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

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by primitiveconcept - Jam Entry

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Beneath the surface of this robotic tick's metal chasis lies a mind yearning to become conscious. And so, it harvests DNA from beneath the surface of your skin to build up its neural net!

Locate open wounds upon which to feed, to fuel yourself with blood and build up DNA to increase your intelligence. As you gain DNA, the tick learns to speak!

Randomly generated speech with text-to-speech capabilities leads to some hilarious dialogue while you play. Warning: Much of the word lists and phrase particles were built using Cards Against Humanity for inspiration; dialogue may be very explicit and/or offensive.

Left click controls movement; right-click to attack hairs to cut them down, or feed on open wounds. Avoid the pulsating ingrown hairs! THEY 'SPLODE!

Downloads and Links




mrexcessive says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:09am

Hi. Only weakness I found was the difficulty, need a lot of replays or luck with blood spots early. Love the speech and overall impression, though do not like tics and this doesn't help with that...

Apr 30, 2014 @ 8:29am

The game lags really hard every time a new sound file is loaded.
And I have the impression the blood spots do not respawn? At least it feels as if I had run out...

Spierek says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 11:59am

The blood spots don't respawn, it's almost impossible to cut hairs, and the CAH-based remarks were completely unnecessary :(

May 1, 2014 @ 4:46am

Yeah, I wanted to have blood gradually respawn, but I ran out of time :(
I do have commits ready now to make both hair and blood respawn over time to make the game "endless," as was originally intended, but I don't know if that counts as a win condition "bug," or a new feature, since I knew it was unfinished when I submitted.

I don't want to break any rules, or the spirit of the jam. Anyone know if there's been similar fixes in the past that would set precedence?

Konrad Zegis says ...
May 3, 2014 @ 8:57pm

I love the idea, and it's great to see somebody implemented theme in more 'organic' way, and overall impression.

But I have the impression that I cannot win this game. Blood spots seems to run out, and the game still keeps goin until I died.

ThingoStudios says ...
May 5, 2014 @ 10:42pm

There is no way to "win" the game but I don't think that was the intention. Dialogue was less funny than the mechanized voice attempting to read it, including the punctuation marks and colons.

Alex Rose says ...
May 19, 2014 @ 8:52pm

I really like the graphical style, getting together a nice GUI and stuff like that in Unity on such a time limit's tricky, especially the health bar, that stuff looked really good. The voice interpreter was interesting, did you record the lines or do you have some kind of plugin that reads it on the fly?

(Even as I made that comment I feel stupid, surely it's prerecorded). But anyway, dialogue ranged from "wtf" to "looool", game itself was fun after I figured out what to do (I stupidly thought the blood were just scars like.. holes that you'd fall down so I was going for the zits and hairs).

Nice take on the theme. Nice one.

May 20, 2014 @ 4:25am

Heh... actually, the voice was javascript text-to-speech; random speech was also done in javascript by another member of the team. I would have Unity send an event to the webpage to fire off the speech generation function, which would generate a random phrase, speak it, and send the string back to Unity to be displayed in-game. Kind of hacky, and I'd wanna' use an in-engine TTS engine in Unity should a more complete version of the game be done (it's in the works).

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