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

Event Links: [ MiniLD 50 | Warmup Weekend | Real World Gatherings | Ludum Deals | Wallpaper ]

Back to Browse Entries

The Stanley Enigma

by nddrylliog - Jam Entry

A young woman dreams about the murder of her friend and roommate, Stanley.
Is this dream a warning?
Is Stanley in danger?

There's only one way to find out...


Make sure you have time ahead of you. There's 1K+ lines of dialogue, so you can't play that in a rush.

Showing to different places at different times with a different history yields different results.

Don't try to win, just consider this entry a non-game and enjoy the ambience/characters.


Story: Amandine Bru (NimToasterGirl)
Code: Amos Wenger (nddrylliog)

Music: ccmixter members grapes, 7OOP3D, flatwound, _ghost, stefsax,
Sound effects: members


The web version is JavaScript+WebGL, was tested under Chrome on Linux, Mac, and OSX. See:

The desktop version is a .jar file, you'll need a recent Java runtime environment to run it.


There used to a few game-breaking bugs, those were addressed (specifically, picking up the toy).

Also, PLEASE no more feedback about why this or that part of the game doesn't seem to have any purpose.

We had fun, we're not in it for the ratings. Thanks!

Downloads and Links




Wertle says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:56am

Great atmosphere. The controls were disorienting and made me uneasy, which I suppose was the point :)

plash says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 3:48am

Page went black after picking up the child's toy in the abandoned house. Not sure what happened, exactly. Sound is still playing in the background, but input seems to do nothing. (And it did this a second time when I restarted.)

I like the environment, and the controls are nicely tuned. I saw a few places where the dialogue made it sound like Kate was leaving (e.g., Sam's Hideout, and Robert's house), but then you can only sleep there. Seems inconsistent. Also, I haven't been able to figure out what kind of era/setting this is. (Maybe intentional?) People sleep at campfires (Melissa) or hunt (Asha), so it seems non-modern, but I still get different vibes from it by the dialogue (Stanley is "on business"?).

mrexcessive says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:05am

Love the background sound - first thing I noticed during the intro, great timing tied to text. Like the control system and map presentation. Only have 10 minutes before leaving for work, will come back to here to complete another day.

LandoSystems says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:06am

Glad to see more libgdx games out here. Fun little game, must have been time consuming thinking up all of that dialogue.

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

Awesome music, interesting story. Still playing through it.

nddrylliog says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:15am

> must have been time consuming thinking up all of that dialogue.

Ah, there are just about a thousand lines of dialogue! Didn't take more than 72 hours :)

yo_milo says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:30am

Amazing mood..But I had the pick-up the toy bug too... I do not why that happens :(

InfectionTeam says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:38am

That was interesting, it's too late here and too tired but will definitely revisit this later to see more of the story.

nddrylliog says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 5:10am

Fixes are coming for the toy bug and for quick-restarting the game!

Team-KwaKwa says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 9:51am

At first, I was like what is this 3d mesh, then I understood it was the village map.
It is a good way how to use the map, maybe seeing some characters would have given more life, and the story is well written.

SirJson says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 12:58pm

The motivation of the main character isn't quite clear though I think the atmosphere and the use of audio is well done.

theengineers says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:51pm

Amazing atmposphere. Incredibly Disorienting controls. Well done.

ninjacharlie says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 3:07pm

I really liked the story and the gameplay, but I don't think the graphics helped add anything. I think it would have been better to do something like "A Dark Room" and sticking to pure ASCII, or a really minimal map. Other than that, I had a lot of fun. Good job :)

Magdev says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 5:42pm

I like the movement system thing

illugion says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:56pm

You're really good at telling stories ! I got really into it for some time but i wasn't sure if i was progressing and i don't know when her birthday is D: haha Great job with the game !

whilefun says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 1:36am

Neat game! Had a nice creepy feel. Great audio, too. The butcher shop had the best music!

May 1, 2014 @ 12:03pm

Brilliant game. Not many Ludum Dare games I played focused on dialogue. I like it. Good job.

fullmontis says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 12:05pm

Ok first a couple of suggestions. Since this is a text heavy gama, i would use a bigger portion of the screen for the text, use a slightly bigger font and use a serif font which is easier on the eyes for long texts. That's my personal preference at least.

Apart from that, the writing is excellent! Well rounded characters and interesting story. The graphics are a bit dull after a while and it's difficult to distinguish between the various buildings. Also I don't think that grey map really fits with the colourful writing. I would add a little bit of colour here and there to break the monotony.

