Ludum Dare 35 — April 15th-18th, 2016 — Theme: Shapeshift

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Strata: The Shapeshifting Microworld

by AtomicPair - Jam Entry

In Strata, you must find your way out of a shapeshifting microworld by indirectly manipulating walls, crawling through tunnels, and avoiding a squishy death! This game combines several of the other LD35 theme suggestions in a 2.5D first-person engine to produce a patient, if not shifty, experience.

Although the core engine was ported from another recent project, everything you see was created solo, from scratch, in the past three days. Unfortunately, the engine porting work used up most of the time I had for this event (doesn't it always?), so there are no sounds or texture mapped walls in this version. Next time, we'll see if we can pack in more features!

NOTE: This version is for desktop web browsers using a full keyboard.

Haxe, Luxe, Pinta, and Vim were all used to create this shifty little gem.

Please report any bugs below, and thanks for playing!

Downloads and Links


Ratings

#878Graphics(Jam)2.71
#898Innovation(Jam)2.59
#908Theme(Jam)2.76
#982Mood(Jam)2.29
#1036Overall(Jam)2.65
#1053Fun(Jam)2.35
#1808Coolness32%

Comments

ziege says ...
Apr 19, 2016 @ 2:42pm

Not bad. The controls where a bit uncomfortable for me, I would prefer turning on A/D

LeReveur says ...
Apr 20, 2016 @ 6:58pm

Interresting. I wish you to have more time to polish the next time. :)

kabel says ...
Apr 21, 2016 @ 5:42am

The controls are uncomfortable? Why not stick with WASD and mouse for turning? I am not sure if there was any shapeshifting or interaction, pressing Space didn't do anything.

anissen says ...
Apr 21, 2016 @ 6:38pm

Very nice game! I'm really loving the look and feel of the game - like a puzzle version of Wolfenstein 3D. Unfortunately, I couldn't find a door after the 3+1 sliding blocks :/ Good job!

AtomicPair says ...
Apr 24, 2016 @ 8:45am

Thanks for the feedback and kind words, everyone!

@kabel (Small spoiler, but) did you try pressing space close to any of the three darker-colored walls in the first room?

dj_pale says ...
Apr 24, 2016 @ 5:46pm

Interesting concept - would have loved more feedback (sfx/gfx) when the manipulation was succesful or failed.

LinealGames says ...
Apr 24, 2016 @ 10:21pm

I felt like I was actually in the game Great job!

Solifuge says ...
Apr 24, 2016 @ 10:37pm

A nice simple maze-runner. The theme idea was neat, but didn't seem to happen often enough to make the gameplay feel strongly connected with the Theme. The lack of textures (or even changing colors) hurt when trying to create a sense of motion, or help me navigate and remember landmarks and corridors in the maze. For input, using WASD and arrows was a little awkward as well. I'd suggest WASD for Movement and QE for turning. Faster turning and movement would help a lot as well, since the gameplay was rather slow for a game heavily focused on maze navigation, and trial and error.

Honestly, I found the pace of the game and the lack of apparent progress (and the lack of a way to see what progress I'd made) rather frustrating. Games meant to be played slowly or meditatively are fine, but it's also important for game developers to be aware of and respect their player's investment of time in playing, too! A birds-eye map of the tiles you've explored so far would help create a sense of progress; even just a tiny box of nearby walls and tiles would help in navigating and remembering where you've explored if you wanted to preserve the feeling of being lost. Also, when progress isn't being made, it helps to give players small bits of positive feedback or encouragement, like the "reward" of getting a new song in the background, a new level mechanic like the automatically sliding walls, some new visual elements to see, or even just a new color of wall! Part of game-making is convincing the players that your game is worth playing for a bit, and will be fun, interesting, challenging, or otherwise engaging.

That all said, thanks for putting this together. Keep making cool stuff!

DevelopTech says ...
Apr 26, 2016 @ 10:23am

Nice work. I would prefer to use the mouse or the A and D keys to turning the player, but still the game dont feel unconfortable. Love the "classic look" of the game.

Gamepopper says ...
Apr 26, 2016 @ 12:31pm

Simple but well executed. Good job on the 2.5D level work!

suppi says ...
Apr 29, 2016 @ 11:15am

interesting, but it was pretty hard visually to understand how the walls are moving and where. I'm not sure what could have made it easier. I think a top down 2D view could work better for this idea, or perhaps it just needed textures on the wall? i don't know.

nice job on the engine and congrats for completing a game for LD! :)

damrem says ...
May 9, 2016 @ 11:58am

Interesting idea, but it's difficult to know what's happening to the maze from the inside.

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