Ludum Dare 29 — April 25th-28th Weekend — Theme: Beneath the Surface

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by Brian Stegmann - 48 Hour Compo Entry

** Please run in Chrome, Safari, or IE. A very recent Firefox update seemed to break the audio.**

Beneath the surface lie melodic totems, waiting to be unearthed. Stand before them, listen to their muffled melodies and reproduce them to unlock their secrets.

Arrow keys = movement
1, 2, 3, 4 keys (not number pad) = play note (4 notes per sequence)

Source code can easily be retrieved from browser, it's found in game.js and pulsar.js.

Downloads and Links




Boodog says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:47am

Nice! The audio was pretty good!

terraco says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:47am

Couldn't hear anything - Windows 8.1

microapple says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:48am

Interesting concept. Took me a while to figure out what was going on, a tutorial would have been useful.

Sim00n says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:50am

I don't know what .. I'm ? Confused? What do I do? I got a perfect sound track for this:

Joseph Miller says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:53am

Really cool idea, but I couldn't replicate any of the melodies. I don't have great hearing though. Wish there was some kind of visual help, but the art style is great. I really enjoy minimalism.

Lacaranian says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:53am

<3! Yessiree, that's a good one. No spoilers here though.

malmazuke says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:55am

Very original idea. Great atmosphere

Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:55am

Really interesting. I was only able to get a couple of the totems. It was hard for me to match the patterns the totem played to the notes I could play sometimes.

Nanolotl says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:56am

Really great atmosphere and neat idea.
I had a lot of trouble figuring out the sequences, but got them all eventually.
Good job.

zanenga says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 3:56am

I love the concept and audio! Very nice! It could use a bit more of visual feedback and/or a tutorial, though.

Brian Corr says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 4:15am

Hi! I really liked this. The atmosphere is oddly intriguing for something so small. If it wasn't a game jam I'd be expecting/hoping for some grand unifying mystery to it all and I'd be way on board.

I think the graphics and sound and mood are all really great. It would be nice maybe to have something other than total silence when you're not near a totem. I get that it's supposed to be about listening, but some chirping birds or wind noise would suit I think. I didn't understand for a while that the 5-dot structure was not a totem, so that was confusing.

I think if you were going to change anything, I'd have some kind of cooldown so that i didn't have to tap tap tap and wait for the buzz to know that i was 'starting' my melody.

Anyhow these are minor gripes. This is a cool concept and the execution is really polished, great job :) :) :)

nesis says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 4:41am

A really nice idea for this game. It'd be great if the graphics were equally awesome - I get a feeling that this idea worked a little further could be as cool as Journey.

Jonochrome says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 5:21am

I love the idea behind this, but all the notes you have to interpret are vague chords with confusing pacing. Wish it was more apparent which muffled note starts each four-note melody. I was able to successfully copy one of the melodies and just couldn't figure out the rest.

terraco says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 5:45am


Apr 28, 2014 @ 5:51am

@Jonochrome If you walk away from a totem until there is no sound and walk back, the first note you hear is the always the beginning of the melody.

BumbleBirds says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:46am

Couldn't hear anything, doesn't seem to be working very well on my end. :(

Gins says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:48am

It didn't work in Firefox, but in Chrome it did.
I like the concept, although it was very hard to hear some of the pieces. Then again, I've never played music by hearing so that may be why it's was hard.

orangepascal says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 8:47am

interesting and original idea

Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:35am

Really great, the ambiance is fantastic! Sometimes it's hard to know where a pattern begins and where it ends but I managed all 4 totems and it felt great! XD

Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:58pm

@BumbleBirds and @Gins, sorry, the audio's not working in Firefox on Windows. I'll convert the audio to a couple more formats tonight and apply a patch. Thanks for letting me know.

Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:16pm

Thanks to everybody for all the feedback and complements so far. I'm very interested in creating games that are based around music, mysteries, and puzzles with minimal conflict, so it's great to see that a simple idea such as this is a good one.

rvmook says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 12:18am

I really like the concept, would've been nice to have a mastermind kind of hint system to see if you're in the right direction.

Hypnohustla says ...
May 3, 2014 @ 8:49am

Beautiful little game. And I don't mean the graphics, they could use a bit polishing. :D But a really nice entry, thank you :)

ThingoStudios says ...
May 5, 2014 @ 10:27pm

A cool idea with lots of ambience, but it was a bit too minimalistic for my taste.

BadgerPriest says ...
May 7, 2014 @ 12:30am

Really great concept. I agree with all the rest though about the difficulty of figuring out the order of the notes. I got stuck on one of them for way way too long because it was not at all clear enough that the same note was being repeated twice since it otherwise sounded like a long note with 3 more after it.

mechabit says ...
May 7, 2014 @ 12:36am

Great atmosphere. But like others have said add some visual feedback, don't want to alienate people who are hard of hearing or tone deaf.

May 7, 2014 @ 1:05am

I completely agree about the lack of visual feedback making it somewhat difficult.

LinusPrime says ...
May 7, 2014 @ 1:13am

Very unique game mechanic, a lot can be done with this. Good job, keep up the great work!

May 7, 2014 @ 1:19am

I really liked the mood of this! I had to crank the volume to properly hear the puzzle melodies though. A visual indication of your currently 'entered' song would help, or perhaps a way to clear your entry. My favorite game of he jam so far :)

Delca says ...
May 9, 2014 @ 7:46pm

An awesome entry! I really like the gameplay, although I had difficulties recognizing the notes sometimes.
Anyway, the game was very enjoyable. Great job!

foolmoron says ...
May 14, 2014 @ 3:31pm

Awesome idea and atmosphere. Hard for me because I can't figure out tones at all.

DannyG59 says ...
May 17, 2014 @ 7:27pm

I love you too <3

May 17, 2014 @ 7:52pm

Too tone deaf to play this game, I can't even hear when the sequences start and end, and I can't for the life of me match the sounds that the player produces with the totem's.

A little too simple for my taste, I think more could be done with a little sound guy like that :)

danialhyatt says ...
May 17, 2014 @ 8:21pm

Great game, great idea, well done!! i think you could improve it by making each note in a melody shorter, as in a flurry of 4 notes, and then silence, then repeat, then silence, then repeat, so on and so forth. the long draw out notes made me just play the note i heard very slowly. it would be cool to "sing a song", quicker melodies, with a pause to let the brain digest it

wschorn says ...
May 19, 2014 @ 1:56am

great concept, hard to know when to start a melody from. pacing is also a bit winky. but a sweet jam game overall!

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