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

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Beneath the Surface

by Milktoast - 48 Hour Compo Entry

Windows binaries provided. The .love file (for MacOS and Linux users) requires LOVE 0.9.1. You can get Windows (32-bit & 64-bit), Mac OS, and Ubuntu (32-bit & 64-bit) versions of the (excellent) open source Love 2D game engine at

=== Controls ===

Arrow keys move the targeting cursor.
Hold LMB to move cursor with mouse.
Numbers 1-3 fire missiles.
Space bar pauses the game.
F1 shows debugging information.
ESC at menu to quit. ESC in game to go back to menu (ends the current game).

Bonus for hitting incoming missiles dead-on.
Upgrades unlocked when levels are cleared: faster missiles, faster missile battery health regeneration, increased warhead yield (bigger explosions), added missile capacity, etc.

=== Post-Compo Version adds the following ===

Cities (labs, factories) to defend
Increased difficulty
Improved sound
Scoring tweaks
Level indicator
All hits show the number of points awarded
Wave summary (shots, kills, misses, etc.)

=== Story ===

Humans left Earth to explore the galaxy and discovered that we weren't alone. The universe is far more hostile than we could have imagined. Earth was destroyed after centuries of conflict and invasion. Humanity was scattered and relentlessly pursued. By chance, we found an ancient outpost beneath the surface of a rogue planet. We accidentally activated the outpost's power plant and alerted our enemies. Now it's a race against time to exploit the ancient technology or suffer total destruction. You must defend the outpost and defeat the aliens aided only by your team of scientists working in the labs below. The key to humanity's salvation lies... beneath the surface.

=== About ===

The compo version is basically Missile Command. I originally planned to let the player choose research and upgrades from the underground base after each wave (even a base defense wave)... but didn't have time. There was also going to be enemy UFOs, MIRVs, and missiles that can withstand multiple hits. There also wasn't time to add the "cities" between the missile batteries, which would've represented the different research labs that you must defend. Other upgrades would've included: shields, homing missiles, super bombs, slowing down time, etc. This was my first project using Love2D and Lua. I found both to be great tools.

Downloads and Links




BoneDaddy says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:03am

A great look on the classic! I loved spamming the air with missiles to see those beautiful colours. Personally I find the game a bit slow for my tastes (includes the original) but I think that says more about me than it does about this version

RARoadkill says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:04am

hard to go wrong with that. like the arcade look to the screen, and the ability to just start rapidly hitting fire on all my guns. good work

ccglp says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:06am

One of the best this far, I really like the three shooters idea. The theme is pretty hard linked though

Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:12am

I got this error trying to run it on the Ubuntu 12.04 version of Love:

granut100 says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:14am

Very good work! Graphics of the title screen were awesome! One thing in my opinion though is that was the targeting cursor suppose to move that fast?

VictorDoval says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:21am

Great game, clean and fun, love the arcade screen!

eerongal says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:27am

Oh god, not a missile command rip off! D:
I'm terribad at that game!

That said, i really like the "arcade screen" look to it, was a nice touch that amused me. Solid game overall.

Empyrealhell says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:33am

Pretty good take on a classic.

jugglerrob says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:38am

Controls felt a little sensitive but other than that pretty good.

omgnoseat says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:55am

Oddly addicting :)

muramasa says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 1:59am

I was afraid of having a seizure because of those explosions ahahaha! Ok, not really, but anyway. The looks are awesome, those vector graphics, sounds, and that screen deformation to look like an old screen.
Gameplay-wise, this game is sooooooo adicting! I had to stop, because I was unable to lose. Explosions are quite large, so I was able to protect indefinitely one of my turrets by occasionally firing myself.

A pretty solid game on all aspects!

pancakecity says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:07am

This looks really neat and retro! The gameplay is well done.

drnick says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:08am

I got a highscore of 529830. Great game, even though your design isn't original. Nice work with the CRT/retro look.

CoderMusgrove says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:47am

I find the game fun, but I cannot shoot into the edge boundaries, and it annoys me.

Phyyl says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:47am

Really enjoyed it! The only thing is that the aim moves a bit too quickly... but overall, great graphics and nice simple concept!

TTFTCUTS says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 3:09am

I liked the screen effect, and the graphics were cheerful, if simple. The gameplay is obviously not so original, but it was executed well. Sounds we fitting and the between-level comments were amusing.

TyrusPeace says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 3:18am

This was really fun! The controls are a bit slippery but that just makes me spam missiles more, which is a big part of the fun and challenge. It feels pretty hard to recover from having your stations go down, but it had to end eventually and I suppose that extends the difficulty and strategy across multiple rounds of the game. Well done.

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

Umm... just wanted to mention that it's way easier with the mouse. Keep LMB pressed, and the crossfire will follow the mouse.

triforcespark says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:01am

Addicting, but the controls feel a bit slippery.

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

Thank you all! I really appreciate you taking the time to play and provide feedback. The slippery controls were my attempt to mimic the trackball the original Missile Command used. As muramasa observed, you can control the cursor more precisely with the mouse by holding down the LMB (this is an undocumented debugging tool accidentally left in the game). There wasn't time for much play testing or balancing, but I do intend to continue working on the game and release a post-compo version in the next week or so.

CrackedP0t says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:53pm

I loved it!

davidwparker says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:07pm

Looks interesting- port to web to play on non-Windows?

colludium says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:21pm

Great look - especially the old warped crt! Not sure about the theme relationship but this is a good version of the classic.

mimic says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:23pm

Haha, the first time around I instinctively went to using the mouse to aim. Didn't realize I was supposed to use the arrow keys.

Neat game. Explosion chaining is the best. Also CRT screen bend effect thingy is great.

CiderPunk says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:27pm

great implementation of a classic, liked the the CRT-style screen curve!

Snicklodocus says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:32pm

I love the art style and the arcade theme. I feel that the game might be better controlled by the mouse, but maybe that was by design? (Just read your comment. Fair enough!) I found myself playing this longer than expected. Great reimagining of a classic!

Katamori says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:50pm

Great and solid arcade game! I'm especially happy that it's another LÖVE2D game.

KuGrou says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 12:02am

I like the arcade look. Controls with the arrow keys felt a bit floaty, but mouse control felt really good, especially as the levels started to get more hectic.

blockbot says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 12:32am

Nice stylized take on the original!

josefnpat says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 1:11am

Nice job! I love the twist on the classic, and the fab shader.

I'm not sure how I can lose though. Still, nice!

Great job!

Milktoast says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 1:20am

I just released a "win condition bug" fix. Several people have mentioned that you can essentially play forever by parking the cursor above one of your guns and firing missiles as needed to protect it. The fix gradually increases the explosion size of the incoming missiles every level after level 6. Please let me know if this is against the rules and I'll put back the original version.

Gwinnell says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 6:35pm

Awesome curvature. Controls might have worked better with a mouse though. Funny how hitting the sides of a screen played a little beep. :)

Caridorc says ...
May 2, 2014 @ 2:34pm

In depth review of this game here:

Recon says ...
May 2, 2014 @ 4:09pm

Retro, cool, with awesome graphics, but little off-theme.

csanyk says ...
May 10, 2014 @ 3:49am

Well, it's Missile Command, with a different story. Well executed, plays great, although I definitely miss not having a trackball. Arrow keys really aren't the control scheme for this game. Graphics are solid. Sounds could use a little more oomph and some spice.

sknoslo says ...
May 14, 2014 @ 12:26am

Awesome game! Nothing revolutionary but I love the graphic style and had a lot of fun playing it. Nice work.

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