News from F5
Meet The Hunted - Ranger
posted on: Monday, November 17, 2014

In our new game 'The Hunted' you will have the choice of nine unique characters to take into the arena. Each of these hunters have their own strengths and weaknesses and it will be up to you, the intrepid player, to determine which character best fits your play style. To help you make that determination we're going to highlight each hunter over the next couple weeks so you can get an idea about what character you want to start with.

If you missed our previous posts in this series you can catch up on them here:

  1. Human Hunter
  2. The Kid
  3. The Brute

Backstory

The Ranger grew up on a planet that had once been very advanced technologically, but a combination of environmental and economic collapses plunged her species back into a strange sort of dark age. While technology still exists from their previous civilization there are very few remaining who can operate or maintain it, and almost none who could recreate any of it from scratch.

Within these circumstances the Ranger servers as a hunter and protector for her people. Using her laser bow she is quick, silent, and deadly to both prey and any foe who may threaten her village. However, when the aliens came to cull a new fighter for the arena she was quickly outmatched and abducted from her home.

Playstyle

The Ranger is a 'light' character in the game. This means that while she moves quickly, faster than any other Hunter in fact, she also is unable to absorb much damage. Because of this, her play style requires fast movement and shooting from a distance to give her time to dodge any shots that are coming her way. Her weapons are well suited to this and make her a formidable opponent.

Laser Bow

The Laser Bow is a silent and fast firing weapon that can deal considerable damage when multiple shots find their target. It requires great accuracy, as there is no spread to its firing pattern, but if used correctly you can line up two or three shots before your target even knows they are being hunted.



Explosive Dart

The Ranger's secondary weapon, the Explosive Dart, excels at dealing damage from a distance and keeping her out of harms way. The Explosive Dart is a small projectile that latches on to any target it strikes and quickly counts down to detonation. While this is another weapon that requires accuracy it causes great explosive damage to its target, and anyone around it, after a few seconds.

Many times the Ranger can stick someone with a dart, hit them with a couple arrows and be half way across the map before her target explodes and the kill is registered.

Boomerang

While the Ranger would prefer to engage her targets from across the screen that isn't always going to be the case. Her special ability, the Boomerang, is most useful for those times when the enemy has gotten the drop on you. The Boomerang flies out in an arc from the Ranger and then returns on her other side. It only deals a small amount of damager to any enemy it strikes but it also stuns them for a couple crucial seconds. As the Ranger you can use this time to deal a quick blow or escape and search for a health pack.



You can also grab power ups with the Boomerang! Nothing is sweeter than using your Boomerang to snag a Double Damage just before someone else picks it up!

The Ranger is a really interesting character and, I believe, will be a favorite for a lot of players. If you have any questions about the Ranger, or the game in general, let me know on Twitter ( @Readmore ) or you can join the discussion about The Hunted on the Touch Arcade forums here: TA Forums.

Release Update

I am very excited to say that we just received word from Apple that The Hunted has been approved and will be releasing for iPhone and iPad this Thursday!

We're also going to be doing some special for launch day. For the first 24 hours of release all of our characters will be unlocked! This means that, if you grab the game on launch day, you can try out every one of the characters we have been highlighting and see which one best suits your play style.

I can't wait to start playing against all of you in the arena! I hope you'll keep reading about our characters this week and that I'll see you in the game on Thursday.

Next Time: The Lurker

The Hunted
Meet The Hunted - The Brute
posted on: Friday, November 14, 2014

In our new game 'The Hunted' you will have the choice of nine unique characters to take into the arena. Each of these hunters have their own strengths and weaknesses and it will be up to you, the intrepid player, to determine which character best fits your play style. To help you make that determination we're going to highlight each hunter over the next couple weeks so you can get an idea about what character you want to start with.

