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

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Read Between the Tropes

by Crowbeak - Jam Entry

My first complete Twine game. This was fun! \o/

It's all about what's beneath the surface... OF STORIES! Also, some of both branches takes place beneath the surface... OF THE EARTH!

Downloads and Links




rojo says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 6:02am

Pretty cool use of theme! It's been awhile since I've had some fun with a good old fashioned text based adventure.

PaperBlurt says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 6:24am

A bit "wall-of-texty" but with good content.

Nice going for first Twine.
Keep it up and do more Twine games!

aelita1992 says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 6:26am

I love this type of games, hope one day it will be some big production with lots of story, as so far, it's really well written, good to read.

Contacaton says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:08am

I noticed a typo in the magical guardian ending after annoying the mirror.
"You are careful never annoy the mirror again."
You might want to add a 'to' in there.

Other than that, really well done. I just wish there was some music or some art to go with it.

NeiloGD says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 8:02am

Pretty good concept, and good work with the writing. I loved the embarassing password ;)

Tropes I travelled through:

A Day In The Life, Easing Into The Adventure, Elaborate Underground Base, Embarrassing Password, Code Name, Useless Security Camera [Averted], Eternal Engine, Psychic Powers, The Empath, The War Room, Alien Invasion, The Plan, Barrier Maiden, Save This Person, Save The World, Ace Pilot, Humongous Mecha, Fighter Launching Sequence, We Wait

Crowbeak says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 8:24am

Thanks for the feedback so far, folks! Glad you're enjoying it. I wanted to add art, but I got started on this late and didn't end up having time.

Contacaton, thank you for the typo thing. I was making the Magical Guardian branch right up until the wire. xD

PaperBlurt says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 9:12am

Hi Crowbeak.
Just wanted to thank you spotting a typo in my entry.
Seems impossible to get them all...

Nition says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 9:23am

Clever way of calling attention to a bunch of tired writing clichés, I like it.

PTSnoop says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:09am

Very well written. I think the series-of-tropes approach did a good job of getting lots of story-per-word into this game. [TropesAreNotBad] indeed!

Just one minor quibble. In the [FinalBattle] at the end of the Mech Pilot plotline, you've averted the [TwoDSpace] trope ("think of the enemy's line as down") - but still the enemy line is a *line*. In proper 3D space combat, I'd expect to see an equivalent enemy *plane*. But this is me being incredibly picky - and I'm only mentioning this because up until that point I'd managed to hold such a clear mental picture of what was going on. Well done!

jeffz says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 12:29pm

Well done. I did start to sense the feeling of being in a movie while reading. Damn tropes.

hissssssssss says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 12:38pm

I played through both stories a couple times each. I loved picking the campiest Hollywood dialogue at every opportunity!

The restart link doesn't seem to work correctly for me. Maybe it should link to ld29/ instead of ld29/undefined ?

voxel says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 12:43pm

I enjoyed the story and the tropes but mostly I liked the groanworthy puns.

Crowbeak says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 12:48pm

o_O Hmm. The restart link is part of the Twine engine... I dunno how to change that.

Crabman says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:58pm

Oh no, not the Loudham Dire! xD Restart worked for me btw.

Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:04pm

That was great, certainly worth a couple of playthroughs with tvtropes open in another browser window trying to work it out. Also, very well written and I'm not entirely sure how you got so much great content in within such a short amount of time! Awesome!

matt_j says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:17pm

Cool, this is certainly different :)

Crowbeak says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:52pm

tripleVisionGames: xD I actually had a bad start and didn't really get anything done until 30 hours in, which is why this is a Jam entry and not a Compo entry. I'd have written more except for the insane notion of creating a game that *required* me to be constantly browsing TV Tropes. I spent at least as much time looking at the web site as I did writing stuff for the game. I suspect the TV Tropes:writing ratio is more like 3:2.

Cake&Code says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 9:42am

Funny game!! Playing the different tropes was engaging. I'm typically not super great with text-heavy games, but this was especially fun to jump into :D

Therrato says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 1:35pm

Im not the biggest fan of text based games but to be honest you did a good job,Never heard of twine before, might have to look into that

Apr 30, 2014 @ 3:35pm

NIce game! And I like the idea of deliberate use of tropes! ^^

Crefossus says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 4:27pm

I was able to follow the mech pilot plot a bit easier than the magical guardian (I just had to read both endings for the mech one :). I enjoyed the humor in the names based on ld48 in both stories!

One interesting thing about this format is that you can't go back if you get confused - I guess I should learn to take my time.

