Another day, another major change to gameplay mid-development -__-
Specifically, I've made it so that enemies don't hurt you when you touch them (sort of like Kurovadis), but I've also made it so that enemies will flinch from attacks, interrupting their attack patterns.
I often thought that making enemies harmless upon contact limits the game's level design. After all, it removes enemies as an obstacle, and makes them easy to bypass. What would Castlevania be like without such enemies, after all?
Well, that kind of thinking is dumb, and now I feel sort of silly.
The thing is, certain games would suck if you made enemies harmless, but that's because the games aren't designed around it. Harmless enemies only make a game too easy if you're still make them move as if they hurt the player. As a designer, when contact is harmless you can make enemies move faster, and in more extreme patterns, because you don't have to worry about how it would effect the player directly. You also can have more enemies that actively pursue the player without it becoming impossible.
Likewise, making enemies flinch seems like it would make the game way easier. However it just makes things different. Including flinching means that there's more emphasis on enemy positions. For instance, you can have enemies attack from both sides, because the player can split their attention between the two, focusing on interrupting their attacks simultaneously. In combination with not getting hurt on contact, it allows for more scenarios where the player has to deal with multiple enemies, and act a bit more strategically on the fly, rather than thinking through a single action, and trying to execute it without messing up.
Also, I just noticed in that gif that there's 1-3 frames of the idle animation in mid-air. So...I need to go fix something -__-