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

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Alien Lobotomy

by SoupWithBits - Jam Entry

Your mission is to dominate the earth!
To do this you need to lobotomize 4 of the earth's 6 major leaders.
You have the power to re-wire the neural pathways within an earthlings brain, use it to make them vegetables!

To lobotomize a leader, you must connect the neurons in such a way that the total is within the numbers displayed either side of the score.
A neuron's value is added to the score for every neural pathway to and from that neuron.

Art + Programming : Cukia Kimani & Kevin Marais
Sound : Tim Harbour

Downloads and Links




soulrot says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 10:51pm

Rather confusing at first, but as soon as you get the hang of it, it is an interesting game. I seemed unable to solve a puzzle because it required a value over 50 while the only two positive values on the screen where 6 and 8.

TowelKing says ...
Apr 28, 2014 @ 11:00pm

nice puzzle game, a bit more tutorial would have helped, but interesting once you get the hang of it.

SoupWithBits says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 6:59am

@soulrot i am 100% sure that every puzzle generated is solvable. Not saying there aren't more difficult ones ;) thanks for the play!

GertJohnny says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 8:46am

Pretty interesting, took a while to figure out but it was worthwhile.

udvaritibor says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:18am

I love it really original I think. Sounds are cool as well.

Simon@LD says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:23am

Nice graphics and sound design. I had some troubles finding out how it worked though. A better tutorial would help i think. Original interpretation of the theme!

matheod says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:32am

Really nice puzzle idea. Never seen it before. The game is really hard at the start but really easy when you understand how all the things work. I think this could be a really good game with more mechanics ^^
I don't know why the game end when there still be some contry to invide.

matheod says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:32am

Edit : I just read "To do this you need to lobotomize 4 of the earth's 6 major leaders." :)

Strange choice :p

BarkingCat says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:32am

now this is a puzzle game I'd spend hours with, especially on phone. I like how the leaders' brain are full of negative numbers. heheh.

teambrookvale says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:43am

A little explanation would be nice but the concept is neat. Mood and graphics are cool!

Diptoman says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 10:57am

That was a really interesting puzzle mechanic. Enjoyed it. Though I couldn't make sure how many nodes could be connected to one node. Sometimes it was 2, sometimes 3. The use of the theme seemed a bit loose.

Norse Games says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 11:49am

I really liked the original idea for this one, but its a stretch to see this fit the theme. I enjoyed this game a lot, and I'll look out for more stuff by you in the future. Congratulations on surviving the dare! Just a note, If there was an iPhone version of this game I might be inclined to buy it. *wink, wink*

codevinsky says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:11pm

I tried playing this and I just really don't get it. Could you expand the instructions and rules a bit?

Andrew Adams says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:14pm

I now dominate the earth. Awesome.

r0x0r says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:15pm

any chance of a linux build?

Apr 29, 2014 @ 2:16pm

Didn't understand the instructions but after one or two minutes of randomly connecting nodes it clicked for me and I beat the game. I found the time limit to be a bit annoying. Would be a cool to be able to just sit and enjoy. Not sure if is complex enough for that though. Its a bit of a stretch for theme. I liked the setting, but it wasn't really explored. Overall I liked it. Nice to see a puzzle game on here with a mechanic that I haven't seen before.

Thorig says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 3:05pm

Now I know how to play and it is a fun game. It the turn was longer, maybe my son could use it to pratice some math calculations.

Apr 29, 2014 @ 4:56pm

Really nice puzzle concept, as soon as I worked it out! The thing that made it click for me is that each neuron can have multiple neurons connecting into it. Once that clicked, it was much easier to understand.

I had a lot of fun - could have done with being longer! :)

BoTreats says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 5:16pm

I like the puzzle mechanic a lot, and there is a lot of mood here. Cool game!

GuyUnger says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 5:45pm

Really cool stuff man!
It took me some time to understand, but when i finally got it, i felt very smart! haha. It's a cool system.
The game has a very spacy and grim atmosphere, nice work on that :)
The world map and little text's give it that little bit of fiction that it needs.
keep it up!

tomvert says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 6:26pm

I'm sorry I must be too dumb, but I couldn't understand your game at all :(

_adamturnbull says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:09pm

I'm probably just too simple minded but I found it quite hard to understand what was going on. Its a nice looking game though! Good job :)

flavio says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 7:20pm

Waow, I was lost, it took me a while to get it.. not easy one
Nice puzzles once you get it !

Tuism says ...
Apr 29, 2014 @ 9:15pm

Wow! This is amazing! I saw it as it grew to this point, and I NEVER thought it would have been so different from what I saw while it was being built! The theme added was pretty damn classy! Well polished, great sounds, nice stuff guys!

NOT easy at all. I almost failed maths so... Not one for me to master :P

NicoM says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 2:14am

Interesting puzzle mechanic, very difficult... also great audio, very moody:)

Lyje says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 12:05pm

I am not good with numbers or numerical based games so I found this pretty challenging - but I do like the graphics and effects for this!

Vytheros says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 3:53pm

Good game, but was ridiculously impossible. I couldn't get any of the level done. If I had more time, maybe a minute or so, I would've gotten it but due to the limited time I had I just could not do it.

metkis says ...
Apr 30, 2014 @ 8:33pm

Pretty challenging, but I enjoyed the premise and like the look of it!

XenosNS says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 12:18am

Was difficult to understand the mechanic at first but once you do it's very clever. Enjoyed it.

