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

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PowerShift: The People's Republic of United Democristan

by nintendoeats - Compo Entry

DO NOT RUN IN FULL SCREEN OR CHANGE THE RESOLUTION! IT ONLY WORKS PROPERLY IN 1024 BY 768. (And also, you really should skim the manual)

I was inspired by the second half of the theme, because **** shapes. My interpretation is based on shifting loyalty, public opinion and power.

You play as the president of The People's Republic of the Union of Democristan(PRoUD). Your objective is to either crush the rebels or escape with over $2,000,000 in an offshore account. To do this you will need to watch your people and bodyguard carefully, because they will betray you if you do not rule with an iron hand. If you aren't careful, the rebels will punch through your top commanders and put you on trial for your deeds.

The game looks complicated...well, it is a bit but not nearly so much as it looks. To counter that I have put together a little document describing the actions and what they do. I would advise giving it a skim, but once you know what the meters mean it's pretty common sense. The key mechanic is to watch what people are saying. If you believe that a civilian or soldier is not loyal to you, they must be dealt with quickly. Attacking those loyal to you will harm your cause however, so be careful.

P.S. If you are attacked but nothing happens, that is not a bug. I didn't have time to code a check to prevent the animation from happening when the rebels can't attack you. Sorry. I'm also sorry that the music sucks, it isn't up to my standards for this sort of thing but I lost over an hour figuring out that not-bug. That came out of audio time.

I hope you enjoy! Leave a substantial comment and I will review your game in kind.

-Made a change which may reduce crashes during rebel assaults.
-Set variable for attack cooldowns. Game balance is no longer sodomized.

-Fixed a bug which prevented the endgame screen appearing when the player is defeated.

Downloads and Links




Przekop says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 10:22am

Wow I didn't know what i was doing, but it was fun (how??). Crushed the rebels with smile on my face.

CasualCat says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 4:05pm

The music was catchy, and it presented it's self well at the beginning. But then I was immediately overwhelmed when the game started. I had no clue what I was doing, I think a tutorial would have been nice (unless I missed it). But it looked promising; it seemed very complex and well thought out.

ohmmus says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 4:29pm

I'm also in the camp of i had no idea what I was doing and had fun. I'm not sure why I couldn't stop playing... Maybe it was because one of my officers defected and I wanted to kill all the rebels out of anger... Great work on the design of this, and nice interpretation of the theme!

FerraWare says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 7:23pm

Really weird game, it took me some time to get to understand what was going on, but i think i got it :P

Definetly going for that Humor votes!

TLansdale says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 8:14pm

Very confusing, but I like what you were going for! The music is great.

pixzleone says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 9:11pm

Nice twist on the theme! :D

jdmazz says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 9:16pm

I was able to play through it and flee offshore very easily. Thanks for making a guidebook. Very thorough game in all area other than graphics. Audio was great and helped the mood score. Good job!

Jod says ...
Apr 18, 2016 @ 9:20pm

Loved the music and the little textbytes. I believe someone lost weight and I was like: "Good for you buddy!" The sound-fx were pleasingly old school and the graphics were actually pretty good.

As for improvements: Making an introduction level would have been a good thing, but that's been said in comments above mine. I think working on the user interface would add a lot to the game.

johnasebok says ...
Apr 19, 2016 @ 2:56am

This is the first game i run into that the developer was kind enough to supply a manual for. Thank you :). Not only did the inclusion of a manual help but it showed that there was a bit more thought other than the typical "Me bash button, Me blow up thing, Me pew pew". I didn't score high on the theme cause not much shape shifting going on unless yo count the many blood stains I left of the rebel scum.

I had it stop on me a few times when attacking. But other than that it was enjoyable.

iapc says ...
Apr 19, 2016 @ 3:44pm

Fun, unique game. Not really related to the theme, so I can't give you points for that.

It's a bit hard to know what you should be doing. Also, you should have made a different sound effect for the female underlings ;).

