August 23rd-26th 2013 :: Theme: 10 Seconds

Ludum Dare 27 — August 23rd-26th, 2013
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Captain Pico and Ensign DeGaro in Ten Second Time Bomb

by dalbinblue - 48 Hour Compo Entry

Update3: Folks on IRC, and especially LordHellMaX helped me debug the issue. It was in code parsing double values. It wasn't parse with an invariant culture so on systems that use a comma instead of a period it would crash. Thanks everyone for your help.

Update2: I've added code to show the full exception when there i an issue. If possible, if you hit the issue, can you please post a link to a screenshot so that I can fix the issue?

Update: I've uploaded a possible fix for the issues people have mentioned that are crashing the game. The links are updated to the new version. Unfortunately, I could not replicate the issue, and I tested on a wide range of system. The best I can guess is that it is a .NET culture settings issue so I removed the line where a FormatException would occur. If you get a crash when running the game, please let me know where, what the error states, what operating system you are running, and what culture you are in. Any help will be appreciated!

Anyway, on to the actual game:

Captain Pico and Ensign DeGaro are trapped by a strange anomaly with an incredible gravitational pull. The only way to free themselves is to self destruct to jettison escape pods with enough force to escape their doom, but was is this strange radiation emanating from the anomaly, and can it be the key to their survival?

Controls (Keyboard):
- Left and right arrow - Move DeGaro
- Spacebar - Jump
- Left Alt - Interacts with switches and crates
-Left Control - Use time ability

Controls (Gamepad):
- Directional pad - Move DeGaro
- A - Jump
- X - Interacts with switches and crates
- Y - Use time ability

Written in C# using XNA 4.0. If you haven't run an XNA application before, you will need to install the XNA redistributable, available from Microsoft at Note that you will not need to install the game itself on your machine, just unzip the archive and run the game executable.

Note that I did run out of time, so there are a few minor graphical bugs, but nothing that will prevent you from finishing the game.

Constructive criticism is always encouraged.

Downloads and Links




lcass says ...
Aug 26, 2013 @ 3:15am

I like the graphics in the picture but it doesnt load for me.
its a good idea.

Suese says ...
Aug 26, 2013 @ 3:31am

Very solid graphics, polish, and idea-wise. It's a bit buggy. though. I found myself falling off the map quite a bit.

dalbinblue says ...
Aug 26, 2013 @ 3:32am

Suese, can you tell me specific areas where you fell off? I thought I fixed all the collision bugs.

dalbinblue says ...
Aug 26, 2013 @ 3:32am

Lcass, did you get a specific error?

Senevri says ...
Aug 26, 2013 @ 3:38am

crashed due to formatexception. Nice graphics, what I could see.

psypol says ...
Aug 26, 2013 @ 12:44pm

i installed XNA distribuable. Game starts properly and i can pass dialogs but then it crashed right before gameplay (i guess) when the screen fades and characters says : "what's that falling out of reality"

i really wanted to play :-(
any advice or fix possible ?

olafurw says ...
Aug 27, 2013 @ 12:58am

Game crashes after into sequence. Nice graphics though.

dalbinblue says ...
Aug 27, 2013 @ 1:02am

@olafurw Do you have a specific error message or a stack trace? I have tested it on many computers and cannot reproduce the issue, though it sounds like a ton of people are having a problem.

EggPlant <3 says ...
Aug 27, 2013 @ 1:53am

Cute game, with some nice graphics. I was intrigued by the gameplay but there were some collision and AI bugs which ultimately made it a bit irritating to play. :(

Epiphane says ...
Aug 27, 2013 @ 5:49am

Excellent game, clever puzzles and fantastic story. I liked the personalities of the characters. Tight controls (as tight as 48 hours permits), although I couldn't manage to launch the escape pod... maybe I just couldn't figure out the puzzle, but it seemed like it was a glitch.

psypol says ...
Aug 27, 2013 @ 9:39am

Your update fixed the crash on my side ! thanks !

Meep says ...
Aug 27, 2013 @ 7:46pm

Nice idea and graphics, but like others've said, it was a little buggy. Has lots of potential though; nice work!

LordHellMaX says ...
Aug 28, 2013 @ 1:13am

Nice game! Quite inventive! I love the atmosphere that gets out of the game. It gets quite hard at some point, you really have to manage time, the boxes, your little buddy... Nice experience overall. One thing that could be better would be that the boxes could have physics when you drop them, because right now they stay in the position you leave them, most of the time in the middle of the air. But I enjoyed it anyway, good job!

dalbinblue says ...
Aug 28, 2013 @ 2:22am

@LordHellMax, the boxes should only be staying in the air when time is stopped, if not, I've got another bug.

zlowrance says ...
Aug 28, 2013 @ 3:37am

Great aesthetics, really enjoyed it. Good job :)

Solifuge says ...
Aug 29, 2013 @ 4:19am

Nice, short, silly platformer. I liked the time-manipulation puzzles. I'd like to see something like this in a complete game. Thanks for putting it together!

hbocao says ...
Aug 31, 2013 @ 2:27am

Awesome entry, man. Loved the art style and sound. Great job on that regard. The puzzles were spot on too!

Ciaran54 says ...
Sep 1, 2013 @ 2:55pm

Very good game, loved the story, the writing, the graphics, audio and humour! There was a weird bug that meant after you wend off the left side of the screen you became invisible, but it wasn't game breaking :P

Purplescape says ...
Sep 2, 2013 @ 10:53pm

The characters you created are lovable. Every level was interesting. The graphics and audio are wonderful too, great game!

TobiasW says ...
Sep 2, 2013 @ 11:05pm

That was pretty cool. I was especially happy about the stack-boxes-to-form-a-ladder mechanic - I was waiting for that since I saw the first box hovering in mid-air. The puzzles weren't very hard, but still interesting. I liked the graphics a lot, and the sound effects work quite well.

It's a pity you didn't put any music in! If you don't have enough time to whip up something yourself, you could try a generator like Normally I don't like generators too much, but I used this one in my game too and I'm pretty content with how that turned out.

The intro sequence and the humorous bits of plot add a lot to the experience. Good job all around!

PS: Where's the good end where I make it to the party? :'(

Endurion says ...
Sep 13, 2013 @ 1:00pm

Very nice idea!

Unfortunately a bit buggy (you can walk off the first screen to the left and fall down).

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