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

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by yuotta - Jam Entry

Auxochrome a game where you set out to restore balance by collecting chromophore pixels. By doing so, chomophores will size you up to the giant auxochrome, restore the land to color and save the world!

When you start the game, shoot the boss and watch as you restore the land to what it once was! If the boss retaliates, kill the minions and collect there chromophore's to restore your own color, and when you have enough grow in size!

W,A,S,D : Move
Left-Click: Shoot
Right-Click: Run
Z:Upgrade (when upgrade is available)
Shoot the ground to do a double jump while in air!

Best played in fullscreen!

Downloads and Links




Enchae says ...
Dec 15, 2015 @ 9:55pm

Not bad. The constantly tilting camera was a little disorienting, but other than that the graphics were nice, the sound worked well, and the atmosphere was interesting.

Solid entry.

Yword says ...
Dec 16, 2015 @ 7:28am

Very interesting idea and gameplay! I think maybe it will be more challenging to make the minions keep spawning (like Super Crate Box) and make them easier to killed. Well done!

xodene says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 4:17am

Pretty awesome atmosphere, I really liked the graphics and sound. But I wish the enemies, especially at the beginning, were a little easier to kill. It felt like they needed to many hits to knock down or the collision boxes were too small. So it really slowed the pace down of what feels like should be a quicker paced game.

yuotta says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 4:33am

@Enchae Thank you! I wish I had put in place a way to disable music, sfx and the camera tilt for those who didn't want to. Trace and I are going to add them in because we want to make a full version!

@Yword Thank you, I agree completely. We had made a full game before but nothing like this and all of the end bits were thrown in with 6 hours to go (waves/boss battle) and even still, this game needs hours of balancing to be done to it.

@xodene Also, totally agree. It's WAY too slow and I can't believe I let it publish this way. In the version I have since continued, that was the first thing I fixed and it's way more fun. I am still super proud of what Trace and I did in less than 72 hours here, it was a whole process that really opened our eyes. I wish we had planned it out better, but the mechanics we tried to get across for the theme (the bigger you are the worse you are but the better your bullet damage is) was our main focus and all of that took way longer than I thought to program.

Thank you all for the really awesome comments! I look forward to releasing a better version of this game in the future!

Best regards,

Henez says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 4:46am

Gameplay is standard but fun. Not really sure how it ties with either theme. Sound and music are nice and go well with the visuals. My index finger got tired pretty quickly from shooting, Since there is no downside to not clicking perhaps allow the fire button to be held down? Well done

SpringCabal says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 4:47am

Good graphics/mood, annoying clicking/camera, too much time to kill enemies.

dlowe says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 4:54am

Very cute and very well executed game; I'm impressed! Unfortunately way too much clicking for my poor wrists to handle. Automatic rapid-fire, or else *significantly* less hits required to kill enemies, would make the game much more playable for me. Thanks for the game!

TRAB says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 5:03am

I enjoyed the boss's taunting! I didn't enjoy the tedium of my woefully ineffective attacks, or the constantly-shifting size and jump abilities of my character. Giving the game more conveyance could really make it excellent! The graphics were pretty cool too.

richardboegli says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 5:05am

It was fun for a while, but got very repetitive.

Need more variety of weapons and enemies.
Space for jump would have helped me.
Upgrading to become bigger seemed to be a hindrance as I couldn't jump up to the boss platform anymore.

aeveis says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 5:20am

I liked the audio, added a to the mood. One thing I wasn't sure of how much health I had. At first it seemed like touching the little guys didn't really hurt me and I could jump on them, but eventually I died and one touch then killed me. good work overall!

yuotta says ...
Dec 17, 2015 @ 5:45am

@Henez If you collect all the pixels and hit Z you double in size. Then your bullets become stronger, you slower and your enemies harder. I realize the big flaw in this game as it stands is:

1. Enemies are too hard (needed to make it so the 16x16 enemies are easy mode, spawn a lot of them and then wave 2 have bigger enemies which are harder

2. Left click and left click and left click to keep shooting. It is quite repetitive and it does hurt your finger after a while! All in the learning process!

Thank you all for your comments! I hope we can address these and balance this to be a full game soon!

cubicme says ...
Dec 20, 2015 @ 4:37am

fun little game! nice job. clicking too much was annoying at first, but it was okay after a while (specially with two finger tapping on track pad). is it a bug that after you upgrade too much you become small again or was it your intention?

Sim00n says ...
Dec 20, 2015 @ 4:43am

It's a nice little jam game. I like the graphics and the feel of the world. I don't like that fact that there's a huge boss sitting up top, he's probably 50x the size of the small little fellow (the first enemy), yet it still takes me 5+ minutes to kill it. This immediately makes me think the game will be drawn out. Nice submission though.

Stuntddude says ...
Dec 20, 2015 @ 5:19am

Nowhere near as good as the art makes it look at a glance. I'm not one to mince words, and this game is really, truly terrible. I mean it.

Firstly, the font is horribly broken, and it makes the "options" screen (actually a tutorial screen, there are no options at all) virtually impossible to read.