Jed T. says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 1:21pm

Love the story! this game made be reminisce playing MUDs way back. I shouldn't have listened to my commander :( Fantastic job!

Eniko says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 8:09pm

I like the writing, though I found the mech story better than the magical guardian one, that's probably personal preference talking though. It's amazing how you can make a pretty decent story just stringing together a bunch of tropes, I actually got pretty interested in the background of the mecha story. :D

GamerTaters says ...
May 3, 2014 @ 3:06am

Cool concept. The list of tropes seems endless!

madjackmcmad says ...
May 3, 2014 @ 3:58am

A fine adventure! I played through the mech pilot version, I should try the other one and look for parallels.

Snoother says ...
May 3, 2014 @ 4:16pm

The prose is generally well-written, but I do agree sometimes it's a bit too much all at once. Might have helped if you'd tried using different (perhaps larger) fonts and broke up the text further. Nevertheless, the story was fun to read and the choices seemed to have admirably significance.

Chaoseed says ...
May 4, 2014 @ 6:28am

You have some writing talent! It wasn't a chore to read through that whole thing, twice. (A lot of people couldn't pull that off. ;) ) I liked the stories well enough. Although...I'm not sure about the premise of the thing; tropes aren't universal building blocks, they're more like patterns people notice in various stories. Not only that, the stories didn't seem to be ABOUT tropes, they were just about something and you highlighted some tropes; seems like a missed opportunity. Also, you didn't make much use of the capabilities of Twine, as far as I can tell; I mean, there were a couple of branches, but each story had its general shape that didn't get deviated from (of course, I only played each one once...). Still, in all I enjoyed it, and I definitely think you should do more with Twine!

TobiasW says ...
May 4, 2014 @ 3:31pm

" But beware! The TV Tropes web site is quite possibly the biggest time sink in the history of the internet. You are warned."

Yeah, I know, and I'm not going there. Luckily you haven't linked the tropes at the end, some would've been really hard to resist clicking :D

So, two games in one? I like it. Tropes are a interesting nice use of the theme (although I feel there could've been done more than just using them in the story and naming them in the end), and the stories itself were well written and fun to read.

Great job!

Delca says ...
May 4, 2014 @ 10:58pm

I like text-based entries! The theme interpretation was quite interesting too, that may be the most original I have seen yet.
Great work on that one, congrats!

alvivar says ...
May 9, 2014 @ 12:10pm

Nice writing. I did enjoy particularly the Mech Pilot stuff. It was really interesting (and clarifying) the use of so many tropes as the core of the game. Tropes Are Scary Tools.

Totally waiting for the post-compo version!

HybridMind says ...
May 11, 2014 @ 2:28pm

Interesting take on 'beneath the surface'. I played the mech-pilot route. Held my interest pretty well and liked the list of tropes at the end.

shadow64 says ...
May 11, 2014 @ 9:28pm

A really cool take on the theme and I enjoyed my playthrough. I wasn't really sure what was happening until I got to the end and I'm really glad I got to it. It's really cool to examine all of those ideas in a way that is still entertaining.

My one suggestion is to reconsider the color palette on the site itself. The black on grey was a little bit tough to read.

Well done. :) Thanks for sharing and for playing/rating my game. I'd love to see what this would be like as a visual novel with music/art - maybe a Ren'Py game?

cageinabird says ...
May 12, 2014 @ 9:36pm

A genuinely interesting idea! I did find spotting the tropes more interesting than the stories themselves, and I think emphasising that aspect would be one way of focusing the player's experience. Perhaps you could make it into a mechanic, and have the player try to complete sets of tropes (say, belonging to a specific genre) or fulfill a well traveled plot by ticking off the tropes it uses.

Unfortunately, I now have TV Tropes open in another tab and may not be back for some time. I have known people to disappear and never to return. Wish me luck! :)

Managore says ...
May 16, 2014 @ 11:30am

I never would have guessed that I would end up playing a choose-your-own-adventure for Ludum Dare, but I'm really glad I did because this was excellent!

May 18, 2014 @ 7:16pm

Good game, I liked the variety of branches on it.

Crowbeak says ...
May 19, 2014 @ 2:13am

I dunno if anyone will read this, but I've been thinking about what some people have said about doing more with the tropes than listing them at the end. I've come to the conclusion that it would have been good if I had had the player choose which trope to add next, using the random trope button on TV Tropes to find things to use. Lots of hilarity would have ensued. I might do one like that later.

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