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

Ludum Dare 26 — April 26-29th, 2013
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by komiga - Jam Entry

Prisma is a color-component-based puzzler.

R1 was built during the Compo. Since I missed the Compo submission deadline, I decided to continue into the Jam.


There are secrets! Find them! You HAVE NOT SEEN ALL OF PRISMA until you reach the level selector! If you found the boss level (5th screenshot), you're going the right direction. Good luck!


# Controls #

- move : up, down, left, right
- action : space
- MOVE FASTER: spam arrow keys!

# Download notes #

Linux users: get LOVE 0.8.0 and do `love prisma_r3.love`. If you don't have easy access to LOVE, the Windows package should also work perfectly in Wine.

# Contact #

In this order, preferably:

- plash on irc.afternet.org (**PM me if you want hints -- I want you to finish it!**)
- @komiga
- me@komiga.com
- http://komiga.com

# Changelog #

## R3 ##

- Fixed character escape sequence for Lua 5.2.x users (Arch Linux! retest, please!).

# Other things #

Correction to my first comment (blame exhausted plash!): I spent 35.1 hours total working on the game, 27.416 of which were during the Compo, and 7.684 of which were during the Jam.

- Timelapse: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JExIaOhQhqI

Downloads and Links




plash says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:12am

Missed the Compo deadline, apparently. This was made solo in ~34 hours.

manabreak says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 6:55am

Neat idea for the game. :)

plash says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 1:24pm

Thanks! I'd make it a lot different if I had more time. A few of those levels are just terrible.

caranha says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 2:31pm

Cool puzzle - I got frustrated and left at that level with a red/greed long corridor with a switch in the end - couldn't make it through in any way :-(

plash says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 12:20am

@caranha: Hehehe. It gets much worse. R2 changes the order of the levels so that Kiddquikk comes later, but the difficulty is still the same. Pressing an arrow key repeatedly will move your tile faster than holding down will.

fullmontis says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 4:58pm

Nice concept, dig it :)

phi says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 4:59pm

Nice concept, levels could be better... Good job!

Nancybeast says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 5:01pm

I really liked the gameplay, theme and graphics but the Sound FX were very annoying by the end. Nevertheless, a good fun game!

plash says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 7:23pm

@phi: Thanks! Any gripe with any level in particular?

@Nancybeast: Thanks! I had a hard time with the sounds. I changed them a lot but I suspect having crappy earbuds (iPhone gen 1 on a PC) may have skewed the result farther in the "oh god make it stop" direction than I had hoped.

I am wondering.. for any new voters, let me know how far you get. There are a few secrets. Three levels cannot be accessed without finding them.

Cryovat says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 9:47pm

The timers are unforgiving! D:

That said, the color switching mechanic works well and it has good potential for expansion. I also like the narrative. :)

plash says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 10:13pm

@Cryovat: Cheers! Glad people are liking the idea.

lulzfish_4 says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 10:31pm

Kinda interesting, but I think I missed the later levels because it looked like the game had restarted.

KiddQuikk is frustrating, the instructions should say what you said about tapping a key instead of holding it.

plash says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 11:07pm

@lulzfish_4: Good point. I'll mention that.

Tomassino says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 11:43pm

Good application of the theme, couple of nice mechanics exploited well. UI and game are pretty juicy. I too struggled with Kiddquikk, I managed to get halfway back one time, but the feat could not be repeated. For future expansion, maybe add a difficulty setting or a tapping speed calibration to avoid that.

PsenFilip says ...
Apr 30, 2013 @ 11:48pm

So yeah... 1 hour in to beat this game.
I really, really didn't excepted this to be that much engaging.
This is simply the best puzzle I've played around here.

It is hard but incredibly rewarding.
If you happen to think the game is either slow or keeps restarting, just hang on it. Stick to it you will eventually find out.

The sound fits the concept and the overall design is very well thought. Good Job and keep on it.

plash says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 12:13am

@Tomassino: Noted! Thanks for playing & commenting!

