After its triple nomination at the 2010 Independent Games Festival, the Rocketbirds universe is finally approaching release — and only on PSN. Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken takes you on a cinematic platform adventure through Albatropolis. In the single-player mode, you’re Hardboiled Chicken, the original Coq of War, on a mission to hunt down the Penguin’s corrupt leader, Putzki. Along the way you’ll have to kill many Penguins, solve puzzles, incite revolution, and maybe possibly pilot a few jetpacks.
Today I’d like to share a bit about the game’s two-player couch co-op mode, since we are particularly happy with the way it’s turned out. But first, check out some gameplay in our new Rocketbirds co-op video.
We had always wanted a couch co-op mode for the game ever since we started development on the PS3 (because, well, co-op is fun), but didn’t know how and if it would work for our non-scrolling platformer. Simple questions needed answering, such as; “What should happen when one player leaves the current screen the other one is still on it?” After a few quick tests we decided to allow screen changing only when both players exited the screen in the same direction. In the end this allowed us to create some pretty cool new puzzles for the game!
We also decided to make the characters pint-sized and called them the Budgie commandos (a parakeet is called a “Budgie” in the world of Rocketbirds). When stacked, the Budgie on top becomes the turret (Master-Blaster style), able to piggy-back along while the Budgie on the bottom handles all the running and positioning. When stacked, the Budgie team can reach higher places, which also paves the way for some interesting new combat strategies.
The co-op mechanics worked so well that we ended up creating entirely new puzzles, crazy battles, and a separate back-story just for this 10-chapter mode. In the co-op mode, the General’s daughter has been bird-napped and held ransom by those sneaky, totalitarian Penguins. The dirty half-dozen Budgie commandos have been dispatched into Albatropolis to “find her and bring her back (dramatic pause) alive”.
We’re bringing Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken exclusively to PSN in the US on October 18th. We’ll be back soon with more!