April 20th-23rd 2012 :: 10 Year Anniversary! :: Theme: Tiny World

Back to Browse Entries

Tiny Eco

by Truce - 48 Hour Compo Entry

Tiny Eco is my take on Conway's Game of Life, crossed with an old shareware game I played as a kid called "Eco Master". I started about halfway through the competition, so it's rough around the edges, but it's a fun little game/toy with an elaborate simulation driving it.

Construct a small ecosystem out of terrain tiles and place animals into the world. When you click "Lock In", the game of survival begins.

Balance is key: too many hares on a tile and they will reduce the rate at which edible plants grow. Too many foxes on a tile and they'll hunt the hares to extinction. No hares for the foxes and they'll starve.

When the simulation is complete, you will receive points for each surviving animal: 5 points for a fox and 1 for a hare. The highest score on each puzzle is recorded. There are 12 puzzles for you to try.

Hope you enjoy playing! =)

- Truce

TL;DR - Drag land tiles and animal tokens to complete the map, click Lock In. Watch it go, then reset and try for more points.

Downloads and Links




Apr 23, 2012 @ 2:29pm

I really don't get it. I didn't have any tiles to move around so all I could do was place two animal icons on the tiles and press lock in, then look at the score. That wasn't very fun!

Skully says ...
Apr 23, 2012 @ 2:37pm

I like similations and this is pretty cool, good job :)

Kimau says ...
Apr 23, 2012 @ 2:42pm

Feels like you were building a game for Artificial Life and not Tiny World.

Though other than that an interesting implentation of a common thought problem and simulation. Though you didn't provide enough feedback to the play so what could be an interesting puzzle can starts feeling like a blind pin the tail on the donkey.

Really awesome idea just needs more feedback to the player and it could be really fun.

wibblymat says ...
Apr 24, 2012 @ 12:52am

No tiles selectable, couldn't play.

True Valhalla says ...
Apr 24, 2012 @ 12:59am

I couldn't drag many tiles onto "blank" slots and overall the interface was not user friendly. I like the simulation aspect though, and the visuals were nice.

Truce says ...
Apr 24, 2012 @ 1:02am

@ Eric and wibbly:

The first puzzle starts with all tiles placed, just the animal tokens to put down. Seems like that's confusing people. Oops. =(

You can click on any of the red puzzle numbers to switch to a different setup.

@ Skully:

Thanks for the encouragement!

@ Kimau:

Yeah, I ran out of time before converting most of the text-based events produced by the simulation into visual cues in the game. Sounds like I would have done better to just show all that info on the screen. Live and learn, I guess. =) I'll do better next time.

Apr 24, 2012 @ 1:13am

It would have been helpful to have a better underlying concept of the rules at play. For example, in Conway, even though you can't always imagine the large-scale evolution of a pattern, you can always look locally at one particular space and figure out what's going to happen to it in the next iteration. Right now, I'm just kind of randomly pulling tiles and going on my "knacks" based on your description of the rules above. If the rules were a little more exact, I think that would bring out the "puzzle" aspect of the game more.

Pixelulsar says ...
Apr 24, 2012 @ 1:14am

Admittedly I have no idea what was going on... But it seems like there were quite a few puzzles just for the competition.

mattchu says ...
Apr 24, 2012 @ 1:52am

An interesting eco sim. I was stuck at 18 points, it seemed, with the two or three setups I tried. Would have been cool to see more to it.

vigrid says ...
Apr 24, 2012 @ 8:37pm

I wasn't really sure if I "won", or not - this game would need some goals or "par" to be achieved for each level. I like the idea overall. Good take on the theme!

Several says ...
Apr 25, 2012 @ 3:42am

I quite like the concept--cellular automation seems to be woefully under-explored as a starting point for gameplay. The assortment of "puzzles" in your entry is a nice touch.

The other comments here do an excellent job of highlighting the shortcomings (in-game instructions, amount & clarity of visual feedback, goals). It's a shame you didn't have time to implement more visualization of the variables in play; done abstractly, I could imagine the simulation being quite hypnotizing.

domrein says ...
May 3, 2012 @ 3:45pm

Fun! I still don't really get how everything is balanced, but as a simulation fan, I really enjoyed just trying out different placements and seeing what happened.

Madball says ...
May 6, 2012 @ 10:46am

Well, it's a nice idea, but I didn't see any algorithmical approach, I just randomly placed tiles/tokens, hoping that foxes won't eat rabbits before they breed enough.

Raptor85 says ...
May 11, 2012 @ 9:21pm

interesting, agreed it feels more like "artificial life" than tiny world though. Confusing interface and puzzle 12 bugs out and simulates forever. Doesn't seem to be much of a game though, no score to beat, no win/lose conditions.

You must sign in to comment.

[cache: storing page]