@PsenFilip: Cheers!

BenW says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 1:00am

I tried as hard as I could but I just couldn't get past the boss room because the timing was way too difficult. I'd love to see a tweaked version of this since I really wanted to see the ending. I thought a lot of the puzzles were very clever.

plash says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 1:10am

@BenW: Thanks for streaming! I loved seeing someone play it live. I'll definitely ping you when I get an easier version up.

oldtopman says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 2:12am

Very good game, very polished. Some of the most entertaining source code I've seen in a while - I'd love to play around with it, because it seems very well written for a 48 hour game. What license is it filed under?

plash says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 3:15am

@oldtopman: Thanks again for streaming! License is now CC-BY-NC-ND 3.0 Unported -- in short: you're not allowed to make public derivative works nor use it for commercial purposes.

stqn says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 4:31am

Doesn't work under Arch Linux with love 0.8.0:
$ love prisma_r2.love
Error: Syntax error: src/AssetLoader.lua:322: invalid escape sequence near '"(%w+)('

stack traceback:
[C]: at 0x0047e930
[C]: in function 'require'
src/Core.lua:10: in main chunk
[C]: in function 'require'
main.lua:12: in main chunk
[C]: in function 'require'
[string "boot.lua"]:331: in function <[string "boot.lua"]:227>
[C]: in function 'xpcall'

plash says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 12:30pm

@stqn: I think I have a fix for this. If you happen to see this, ping me on IRC. I would like you to check if it works.

stqn says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 7:20pm

Great game! I had fun. The black level was a bit long and the sequences were you have to go fast a bit too hard (but I made it eventually so I guess it’s ok). Also a less "beepy" movement sound would be great :).

Holofire says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 10:17pm

Interesting puzzle game. I didnt end up finishing because i felt like I was going around in a circle. Anyway, great job!

SuperDisk says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 12:37am

I think I "beat" it when it looped me back to the beginning, but people are talking about boss rooms and stuff in the comments so maybe I'm missing out on something. I'll give it another go later.

plash says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 12:57am

Thanks for playing, everyone!

@stqn: I have plans for it. It most definitely involves less beepery.

@Holofire: Indeed, you will if you miss the subtle hint. It might be a bit awkward thinking, but consider the alpha channel (that is, think in RGBA instead of just RGB).

@SuperDisk: I may make an easier version after the judging period is over, and move around some of the levels so that the boss level is part of the normal sequence, but there will definitely still be secrets. If there were more levels I would've made the secret bits more of a side-path instead of.. "important". You are only missing the boss level and The Black Labyrinth. The first is very difficult, and the latter has some messages, but is very, /very/ dark and disorienting.

I intended the faux start to set off alarms, but it seems the change was too subtle for the majority of players.

nintendoeats says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 2:57am

Was that the end?

I really like this, though kiddQuikk felt kind of unfair. Surprisingly my colourblindness wasn't a significant factor!

Jellycakes says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 3:12am

Really nice game, took a while to solve and complete EVEN with hints. But the game was still pretty solid and it still kept me interested until the end!

plash says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 3:22am

@nintendoeats: Wow! I was wondering how it would be to blind players. I know the difficulty is kind of ridiculous right now, but I intend to upload a playthrough and possibly make an easier version once the judging period is over.

@Jellycakes: Thanks! Love watching people try to figure it out. Does that make me evil?

Haette says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 3:39am

Very nice! Kind of a distilled Antichamber or something. The intro message to the last level is absolutely devious, I know it's only a little thing but that's probably my favorite touch in the game.

plash says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 3:53am

@Haette: Thank you, thank you! I guess I haven't yet mentioned it here yet, but: Antichamber was definitely an influence. I began with just the idea of color, though, and the rest of the sneaky stuff was just to make it engaging.

