April 26th-29th 2013 :: Theme: Minimalism

Ludum Dare 26 — April 26-29th, 2013
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The Ethereal Stage

by Brassawiking - 48 Hour Compo Entry

My best entry to date, behold its glory!


- Complete game (stick around until you see the actual end credits)
- A long and rich point'n'click adventure (No deaths, so no worries about that)
- Deep story
- Completely free of any gender and racial bias (Something I was very strict with)
- Wonderful graphics made for Full HD (Be sure to run in fullscreen)
- Music that almost loops alright
- Easter egg! See if you can spot it...
- Pure HTML, js and CSS3
- Long playthrough (15-60 minutes to reach end credits)
- Somewhat interesting characters if I may say so myself...


Fourth time doing Ludum Dare. This time I'm all out with my best skills: Mood, story and graphics!

I have had this idea before, so it was not entirely brand new. The reason I took it for this theme, was that the idea for the game, was that it was going to be built like a theater play. Just an simply stage with some actors and a few props. The rest of world comes to life when they start interacting with eachother.

###### Additional notes #####
May require a refresh, if scrollbars starts getting weird or something else doesnt look right or the music doesn't play.
Also, the browser needs to have a 16/9 ratio or the images will get cut. So if that happens, just adjust the browser window until it looks good again.

Downloads and Links




hnjslater says ...
Apr 28, 2013 @ 1:19pm

Playing on chrome, I could not work out what to do once the greeter had gone. I called the merchant but nothing happened?!

Brassawiking says ...
Apr 28, 2013 @ 1:43pm

Ah that is because I am not done yet =) Should put that in the description.

beshr says ...
Apr 28, 2013 @ 4:09pm

Nice artwork!

Szedouu says ...
Apr 28, 2013 @ 7:38pm

artwork looks very good

Cybearg says ...
Apr 28, 2013 @ 9:24pm

Very nice artwork and the idea of putting runes together like that is an interesting one.

cjacobwade says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:26am

Best game I've played so far.

stevejohnson says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:32am

This is great for a 48 hour game. Not the usual platformer fare by any means. A couple nits: the music felt repetitive after a few minutes, and it felt like things happened too slowly to keep my interest. If it were a bit faster, with small interface sound effects and different music, it could be 50% better. Maybe also put the hymns in some kind of visible display. The clicking back and forth was slightly (though not very) annoying.

Great work!

Griffablanc says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 3:56pm

It's a very nice project. I found the likeness of a theater was an interesting way to work.

JFlegle says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 5:03pm

This art work is great, I love how its a graphic adventure but you some the players.

zerebruin says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 7:05pm

Wonderfull atmosphere. The graphic style fits perfectly to this game. Long and slow, but in a good way.

belickim says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 8:06pm

The theme and the universe you came up with are quite impressive. I don't have much experience with visual novels, so it's hard for me to judge how original this idea is, but I find it really clever and neat to place the protagonist in front of the screen, it resembles games with third person perspective. I think it really adds a bit of depth.

However, the looping sound drives me crazy, please, consider adding a way to turn it off.

Brassawiking says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 8:54pm

Thank you all for the comments and feedback. As requested there is now a toggle button for the music in the upper right corner, something that I know should have been there from the beginning =P I blame exhaustion for that one hehe.

naughtyloose says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 9:48pm

that was awesome! a bit repetitive tough.

siondream says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:14pm

The art and mood are great but it doesn't really fit the theme very well.

AlbertoSM says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:25pm

Wow...lengthy. The title gave me a good impression! I like the art direction, even though it doesn't match with the theme of the compo. The music gets repetitive after a while and the pacing is sllooooowww. Anyway, nicely done!

Brassawiking says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 7:55am

For those of you that don't think this fits the theme well, would you mind explaining why you feel that? And what would have made it fit the theme better according to you?

My take on it is that this is a like a theater play, with just an empty stage, props and a few actors. It intends to play more on your imagination than what you actually see and read. So what you see and hear is minimal, but the world you experience is enourmous.

enzo says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 4:42pm

Intense! I feel like the characters and the world have a sort of depth, even with such a comparatively short story! I have so many questions. Why was the Lost one lost? What are the Merchant's motives? What happened to the Bridge? Why is the Greeter so angry all the time, gosh

Brassawiking says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 5:21pm

I leave it up to you to figure out the answers yourself. Feel free to speculate any theories you have here =)

Btw, speaking about The Bridge, did you stick around long enough to see the end credit? There is a small hint on what happens with the bridge just before that.

