- Win to cheat and cheat to win -
Welcome to the Flag N Frag Alpha; the 1-4 player couch combat game that combines turn-based strategy and board game elements with fast, frantic arcade action. Move your units across maps capturing (or "Locking") flags while attacking other players in order to unlock and steal theirs, and a chance to backflip as many Cheat Coins from their bouncing, bleeding heads as possible. Players then cash in their Cheat Coins for random powerups that have the potential to completely change the control over the map.
When it is the active player's turn, that player must move all of their units in order to end their turn. When a player selects a unit, it is given a 1 out of 3 chance at a Move Bonus (green arrow, more spaces to move) but also a 1 out of 3 chance at a Move Penalty (red arrow, less spaces to move). The range of movement is then shown and the player can select any space that is highlighted.
Once the unit is done moving, and lands on a flag, the unit regains their turn so that they can "grab and go" and move towards the next flag. If the unit did not land on a flag, the unit checks if an enemy unit is beside them (not including diagonal) and if so, the player must select that unit to attack. If a unit ends their movement without capturing a flag, that unit uses up a turn. If the unit has non left, the unit is darkened and unselectable until the next round.
If the active player moves a unit onto a flag that is neutral (white) or is "Unlocked" (has no lock icon on it), then the active player captures or "Locks" the flag and now belongs to them. The reason for Locking flags is to promote a "grab and go" style of play; so instead of turtling and having a unit sit on a flag in fear of being taken, players can capture flags and immediately move towards a unit to attack or another flag. Locked flags cannot be captured by other players until one of that player's units dies in combat, then all that player's flags become Unlocked and are free to capture.
SCORING FLAG POINTS
At the start of a player's turn, any flags that player controls on the map, regardless if the flag is Locked or not, are added to that player's Flag Points. The points are only added at the start of a player's turn so that players must work to not only capture flags, but defend them until their next turn to score/bank points from them.
Combat includes an Attacking player (always on the left) and a Defending player (always on the right). Each player wants to hit the Bullet Ball away from their side of the arena and wins if the Bullet Ball leaves the arena from the opposite side.
If the Defender wins, then the Defender's unit is Safe and is rewarded with 3 Cheat Coins to spend on their next turn.
If the Attacker wins, the Defending unit's body explodes and their head bounces around the arena for a limited time as the Attacker tries to hit the head as many times as the player can. Every time the Attacker strikes the bouncing head a Cheat Point pops out and is awarded to the Attacker. All of the Defender's flags then become Unlocked for any player to capture.
BACKFLIPS AND BULLET BALLS
Not only can players strike the Bullet Ball up or down in combat, but can also Backflip the ball backwards towards their own goal. Backflipping charges the ball, causing it to bounce in unusual angles at a faster speed and can be used as a "charged shot." Players can also backlfip the ball and then strike it immediately afterwards, which creates a Curve Shot. Curve Shots can be difficult for the opposing player to counter-hit, but can also be created by the opposing player if the player who backflipped/charged the ball failed to follow up by striking.
In order to prevent a player from backflipping the ball and scoring into their own goal, when a player strikes or backflips the ball they gain ownership of the ball. If the player's unit's name is coloured in red, that unit does -not- have ownership and is in risk of losing.
Each player also has a hidden meter that fills each time they strike the Bullet Ball up or down. When the meter is full the player's unit will display a flashing 'S' above their head. The player can then press both strike buttons at the same time to shoot the ball straight ahead at an accelerated speed, called a "Screw Shot." Backflipping does -not- help fill this meter.
The Bullet Ball's speed also increases when a defensive block is destroyed.
When it's the active player's turn, and that player has at least 3 Cheat Coins, that player can then spend them on powerups called Cheats. At the cost of 3 CC each, the player can buy a random Cheat then apply it to a unit that can move (green flashing outline) . Cheats can only be used -before- selecting a unit, and only one cheat can be purchased/used at a time. Most cheats are "used up" after a unit is done moving, even if that unit didn't attack or has extra moves left. This making using cheats risky as the cheat can be wasted depending on the situation. However; cheating can also change the entire control of the map if the player is lucky.