If you missed our previous posts in this series you can catch up on them here:

  1. Human Hunter
  2. The Kid

The Brute



Backstory

The Brute comes from a race of savage warriors that live on a world of massive forests and emerald green seas. While they have no advanced technology their skills in physical combat are rarely matched, as is their ability to leap great distances and heights during the hunt. Once the Brute was abducted for the arena the alien battle masters set about creating a weapon to match his deadly power.

Playstyle

The Brute is a 'heavy' class character in the game. This means that while he moves slower than medium and light characters he can absorb more damage than any of them. This ability to soak up more damage allows him to charge right into the fray and shoot, or smash, his targets with ease.

Bounce Cannon

The Brute's main weapon looks like a large cast iron cannon but instead of shooting traditional cannon balls this weapon shoots projectiles that bounce off walls before finding their target. This makes the Brute especially effective against campers.



Trap Mines

As his secondary weapon the Brute can set trap mines to disable his target. Once these mines are set they cloak themselves and lay in wait until an enemy player walks over them. When detonated these mines deal explosive damage and stun the target to give you an extra second to pounce and finish them off.

Jump Slam

The Brute's special ability is a jumping slam that lets you close the distance with your target and then slam into them from above. This move deals a ton of damage to any target that you land on and then, if they survive, it pushes them away from the point of impact. This is a great move to clear out a control point or just to get bragging rights over your friends.



You can also use the Jump Slam to leap over walls in the game! This is not only awesome to do but it helps you overcome your slower foot speed by taking a more direct route than other players are capable of. It can also let you get the drop on your enemies and slam them before they even know you're there.

The Brute is a really great character and combo-ing his Trap Mines and Jump Slam together can have some really awesome results. If you have any questions about the Brute, or the game in general, let me know on Twitter ( @Readmore ) or you can join the discussion about The Hunted on the Touch Arcade forums here: TA Forums.

Next Time: The Ranger

The Hunted
Meet The Hunted - The Kid
posted on: Wednesday, November 12, 2014

In our new game 'The Hunted' you will have the choice of nine unique characters to take into the arena. Each of these hunters have their own strengths and weaknesses and it will be up to you, the intrepid player, to determine which character best fits your play style. To help you make that determination we're going to highlight each hunter over the next couple weeks so you can get an idea about what character you want to start with.
If you missed our first post about the Human Hunter you can check it out here.

The Kid



Backstory

The Kid isn't actually a kid at all. He comes from a race that ages differently than Humans and who only ever grow to a height of 4.5 to 5 feet. Because of their small stature they have always relied on technology to help them overcome their physical shortcomings. This has bred an innate love of tech into their species and they travel the galaxy searching for new advancements that they can adapt to their own uses.

The Kid was abducted during just such a mission, while scavenging on a derelict space ship looking for technology he could rebuild or sell. Luckily he was wearing his exploration/combat suit, which is highly advanced and allows him to not only survive in the hard vacuum of space but also deal with any threat that he may encounter along the way.

Playstyle

The Kid is a 'light' build character in the game. This means that he is quicker on his feet than most Hunters but unable to absorb as much damage during a battle. Because he damages easily you'll need to constantly be on the move and harass your targets with The Kid's sweet weapons.

Arm Cannons

The Kid's main weapons are two 'Arm Cannons' that allow him to spray energy blasts across a room in record time. When you fire, each cannon alternates their fire with the other so that you can shoot a steady stream of pain across the screen. The gif below will give you a feel for this firing speed as well as the faster foot speed that The Kid has over the Human Hunter.



Cannon Blast

The Kid's special ability requires him to get in close with his target. His 'Cannon Blast' ability forces superheated air through his Arm Cannons and directly into the back, or front, of your target. The Cannon Blast not only deals damage but it also forces your target away from you which can be useful when you need to clear someone off a control point or you want to force them to take a trip on a teleporter.



The Cannon Blast is also really handy when someone tries to throw grenades at your feet. If you're quick enough you can use the blast to shove the grenades away from you without needing to clear out of the area.