GetFun says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 12:10pm

very cool art work =)

multikorv says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 10:33pm

Very nice! You're really starting get the hang of the art work. The narrative is also really good! Nice work! :) The music really put a hole through my head after a while though. Nice that you added the toggle. :)

MinionStudios says ...
May 6, 2013 @ 10:29pm

Very compelling story and characters! This storytelling would make for an EXCELLENT RPG. You have succeeded in drawing me into the world through a few props in a browser window. Awesome

mildmojo says ...
May 12, 2013 @ 12:57am

Wonderful piece of kinetic fiction. There were a few spots where the next step wasn't evident, but thankfully there wasn't any penalty for doing the wrong thing. The journal filled out nicely with bits of story, and the lost soul was enigmatic enough to keep me wondering. Quite a lot of content for a compo entry!

I peeked at the source and it's pretty brute-force. Way to optimize for programmer throughput! =)

Xanjos says ...
May 12, 2013 @ 7:24pm

Loved the artwork and music and the story was amazingly deep.

May 12, 2013 @ 7:46pm

Nice artwork and a pretty good music but gets pretty annoying after a while. Pretty well written too.

nathanj439 says ...
May 12, 2013 @ 7:49pm

Nice art, music and story. Kept me entertained until the end.

sP0CkEr2 says ...
May 13, 2013 @ 3:36am

nice art -- great story -- good use of theme -- high marks

Hayawi says ...
May 13, 2013 @ 6:04am

Really nice game that has a wonderful mood, and artwork, but if only it was a different theme, this game just does not seem to fit into minimalism all that well.

Mago says ...
May 13, 2013 @ 8:17pm

Very interesting atmosphere and great art.

imagnity says ...
May 13, 2013 @ 8:21pm

I would really like if the background music was a little longer before it starts repeating. :)

alwaysinbeta says ...
May 13, 2013 @ 9:26pm

I like the art and writing. Got stuck after a while though!

avidgamerNino says ...
May 13, 2013 @ 10:20pm

Very cool, At some parts I swear I just waiting for the merchant to do something. The art looks 3D from the screenshots, but when you get close up you begin to see the brushwork.

Taro Omiya says ...
May 14, 2013 @ 4:46am

Quite an interesting adventure game that utilizes the Ocarina of Ti- I meant, hymns. Story was a little confusing, however. Was it supposed to be a love story, like the Shadow of Colossus?

someone says ...
May 14, 2013 @ 6:12pm

That was nice. Good story.

Krahe says ...
May 14, 2013 @ 11:35pm

Pretty amazing

kibertoad says ...
May 19, 2013 @ 5:49pm

has a strong Neil Gaiman vibe to it. nice work.

stqn says ...
May 19, 2013 @ 8:24pm

I don't get it, better instructions would be nice (I don't feel like working one hour to try to understand the game). Nice music (for the first 30 s) and gfx though.

Brassawiking says ...
May 19, 2013 @ 8:30pm

If you got stuck after the first dialog, then you simply need to click the darkness in the middle. A blue border shows when you hover over things that are clickable.

stqn says ...
May 19, 2013 @ 8:43pm

@Brassawiking: I got to that point but then... had to remember 3 runes, which was too much for me. And I didn't know what I was supposed to do. I think I'm too tired to play this... Thanks for trying my game!

Brassawiking says ...
May 19, 2013 @ 9:41pm

Thanks for trying anyway =)

AndyBumpkin says ...
May 20, 2013 @ 11:14am

it could have done with a slightly longer music loop, and perhaps some sounds on the "hymns" would have been nice.
Otherwise yeah not bad :)

dalbinblue says ...
May 20, 2013 @ 1:47pm

This was nice and refreshing entry; very different from pretty much everything else I have played. I waited a while to review this from when I played, as I too didn't think it melded well with the theme and saw your comment asking for details on why reviewers felt that way. After thinking about it for a while I didn't have a good reason; I think its actually because it's the elements around the story that are minimalistic, but actually story takes center stage (pun intended) that many of those elements didn't really cross my mind. Yes the game is played out on a stage, the music is minimalistic, the graphics are too (everything is just a static overlay), and the controls are too as everything is just casting one of 6 hymns. It's the story that makes you not pay attention to those things, and overall I think that is a far better accomplishment than making your game obviously match the theme.

Brassawiking says ...
May 20, 2013 @ 6:12pm

Thank you very much for that review, that meant a lot to me! It looks like I have accomplished what I wanted on how this is perceived. Really glad that all the details came through after you had thought about it for a while =)

stqn says ...
May 20, 2013 @ 10:39pm

Just so you know ;) I tried again and got to the point where the merchant tells you to wait for the next day. Then I didn't find how to make the story progress.

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