Ludum Dare 34 — December 11th-14th, 2015 — Theme Tied: Two Button Controls, Growing

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by RockhopperGames - Compo Entry

Pikki has arrived in a strange place. Pikki does not belong here. Pikki must choose what to accept, and what to reject. Will Pikki be able to adapt?

A short game made for Ludum Dare 34, with the themes "Two Buttons" and "Growth." I drastically overscoped this one, and as a result Pikki will likely never see the surface, but I'm pleased with what I was able to achieve in the time limit. This is the first time I've been able to add music to my game, so feel free to mute that with the "M" button at any time.

Controls: The entire game can be controlled with the mouse.
Alternatively, you can use left and right, or "Z" and "X" to select buttons.
"M" mutes the game.
There's said to be a secret, forbidden button that can be found by true explorers... Those who are in a hurry can use "~" Whatever that means!

What will your Pikki become?

Downloads and Links




kmakai says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 12:36pm

Really interesting idea, it would be cool to see it developed further. I like the sound/music, and visual style a lot!

CMG says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 12:37pm

Nice music! Playing as a cell had a clean minimalist aesthetic. And the two different game halves were a neat juxtaposition.

aamatniekss says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 12:38pm

An interesting game! Fun to see all the variations you can evolve into! :)

justinooncx says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 2:51pm

Could've been an interesting game, I'm sure!

rplnt says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 3:02pm

Sometimes it's not obvious what would happen (I guess that makes sense though). Played it over several times, really like how it all looks, how you change (especially the first stage). Would be awesome to have smoother progression between those two stages (not complaining it's not there now, just that it might make sense to work at it :)). Good job.

Rogod says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 4:43pm

Hah, this isn't usually my style, but I liked it.
I got to the end of the second stage and presumably died.
Nice effort with the art and game style though.
Not sure the audio lives up but it didn't detract in my opinion. :D
Definitely my favorite thus far.

okusho says ...
Dec 14, 2015 @ 5:02pm

Pikki's growing is fantastic and full of surprises!! The music also nice!! :)

Dec 14, 2015 @ 5:31pm

Thanks for all the feedback so far! I wanted to have a third stage about life on land (and possibly a fourth stage about eating abstract concepts), and had a bunch of body parts already sprited up, but I couldn't get a full set together or implemented by the 48 hour limit. Once I've had a rest, I'll see about making a post comp version that goes further.

@rplnt: Do you think something like having the cell start multiplying, or swimming upwards might work for that?

@Rogod: Sorry, that was actually the end of what I managed to make for the competition. I tried coming up with a few possible ending screens, but by that point they all seemed to be a little cheesy, so I just went with a gentle return to the title for now. It was my first time writing music for a game, so that's something I still need to work on!

GFM says ...
Dec 15, 2015 @ 1:50am

Nice idea! It somewhat reminded my of "E.V.O.: Search for Eden".
You were able to get quite a few variations, from what I could see. I was able to get a jelly, a fish, an eel and an octopus.

The song was a great match to the first part of the game, with the simple graphics. And it wasn't even nearly as bad as you made it seems (with the "feel free to mute it anytime" XD). I quite liked it. :)

(Also, on a side note, thanks for the comment on my game! =D)

RhysD says ...
Dec 15, 2015 @ 9:07am

Cool idea, and the music was fine for your first go (I was too scared to add any to mine!).

I wasn't sure if there were any consequences for not eating vs eating. In the end I just assumed it was a cosmetic choice rather than anything else.

Was relaxing to play.

CalmKai says ...
Dec 15, 2015 @ 1:45pm


Dec 15, 2015 @ 3:54pm

@GFM: Ah! I still need to play that game! I'm sure that could be a useful reference!