Grenade Blast Combo

The Kid, like the Hunter, uses explosive grenades as his secondary weapon but, when you combine then with your Cannon Blast ability you can create a sweet character specific combo. Check out it in the gif below.



Using your Cannon Blast on your own grenades lets you shoot them much farther than any other character is capable of tossing them. This lets you grenade targets that would other wise be un-reachable.

The Kid is one of my favorite characters because I love to speed around the map and pin down the other guys with a constant wall of fire. His ability to move other players, and grenades, around the map is just an awesome bonus! If you have any questions about the Kid, or the game in general, let me know on Twitter ( @Readmore ) or you can join the discussion about The Hunted on the Touch Arcade forums here: TA Forums.

Next Time: The Brute

The Hunted
Meet The Hunted - Human Hunter
posted on: Wednesday, November 05, 2014

In our new game 'The Hunted' you will have the choice of nine unique characters to take into the arena. Each of these hunters have their own strengths and weaknesses and it will be up to you, the intrepid player, to determine which character best fits your play style. To help you make that determination we're going to highlight each hunter over the next couple weeks so you can get an idea about what character you want to start with.

A little background

Before we can really get into the details about each character we need to go over how 'The Hunted' plays so that everything makes sense. 'The Hunted' is a dual-stick shooter, which means that there is a virtual joystick on the left which controls movement and another on the right that controls where your characters shoots.



The right stick controls the direction your character faces and also shoots their primary weapon. Each hunter has a unique primary weapon, which we'll explore in the following posts, but these weapons get dropped on the battlefield when a player is killed during a match. That means that, for a limited time, any character can pick up and use the primary weapon of another character which can create some really interesting 'player builds' and give you a temporary edge.

The right joystick also has two buttons, one to trigger your character's secondary weapon and another to use their special ability. As you can probably guess, each special ability is unique to the Hunter and gives them each a different play style and personality. As we explore each of the hunters over the next few posts you'll get a good look at each of these abilities and how they can be used to full effect on the battlefield.

The Hunter



The Hunter is a 'medium' build character in the game. This means that he has an average level of speed and durability to damage compared to the other hunters. He is also the starting character that every player will have access to right after downloading the game so he's a hunter that you'll more than likely spend some time with.

His main weapon is a double barrel shotgun, and it packs a punch! As you would expect from a shotgun it does tremendous damage when you are up close and personal with your target, but its long range effectiveness is limited. In 'The Hunted' we decided to go old-school and model every projectile fired from a weapon as it moves across the screen. This means that the farther away from your target you are the more you'll need to lead them if you want to score a hit. Also, when you are the target, it gives you an opportunity to dodge bullets, if you see them coming. The gif below gives you an idea of the spread on the shotgun blast over a couple different distances.



Tracking Dart

The Hunter's special ability ties into his history as an animal tracker and gives you the ability to stalk other players around the map. When you use his special ability the Hunter shoots out a tracking dart that will relay a target's location to you even if they are outside your normal field of view. Check out the gif below to see what I mean.



Once you've tagged a target they will continually give off a 'ping' until they die and respawn. This means that if you can tag your target with the tracking dart they won't be able to hide from you again until you take them down. As you can probably expect, knowing your enemy's location can be a huge advantage during a tough battle.

The final addition to the Hunter's arsenal is explosive grenades. These are really useful for clearing out space around a control point, forcing an enemy out of their cover, or giving you the time you need to escape and patch yourself up.

Between the double barrel shotgun, grenades, and tracking dart the Hunter definitely gives you everything you needs to put the hurt on your enemies. If you have any questions about the Hunter, or the game in general, let me know on Twitter ( @Readmore ) or you can join the discussion about The Hunted on the Touch Arcade forums here: TA Forums.

