Chloride: The High-Octane Hovercraft Shooter

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A month or so ago, there were some discussions about community places where people can have fun and interact with each other, similar to the old gamemode GMod Tower. Now, GMod Tower was not a new idea; and an older service called playstation home existed on the PS3 back since 2008, with the same concept of playing with friends in communal spaces, even having homes you can decorate and hang out in.

PSHome also had a few minigames you could play, and one of them released in 2009 was Sodium One: Salt Shooter. This was a shooter game where you controlled a hovercraft fitted with a variety of customisable weapons in a wave-based PvE gamemode against different enemies and bosses. And back in the day I’ve spent a fair few hours going for the high scores.

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As you might’ve guessed by the name of this gamemode, this is an attempt as a spiritual successor to the high-speed hovercraft game. There are a few major changes compared to the original:

  • Support for Multiplayer (because we have friends now)
  • VR support! (VR is awesome, whoever says otherwise can’t afford it)
  • Actual craft customisation!
  • High quality damage

So far my progress has been limited; I’m a programmer by trade, and my art skills are completely abysmal. Recently I’ve been trying to get a good blockout for the hovercraft, but have been having issues with the overall proportions. I suspect I’ll crack it eventually, but I’ve been quite busy over the recent months.

As for the style side, my main idea so far is having a junkyard / scrap-scifi sort of style, with future tech available, but these are the people making jury-rigged fighting arenas with your local utopia’s scraps. The available rust assets would work wonders with this, and add a few cables and wires along with the occasional high tech energy source and hover plates then you’re sorted.

On the map side, I’ll be making something similar to the original for testing, which is just a small camp area and a large flat land of saltlake. I’ve got in the plans some obstacle courses and racing maps, since I’ll most likely be leaving the weapons systems till last and have a racing gamemode until then.

I’ve got some more info on the roadmap and some ideas on the github page

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Some sources of technology inspiration:

Thierry doizon has some artwork featuring hover mechanics, and the hodge-podge look work quite well as you can see with the duct tape holding the chair together, and some battery components to keep things running. It mainly features a single downwards-facing thruster, and while it does at first glance seem to use hover plates, they’re noted as bumpers.
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Another piece by them has a continuation of their style, but closer to a more modern approach, with the main thruster block looking like a large battery.
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Simon Stalenhag is probably the largest influence in terms of technology style, with numerous examples of hover-plate technology with their abandoned-scifi theme.
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Here you can see the slowly rusted plates which are obviously repulsing from the ground, and then large engine enclosure to generate enough power for them. The industrial theme is also continued with the loose wires we can see connecting the plates, and this is also visible in another image of their works, although the rigidity makes it looks closer to a support beam rather than a cable.
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I’ve also managed to find some concept art from the original salt shooter
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It should be noted that the fan sizes are actually equal to the center stack, and in game this vertical stack is roughtly the same vertical size as two fans, but in Chloride I need the vertical space for the player’s seating area. And from my blockouts, the seating area throws the entire dynamic all over the place…

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