@RhysD: It is almost entirely a cosmetic choice. If you refuse to eat anything, the game ends at the end of the first stage, but the injuries from eating trash are completely cosmetic. I wanted the game to be about choice, and since Pikki is so alien, trash isn't necessarily different from food. The negative connotations of trash are what cause Pikki to develop injuries, since the injuries are just negative connotations themselves.

marod says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 5:35pm

Great game! Interesting concept and music

monetai says ...
Dec 18, 2015 @ 6:30pm

simple game, simple graphics, simple music, but a little something that was good to feel

Hot Box Games says ...
Dec 20, 2015 @ 6:44pm

A relaxing, enjoyable experience! The music fit well and the art was very nice, good job!
Could be quite interesting with a lot more variations and challenges your pikki that your pikki had to overcome

Dec 21, 2015 @ 2:09pm

Actually nice, enjoy it, good luck.

OwT says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 5:56pm

Funny little game! Nice to see that different options actually lead to different results (I've played it 3 times).
The music is very enjoyable too!

Shide says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 5:58pm

Such an obscure and charming entry! An overall cutesy performance, all of it: annotation style, graphical choices, somewhat-like-a-voiceover. Amazingly personal game, it was so much fun to explore it!

Dec 28, 2015 @ 8:11pm

Great idea. But to me, it's very cheap to use two buttons only for making choice. However, it was interesting to beat it more than 1 time to see the difference in growing and evolution

Claire1605 says ...
Dec 28, 2015 @ 8:13pm

Definitely liked this better after playing it a second time and realising you could end up as different creatures, I think I was expecting to be able to move up and down as well, so first playthrough felt like there wasn't much to do - liked the variation in the end though! Nice graphics too :)

BlackBulletIV says ...
Jan 2, 2016 @ 10:53am

I like the concept, especially how the creature adapts to what you eat. Would've been nice to see it fleshed out more.

local minimum says ...
Jan 2, 2016 @ 3:19pm

Cool idea! It would have been great to have some clear feedback on all eat-decisions. If they were productive or not. But I get that would have been a lot of work. Maybe have the bad (if they existed) or neutral ones have a small screen-shake or such. The game kind of ended a little abruptly too, would suggest adding at least a end-screen. Great entry though.

Jan 2, 2016 @ 5:17pm

Thanks for all the continuing feedback! I am working on the next stage, though I don't think I'll have this done by the end of the rating period. I will continue to work on it, and see what I can make!

@Maroovan/@Claire1605: I spent a lot of time considering the control scheme. Up/Down are still two buttons, and actionscript has easy to implement collision detection, so it was definitely on the table. I ended up deciding to go with the yes/no choices because I wanted to make the choice element clearer. If I had provided up/down controls, and introduced even the slightest layer of difficulty into reaching the objects, then I'd run the risk of gamifying the choices. If a player felt they had to collect all the objects because it was a challenge, then my game would have failed. That is why I went with the yes/no choice system.

@local minimum: I didn't intend for there to be any "bad" decisions, apart from refusing everything. Even eating trash, which causes cuts to appear on Pikki, isn't supposed to be a wrong decision, the injuries it creates are as much a part of Pikki as teeth or eyes. This was something I am hoping to expand on more in the third and fourth sections. I do understand your point about feedback, though. I would like to create some way of depicting eaten objects, but that wasn't in the time I had in the Dare.

Brightstar says ...
Jan 3, 2016 @ 12:19am

You are what you eat. Great game.

dreamlogician says ...
Jan 3, 2016 @ 12:26am

I was pretty confused for the entire first section, but I was still thoroughly enjoying the experience. It was fun to just randomly click the buttons while trying to discern what the choices actually did. Once the game moved into a more recognizable context, it was actually slightly less intriguing. I liked the sense of mystery I felt before I figured out what was going on! But it was still fun to see the results: "You're a squid now!" ;)

Jan 4, 2016 @ 5:21pm

Interesting and great concept! I liked the artwork. I would of loved to see more because the whole idea was really unique. The music and atmosphere was also very nice, I liked how it evolved into colour. Great stuff!

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