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

Ludum Dare 26 — April 26-29th, 2013
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Compactor

by VDOgamez - 48 Hour Compo Entry

The walls are closing in. Freeze your foes to hold the sides off, or burn them up for power.

Use the WASD keys to move, click to shoot your gun, shift to change your gun, space to buy an item, and control to change items.

The freeze gun (blue) freezes enemies in place. While they remain, the walls will get stuck on their bodies. However, they quickly start to melt.
The laser gun (orange) does high damage to enemies, but doesn't freeze them. Instead, it converts them into power, which can be used to buy items.

The ice cube (five power) comes pre-frozen for your convenience, and can be placed anywhere to jam the walls.
The shield recharge (ten power) recharges half of your shields, good for an extra two hits.
The jacks (fifteen power) come in two orientations, and will expand to meet the walls on both sides. Made of sturdy metal instead of ice, they will last an entire two times as long as an ice cube before melting.
The hourglass (twenty five power) has the mystic power to delay the inevitable. Time flows backwards, and the walls slowly reverse. Don't think they'll stay there, though.

The theme of minimalism here is being used in a physical sense. Or something. Really as soon as I heard the theme I started thinking about garbage compactors and never went back.

This weekend has been filled with lots of distractions, and it turns out I am not especially good at working continuously. In all, I spent about twelve hours on this game, and was getting bored of this by the end. I did manage to do a lot better by choosing a simple idea instead of something involving some complex mechanic, like 3D calculations or orbital mechanics or an AI opponent, so I was able to put a lot more polish than I have before on this game. Even so, I didn't really have time to play it enough to balance it perfectly, so you may find that certain strategies make the game trivial, or that some items are incredibly overpriced for their usefulness, despite my efforts. Still, I'm pretty happy with what I've come out with from this competition, especially after missing a couple of previous ones.

Downloads and Links


Ratings

Coolness65%
#156Innovation3.68
#619Overall3.11
#632Theme3.46
#643Fun2.89
#906Graphics2.59
#916Humor1.75
#1077Mood2.30
#1090Audio1.12

Comments

mrexcessive says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:19am

Sound was either really quiet or not there (Chrome browser on Windows). Felt a bit slow to start with, still managed to be stressful!

Perry says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:20am

I like the transition with the compacting walls. Shame to hear about your distractions, I too have to work on this. Good entry :D.

Andy West says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:30am

Interesting concept, and definitely minimal, but the gray-on-gray is very difficult to read. Also, I found the controls cumbersome and non-intuitive.

Super Hamster says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 4:53am

The game was interesting. I didn't even notice the compactingness for a while. What would be nice, is to be able to replay, after you lose.

VDOgamez says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 5:13am

I would have liked to have added sound for this, but I haven't gotten around to learning how to make sound effects for this. It really feels like it needs some kind of metal grinding noises or something. The text coloring was a thematic decision that was perhaps poorly thought out. And I feel kind of silly for forgetting a replay option, it would have been easy to put in.

sparksgently says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 6:02am

The compactor is a neat idea, it really would have had a lot more emotional content with sound effects... I tried to stick with it until I got a power-up but I decided that the frustration (mostly with the difficulty of shooting things) wasn't worth it.

nseward says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 6:26am

I loved this. I will have to come back and perfect my strategy. I felt a little out of control at first. The only thing I would suggest would be a tutorial section. (I fixed my link if you want to check it out again.)

Apr 29, 2013 @ 6:42am

Great concept. The compactor closes in a little too fast, maybe? I had trouble freezing enemies fast enough to really make a difference while also trying to gather up some points. Fun game though!

Brian Corr says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 8:04am

Not bad. I didn't like the aiming controls. The enemies are small and your bullets are slow.

However, the compacting concept is a great one. If there was a way to somehow expand the walls, and not just stall their progress, I think that would improve things a lot. That said, great effort, very polished.

JonRB says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 8:06am

Really original, shame there's no sound. Overall a pretty good game! I really like the scaling graphics!

Casino Jack says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 5:22pm

I really like the concept of freezing enemies to stop the walls closing in on you (though I actually did much better by killing them and placing blocks)

free_napalm says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 9:20pm

I think everything has been said, but I really liked the opening transitions.

Meep says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 9:29pm

Very fun and original game. I had trouble hitting the enemies at first (They're small, bullets traveling relatively slow), but it gets better over time. The overall look is aesthetically pleasing, great work! :)

Canobie says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 9:38pm

Very cool! Liked it a lot!

Cirrial says ...
Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:27pm

A solid game. The aesthetic simplicity works wonders for the theme, although it took me a while to realise there were other options for things to buy with power. It seems really difficult to shoot things. Not sure why. Maybe an issue with the shot speed or the size of the enemies. Still, I really like the idea.

Milo says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 2:21am

This is pretty neat. I like that you have to use your enemies to help you - and you get to choose, specifically, how to do that. I felt like more variation, like having more than one enemy type, might have made the game feel engaging longer, although as it, it withstood a few plays.

markusfisch says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 12:58pm

Interesting idea. Well done!

Idovoodoo says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 1:10pm

Really like the concept here. Well done :)

DBRalir says ...
May 1, 2013 @ 9:48pm

Very interesting concept, I would love to see this made into a full game. It mainly just needs to be rebalanced, I think.

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