Well, this is my first thing to be uploaded to TIGSource...
It's a game based on the best science fiction book ever written, Roadside Picnic
. By Arkady and Boris Strugatsky.
The book's premise is that about thirty years ago, six strange objects flew into Earth from one spot in place, and the six objects hit the planet, causing six large areas of the planet to be affected. In the affected areas (known as "Zones" when spoken of collectively, but when you're near one, they would just be known as "The Zone.") In The Zone, strange objects began appearing. Obviously, people would want to study these objects. Unfortunately, only government-licensed people are allowed into The Zone to study it. Of course, because the objects are valuable, there are people willing to enter The Zone illegally to try and smuggle the objects out and sell them. Some do it for greed, but others do it because it's their last line of hope to get back on their feet. So they sneak past the armed guards in the night, in hopes of striking it rich on the black market. Also, the objects aren't the only things in The Zone, there's also strange areas in them. They are almost entirely mysterious. No reasonable explanation for their existence can be made. They are completely invisible, but they are definitely deadly. Originally, scientists didn't know how to get past them, but one guard reported seeing a stalker (the slang term for people who illegally enter The Zone) throwing bolts about, and the scientists found out. They discovered that small metal objects were prime candidates for studying the effects of the anomalous energies.
The name of the game stems from the name of the book, which stems from one scientist's view on what the Zone might be. His idea was that the Zone was similar to the way human teenagers might have a Roadside Picnic in some forest area. They would come by, stop, spread their things, have some fun, and then leave, with trash and junk left behind for the woodland creatures to deal with. He believes the Zone is like that, except with alien space-travelers instead of human teenagers and with people of Earth instead of woodland creatures.
You play as a stalker, having snuck his way into The Zone, and now in an anomalous field, equipped only with a bag of bolts.
Okay, story stuff past. Now for the crunchy stuff.
The game isn't finished yet, but I have a gameplay demo ready, which will show the basic gist of the full game. Currently, there's only one anomaly field, where there are three artifacts (the term for the objects found in The Zone). All of them are empties (described in the book as being two copper plates about a foot away from each other, always facing each other, and steadfast in their relativity. They don't have any visible connection between the two plates, but they are always together. The graphics are pretty simplistic, and it's been noted that because of the simplistic graphics, depth perception is somewhat difficult, but it's still playable.
Use standard FPS controls: WASD for movement. Left-click for a soft throw, and right-click for a strong throw (for bolts). "E" will pick up thrown bolts, as well as pick up an artifact if you're close enough.
There is a bit of a problem with picking up artifacts, though. You have to be standing a few steps away from them to pick them up. I'm not sure why that is, and I'm trying to fix it, but as for right now, you'll just have to deal with it.
EDIT: Okay, I just played it again, and I've decided to edit my post a bit. Those weird cylinder thingies you see are empties. The game is basically an invisible maze, which you have to navigate through the use of bolts, which will temporarily reveal the walls, as well as act as a sort of bread-crumb trail. If you touch any of the "walls," you will get hurt, and may die. After throwing a bolt, if it lands safely, that area is safe to walk to. If it disintegrates in a flash of red energy, it'd be smart to avoid the same fate for yourself.
EDIT: Oh yeah! Screenies!
I've programmed the game in Blitz3d, and all the code is original code. If you want to create your own anomaly field, go into the "Levels" folder and muck about with "demo.txt". 0 is nothing, 1 is anomaly, 2 is start position, and 3 is artifact. The name of the file will always have to be "demo.txt" though.
Be nice! (Or mean, if you have to. It's okay. I can take a beating if you really just plain don't like it. It might be an acquired taste, for being such a niche book (in non-Russian societies).)
I'm looking for suggestions (I already plan on having different types of anomalies, as well as randomly generated anomaly fields), strange bugs which you think I may not have noticed, or suggestions on how to make depth perception easier without requiring cool fancy graphics.