The Nintendo DS version of Geometry Wars: Galaxies shipped yesterday. I picked up mine at GameStop along with Petz Wild Animals: Dolphinz (for Samantha). I don’t know if the dolphins game is any good, but Galaxies is incredible.
Some quick thoughts:
- It uses the same control scheme that my homebrew game, Extreme Onslaught uses, but they’ve made it much more intuitive by using aiming graphics in the top screen.
- The full Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved game (the XBox 360 Live Arcade version) is included. That was a nice surprise and a wonderful fallback if you decide you don’t like the Galaxies game.
- Galaxies is fun, with a lot of variations on the normal Geometry Wars rules.
- The drones (independent ships that fly next to you and have their own weapons and powers) really add to the variety and are a blast, especially for an RType/Gradius fan like myself.
- To unlock new drones, planets and solar systems, you need to collect geoms (enemy wreckage) during normal gameplay. I don’t like that aspect of Everyday Shooter, so I was surprised that I actually enjoy doing so in Galaxies.
- I’m looking forward to trying the multi-player game types.
This question comes up from time to time – How do you get started writing Nintendo DS Homebrew. Here’s a very brief intro:
- DevKitPro or PALib (which is based on DevKitPro).
- The DSDev / GBADev forum is a good place to start learning about the two.
- PALib has a lot of great documentation and has a very active community, but it insulates you from the hardware more than DevKitPro does.
- You’ll want to test with one or more emulators. I like Dualis, but I hear that no$gba is rapidly becoming the compatibility frontrunner.
- First, read about FlashMe.
- For the DS or DS Lite, I think the new DS-X card is the most interesting for Homebrew Developers. It fits in the DS slot, not the GBA slot and you don’t need to buy a micro SD card. DS-X requires that you use FlashMe and not a PassCard. Frankly, I’m glad, because I prefer having a flashed DS – it’s safer, because it reduces the risk that your DS will get bricked by malicious code.
- If you can’t wait for the DS-X to ship, you should consider the SuperCard Lite. It fits in the GBA slot, so you can use FlashMe or a PassCard.
- You can buy both of those cards at http://www.divineo.com or http://www.winsunx.com.
I’ve been working on this game for months, but it hasn’t changed substantially in a week, so I think this is the time to release it and gather feedback.