Next Time: The Kid

The Hunted
Welcome to the world of the Hunted
posted on: Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Our vision for The Hunted has been based in that old turn of phrase 'The Hunters become the Hunted'. We wanted to play on the idea that no matter how adept you are at Hunting, or how high on the food chain you may find yourself, there is always something that could turn you into the prey.

We decided to put that idea front and center with the Human playable character who is simply named, The Hunter.

The Hunter was out in the woods early one morning when he found himself abducted by a flying saucer. When he awoke onboard the alien ship he found that he wasn't there for experimentation, or to be dinner, the aliens just wanted him to fight for their amusement.

He also finds that he is not alone in this torment, many other aliens have been taken from their homes and forced to fight as well. Each of them cloned dozens of times so that not even death can stop their endless battles.


Each fighter is given a generic title, Hunter, Brute, Stealth, that allow the thousands of spectators to bet and cheer for them without really knowing anything about them as beings. They are gladiators for a new time and place, but still nothing more than slaves


You will fight as one of these Hunters, and while you may find victory in the arena, you will never find your freedom. At least not while playing by their rules.

Next time we'll take a more in-depth look at The Hunter and talk about his weapons, special attacks, and strategies for victory. Until then, if you have any questions about The Hunted feel free to message me on twitter ( @Readmore ) or you can join the discussion about The Hunted on the Touch Arcade forums here: TA Forums.

The Hunted
The Hunted - A Dual Stick Multiplayer Shooter by F5 Games
posted on: Friday, October 03, 2014

Nine warriors from across the galaxy have been abducted, cloned, and forced to fight in an endless series of deadly arena battles.

These hunters have become, The Hunted.


I am extremely happy to announce that our next release is a multiplayer shooter named, The Hunted.
Work on the Hunted began more than a year ago when we challenged ourselves to make multiplayer a shooter work on a touchscreen device. My goal has been to recapture the awesome deathmatch experiences I had with my friends playing Quake, waaay back in the day, and bring it to a new platform and a whole new generation of players. With The Hunted, I think we've done it.



The biggest challenge to overcome was obviously the controls. While there are plenty of multiplayer first-person shooters on iOS none of them really control all that well, and it really compromises the experience. A game type that does control really well on touch screens is the top-down 'dual-stick' shooter. The only problem with top-down shooters is that you have a perfect view of the battlefield. No one can sneak up behind you and take you out with a melee attack, or duck behind a wall and make you wonder where they are going to pop up next. We knew that if we really wanted to deliver an awesome deathmatch experience we were going to have to find a way to make you feel like you were still a character in that world looking down the barrel of your gun.



Thanks to the awesome coding skill of our team we were able to do just that. We've combined a limited field of view, like the view you get in an FPS, with the top-down dual stick shooter controls that work so well on mobile and we've made the best mobile deathmatch experience you've ever seen. It's fast, it's fun, and it's coming to your iPhone and iPad very soon!



Keep an eye on our twitter feed and here on the blog over the next few weeks as we share info on the 9 unique character classes you can choose from, all the different game modes, and show off tons of new gameplay footage and images from the game.

Please help us to spread the word, real Deathmatch is finally coming to mobile!

The Hunted
House of the Lost Launches on OUYA!
posted on: Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The day is finally here, House of the Lost is now available on OUYA!. After you watch our awesome launch trailer click on this link to hit our OUYA game page, where you can download the game directly to your OUYA no matter where you are right now!

Bringing House of the Lost to OUYA has been an incredibly long journey for us, and we are so excited to finally get to see it on the store. When we chipped in to the OUYA Kickstarter we were really hopeful that we were contributing to something that could change the way games are made, and made available to players. While I think that OUYA has had a few stumbles along the way they really have created a console that is welcoming and friendly to developers and players alike. Bringing together the open development standards seen on mobile and the living room/big screen/couch gaming aspect of the home console is a huge undertaking, but also something that is sorely needed in the industry right now. We're extremely proud to be a part of it! Now go play House of the Lost!

P.S. If you didn't already download the game to your OUYA you can do it now just by clicking this button!

