Star Castle

Star Castle’ is a space-shooter, where the object is to destroy the central cannon, by shooting through the rotating rings surrounding it – the castle. Heavily defended – the cannon will do what it can to take you out before you can succeed.
Download for Windows XP and above. (6.6MB)
Download for Mac OSX (Intel). (7.0MB)

Current version v1.1 (released february 21st, 2011)

The original game was a black and white vector graphics arcade game by Cinematronics from 1980, but is here, with this remake, brought into the new millennia in all its glory with nice and glowing vector graphics, while retaining its great gameplay.

Here’s two screenshots from the game.


The titlescreen. Click picture to view fullsized image.

In-game screenshot

In-game screenshot. Click to view fullsized image.

In-game screenshot

In-game screenshot with background turned on (can be turned off again). Click to view fullsized image.

Gameplay description (from Wikipedia):
The object of Star Castle is to destroy the enemy cannon which sits in the center of three concentric, rotating energy shield rings while avoiding or destroying ‘mines’ – enemies that spawn from the core, pass through the energy rings, and then home in on the player’s ship. They can stick back to the shield if the player maneuvers in such a way that a ring is between the ship and the mines. The player-controlled spaceship can rotate, thrust forward, and fire small projectiles. The cannon’s shields are composed of twelve sections each, and each section takes two hits to destroy. Once a section is breached, rings beneath it are exposed to fire.

Once the innermost ring has been breached, the central weapon is vulnerable to attack from the player. However, the player is also more vulnerable at this point, as with the shield rings eliminated, the gun can fire out a large projectile that hisses with white noise. Moreover, the central core tracks player movement at all times. If the player manages to hit the cannon, it explodes violently, collapsing the remnants of the shield rings, and the player is awarded with a nice bonus. Extra ships are awarded every 10.000 points. The next level then starts with a new gun and fully restored shield rings, with the difficulty increased (the mines move faster, the rings rotate more quickly, and the core tracks the player faster).

If the player completely destroys the outermost shield ring, the cannon will create a new one. The middle ring expands to replace the lost outer ring, the inner ring replaces the middle, and a new ring emerges from the core to become the inner ring. Therefore, in order to penetrate the cannon’s defenses, the player must be careful not to completely obliterate the outer ring.

The game will start with three homing mines that will destroy the player’s ship on contact, but as you progress through the game there will be more of them. The mines can be destroyed, but they are very small and difficult to fire on, and the player does not receive points for destroying them. Mines are revived when shield rings regenerate (some variants keep the mines churning constantly so that a new mine respawns from the core as soon as one is destroyed). As the player progresses through the levels, the mines get faster and faster, forcing the player to keep moving to avoid them.

Unpack the ZIP file and you’ll end up with a folder called ‘Star Castle’ that contains the game files. Run the executable file to run the game. The game has been tested and is works on (at least) Windows XP, Vista & Windows 7. The game will write a configuration file to your Document folder. To reset the settings just delete this file.

Use the LEFT and RIGHT keys to control your ship, LEFT CTRL to fire and LEFT ALT to thrust.
All keys can be redefined. Joypad also suported.

Legal Blurb:
This game is FREEWARE and must remain freeware. The game can generally be distributed however you want, as long as all the files are included and unchanged. It shouldn’t be sold or given away on any kind of compilation without my permission. I would like to ask, that if you’re going to include this game on a CD for a magazine or somewhere else, that you contact me first – I would like to know what kind places my little project goes…also it shouldn’t be asking too much, but then I’d also like a copy of the magazine or CD.

Copyright for the gameidea is held by Cinematronics who made the original arcade game in 1980.
The original game was designed by Tim Skelly and programmed by Scott Boden.

This remake was programmed by S. Borgquist (aka Sokurah), 2010/2011

If you get a good score in the game you can upload it to here from the ‘Scores’ menu,
and have it compared with other peoples scores. Remember to set your name first.

Title: Highscores


Version history.
v1.0 – 30 December, 2010
Initial release.

v1.1 – 21 february 2011
Added Joystick support, pure wireframe mode & adjustable amount of glow on neon vectors. Also a new backdrop.

v1.1 (OSX) – April 25th, 2011
Released for Mac OSX.