Ludum Dare 31 — December 5th-8th, 2014 — Theme: Entire Game on One Screen

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by kraln - Compo Entry

A throwback rogue-alike that runs in a browser.

You're a teenager in a small village in rural England at the dawn of the 15th century. The village elders have been preparing you since birth for the screening ritual. This past week, you've successfully passed the written screen, the oral screen, and the heritage screen. There's just one screen left: the game screen.

In the middle of the night, the elders took you from your house and threw you down into the dank catacombs underlying the village. The eldest, a man wizened and frail, peers down into the darkness and begins to give you some last advice. Find the flashlight, find the ladder. Avoid Grumpus.

The entire game depends on this last, one, screen.

Can you survive and emerge victorious? Good luck!


Greetings to my lovely wife Joelle, my cat, Mu, and obskyr & khahem from IRC for helping me with some last-minute testing.


For QWERTZ keyboards, ? will function properly.
For AZERTY keyboards, ; functions intead of .

Movement: Arrow Keys or HJKL (Recommend HJKL on embedded)
Interaction: .
Attack: a
Inventory: i
Use: u
Status: s
Breadcrumb: b

Source code

Downloads and Links




tudd says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 1:24am

Looks interesting, but when I press H for help it just moves me left :o

kraln says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 2:00am

@tudd: right you are... it should be ? for help, as HJKL are movement keys (like in vi).

I've updated the description and the in-game help.

fachexot says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:03am

Dat Kobold!

daviosmash says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:09am

Have absolutely no idea what I'm doing. Good music thought.

sam101 says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:09am

The game is hardly playable with an azerty keyboard, since it relies on the "." key..

BtheDestroyer says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:10am

Nice game. I've always loved old roguelikes, although it would be nice to have your stats up to the side of the window at all times. I'll bookmark this so I can play later ;)

panda says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:12am

Looks very interesting! I love that it has music, too. However when I use the arrow keys, the browser window scrolls at the same time as the game moves! That makes it very hard to play. And hjkl hurts my non-vi brain.

Perhaps list the keys in the text under the game window?

madlee says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:14am

Nice. Had a little trouble playing in the embedded view (pressing space scrolls the page down) but worked fine when I played directly on your site.

iMer says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:16am

The music and "graphics" really got me into a eery explory mood. Nicely done

Pressing ? does not seem to do anything - German layout here, have to press shift+"ß" (next to zero).
Maybe adding an alias would be a good idea

For anyone else having issues:
Leave a breadcrumb: b | Check status: s
Inventory: i | Use: u
Interaction: . | Attack: a
Movement: Arrow keys or HJKL

Mokosha says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:17am

I like the homage to nethack, however, it could use a little bit more hand holding in the beginning. How do I pick things up? Can I defend myself when I'm being attacked? Also, I had to turn the music down (read: off) because it was a little grating after a while. =/

Jupitron says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:18am

Excellent game! I love your style, ill definitely keep playing this one.

woodecker says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:18am

I like ASCII games.

kraln says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:19am

Those of you with non-us keyboard layouts, can you suggest an alias for ? and . that will work nice? qwertz can probably use the # for ?, but I have no idea about azerty.

ken says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:26am

It felt rewarding when I completed the game however it was a grind getting to the end. At the end it said I took 10313 turns, which isn't actually that many because I could speed down hallways, but since it was exploring probably over 100 rooms, most of them empty or with a bat it got a bit tedious. If I had found the flashlight first I think I would have had a better time because exploring each room wouldn't have taken so long. It was fun when I fought Grumpus and found items like the shield but the majority of the time I was just walking down empty hallways. If there was more in the world I would have enjoyed it much more.

kraln says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 3:30am

I've added a slight patch to make the game nicer for non-us keyboards. the ? on a QWERTYZ keyboard should work, as should ; instead of . for AZERTY.

One of my biggest regrets in not having as much time as I wanted was in filling out the beastiary and items. There's definitely room to make the dungeon a WHOLE lot bigger, and put a bunch of crazy stuff in there. Sadly, it was not to be... I am pleased to have a complete, sparse as it is, game. :)

Mopz says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 7:24am

Very nice music, reminds me of the dungeons in Zelda (1).

pjimmy says ...
Dec 8, 2014 @ 5:40pm

nice, love the ascii interface

drludos says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 12:49am

Congrats on creating such a large game (large cave, lots of items) in such a limited time frame. Not easy to get into, but a very nice entry! One suggestion though: you should display the "key" somewhere on a empty space on the screen, it'll make it easier for first time players to use the game properly (I had get out and on of fullscreen many times just to check the keyboard shortcut to use.)

Dec 9, 2014 @ 1:26am

Good simple roguelike. There was a problem for me, running the game in Chrome: pressing up or down keys would scroll the whole page instead of only the character in the game. Nice music!

pvtroswold says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 2:35am

Good job!

merrak says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 5:34am

Nice! Interesting interpretation of the theme.

kraln says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 1:45pm


The cave actually randomly generates every time you's different every time! :)

Also, in the beginning it tells you to use ? to see what keys do what :). With a resolution of 80x24 every character counts... :)

I think it's a problem with the embedding in the ld48 site; if you use it standalone it doesn't do that (but also, that is why enter and space are aliased, and HJKL are available instead of arrow keys)

Alendro says ...
Dec 9, 2014 @ 5:14pm

I like the music. Interesting graphics.

Samm says ...
Dec 11, 2014 @ 5:44am

It's nice to see a ASCII roguelike in the mix. I was considering making one for the jam, but I'm glad to see you nailed the idea :)

Dec 11, 2014 @ 5:56am

great rogue like. very large scale. the rooms feel a bit empty

Pulsartronic says ...
Dec 12, 2014 @ 2:10pm

no idea what to do, but it made me laugh a lot :D ... 5 stars for fun jojojo

Dec 13, 2014 @ 2:02pm

Nice to see an ascii entry. Liked the story and the exploration aspects.

Dec 13, 2014 @ 5:20pm

Nice idea to go old school!
Maybe you could simplify more. Remove S button, put status up at all times. Remove breadcrumbs. Maybe even auto attack.
Should this music be in the game, it was composed by Beethoven right?
Kind of a stretch to make this follow the theme. I would have rather seen a smaller rogue-like that fits everything onto one screen or something like that.

dekart says ...
Dec 13, 2014 @ 5:23pm

I love the music, and the mood it creates. The game has a significant flaw - text is very hard to read, at least for me. It's also pretty hard to understand when your opponent die because they stand at the same position as you and they disappear from view. Overall, nice re-make of a very old and very good genre :)

thristhart says ...
Dec 14, 2014 @ 4:47pm

I loved your take on the theme! I chuckled at the "game screen" line.

miotatsu says ...
Dec 23, 2014 @ 10:38pm

Playable, but pretty rough around the edges. I think the best advice I have is to try something a little less ambitious the next time you do ludum dare. Good job none the less though

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