Ludum Dare 32 — April 17th-20th, 2015 — Theme: An Unconventional Weapon

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by Zanzlanz - Compo Entry

Welcome to the "Alternate Reality Boss Fight"!

Update: I released the game with an older version of Flash Player, so you won't see a black screen on Linux and older Macs. :)

=== CONCEPT ===
Follow the villain through his lair and into the fight room, in order to defeat him and get back what he stole!

My idea was to have a classic retro boss fight where each time you play, you're in a different reality. Every time you play, the villain steals different items, and you & the villain are given a random weapon, making the fight interesting and fun!

=== CONTROLS ===
It should work in your favorite browser - it's Flash. :)

- WASD to move
- Arrow keys to shoot
- M to mute

HINTS! You can wall jump and double jump. Get an extra boost by shooting downwards too!

- A lot of things! I am really happy with this game!
- I got more done than I thought I would!
- I really love the engine that I developed for this game!

- Ran out of time! I'll be doing a small post-compo!
- I wasn't able to add unique abilities to weapons. Maybe this was a good thing though?!
- The livestream wasn't very well executed. At least the timelapse went really well though!

=== MUSIC ===
Thanks so much for your comments about the audio! It's not much, but here's the main loop:

I hope you enjoy the game!!

- Zanz

Downloads and Links




vini60 says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 1:12am

Hahaha the music, so good ! Very unique graphics and gameplay, keep making more of these.

ppvk says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 1:41am

Everything is fantastic, I most enjoy the platforming. Feels good on the fingers.

Zanzlanz says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:06am

vini60 - Thanks so much! I'm really glad you thought the music was good! ^-^

ppvk - <3! I was pretty worried about the controls actually! Thanks for the comment!

Boodog says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:36am

Very awesome job, as always Zanzlanz! Great work!

mtanton says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 2:56am

Love the beginning cutscene. I kept trying to kill the boss before getting to the top room. Very fun game!

WeaselZone says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 3:27am

The music and the sounds are great. I really impresses me what you can get done in 48 hours! Looking forward to more platformers from you!

Suese says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 4:07am

It took a while to figure out that you could double-jump and wall ride etc.

Zanzlanz says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 4:21am

Thanks a ton, everyone! :D

mtanton - Oh yes the cutscene is my favorite part! The design of it was so fun to create! :D I tried doing defeating the boss before the top room, too! After I succeeded, I made it 3 times harder to do, hah!

WeaselZone - Woah yeah I was also really surprised I was able to get as far as I did! I'm worn out now though haha! Whoof! Next time I will have to come up with a super simple idea! XD

Suese - Glad you were able to figure it out! I was going to add text instructions in the level, but decided to just make the level design hint at your abilities, in an attempt to increase immersion. Plus, at least the boss waits for your to figure things out ;)

fluidvolt says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 7:43am

Fun game! I like the nonsensical story and the Robotron-style controls. I couldn't beat it though... I'm gonna try again!

retrophantom says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 10:33am

love the action and rebounding feathers

nicotuason says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 11:55am

I'm shooting Qtips! Haha great platformer with tight controls. Quite challenging to reach the end, but because of the level design and not the boss. Amazing sound track too!

Buko-Studios says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 1:34pm

Very fun, smooth controls, nice music track, interesting level design.
You have a great framework here for more content!

danidre14 says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 1:58pm

Awesome! The graphics is nice. And music don't seem to get you annoyed no matter how many times it loops. The boss battle was intense though. Sometimes it's really easy, and other times the boss goes down to ground level and spam fires at you XD!

One time I went into the boss room, and stayed to the left of it, and the cage bars locking me in, did not appear, and the crates did not start to fall XD. Then I replayed, and when I got to the boss room, I jumped up in the air, and then it locked. So that's a cool hack XD.

I wish there were a few levels with the boss' minions or something before the final level though, but overall, it's still really enjoyable!

Thank you for making it! XD

maunovaha says ...
Apr 20, 2015 @ 3:31pm

Really good music / sound stuff. :D Also, the gameplay was pretty fun too.. a bit hard, but fun. Controls were a bit difficult, but other than that. good job! :)

T8000 says ...
Apr 22, 2015 @ 3:22pm

Sweet music and overall nice entry, nicely done.

