Space Barnacle: What a Terrible Fate… to be Reborn in Space - Doomlaser

Space Barnacle: What a Terrible Fate… to be Reborn in Space

I’ve been hard at work for approximately the last month, creating a game. Space Barnacle is the end result: an ultra-violent pixelated platformer modeled in the 8-bit style.

The project came about as a result of a B-Game Design contest, hosted by the excellent Independent Gaming Source (TIGSource) community, and writing it has been some of the most fun I’ve ever had in game development.

I wanted the game to feel like a long-lost budget title, perhaps developed for the NES or Commodore 64 somewhere between 1989 and 1990. Thus, the native resolution is 288×180 pixels, and most of the characters are a mere 16 by 16 pixels square.

My friend Kevin shared pixel art duties with me, and we tried to work from a limited 55 color NES palette. But we took some liberties, taking advantage of additive blending, parallax scrolling, and particle effects for blood and vomit explosions.

The music is composed entirely of chiptunes in Amiga module format, emulating the sound of the Commodore 64’s famed SID chip, and we were lucky to be able to include compositions by Reed Richards, among others.

In developing the engine, I was intrigued by the approach of Knytt, Within a Deep Forest, and Lyle in Cube Sector, which all used the rapid development environment, Multimedia Fusion.

Coming from a background of Mac OpenGL development, building a game in this environment was quite a shock. It both saved time, and caused endless frustration, as the method for logic control is completely insane.

In the end, I’m pretty pleased with what we came up with. We’re not done working on the title, and I’d really like to come up with a solution for an OS X port. I’ve been trying to hack together a little encapsulated Wine Binary Launcher for the game– sort of a low-rent version of Cider. This would have the added benefit of potentially bringing some other great indie games to the Mac.

Until then, Windows users can play the game natively, and Mac users can play pretty adequately through CrossOver, which has a free 60 day trial.

view the game on

11 Responses to “Space Barnacle: What a Terrible Fate… to be Reborn in Space”

  1. Saurabh Says:

    This is a great game to play. Can we have game controller support for PC please.

  2. Lync Says:

    This is a great game! I have to ask, though; what program/language did you use to make this game?

  3. mario Says:

    As much as i love the game, i have trouble finishing it in one go.
    Is there a way to save or restore the progress?

  4. DamionKutaeff Says:

    Hello everybody, my name is Damion, and I’m glad to join your conmunity,
    and wish to assit as far as possible.

  5. [me] Says:

    Uhm… i was kinda dumb and didn’t find the next screen on the left side of the level ^^

    But a Shortcutlist still would be great 😀

  6. [me] Says:

    Hey I really like your game, but I’ve found some mysterious bug. I can’t shoot these grey boxes. So I can’t finish the 2nd level 🙁
    And some information about the extra shortcuts would be great.

    D – Self destroy and
    G – level warp?

    But Space barnacle is great! I hope I’ll find a way, to get through these boxes and continue my great space saga… which will be a terrible one 😀

  7. Tank Says:

    The New Satan Sam and The Spirit Engine are my favourite MMF games.

  8. copilot Says:

    If you ever decide to make shirts I want one.

  9. Rocky Says:

    Actually, your chiptunes sound more like from C64, not NES 🙂

    Which is cool.

  10. Puppyblog » Blog Archive » Space Barnacle! Says:

    […] found a very cute game over at TIGsource today called Space Barnacle by a little known crew going by the name of Doomlaser. We at Puppygames dig the ultra-retro […]

  11. mdmunoz Says:

    It runs fine under Darwine as well.

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