Arklight is at its heart a breakout game. It just happens that it's also a vertical scrolling shooter
The idea was taken from a game I wrote on the Commodore 64 called Outbreak, which was a scrolling breakout game. The scrolling added an inherent time constraint to the breakout genre. You have to break the bricks quickly or you'll get squashed when they reach the bottom of the screen. I wanted to have another go at doing something with the idea.
Arklight takes this principle a step further by making breakout's balls your ship's bullets. This means you control how many balls/bullets are on screen, but more bullets means you're using more energy, there has to be a trade off
The ship in Arklight is round by design. This helps control how the balls deflect more accurately. After all, who in their right mind would make a space ship out of a bat?
One last design element is the ship's ability to reabsorb its bullets. This was necessary as enemy ships and turrets need to be shot multiple times. During development this tended to create more bullets/balls that the player could keep in play, so reabsorbing them made sense.
While absorbing, bullets head towards your ship creating a new way to alter the bullet's trajectory. With a little practice it becomes an important part of the game.
I've just uploaded the fourth Clockwork Pixels game. Arklight has taken a while to finish, but I think all the hard work has been worth it. Please try out the free demo and let me know what you think