House of the Lost
House of the Lost for OUYA adds levels and NG+
posted on: Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Today I'm happy to announce that, even before release, we've already updated House of the Lost for OUYA! Over the last couple weeks we've been refining and adding new features to the upcoming OUYA release and I want to quickly highlight a few of them today.

New Game Plus

New Game Plus is an unlockable mode that allows you to continue playing a game after beating the final level, and now, House of the Lost has it! We've added a New Game Plus (NG+) mode to House of the Lost that allows you to keep your weapons, items, coins, and score from one play though and carry it over into another. This lets you continue to rack up high scores and gives you a better chance of crafting and permanently unlocking new weapon combinations. You'll need to watch out though, every enemy in the game gets more difficult in NG+ and their difficulty will continue to scale up even if you play through the game multiple times without dying. Although, I wouldn't bet on anyone being able to do that.

New Levels

In addition to the NG+ game mode, we've also added new map layouts for the House that will continue to keep you guessing as you play through the game. Each of these new map layouts will have new puzzles, new enemy placements, and new secrets to discover so you'll have even more game to enjoy.

When is it coming out?

We're finishing up the release right now and expect House of the Lost to launch on OUYA next week! As soon as we're confident on the launch date we'll let you know for sure but go ahead and call your friends to set up a game night for next week. You're going to need the help.

House of the Lost
House of the Lost coming to OUYA in July!
posted on: Wednesday, July 09, 2014

We've been hinting at it for awhile but now I'm happy to officially announce that we will be launching House of the Lost for OUYA this month! Let's be clear though, this isn't just some port to a new platform, this is absolutely the best edition of the game. Not only is this the most up-to-date version of the game from iOS and Android but this version includes a few new features that you can only get on OUYA, physical controllers and a new couch co-op mode!

Quick Recap

House of the Lost is an action/adventure game that challenges the player to survive a constantly changing haunted house while trying to save his sister. It plays similar to the dungeons in the original Legend of Zelda, or the more recent PC game Binding of Issac. You move from room to room fighting monsters, solving puzzles, and uncovering secrets on your way to a showdown with that level's boss. Along the way you will grow stronger, craft new weapons, and learn the secrets of the House, but if you fail you'll have to start back at the beginning. Also, each time you start over the house randomizes itself, changing the layout of its levels, placement of its monsters, and location of items and power-ups. All of this combines to give House of the Lost a real old-school challenge, and we are really excited to bring it to OUYA.

You can check out more screenshots and video of the game in action on our game page right here.

Physical Controllers



One of the biggest enhancements for the OUYA version of House of the Lost is support for the OUYA controller. You can now play House of the Lost with an actual controller in your hands, and it is a thing of beauty. Since the initial launch you have been asking us to refine the controls and we've made big improvements to how the game plays based on your feedback. However, none of those tweaks could make up for the fact that this game just needs to be played with an actual controller, and as soon as you get your hands on it I think you'll agree.
Our control setup for the game uses the left analog stick or d-pad to control your movement and the four face buttons ( O, U, Y, A ) give you directional fire independent of your movement. This allows you to move in one direction and then use the face buttons to fire in any other direction as you move. We've also mapped both analog triggers to item activation so you can use whichever one feels most natural to you.

House of the Lost has never controlled better than it does in this version, you've got to get your hands on it.

Couch Co-op



While the addition of physical controls has a huge impact on how you play the game our other massive addition could possibly be an even bigger deal, Couch Co-op! From the moment we got our hands on our Kickstarter OUYA console we've felt that it's best when you're playing together with a friend. OUYA is THE co-op console and we knew that we had to adapt House of the Lost to support co-op if we were going to do an OUYA release. We're very happy to say that adding a co-op mode was the best decision we could have possibly made.

