ _____________._____________|    |__
       |     __     /   __     /_\     __     |    ____/____)    __/______
       |    |_/    /    |/    /   \    \_|    |    __/ |    |    |_/     /
   .   |    ______/_____|\_________\__________|    |   |____|___________/    .
       |____|                                 |____|
  o                       .                              .                    o
   o                    o         P R E S E N T S          o                 o
         O        O                OVERGOD [OS4]                O       O

                              AN ABSTRACT ARENA SHMUP

                         PORTED BY .................. HITMAN 
                         .............................. SPOT
                         SUPPLIED BY .................. SPOT
                         AUTHOR ............. LINLEY HENZELL
                         TYPE ......................... GAME
                         REQUIRES ... ALLEGRO, LIBJPEG, LIBZ

- --- -------------------------------------------------------------------- -- -



Version 1.0

Copyright 2005 Linley Henzell


Overgod is distributed under the terms of the Free Software Foundation's General
Public Licence (GPL) - see the file LICENCE.TXT. It comes with no warranty, and
no liability is accepted for any harm it may do to you or your computer. In the
unlikely event that it causes you some injury, contact your MP or other local
representative. Read the licence for more information.

The source code should be available from http://users.olis.net.au/zel/
If it's not there, try contacting l_henzell at yahoo.com.au to find out where
it's gone.
Also use that address for any comments, complaints, threats etc.

If you like Overgod, you might also like some of my other games:
- Lacewing (quite similar to this game, because it's built on the same engine)
- Captain Pork's World of Violence (a not-very-good Liero clone, which I wrote
to teach myself Allegro and networking)
- Captain Pork's Revenge (a slightly better Liero clone, but still not very
- Crawl (A 'rogue-like' adventure game, a bit like Nethack. Try the Japanese
graphical version if you don't like text mode)


1. Acknowledgements
2. Introduction
3. Controls
4. Upgrading
5. Configuration
6. PAQ

1. Acknowledgements

Overgod was made with:
- The MingW version of the Gnu Compiler Collection C compiler
- Bloodshed Software's Dev-C++
- The Allegro libraries
- The GIMP (for graphics)
- Psycle (for sound) and various VSTs, including a set by Erik Wollo
- Audacity (for sample editing)
- UPX (used to pack the executable - from http://upx.sourceforge.net)

Many thanks to anyone who worked on any of these excellent free programs!

2. Introduction

For too long has the world been ruled by cruel and disputatious gods! It's time
someone did something about it. You have constructed a vehicle in which to visit
the outer layers of the Celestial Oversphere and do battle with those who sit in
judgement on the Universe. Failure means oblivion, or worse. Success will strike
a blow at the shackles which bind humanity, and let you join or even supplant
those you have conquered!

Your vehicle is a marvel of transplanar engineering, capable of travelling to
worlds beyond our knowledge and making use of the strange energies which there
exist. Long years of research and intricate labour have allowed you to build
weapons capable of tearing through the substance of even the most exalted ones,
and you have made the appropriate pacts to enable your craft to reconstitute
itself a limited number of times should its substance fail you. Now it is ready
to leave this place behind and venture to where your existence is forbidden.

Your task will not be an easy one. On each layer of the Oversphere you must
fight your way through the lesser gods, greater gods, elder gods, younger gods,
demigods, demiurges, idols, sub-idols, undergods and overgods, and all of their
children, slaves, servants, soldiers, sentinels, guardians, messengers and
machines. Most of the enemies you meet must be destroyed for you to reach the
next layer. The larger enemies are worth several of their smaller kin, while
there are some whose destruction may be useful but is not required. A secret
ritual has shut the fearsome Eyes of the Watchful Ones, although only for a
time. You will have from two to three minutes in each layer before they open
again, so don't tarry!

You can tell which enemies you need to destroy by looking at your overview on
the bottom right of the screen. Essential targets are large yellow dots, while
unimportant ones are small and orange. The amount of time you have, and your
progress through the layer, are indicated on the top left of the screen, while
on the bottom left you can check how well your vehicle is holding up against the
fury of your enemies and how many lives you have. 