McFunkypants says ...
Apr 22, 2015 @ 4:13pm

AWESOME! Really amazing looking, fast fun, feels good.

TheLemonKing says ...
Apr 22, 2015 @ 7:17pm

Very nice! I love the music. It was kind of hard but it was still enjoyable. Although you could shoot to the side and up at the same time with > and ^ both pressed down together.

2R says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 3:49am

I like this player, it looks great:D

pkenney says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 3:50am

Great music and look! If I could add one piece of polish it'd be to when you get hit so you feel more pain.

OnlySlightly says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 3:51am

Loved all the attention to detail with thing like the dust that whips off the cave walls when you jump into it or land on the ground. Very solid and cohesive game. You manage to preserve a sense of tension with the music and pacing chasing after the villain. Great job!

seraphki says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 3:55am

Lol, adorable. I love it. Humor is good, game feels surprisingly clean and polished for a jam game. Music is great, love the randomly generated weapons. Platforming was a bit tough, but then I'm not super great at WASD platforming. Excellent work! =D

JenniNexus says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 4:08am

Insanely addictive but I still didn't get that ambiguous dress after 4 tries!!!!!! More soon!

Zanzlanz says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 5:29am

Thanks again everyone so much for your kind comments! I appreciate it!

Good luck fluidvolt and JenniNexus! :D

I'm really happy with the framework also, Buko-Studios! It runs well too, so I'm seriously considering to make a full game with this code! I need to visit all my old Ludum Dare sequels I promised too... haha.

I'll probably need to redesign the level, nicotuason. I can improve it in a lot of ways, I believe!

Thanks, danidre14! I'll make the boss fight more discrete in the polished version. That should make things more fair!

I agree that the controls could be a bit tighter, maunovaha! It's pretty challenging to get the timing to work with fast pace controls, but I'll do my best! (Also in response to seraphki)

Haha TheLemonKing, I also noticed that when I started speedrunning - it was easy to fix for the final version. But for this version, use it to your advantage ^^

You're suggesting even more damage pkenny?! Some people think it's hard enough as it XD Maybe I should get inspired by your dynamic difficulty when redesigning the boss's behavior, haha!

Thanks OnlySlightly, I really appreciate your attention to the game design! I really wish I could have made particle sprites before the compo ended, but I knew it was necessary to have some sort of detail ;) Screen shake works magic as well :D

That was awesome to see you stream the game JenniNexus! Thanks for that! And I cannot believe how many times you got the dress in a row! Hope you beat it!

phi6 says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 12:02pm

Amazing - didn't expect this one to be so fun! The whole level based around chasing the boss. Seems so easy at first then for some reason got progressively harder. Last minute was tense as both health bars were low, but then I got killed. Fantastic work!

maddada says ...
Apr 23, 2015 @ 1:46pm

really nice job man :)! controls very nicely.

sP0CkEr2 says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 4:13am

great game - nice take on the theme - awesome music and graphics - well done!

Pilly says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 5:56am

Wow, this was great! Love that you didn't explicitly tell players that it was possible to double/wall jump, but let us figure it out based on the design of the level. On my second play through (I died on the first), I didn't realize that that the weapons were different, since I skipped the opening sequence - so perhaps there's a way to make that more obvious.

Fantastic sprite & audio work!

Vaughn says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 6:00am

Really great work here. There's some very funny weapon combinations going on. I did not expect the re-playability here either. Very cool! I did a playthrough of it on Twitch if you are interested:

pkenney says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 12:54pm

Oh no, I didn't mean more damage! I just meant a bit more effect to getting hit. Right now it does throw out some nice blood splatters, but there is no knockback or alarming sound or timestop. I don't FEEL getting hit in the controls as much as I could.

Zanzlanz says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 1:40pm

Thanks thanks everyone ;D

Yeah Pilly, I'll make a proper HUD that shows the weapons and the stolen item when the game begins :D Also some more graphical hints and differences with those things! Thanks!

Awesome playthrough Vaughn! I really enjoyed watching you figure things out! Thanks for playing!

Ah I gotcha, pkenney! I thought that's what you meant at first, but wasn't sure. Yep I'll definitely make it more obvious and effective when you or the villain takes damage!

Tanser says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 2:58pm

Amazing entry. Best compo I have seen so far!
The music is just astonishing.

