Bomb Sworders — Currently in development. Steam page here

A couch-multiplayer game about bombs and swords. And hitting bombs with swords. And explosions. And avoiding explosions.

Update v0.7.8.1

v0.7.8.1 brings a bunch of small changes

  • better interpretation of player’s intent for recoil at near-horizontal angles
  • more reliable, slightly-easier sword swing mechanics and animations
  • fixed an exploit where you could assign multiple jump buttons and then mash them all to climb super fast. (As one of the primary abusers of this exploit… I mourn the passing)
  • Exploder mode: once again displays a running-out-of-time graphic — accidentally had hidden it in the previous version as part of a larger-scoped optimization
  • fixed issue where items could fail some interactions with other objects after a player death
  • Race mode: fixed error when an enemy-owned bomb was near a target at the moment the level was completed
  • Race mode: easier to jump off stars
  • a couple minor tweaks to some race levels

That’s it for this update!
More coming soon(ish)

The Jogging Update

“The Jogging Update” (v0.7.8) brings our first pass at a new single-player mode: Race!

  • Grab the flag as quick as you can
  • Improve your score by collecting stars and exploding targets along the way
  • Compete against the playback of your best score (currently the white dot — in the future, maybe not a white dot?)
  • Compare your scores with others on the leaderboard

Race mode is also the first in-the-wild use of FlowCam — our camera controller. It attempts to allow precise control over framing while smoothly following the character. So far it’s been doing a great job of letting layout be more purely a creative task.

The update includes a few different race levels — all considered experimental as we continue to make more and continue to learn what works well and what doesn’t.

WARNING! As time goes on, race levels may experience significant changes — if so, the leaderboards for those levels may be wiped

Other changes are in v0.7.8 too

  • Improved AI on tutorial levels
  • Improved interaction between thrownSword and jumping
  • Other minor tweaks

Quick fixes v0.7.7.2

v0.7.7.2 has been released to the beta group!


  • Better thrownSword behavior near walls
  • Fixed potential inability to progress through new notifications
  • Fixed broken jump/dash after controller reconnect

The Groundwork Update!

v. has been released to the beta group!

This update focuses on getting the base stuff right (aka “groundwork”) but adds some new things too

  • 2 new levels added to the Experimental section: Crannies and Swordy Bombs
  • Rewrite of the controller handling
    • fixes issues when lots of controllers
    • better controller assignment, disconnecting, and reconnecting
    • when multiple buttons are mapped to jump (or dash), one button being pressed down no longer masks the inputs of the other buttons. (This allows an exploit, which will be fixed in a future update)
    • keyboard movement: the most recent directional-input takes priority (rather than zeroing-out the movement when both directional-inputs are held.)
  • Revision: jumping or dashing off an item will redirect that item’s velocity (and will enforce a minimum out speed)
  • Miscellaneous
    • improved AI on tutorial levels
    • more robustly freezes the game when the feedback form is shown (F10)
    • default keyboard controls now listed in the reference section

Minor Keyboard/Mouse update

v0.7.6.5 is now released to the beta group —
Thanks to those who provided feedback!

This minor update focuses on improving the (still quite rough) keyboard & mouse support.

  • Revised mouse aiming
  • Revised default controls
  • Better multi-monitor support: Mouse cursor is locked to the game window

Among other things, the default controls will be tweaked as time goes on.
* Additionally, note that in the current implementation, there is unfortunately some functionality on a gamepad that is not reproduced on keyboard and mouse. (use of recoil, aiming feet during limbo, dashing). This should be improved in the future.

There are 2 viable layout options in the current version:

layout 1

A : move left
D : move right
Space : jump
S : ghost

layout 2

A : move left
D : move right
W : jump
leftShift : ghost


E or Z or middleMouseButton : drop dynamite
leftMouseButton : aim sword (release to swing)
rightMouseButton : throw sword

Future updates will continue to address keyboard & mouse control but some ground work needs to be done before more polish/customization is possible.

The Malevolent Update

Update v0.7.6.2 has been released to the beta group!

We’re calling this one The Malevolent Update because it adds some sinister stuff:

  • 2 really (like really..) hard levels
  • + a new spooky song in shuffle on tough levels

There’s more too:

  • For Exploder Mode: Online high scores, songs start at random positions into playback so you won’t hear the same 40 seconds of music over and over and over, and the ability to skip past the score page so you can get into the next round quicker
  • First (very very rough) pass at keyboard/mouse controls
  • Misc changes: can jump on a stunned player to kill them, can jump on a ghost character, fixed rare timing issue with thrownSwords and limbo, automatically select the next tutorial upon completing one, added a notification reminding people about the F10 feedback menu

mode options

  • Rounds to Win
  • Handicapping: Whoever is losing starts the round with some free blast zones. Option only available when there are just 2 teams. In practice this has worked well, though I’m still searching for a clean way to do handicapping for > 2 teams playing..
  • Accelerate Endgame: Increases item generation rate after the first player dies.
  • Item Abundance
  • Limbo: When a character dies, instead of being removed from the game, they’re frozen in place. If they can cause a bomb to explode, they reenter the game.

Limbo has worked out really nicely so far in playtesting — provides hope for players who have died, but death remains punishment — all your blast zones are removed from the level when you die and the time spent in limbo is time that the other players are gaining territory with their blast zones.

game options

A few notes about the top-level game options

Lo, the main options screen


(thanks to this post on the “a clockwork berry” blog)

It tries to provide resolutions that are decent choices for the player:

  • less-than-or-equal-to the resolution of the display (as set in the OS’s display settings)
  • and at or near the aspect ratio of the display


Most systems should be able to run the game no problem (if not at 1080p+ then likely at something like 720p), but just in case, there’s also a low quality setting:

  • Fewer particle effects
  • Simpler shaders
  • Less post processing effects
  • Replay system records at 15 fps (half the usual replay-framerate)

*Also, note the scrolling explanation text that appears when a button is selected. It seemed like a nice way to include more info when the layout space is constrained.. but I’m interested to hear people’s reactions.


A couple settings are useful in their own regard but somewhat targeting people who play on projectors. First is contrast and next is..

screen expand

Screen Expand is also useful if you want to make the preview-edges larger (the areas on the left and right sides of the gameplay that show a preview of the wrap-around)


  • An option to turn ON or OFF preview-edges
    • shameful secret: the current implementation of OFF does all the standard preview-edge computation.. then shades it 100% black.
  • Music volume
  • Sound effects volume
  • and a way to reset all options to their defaults