May 1, 2014 @ 1:51am

I guess I couldn't understand all the rules of the game. I played for a while, but couldn't seem to get anywhere.

May 1, 2014 @ 3:05am

Simple but interesting game, I like it. I included it in part 5 of my Ludum Dare compilation video series, if you'd like to check it out :)

May 1, 2014 @ 3:09am

It seems that your game didnt make it into that video, my mistake, it will be in part 6 :)

JavadocMD says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 7:38am

Brilliant concept and well executed. Once the blackout phase starts, it's not very long before there's nothing you can do. It would feel a little less fatal if it creeped in more slowly, but that could just be personal preference.

SoupWithBits says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 11:02am

Thanks Guys! We appreciate the feedback. We'll be looking at making the tutorial better in future.

Ragzouken says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 12:35pm

couldn't really work out what decided how many connections a neuron could have, and it took me a while to understand the scoring - but i won!

May 1, 2014 @ 6:23pm

Here it is!

alvarop says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 6:34pm

As you could see, it took me a while to understand the mechanic. I think the tutorial should be a little bit more clear. When I "got it" I started having fun with it... but I was unsure the whole time if I actually was doing the right thing or not.

TobiasW says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 6:38pm

It took me a few seconds to figure the game out, but after that, it was rather easy. (I don't think it should let you continue until you beat the tutorial though - and more feedback there what you are doing wrong!)

While I think the gameplay idea is really innovative, it was far too easy for me: I just connected everything to the highest/lowest number until I was in the right area, and then balanced. I'm not sure how you could fix that though.

The abstract graphics work well, and the sound effects and the ambience are great.

All in all, pretty cool entry! Good job!

kikaz says ...
May 1, 2014 @ 9:59pm

Nice puzzle game with nice visual effects, very smart mechanism but difficult to handle. Good job !

petey123567 says ...
May 2, 2014 @ 6:46am

Took a while to grok - maybe some feedback animations that visualizes how the value is computed?

2HitAdam says ...
May 2, 2014 @ 9:25pm

Cool once I got the hang of it. I also like that this game could be about just about anything, but you went for lobotomising leaders haha. Nice work.

May 3, 2014 @ 12:58am

I love puzzle games and this is the best one i've seen around here. Good.Job.

BasselGaming says ...
May 4, 2014 @ 6:35am

Really cool game! great art and mechanics

May 4, 2014 @ 11:38am

Nice ambiance and aesthetics but I can't see how it relates to the theme and it definitely needs some tutorial or better explanations.

joe40001 says ...
May 4, 2014 @ 3:50pm

I really liked this game, I was bummed though that it stopped me at like 4-5 out of the 7 continents. Fun game, the title screen made it look like it'd be a lower end game but everything else about it was super polished and nice. You should port this to tablet devices.

May 4, 2014 @ 7:15pm

The idea is so good!! it just needs more polish

May 5, 2014 @ 12:15am

Awesome puzzle. I love this type of challenge

Wertle says ...
May 5, 2014 @ 2:37am

Complex math under time pressure isn't particularly fun. My strategy ended up being randomly connecting things and hoping the number would get to where I needed it. The idea is interesting but it just needs playtesting and iteration on explaining what exactly the player should be doing. Lots of playtesting with new players.

soy_yuma says ...
May 5, 2014 @ 4:57pm

Took me a while to understand. The idea is really original, I've never seen anything like this! It's simple and fun. Congrats!

Rick Hoppmann says ...
May 6, 2014 @ 9:19am

I didn't quite get it.
The font is rather hard to read. The soft glow and floating of the neurons looks good, as well as the transmission animation.

All in all this may be a great game, but I don't quite get it.

terraco says ...
May 6, 2014 @ 10:43am

Very interesting concept!

javifugitivo says ...
May 6, 2014 @ 11:07am

Very original game of puzzles, maybe you can improve it with some backgrounds and more effects, and a better tutorial, of course. Nice job!

mechabit says ...
May 6, 2014 @ 1:18pm

interesting puzzle game

Atridas says ...
May 7, 2014 @ 3:43pm

Interesting game, interesting mechanics.
One thing I may have found is: It was very hard to solve the puzzles at the begining, but as soon as I discovered a "method", the became really easy ;-)

rojo says ...
May 7, 2014 @ 6:36pm

Interesting idea, but not very well explained. Multiple times I had everything connected with something else and the number within the range, but I still failed. Aside from that the graphics looked pretty good, and the ambient audio was a good fit.

sP0CkEr2 says ...
May 9, 2014 @ 2:30am

interesting puzzle game - nice job

gre says ...
May 13, 2014 @ 1:03pm

Very interesting game mecanism.
Funny world map domination.
Original take on the theme if I understand it correctly.

MidCry says ...
May 13, 2014 @ 2:22pm

Innovative but kind of hard to catch mechanics ... with nice and smooth aesthetics it's worth playing ...

Zerkruemler says ...
May 13, 2014 @ 6:22pm

Interesting idea well designed and implemented. Also good sound effects for a puzzle game.

conormn says ...
May 15, 2014 @ 4:38am

I'm super bad at math, but really got into this. Thanks for making!

May 19, 2014 @ 11:23pm

Like some other folks were saying maybe adding in the tutorial how the cells multiply/divide when connected would be great. Otherwise it was simple and straight forward once you got going. Was pretty fun working within the polarity range.

As a side note. Despite the lateness of the video. Alien Lobotomy was featured in LD 29 showcase vol 4.

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