December 16th-19th 2011 :: Theme: Alone

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First Cell

by Canyon - 48 Hour Compo Entry

This is my first entry for Ludum Dare I've tried to get the emotion of being 'Alone' into the game.

Made with Actionscript 3 and Photoshop.

I'm looking forward to playing games from the rest of the community, and to LD23!

Justification for the Theme:
You play as the first and only cell, the first life, surrounded by dead drifting matter. If you don't move you are left in darkness.

Downloads and Links




Balooga03 says ...
Dec 19, 2011 @ 2:07pm

I don't really get the aim of the game but the feeling is quite nice. The train came but there was no end also i did not understand the numbers. But thumbs up for the pyramid :)

Canyon says ...
Dec 19, 2011 @ 2:36pm

Hey Balooga03,

Thanks for the comment, I added a description to explain how to play. And thank you, I like the pyramid also. :)

cadin says ...
Dec 19, 2011 @ 7:02pm

Neat concept. It can be hard to tell where you are sometimes because the glows on the shapes are the same as the glow on the player character. Maybe this is intentional to increase difficulty (?). I think having graphics that tie in better to the story of cellular life would really improve things. Nice work!

zwets says ...
Dec 20, 2011 @ 7:05am

Looks like a really cool concept, but I found it a bit hard to play, even with the explanation. Maybe you make a few training levels, gradually explaining and ramping up the difficulty? Anyway, the mood is there, nice!

Canyon says ...
Dec 20, 2011 @ 10:46am

Thanks a lot for the critiques, I've shown the game to a few people in person, and they seem confused also even if I explain it. But if they watch someone else play it they end up enjoying it a lot once they 'get it'. I'll try and make a game play video, to show how it all works. I'd also like to make a post compo version that is a lot clearer.

@Cadin, that differing glow idea is great! I had a little pointer glow to show your direction, but that isn't enough differentiation. It also probably doesn't help that all the colours are procedurally generated.

I would like to depict cellular life, but also retain the shape game mechanic, which is hard to reconcile.

@zwets, I'll definitely make the concept a lot clearer and add more variety in the levels in a post compo version. I was at a wedding for the first day of the 24 hrs so I was trying to keep it simple with limited time, I regret not having in game help now.

That said, I think the problem is really with accessibility, I think the mechanics and gameplay are all good. I just need to cultivate the concept and communicate better visually.

Thanks a lot for reviewing the game, it means a lot to get feedback!


Bad Sector says ...
Dec 21, 2011 @ 1:47am

The graphics are good looking and minimalistic, but i found myself mostly lost :-P. I never managed to find the proper shapes at the time. The idea itself is good (it reminds me of the games where you play small fishes/microbes/whatever and eat other fishes/microbes/whatever to grow while watching to not be eaten - minus the latter part), but there are too many shapes on screen and the limited visibility doesn't help that. Maybe if you could see everything at once things would be better? In any case, it is an interesting effort :-)

Canyon says ...
Dec 21, 2011 @ 9:21am

Cheers Bad Sector, I'll try to think of a way to keep the dark mood, but also make everything more visible. Maybe keep the outlines of shapes on screen at all time and only the fill of the shape fades away.

All this feedback is awesome!

kato9 says ...
Dec 21, 2011 @ 6:06pm

I think you've done a great job with the mood and feeling of this game - the sound and visuals are very effective. The basic concept behind the gameplay is solid but the execution is a bit too meandering. There isn't really any challenge, and as I was quickly progressing through levels I started to lose motivation to play, as the experience didn't seem to be changing or evolving in any way. Overall, a very strong entry, good work!

bach says ...
Dec 22, 2011 @ 9:27pm

Nice! I really enjoyed this. It's got a very nice mood.

eli says ...
Dec 24, 2011 @ 10:15pm

Something is quite amazing about this game. There is a seeming disconnect between the sounds and the visuals, yet it really does tie together with the "alone" theme.

I liked the idea of increasing/reducing your polygon order using the other shapes. I am not sure I understand exactly how it works, because sometimes a shape would add two orders to my polygon.

Very lonely mood here.

summaky says ...
Dec 26, 2011 @ 1:50pm

Interesting concept, but hard to grasp at first. Sometimes, though, I felt that I didn't touch any of the other shapes but I was changed anyway. Maybe I just passed too close to another?

Winterblood says ...
Dec 29, 2011 @ 1:23pm

Great atmosphere, very polished, but somewhat confusing. I would sometimes change shape accidentally and sometimes not change when I expected to. And I often lost myself amongst the other shapes. But apart from those niggles, it was fun!

Cell says ...
Jan 2, 2012 @ 11:31am

Nice game, nice name xD

Shigor says ...
Jan 5, 2012 @ 2:17am

It's interesting entry with nice mood even if the graphics is very minimalistic. Took me sometime to understand what I'm supposed to do.
Very interesting approach to the theme, but imo it fails as a game, it would need some more gameplay to be more captivating - I quickly become bored (also few times it was next to impossible to get to the shape since some 8-polys spammed it's location and I couldn't get there.
Final verdict - one of the better games showing promise, with great mood.

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