Originally I was going to start with a trigger that activated a circuit and possibly combined with other circuits. Then I implemented the switch and timed color sequence triggers, and eventually scrapped the circuit idea -- at least for the competition. It was just going to take too long to get it looking "right".

This game is very strange to me because I don't know if I'd ever have made it without Ludum Dare. Now I can't stop thinking about how to improve on it.

Thijsku says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 4:35pm

Great game! Interesting concept. Some times the difficulty was a big too high. (the boss room was really hard!) But we liked it overall! Good job :)

plash says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 6:24pm

@Thijsku: Thanks for streaming! Definitely not for everyone with this level of difficulty, I will certainly agree.

Joror says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 8:26pm

My timing too poor to fully appreciate all the aspects (grrr you evictive discriminating colors, why won't you accept my for my color?!), but a fine puzzler & twitch game. :)

hirsch says ...
May 2, 2013 @ 8:39pm

I don't really understand why i got teleported to the beginning of the game in the "Theres only one exit" level. Anyways the game itself is minimalistic and fun to play, even if the move sound gets annoying after a time.
Intersting levels - Good work :)

May 2, 2013 @ 9:00pm

Love the name. Interesting concept.

plash says ...
May 3, 2013 @ 6:39am

Thanks, y'all!

@hirsch: All part of the puzzle, my dear Ludum Darian.

@Dark Acre Jack: Heh. I came up with it in about 2 hours. Right before the Compo ended, too.

GranaDa says ...
May 3, 2013 @ 4:04pm

Nice gameplay and puzzles. Good job!

Felix20 says ...
May 3, 2013 @ 10:02pm

Really fun game, maybe a bit too hard but that's never entirely a bad thing. It also fit the theme very well.

plash says ...
May 4, 2013 @ 2:04am

Glad to see that some of you who find it too difficult still find it to be fun!

To everyone I haven't back-rated yet: I'm having some system-crashing hardware issues. I'm getting a temporary GPU soon that will hopefully work well enough to do more playtesting.

May 4, 2013 @ 10:52pm

Very interesting concept. I like the progression of the mechanic!

pvwradtke says ...
May 5, 2013 @ 3:01am

Great entry, loved this cool puzzle game. The only problem I had was to get it to run faster, seems like "spamming" the keyboard depends on the keyboard itself. If you don't mind I suggestion, you could use the SHIFT or CTRL keys to run faster. Other than that, I enjoyed playing your game :).

Cybearg says ...
May 5, 2013 @ 3:38am

Very cool concept! I like the idea behind the mechanics, though it was a shame that we didn't really get to see it explored much in the game itself. It introduced different mechanics, but didn't get much of a chance to play with them, so it ends about as soon as it begins, unfortunately.

Still, great idea!

May 5, 2013 @ 4:21am

Thanks for coming back to my entry, & thank you for the detailed feedback.

Red & blue make purple. This is based on color theory, not digital mixing. For further reference: http://bit.ly/DAColorTheory

Also re: opening to rate on click - I apologize if replacing the game with the rate page seemed rude to you, but so far it's been very effective because I prefer to refer people to my game's page first, and ratings page second via bit.ly link. It helps with analytics.


Fnkee says ...
May 5, 2013 @ 10:31pm

Cool concept for a game! I would love to see more levels of this (the game loops, right? Or did I do something wrong?)

baldwinthree says ...
May 5, 2013 @ 10:42pm

I really would have loved to spend more time with this, but I don't think I was quick enough to get the harder puzzles. Went through it over a couple of times trying to get to one of the alternate paths but never succeeded. I'll definitely look back for an easier version!

loxo says ...
May 6, 2013 @ 9:04pm

This game is great, but unfortunately I'm too slow or the keyboard is :) I'm stuck at level 6, but I can't stop to try. I like the simple game mechanics and the sound effects.

May 11, 2013 @ 3:56am

There goes my whole evening <3

Roupette says ...
May 19, 2013 @ 10:20am

A square life is a good minimalistic life.

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