Lately, I have been thinking a lot about games with bugs, since I have been working on ways of implementing various bug-like movement through code in Flash. And as luck would have it, the more I think about bugs, the more games I find that feature bugs. And while I still have not yet found a convincing Centipede clone in Flash just yet, this next one shares some traits with the classic.
Bugs is a game created by Hairy Bullet Games and is available to play free on hairybulletgames.com. An action arcade game at heart, Bugs features an interesting gameplay mix from that of a shooter and a strategy game.
The object of Bugs is to stop the bugs from scarfing the 'shrooms by zapping them with your sonic spidey sense. When all the mushrooms are gone, so is the game. Control is with the arrow keys for movement and the space bar for activating your sonic powers. Bugs do not harm the spider, yet the spider's sonic powers can destroy a mushroom.
One by one the bugs will crawl out of the woodwork and walk across the play field. If one runs into a shroom, it eats it and then turns and walks back from where it came. The spider may not move through mushrooms, it must go around, and it can only send out sonic waves in the direction it last moved.
There is a good deal to like about this original and appealing game. The graphics are nicely done, and reminiscent of a classic. The optional scanlines add a nice old-school aesthetic, and the retro sound effects are consistent with the game's overall appearance. I especially liked the gameplay balance of the weapon causing destruction to the mushrooms, and ultimately to the ending of the game. Also impressive is the sheer number of bugs the developers managed to animate across the screen at once with no visible drop in framerate. Bugs is a fun little game about, uh, bugs, and that's good enough for me.
Update: It seems that all good things come to an end sooner or later, and so is the case with Hairy Bullet Games' Bugs.