Asado says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 2:59pm


Apr 24, 2015 @ 3:02pm

One of the best game's I've played so far. Super polished, enjoyable, looks and sounds great, and funny to boot. I didn't feel like the random weapons were that distinct, but that hardly detracts from the gameplay. Great work!

Tselmek says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 3:04pm

Nice juicy game with a lovely soundtrack. Good job!

khahem says ...
Apr 24, 2015 @ 3:11pm

Very fun to play, the bouncing feathers are a really cool weapon and the music is amazing. Great work !

Apr 24, 2015 @ 5:52pm

Really enjoyable game, great graphics and music. A well polished entry

Dreauw says ...
Apr 26, 2015 @ 12:15pm

Nice job !

The controls are really good. It's pleasant to move/jump/wall-jump.
And the music is great too, I played for a while (because I'm bad and kept dying in the boss room >.<) and I didn't get annoyed by the audio.

Excelent entry, bravo :)

Squidtank says ...
Apr 27, 2015 @ 1:59am

Solid entry! Good feel for the controls, boss was just the right amount of challenge.

Langouste says ...
Apr 28, 2015 @ 3:53pm

Super game! I love it, thanks ;)

Xanjos says ...
Apr 28, 2015 @ 10:23pm

Well that was insanely fun. Great take on the theme and I love how the choice of weapons for both the player and the boss is random every time for extra replay-ability.

awestsecurity says ...
May 1, 2015 @ 12:59am

This was so much fun. Graphic, audio, and controls are great. Only bug I found was that I could shoot in more than one direction at the same time.

eastes says ...
May 1, 2015 @ 1:05am

Take a handful of 5 stars. I had a lot of fun playing this. Amazing for a fellow 48 hour compo.

Zanzlanz says ...
May 1, 2015 @ 1:15am

Thank you so much to all the new commenters and viewers <3 :D

CarlsonAndPeeters, haha yeah as I said I would have loved to make the weapons do unique and different things. But the funny thing is as I'm working on the post-compo version, I realize how impossible it is to balance the weapons and keep the game fun. So I think (even for the post compo), it's best that the weapons are just reskinned versions of the same thing. :)

Yep I'm aware of that bug awestsecurity xD It's really fun to find speedrun exploits like that. It was simple to fix in post-compo, but sadly it's not game breaking so it will remain in the LD version :)

Thanks for the handful of 5 stars, eastes! You're very kind! I love the compo, regardless of how stressful it is lol! ^v^

Mixer says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 5:36am

This was awesome! <3 all the gameplay.

+5 for cutscene.

ChuiGum says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 6:11am

Awesome music and graphics. Really fun game overall! Great job! I had fun. The controls weren't as hard as I thought it would be, so it was good!

Pietdagamer says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 7:27am

Amazing audio, nice gameplay. Well done.

bazld says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 9:03am

Super-playable and fun! love it.

Madball says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 9:17am

That was hilarious! Though I think that weapons should have unique abilities, changing their appearance only is kinda cheating.

For now, the game is kinda repetitive. It's for the first time, but I didn't last long enough to see all the variants. I think you should find more things to twist, for now I can imagine it being in our usual reality.

It took me some time to figure out that I could double-jump and wall-jump, but then it was very fun. I think you should make the boss room a bit less plain, and I'd like a pointer of some kind that tells me the direction of the boss, the bounciness of projectiles make them appear from any direction. Or you can use it as an advantage.

Overall, I enjoyed this game despite its length. The cutscene is great, though I though meeting a boss in the beginning is some kind of a trick. And, if you'll make a small post-mortem, I won't be satisfied, this game deserves a big one.

daredevildave says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 10:27am

Nice, smooth good fun.

flummox3d says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 10:52am

An all-around 5 for you! Awesome job! :)

taras_v says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 11:28am

It's awesome!

coderitual says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 11:30am

Good game:) I won in 2 minutes and 56 seconds. A Fine music and graphics style.

SteveSalmond says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 12:14pm

Awesome music, made the game for me. The controls feel great too. One thing - I found I could convince the gun to fire simultaneously in all four directions by holding down all the arrow keys one by one. This made the game a little bit easy, but still super fun. :)

jcsirron says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 4:24pm

I love the platforming! It took me a bit to get used to, but it was definitely a challenge once I got it. Good job!

gruhn says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 4:51pm

Whoa! What a great game. I loved the mechanics of movement and attack. Congratulations on the great visual work and game design.

jwin says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 5:29pm

Great fun and the music matches the mood of the game perfectly!

jackrugile says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 7:48pm

Holy crap, that was awesome! Such a fun, solid, complete game. You used your 48h wisely ;) It took me three tries to beat it, and I did it in 1:43.

