Dragon Inflation Side-Scrolling Shooter Idea

TL;DR- vague idea about a belly inflation shmup. pretty much a cross between Tribal Hunter and Deep Cave (it’s at the bottom of the page)

I’ve had this idea bouncing around in my brain for a while, but unfortunately I don’t have any knowledge of coding whatsoever and not a lot of spare time anyway, so it’s just remained a fantasy until now. I figure if someone likes the idea enough to help me out with the coding portion (I can do art/story/level design/pretty much everything except making the game actually function which is the hardest part lol) then great! If not, well, no harm in posting.

An ancient village guards the Heartflame, a special flower that grants dragons the power to breathe fire. The only problem is, it grows exceedingly slowly and is the only plant of its kind, so the village has to make sure it’s well kept and well guarded. Invaders have been after it for a long time now, and even the village’s greatest warriors can’t keep up with the sheer number of invaders for much longer. Their forces are spread too thin, and defeat is inevitable.

Enter the player, a slightly pudgy young adult who mostly enjoys reading and hanging out with their friends, but they have a big heart and they can’t stand by anymore, even if they’ve never been in a fight in their life. They head to the village elder and ask to take the flower and be granted the power of flame in the hopes of defending their people!

The Elder is hesitant. As good as this dragon’s intentions are, they don’t have the proper training to receive the gift of fire- but eventually the player wears the Elder down and they gain the power of the Heartflame. But just as the Elder had feared, the young dragon can’t produce more than a small puff of flame.

The fire has to build inside the user for a short time before any significant flame can be produced, the Elder explains, and so all warriors must undergo a strict training regimen from a young age to strengthen their bodies so that they may one day harness the flame. But the young dragon, having no training whatsoever, can only build up a tiny amount before it starts to overwhelm them.

As a last-ditch effort, the two of them head to the apothecary to ask if she has anything that can help, but any supplement she has that increases the body’s strength has already been given to the warriors. Rummaging through the back of the shop, she finds an odd, seldom-used herb that might do the trick…

After taking the potion, the young dragon finds that their body is now slightly elastic, allowing their belly to expand enough to contain their fire breath. It’s not much, but it should allow them to stand a chance against the invaders. And if they could find more of the herb, the apothecary could create more potions, allowing them to contain more fire and become stronger.

The game itself is a side-scrolling shoot-em-up. By rapidly tapping the charge button (or by holding it down, but it’s faster if you tap), the dragon can build up flames inside their belly and release them by pressing the fire button. The more flame in their belly, the more powerful their shots will be! But with increased size comes an increased hitbox, making it harder for the dragon to dodge incoming attacks. And if they build up too much fire for their elastic body to handle, it’s an instant game over. (the player can choose between bursting or cartoony deflation based on their preferences)

I haven’t worked out what the enemies would look like in too much detail yet- all I have is a vague idea of some mechanical/industrial faction to contrast with the ancient village theme- but I do have a few ideas for basic types of enemy.

  • Standard: Shoots normal shots that lower your HP.
  • Needler: Shots do more damage the larger your body size is.
  • Net: Tightens around the dragon’s belly, preventing it from growing any larger than it’s current size. If the player’s belly size decreases during this effect, that size becomes their new maximum limit. Can be removed by holding back + fire for a short time.
  • Thorns: Similar to Net, but if the player attempts to push past the size limit, they begin to take HP damage.
  • Gas Cylinders: Fills the player’s belly with air- air just takes up space and doesn’t increase your attack power at all, but it slowly goes away over time.
  • Energy Shield: Weaker shots will not deal any damage to this enemy.

…And that’s about it! I have a few other thoughts bouncing around, but I don’t want to make this post any longer than it already is. As of right now, I have zero plans to actually create this game due to my aforementioned lack of coding skill, but I’d be happy to do the art and story if I have someone handling code. If you’re working on your own project and you want to borrow some of these ideas, that’s fine too! I mostly just wanted to actually share this with someone instead of having it sit eternally in my brain.

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if I knew how to code i would maybe do this as a first project
but i cant code for the life of me

This sounds like a cute idea, I might be interested.

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I can’t pay or anything, but if you’re up for helping with the code, shoot me a DM![

Do you have a discord? I’m most active on there.

I keep my fetish stuff separate from my other online presences, so no. :frowning:

You can message me here or on FA, the link should be in my bio.