Overall it is a great experience and I really enjoyed it! Sound and atmosphere are just amazing, good job.

PapyGaragos says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 12:27pm

I don't really know what part of the story made my feel unconfortable, but something does. Good job with that

TobiasW says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 6:11pm

I came for the title and stayed for the writing. Woah. This is a great, great entry, and even though I don't feel like I'm any closer to solving the Stanley Enigma, I enjoyed my three runs so far a lot. (Or was it four? Might be four. I lost track a bit.)

At first I thought that the map with its lack of landmarks and labels and houses which are all in the same grey would confuse me, but I got the hang of the layout surprisingly quickly. Moving this way gets old after a while though when you know where you want to go - quick movement between the houses you can reach would've been awesome!

The ambience sounds are a great way of setting the mood. My favourite so far are the wolves in the forst!

All in all, this is a superb entry!

PS: Your game reminds me of another one I've played once - sadly I don't remember the name. You're dying and getting weaker each day, but you can still walk around and talk to people, which will lead to different outcomes. Maybe you know which game I'm talking about?

Meedoc says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 7:17pm

Nice game, really good narrative. However, it was hard to guess how many day I had before the day D. And it's sad to be able to only visit one location per day.

xhunterko says ...
May 2, 2014 @ 4:33am

You nailed the mood. Bashing the nails in the coffin nailed it. It either was slow, or felt rather slow. Which did not feel good to play. Coupled with the fact that I don't like creepy games, I won't be playing it again to find a different ending. But that mood? NAILED it completely.

May 3, 2014 @ 7:00pm

The music is well done and I like the story. Cool entry.

Penguincat says ...
May 5, 2014 @ 8:16pm

Some of the writing felt a bit heavy-handed to me, but the plot was intriguing, and the awesome soundtrack really added to the mood. Couldn't unravel the mystery on my first try but I'll have to play again. It would've been helpful if the houses had been slightly different shapes or shades to distinguish them, and if I'd known how many days I had 'til Kate's birthday (maybe if the "day" counter in the upper right were a countdown). Other than that, I'm impressed by how much writing you put into the game in 72 hours!

XenosNS says ...
May 7, 2014 @ 1:31am

Wow, complex story. Didn't solve it on the first play through but will try again.

Cirrial says ...
May 9, 2014 @ 1:23am

I can't put my finger on why but I get some serious Kentucky Route Zero vibes from this entry. Probably the navigation and weird surreal atmosphere to how things are presented. Love the way the game is put together. Incredible depth of content. Outstanding.

Nanolotl says ...
May 17, 2014 @ 12:51pm

Really great overall atmosphere, especially with the music. I really liked the movement system too. Gave it a really unique feeling.

Striwx says ...
May 17, 2014 @ 3:14pm

Omg very cool mood and story. The narration of the game is excellent !!

You must sign in to comment.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you want to place in the final results, you NEED votes. The easiest way to get votes is by rating other games. Judging lasts for 3 weeks following the end of Ludum Dare. For best effect, rate 20 games as soon as possible. Rating more games is encouraged.


TEAMS: Teams entering the Jam should pick a single representative to submit your game, or create a team specific account you can share. We currently do not support Team Voting, but sharing an account and together playing and rating games is acceptable.

NOT LOGGED IN?: If you get a message about not being logged in, even though you are, it’s because your web browser cached the non-logged in page. You can fix this by either refreshing your cache or clearing your cache. CTRL+F5 in many browsers. Chrome is a bit more work. Press F12 to enable Developer Mode, then you can right click on the refresh button and select “Empty Cache and Hard Reload”. This option is unavailable if you are not in Developer Mode.

PORTS: Ports to other platforms can be done after the deadline. That said, the sooner you finish your port, the sooner people can play your game, improving your chances of placing in the final results. For best results, provide a Web version of your game, or a Windows version with no dependencies. Also be sure to rate about 20 games to improve your visibility.

MY GAME DOESN’T SHOW UP: If you can’t find your game, it’s usually because the URL to your downloads are missing ‘http://‘. Fix your URLs ( and you will show up.

MY GAME CRASHES, IS UNBEATABLE, OR I MADE A TYPO: We allow you to fix crash or win condition bugs after the deadline (in a sense, like “porting” to support more players). We also allow “typo” bugs. I.e. A true that should have been a false, a word that should have been a different word, very tiny changes that you would have caught if you had more sleep. We leave this open to interpretation, but generally speaking your game should be identical to the game you submitted. No new features, just things you messed up last minute. Typos.

[cache: storing page]