As for the actual gameplay, there's not a lot to like here. The audio is too abrasive and all but gives me a headache, the 800% screenshake takes about a whole second to become really obnoxious, the controls feel horribly janky and oversensitive/undersensitive depending on your upgrade level, the collision is inconsistent (am I supposed to be able to walk up the ramps or are they just poorly conveyed half-height platforms? Who the hell knows!), there are doors that you can't actually go through (why are they even there???), the absurd amount of repetitive spam-clicking and kiting it takes to kill a single enemy makes my wrist hurt, and being constantly swarmed by those tiny little buggers that get stuck in walls and become increasingly frustrating to hit as you "upgrade" (a.k.a. become larger and slower and get a shorter jump - exactly the opposite of what I wanted) is the opposite of fun no matter how you look at it. It is supremely annoying.

Add to all that the fact that nothing in this game really seems to make any sense (why am I collecting the blood of these blasted zergs? What is going on with my health bar? why does my upgrade counter seem to go down to 1 and then back up to 4 if I don't collect enough blood in time? Why does the boss register damage at some times but not others? It all feels like an unpleasant fever dream), and you get a wholly sub-par experience. Maybe if you had more time to flesh this out into a fuller game, explain what's going on better, and fix what's broken, it could be something truly fun, because the core mood isn't bad in and of itself, but as it stands, the execution fails on almost every level. The only thing I can really praise about this is the art, and even that is betrayed to a degree by the overzealous screenshake and the constant motion-sickness-inducing tilting.

Dec 20, 2015 @ 6:44am

really well made! congrats.

PeteDS says ...
Dec 20, 2015 @ 2:18pm

Really good job man! Solid game

Dec 21, 2015 @ 6:42am

Good game but need more polishing. Game elements on the screen very small so it would be great to upscale it a bit. Also i wasn't like the sound it a bit annoying as for me but maybe it just personal. In general it is a really good LD shot.

shadow64 says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 7:26am

I'm giving thorough feedback on this because you asked for it in your post. Normally I wouldn't be this detailed. I like the ideas here, but the execution is rough.

The controls could use some work. Personally I think the movement speed is a little too fast and the gun should definitely not require constant clicking. Since you're not limiting ammo, there's no reason for it not to be a constant flow with a small delay. The clicking is especially tiresome due to how much health the enemies have.

Lower the enemy health and change the numbers from always being 99 for the next upgrade to having it scale. Each upgrade should be harder to get to than the last, and also it should be a desirable upgrade. Losing your jump kinda sucks, a better/newer/cooler weapon would be nice to compensate. I also ran into a problem where I never reached my "ultimate form" and instead reverted to the original state. I tried going through again and hit the same issue. My wrist/finger hurt too much to keep playing for a third shot.

I like the stuff that the big boss says, but I spent a lot of time zoomed in, so it was sort of lost on me.

I like the chip tune sounds and music, but there's too much crunch to it and that constant popping sound makes it hard for people to listen to and hard on speakers.

The art is fine, but I agree with the person who said the doors don't make sense. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out where to go before I figured out that shooting the little guys gave me health and that I didn't need to go anywhere. Strive for clarity in your level design. Doors to nowhere will tend to confuse people.

Going back to the picking up the health/upgrade juice/blood, separate the health into health drops. Don't make it the same number as the upgrade - it gets confusing. Especially since you want the upgrade to go down to 0 but aesthetically it's strange to want your health at 0.

It's a good idea and I think there's a really fun game there, but right now those are the major points I would work on before trying to add levels or anything else that would expand the game length-wise.

Hope this helps and sorry about the length. Congrats on finishing!

Jwatt says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 7:29am

Had to play this in fullscreen to make anything out of the text or sprites. You've got liberal screen space - use it!

Okay, those little creeps take like a cosmological amount of time to kill. It comes across as an artifical way to stretch out the game, as fighting them isn't very dynamic. Would've hoped for some variety here, as it's kind of the only thing you do in this game.

I feel like the audio was a nuisance more than something that complements the gameplay. So honestly I can't give that aspect more than 2 stars at best.

Gyfis says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 9:09am

Nice game! Enjoyed playing this a lot! Thanks! What I'd change is the ratio between sfx and background music volume, and also the little dots were pretty hard to kill!

pvtroswold says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 2:47pm

I came for the cotton headed ninny-muggins. I stayed because this was a unique idea for a game. I liked it!

Weeping Rupee says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 2:53pm

The art style here is great-- I love your use of color. When I read the description and saw the screen shots I was thinking this was going to be a fez clone. I'm glad it wasnt, bc it was pretty damn fun. The best strategies seem to be to jump either fire completely vertically to the chromophore fall on you, you just entirely side to side while moving toward the enemy. Honestly, there isnt much strategy here, and it takes a while to get going. I think the players base dmg needs to be higher (my forearm is actually sore from clicking so much, haha)

Additionally I did not exactly understand the upgrade system/when I was taking damage. It seemed like as long as I was being offensive I never died. I actually just stopped playing the first time thru just to see if I could die.

These things aside, I really enjoyed this one.

g12345 says ...
Dec 21, 2015 @ 6:41pm

This was a pretty fun game. Nice graphics too.

If there was one thing I'd change, then Auto-firing would be nice.

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