I could definitely see this being successful if you continued development on it. Having multiple levels that are all boss fights would rule. I know that Titan Souls follows a similar concept. I haven't played it, but I think they stick with smaller battle zones. I feel like with your game and style, you could put a lot of emphasis on the level as well as the boss, just like you did here. You could ramp up new features with the boss and with level hazards, could be rad.

Anyway, I'm super impressed. The controls are so tight and easy to use. Well done.

Skiddings says ...
May 2, 2015 @ 10:38pm

That's really good!

IamAcoconut says ...
May 3, 2015 @ 3:02am


Tommyno222 says ...
May 4, 2015 @ 4:06pm

Totally awesome gameplay and music, great polished game! I played it multiple times and enjoyed playing it each time :)

Arche-san says ...
May 4, 2015 @ 5:35pm

Nice entry! Controls are smooth and there's a good strength feeling.
Good job!

Crowbeak says ...
May 6, 2015 @ 10:48am

I liked the projectiles bouncing off the walls thing, but the music is waaaaaaaaaay too loud. I am wearing headphones and that was not even a little bit pleasant when it started.

Zanzlanz says ...
May 6, 2015 @ 11:26am

Thanks so much everyone for your comments! :D

Madball - love the constructive criticism! As I mentioned earlier, unique abilities to weapons is nearly impossible to balance. I spent a few days working on that post compo, but it really isn't as amazing as I thought it would be from the original idea. Basically you can't tweak the speed, fire rate, or power, or else it doesn't feel as fun anymore. ;) I like your idea of a pointer to the boss - I might do that post compo. I'm not going to make a big game out of it, but thanks for your awesome optimism :D

Yep the shooting in multiple directions is a known bug SteveSalmond. :) Was easy to fix post compo. Use it to your advantage for speedrunning - someone was able to get 40 seconds I believe! The boss is actually able to rapid fire by tapping in two directions too, so I guess those two bugs balanced out!

Jackugile - now that would be a ton of work! Wish I had the motivation to go that route. Maybe some other time - the engine that I started would be pretty handy!

Crowbeak - Haha music is actually leveled just below the standard of 0 db (then reduce 80% in-game), so it's not actually loud. I'm guessing the high frequencies were amplified by your headphones. :) I took to the time to have a mute option during the compo as usual. XD

SledKnight says ...
May 7, 2015 @ 2:32am

Awesome little game!

Andy Gainey says ...
May 8, 2015 @ 4:14am

Pretty solid. The physics felt good, including the double jump and wall slide/jump. Although the single-height jump reduced the amount of control that I could exercise.

The diagonal wall reflection was pretty intriguing, but since the boss was almost always out of frame, I mostly just spammed the attack everywhere I went. If I was patient enough, I think I could have defeated the enemy without ever really engaging him directly. But that might just be a limit of the AI, which I'm sure would be difficult to actually make highly intelligent in only two days!

I was hoping that I could hold down two arrow keys and fire diagonally (thus allowing for vertical/horizontal walls to also participate in reflections, and diagonal walls to consume weapon fire), but I suppose that would require introducing a small amount of latency for keyboard tappers, because the game would have to wait for a few milliseconds after one arrow key was pressed to find out if another arrow key would be pressed soon enough afterward to justify a diagonal bullet. Though a cheap way out of that would be to spend those few frames starting the fire sound and drawing an omnidirectional muzzle flash that doesn't care which direction the bullet will eventually go.

Okay, I'm rambling now. Excellent competition entry!

HybridMind says ...
May 9, 2015 @ 7:55pm

Fun! Dug the music too a lot, really gets you into the action. Good humor on the intro setup.

Druid says ...
May 9, 2015 @ 8:51pm

Pretty amazing entry! Controls are little floaty, but overall is 5/5 !

Mechamew says ...
May 9, 2015 @ 9:42pm

This is really great. Definitely the most funny take on the theme in terms of both weapons. Solid, fun gameplay. An excellent entry in all categories!

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