To start a game, select the Start Game option and, when prompted, press fire. If
you want to play a cooperative game, both players press fire. Each vehicle you
can choose has a particular speciality.

If the normal game isn't frantic enough for you, go to the Special menu and
choose a Time Attack game. Here the goal is to survive for as long as possible.
Every essential target you destroy gets you a few extra seconds, and the bigger
targets give more time. You don't get extra time for taking out non-essential
targets or the smaller parts of a larger enemy, and you lose 30 seconds when
you're destroyed. Each enemy lasts for about one minute then disappears, so make
sure you get them before they go! You can also play Time Attack cooperatively.

The Special menu also includes Duel Mode, which lets two players fight it out
between them, although the game isn't very well-balanced for this. The options
here are pretty obvious, except for the Handicap option - it amplifies all
damage taken by the leading player.

Below Duel Mode are some challenge mode settings which you have to unlock by
playing the main game. They make things even more difficult than they need to

3. Controls

You can set up the controls in the Options menu. Here is what each command does:

- Forwards
Accelerates you forwards. Your vehicle encounters an increasing amount of drag
as it speeds up, so it won't keep accelerating forever. 

- Left and Right
Turns your craft.

- Brakes
Operates a special field which greatly increases drag. Use this to stop quickly
or execute quick turns.

- Fire Darts
Fires your vehicle's main weapon.

- Fire Secondary
Fires your vehicle's secondary weapon, if you have one and if it's ready.

- Toggle Link Fire
If Link fire is on, firing your darts also fires your secondary weapon as soon
as it's ready. This is useful or annoying depending on which weapon you have, so
turn it on or off accordingly. 

- Escape
The Escape key always pauses the game and lets you quit.

4. Upgrading

Your vehicle is pretty weak to start off with, so you'll need to upgrade it to
have a chance of success. There are a few types of object you can gather from
the ashes, dust and froth left by your departed enemies in order to accumulate
enough power to push through the layers:

- Repairs
These are orange crosses, and they fix your craft up a bit. 

- Secondary Weapons
Weapons to back up your darts. There are several different types, some of them
more useful than others. Generally, the easier a weapon is to hit with the less
damage it will do, so Orbs do a lot more damage than Worms, for example. You
lose your current weapon when you are destroyed.

- Symbols
These are important! Symbols come in three shapes, and they cycle through
various colours for a grand total of twelve different types. As you pick them
up, they are added to the row along the bottom of your screen. Here is what each
type does:

   Yellow Symbols
 Square - makes your darts fire more often.
 Circle - lets you fire extra darts, which do half the damage of your main
 Triangle - makes your darts fly faster.

   Green Symbols
 Square - increases the thrust produced by your engine(s), but also adds extra
drag while you are accelerating (not at other times). This increases
manoeuvreability but can reduce top speed. It makes your vehicle handle more
like a car.
 Circle - lets you turn more quickly.
 Triangle - increases the thrust produced by your engine(s) by a little bit, and
also reduces drag all the time. It makes your vehicle handle more like a

   Red Symbols
 Square - increases the damage your secondary weapon does by about a third (so
with one red square it will do 133% damage, and with two it will do 166%, etc).
 Circle - increases the number of times your weapon fires or the number of
submunitions it produces, depending on which weapon you have.
 Triangle - generally increases speed and range, and may affect duration.
Increases the destructive radius of exploding weapons.

   Blue Symbols
 Square - adds armour to the outside of your vehicle. You can see how much
armour you have by looking at the bottom left of the screen.
 Circle - lets your vehicle generate a protective sheath.
 Triangle - increases the rate at which your sheath restores itself.

Symbols are stable for longer than each level lasts, so you don't have to worry
about them expiring before you run out of time. They do go away when the Eyes
open, though.

You don't lose symbols when your craft is destroyed.

5. Configuration

The Options menu has a whole lot of interface options you can set. Here is what
they do.