In co-op mode you and a friend get to team up to defeat the House and rescue all the children trapped inside. Because the game is room based both players get to share the full game screen, there is no need to split the screen and limit your view on the action. Also, just because there are two of you now doesn't mean that things will be easy. Not only have we upped the difficulty on the enemies in co-op but we also have friendly fire turned on so you're going to need to be on your toes if you want to survive.

One area of the game that co-op really affected was our concept of permadeath. In House of the Lost you only get one chance to defeat the house and escape, if you die along the way you become a 'Lost Soul' and have to restart your journey from the beginning. When we started working to add a second player to the mix we realized that there was an interesting way to allow you to work around this issue and we decided to create a way for one player to bring the other back into the game. When one of the players dies in co-op mode they will transform into a 'Lost Soul' and disappear into the house while the other player continues on with the quest.



If you've played House of the Lost before you may know that you can find these 'Lost Souls' in different rooms of the house and if you save them they unlock secret shops where you can buy new weapons and items. In co-op mode, not only will you get access to the shop if you save a 'Lost Soul' but you'll also be able to bring your friend back into the game by saving them from the monsters. This makes seeking out the 'Lost Souls' even more important and really adds a new level of tension as you're trying to find a way to get your buddy back into the game.

A Huge Update

In addition to what we've talked about today there are also a huge number of smaller changes and tweaks that have found their way into the OUYA version of House of the Lost. This has really been a labor of love for me over the last several months as I've been making these updates in my spare time while the rest of our team has moved on to other projects. All the hard work has payed off though, as I really feel like this version of the game brings back that feeling of a lazy summer afternoon playing SNES with my brothers. There is a certain kind of fun that you can only get when you're sitting in the same room and playing together on the same screen.

I hope when House of the Lost launches later this month you'll give it a try and get a little of that old-school gaming nostalgia as well.

House of the Lost
F5 Games Announces Blox Blast for iOS and Android
posted on: Saturday, September 28, 2013

Our next game, Blox Blast, is a fast action puzzler where you have two minutes to rack up the highest score possible. To score points you slide whole rows and columns of blocks on the screen to form squares of 4 or more like-colored blocks. You can compare scores with your Facebook friends and compete with them to win weekly tournaments as well as track lifetime high scores through Game Center.

Gameplay

Blox Blast uses the characters and powers from our highly rated puzzle game IncrediBlox but instead of dropping blocks to create squares you slide a whole row of blocks at once, similar to how you play with a Rubik Cube. This play style allows you to set up moves that will combo across the board, clearing squares and activating the IncrediBlox special powers. Check out this video to see some of this sweet combo action.

The key to getting a high score is to keep your combo streak going. You’ll have just a few seconds after each square is cleared to to set up another one and continue your combo. In testing we’re consistently getting combos of more than 100 blocks at a time and it makes a huge difference in your final score.

Powerups

Before each round you can choose up to 3 powerups, from a group of 6, that can really boost your high score. Some of them are active throughout the entire 2 minute session while others need to be tapped by the player and activated at just the right time. The video below shows off two of these powerups. The first is Freeze Time, which stops the timer and keeps squares from activating so you can set up a cascade of blocks to all activate at once. The second powerup is Point Doubler, which lets you earn twice the points for any blocks you clear while it’s activated. Check it out!

Friendly Competition

Once you’re done scoring tons of points in Blox Blast you can connect the game to Facebook and see how you stack up against your friends in the weekly tournament. From the image below it looks like I need to work a little harder if I’m going to catch Oliver and his awesome fro.

Blox Blast will be available for iPhones, iPads, and Android devices at launch. We’re expecting to release it on both the Apple App Store and Google Play on October 17th. We’ve really had a lot of fun building Blox Blast and I’m sure you’ll have a lot of fun playing it. Stay tuned for more updates in the weeks ahead and make sure to check out Blox Blast on October 17th.

Blox Blast
F5 Games is an independent game developer in Tulsa Oklahoma. We strive to create the very best in tablet and mobile games.