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Heli in the Caves

Heli in the Caves


>> Download: Heli in the Cave


0) Preface

The game was originally created for the ABBUC Software Competition 2013. owever, as the development made good progress first the summer came and then the deadline. In the last weeks I have made some changes and redesigned some rooms. And added the rotor animation which was requested by a lot of people 🙂


1) The story

For what ever reason you are the pilot of a helicopter which is in a cave. The exit of which is guarded. What are you waiting for, find the exit and leave the cave!


2) The title screen


After the game is loaded, the title screen is displayed. Here you can see the time the fastest try has taken. Additionally it shows the collected gold and elapsed time for your last run.

You can start the game by pressing START or the fire button on your joystick which ever is more comfortable for you.


3) Playing the game

3.1) The screen

The display is divided into two parts. The top part shows the actual playing area. While the bottom displays the info panel. Here you can see the gold collected, the state of your energy cell(s), the number of reserve helicopters, the enemies you have destroyed and the time you have spend in the cave.

3.2) Controlling the Heli


The controls are straight forward: Move the joystick up, down, left or right to fly in the respective direction. You will notice, however, the Heli will not turn if you steer it against its facing direction. This enables you to keep shooting at an enemy while backing off. As helpful as this features is, it comes with a downside. To turn your helicopter, you have to tap the stick two times in the new direction. At first this might be awkward, however, after some minutes you get the hang of it and it will feel naturally. If you tap in the facing direction two times and keep the stick pressed you activate the Turbo boost as long as you hold the stick. Be careful however. If you hit wall while turbo-boosting you receive a lot of damage! So handle with care.

3.3) The cave


Most areas of the cave are rather normal, well, if you consider shooting enemies as normal that is 🙂 There are some rooms which are special. Most notable are the shops. If you enter a shop your energy cells get refilled automatically. Further, you can spend the gold you have found in the cave to upgrade your vessel (see Upgrades). Very few parts of the walls are destroyable. Some are easy visible others not.

But sooner or later you figure out which tiles to probe, the rooms of the cave are rather regular after all.

3.4) At the Beginning

You can go where ever you want, however, it is advised to stay close to the first shop until you feel comfortable with the controls and have bought some upgrades. Do not forget, this is not an action shooter. Exploration and finding tricks to kill the enemies easily is key to the game.

3.5) The End

The exit is guarded by The Boss. You have to kill him to open the door and leave the cave. If you enter its room, you will be trapped so your only way to leave the cave ALIVE is by defeating the boss.


4) The Upgrades

  • E) Improves your engine. Fly faster and reduce gravity.
  • T) Improves your energy transformer. Reduces energy loss when hit.
  • R) Increase the fire rate of your weapon
  • P) Increase the fire power of your weapon
  • There are 3 levels for each upgrade. The current level is displayed in the score board when you enter the shop. Flying over an upgrade icon displays information about it. Pressing the trigger buys it.


5) Accomplish Quests for Bonuses

By pressing the HELP key you can display some side-quests you can do to get some bonus gold.


6) Tips and Hints

  1. There is ALWAYS energy draining from your batteries, except when you are in a shop
  2. If your energy is low, the scoreboards blinks red. Fly as fast as you can to a shop
  3. Secure your loot regularly. If the Heli gets shot down you loose all the gold collected since your last visit in a shop.
  4. There are 4 extra energy cells scattered in the cave. Try to find them to
  5. If you have a Freezer or when you play with an emulator make save-states in the shops. Originally it was planned to save the game when entering a shop. However, there wasn’t enough RAM available to include xBIOS 🙁


7) Final Words

First, I have to thank Jason Kendal „therealbountybob“ for playing the beta versions and giving valuable input. Although not everything could be fixed/implemented. Secondly, this game isn’t perfect yet. There are some glitches which do not affect the game-play. Only one severe, but hard to fix bug as far as I know. You should not fly close to the ground when leaving a room while using the
Turbo Boost. The game should be released latest on the week-end before Christmas, because I have other ATARI-related things in my head.