- Sound
Lets you turn the game's sound on or off, or choose whether to play it in mono
or stereo. In a one-player game the stereo option pans the sound according to
where it's coming from. You can also reverse the stereo if you have your
speakers set up that way.

- Volume
Lets you set the volume for sound effects and 'music'. If you set the music
volume to zero it won't play at all, which might improve performance a little.

- Video Sync
Turning this on synchronises the display with your monitor's vertical retrace.
This prevents a kind of shearing flicker effect which some people find annoying,
but makes the game skip frames on slower computers.

- Test Speakers
Find out where the left and right speakers are.

- Test Keys
Most keyboards have a problem which prevents them detecting certain combinations
of keypresses, making cooperative and duel modes almost unplayable. Use Test
Keys to work out which combinations work best.

- Resolution
Choose between 640x480 and 800x600, windowed and fullscreen. You'll have to
restart the game for this to take effect. If you switch resolutions and the game
crashes on start-up (Allegro has trouble with some video cards), edit the
overgod.cfg file and change 
Resolution=1 [or 2, 3, 4]
(there are instructions in the file)

- Colour Text
If you have trouble distinguishing colours, this option will tell you in writing
what colour a symbol is.

6. PAQ

I haven't been asked any questions about Overgod yet, so I can't have a proper
FAQ. Instead, here is a list of Pre-emptively Answered Questions:

Q: What are the system requirements?
A: It runs well on my Celeron 500MHz with 128MB RAM, and it will run on
something less powerful without too much trouble. I'd say 300MHz would be about
it, and memory isn't likely to be a problem (8-bit sprites don't take up so much
space). It doesn't require any kind of special graphics card, just SVGA.

Q: I get a file-not-found error message, or something.
A: Did you decompress the game with the 'preserve subdirectories' option? If you
did, there should be a gfx and a wavs directory from the main directory. If you
didn't, delete it and try again.

Q: The game crashes on start-up.
A: Edit the overgod.cfg file and set both the Sound_init and Resolution options
to zero. This might work. If it doesn't, sorry.

Q: The game looks jerky.
A: This is probably because your computer is having trouble keeping up with the
graphics, so it's skipping frames. The best way to speed things up is to switch
to 640x480 fullscreen resolution, although that doesn't let you see as far.
Turning off Video Sync will also help a lot if you don't mind the shearing
effect (doesn't bother me). Turning off the 'music' may help a little bit, too.

Q: The sound is a bit dodgy, and misses effects every now and then.
A: This seems to be a problem with Allegro's sound support under Win95 and
Win98. Nothing I can do, sorry. Turning off the 'music' may help a bit, as your
sound card won't be so heavily spammed with samples.

Q: Is it actually possible to finish this game?
A: Yes, just very difficult. Keep on practising! Time Attack never ends, though.

Q: This game is so unfair! One time I got mostly circles, so I had plenty of
worms but they never hit anything and when they did they didn't hurt it, and the
next game I didn't get any circles at all. Also I keep on getting the hard
A: It is unfair, isn't it? Just like life.

Q: Why don't you add a password or saved game system?
A: Overgod is unfair because it's random, and it's random because that makes it
different each time you play. This means that every time you face a different
challenge, so save games are unnecessary. In my opinion. Besides, it takes less
than half an hour to play all the way through, so you hardly need to span your
playing sessions over multiple days.

Q: Why doesn't this game have joystick support?
A: Because I don't have one to test it on. Anyone who wants to write joystick
support and send it to me is encouraged to do so!

Q: Why don't you write a networked version?
A: Because that would be really hard.

Q: I want to write a patch/port/fork.
A: Great! If you would like to patch or port Overgod, please contact me first to
make sure you have the most recent version of the source code. If you want to
fork it, go crazy. Contact me if you have any questions about the source (I
should warn you that I learned to program in Commodore 64 BASIC and taught
myself C from the Borland Turbo C++ manual, which explains a lot about the
quality of Overgod's code. At least I no longer use goto).

Have fun!

- Linley

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