Ludum Dare 35
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December 16th-19th 2011 :: Theme: Alone

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Space Ghost

by madmaw - 48 Hour Compo Entry

A little Matlab-esque shooter. I guess it is vaguely to do with the theme since you're alone ... with a ghost ... in space. Also, there's a kitten!

The game uses hand-written Javascript/HTML5 and isn't obfuscated and doesn't rely on any third party libraries. You can view-source on the HTML document and it should be fairly obvious where the code is. The graphics were generated using a project I wrote a while ago, BatchSVG (Google it if you're interested) and just straight rendering of Javascript primitives. Sounds using SFXR.

In hindsight, a game using similar mechanics, but on a simulated mini-golf course would have been both a better fit for the theme (alone: no enemies) and probably a better game. Ah well, if there's enough interest in this I might look into it.

Downloads and Links




revilossor says ...
Dec 18, 2011 @ 10:30pm

Love the idea. This would be perfect as an educational game for a raspberry pi (

A-Type says ...
Dec 19, 2011 @ 5:46am

This would be more fun if I knew math! But it's a really cool concept. Backspace ruins syntax though...

galman says ...
Dec 19, 2011 @ 12:54pm

Amazing idea! Wish I knew math better. But I don't really see how it's connected to the theme... Well done!

madmaw says ...
Dec 19, 2011 @ 10:48pm

Thanks for the comments guys. I'm trying to think of a way for the game to teach the basic shapes of different equations to the player, maybe through some kind of extended tutorial or function builder (operators are power-ups?). It would be good to make an educational game that didn't suck

youdonotexist says ...
Dec 20, 2011 @ 5:57am

This is an awesome idea! It reminds me of the gif that shows what sin(t) looks like and how it relates to a circle (

Visual stuff like that makes it much easier to grasp what's going on behind the numbers.

The only frustrating I encountered was.. I wish it was more of a text box interface and not a command line. The command line made it difficult to try different things, swap out components and keep another, copy and paste, etc.

Other than that, overall a great game!

Shigor says ...
Dec 20, 2011 @ 10:03pm

Great idea :) Good game for mathematicians and programmers, but right now I'm too tired to play it to the end :) (but going to bookmark)

(For the idea alone best overall / innovation rating I gave today :)

kato9 says ...
Dec 21, 2011 @ 3:04am

Uhh...well I'll admit I really didn't understand this at all. I tried typing in the equations you listed at the bottom of the page and nothing happened.

madmaw says ...
Dec 21, 2011 @ 3:26am

It could be a browser compatibility issue (I've only tested it in Chrome and Safari), but on the off chance it isn't, the page needs to have focus and you need to type 'L' <enter> when you actually want to launch.

Yoman says ...
Dec 22, 2011 @ 3:24pm

I tried some simple addition then went straight to geometry, parabolas and such. Too bad I had forgotten most of what each formula actually looked like XD.

A good idea for an educational game. The graphics were absolutely appropriate, especially the screen flicker for some reason. The theme didn't fit so much, but only because of how the game is shown, not because there is only one 'character'. Good job.

tcstyle says ...
Dec 26, 2011 @ 7:40pm

Innovative idea, but quite unintuitive to control.

SonnyBone says ...
Dec 27, 2011 @ 1:32am

Everything I type gives me SYNTAX ERROR. I can't see what I'm typing on the screen.

madmaw says ...
Jan 3, 2012 @ 1:27am

If you run out of space, try typing CLR followed by the enter key, that will clear the screen. There are some examples of what it expects if you look at the help, or scroll down on the page.

I was going for an old telnet style interface, but yeah a simple HTML textarea would have been easier to use and quicker to implement.

Milo says ...
Jan 8, 2012 @ 7:04pm

YES! MATH! This game was really innovative, and I enjoyed it quite a lot since math is the best thing ever. I would like it if you could repeat levels (or choose not to advance to the next one), because I wanted to figure out lots of formulas for each one.

Although, the fact that you could define piecewise functions through tables or the ternary operator made it easier (although I didn't use this solution 'cuz it's not fun):
pts = [[0,0],[-0.5,1],[-1,0]]
num = Math.floor(t*5)
x = pts[num][0]
y = pts[num][1]

madmaw says ...
Jan 9, 2012 @ 4:08am

Ha! You got me! Yep, there is very little validation, so you can basically enter raw Javascript to avoid the need for math. Nice outside the box solution.

kosinus says ...
Jan 9, 2012 @ 10:47pm

This is GENIUS. Or maybe I've just not seen a whole lot of these before. Absolutely fantastic.

madmaw says ...
Jan 10, 2012 @ 2:49am

Wow, second in innovation! That's super-cool guys.

Thanks to everyone who voted. and/or commented. I'm going to take what I've learned, and all the suggestions (especially regarding the barriers to entry), onboard and see if I can make a professional version of this.

madmaw says ...
Jan 10, 2012 @ 2:50am

Wow, second in innovation! That's super-cool guys.

Thanks to everyone who voted and/or commented. I'm going to take what I've learned, and all the suggestions (especially regarding the barriers to entry), onboard and see if I can make a professional version of this.

madmaw says ...
Jan 10, 2012 @ 2:52am

Awww, man, double post

hdon says ...
Jan 11, 2012 @ 4:05pm


madmaw says ...
Jan 11, 2012 @ 11:58pm

Love it!

Zolomon says ...
Feb 26, 2012 @ 4:39pm

I COMPLETELY love this game! Could you do something like this for vector math as well?

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