Afendar says ...
Apr 19, 2016 @ 7:42pm

Intressting game. Grphisms are basics but engine is here. good job. Juste one thing i cannot found shapeshift in the game.

James Coote says ...
Apr 19, 2016 @ 8:31pm

I struggled with the game's ending. I lost all my underlings in the first round and from then on, was just waiting to see if the rebels ever won. They kept beating me in combat, but never toppled me. I assume I just had to keep the rebel civilians in -ve territory and embezzle enough to win. But that felt a bit easy. Equally wasn't quite sure if I could ever reduce support for the rebels enough to defeat them counting aside combat/war.

The tax sliders worked quite well, as did the balancing between stashing money and trying to keep people in line.

If anything, the game kinda went on a bit long without me feeling like I was about to win or lose. I only played it through once, but still took quite a while.

whilefun says ...
Apr 20, 2016 @ 12:30pm

I was doing fine then rebel LeBron James came in and cleaned house. Making a game with a complex rules set is not an easy task, so congratulations on making a game like this. The music was nice.

dringy says ...
Apr 20, 2016 @ 5:00pm

This was a very complex game, even with the pdf you included I got very confused on why you would recruit more people. Regardless I did enjoy it and somehow managed to win. Well done.

rodobodolfo says ...
Apr 21, 2016 @ 9:17am

That was really fun and more fleshed out could turn into a really good game. Great job! Down with the rebel scum!

Casey Jordan says ...
Apr 21, 2016 @ 2:54pm

I'm a fan of Paradox Interactive games, and this touched on a lot of similar aesthetics. (Fantasy, projection, a lot happening in player-head-space, etc...)

I played numerous times, each time altering my approach, not in an effort to win but to explore a different narrative arc. There's a LOT in this tidy little system.

I can't help but love this. We have a similar design philosophy, so I'm a little biased. But shamelessly so.

One bit of actionable criticism: I wish an in-fight was triggered on drag/drop, not consecutive clicks. As thematically appropriate as being able to accidentally trigger an in-fight is, it's frustrating. Cx

You're a design genius. You deliberately craft bounded experiences and allow players to explore themselves through the tools you create.

I've got mah eye on you.

jonnopon3000 says ...
Apr 21, 2016 @ 7:41pm

Took a little while to get used to the mechanics, but this is a mark of a great depth for a game made in a weekend. Nice work.

KairosXIII says ...
Apr 22, 2016 @ 12:00am

Great idea and use of theme. Music really helped to set the mood.

Pixelaborate says ...
Apr 22, 2016 @ 1:05am

Took awhile for me to understand what was going on, and even once I finally got a grip, it was still incredibly involved. It was fun to just click on people and make them fight and stuff though. If it was dumbed down for a layman such as myself it would be a totally awesome little time-waster!

candlesan says ...
Apr 22, 2016 @ 8:11pm

Cool concept.

Interface says ...
Apr 23, 2016 @ 4:51am

A bit complicated to figure out (needing a PDF to explain is not a good sign :-)) but ultimately it's not too bad to get it. Music sets a good mood.

Oliver_MB says ...
Apr 23, 2016 @ 10:31am

Great approach to the theme. Good job!

Hempuli says ...
Apr 27, 2016 @ 11:03am

A very ambitious idea! Keeping the people happy was relatively easy and I seemed to be doing well until a single overleveled rebel leader came and wiped all my units. I'm not totally sure how I could've avoided that since I can't directly attack a given rebel leader. Also once a level 1 unit of mine beat a level 4 rebel, I wonder why that is.

Crefossus says ...
Apr 29, 2016 @ 6:59am

This is a pretty intense game as far as scope goes. It's very interesting to test out different strategies. I think I've played two builds - one where you can't die, and the other where you can and the attack cooldown is functioning (must be 1.0 vs 1.2).

It seems like the difficulty can be overbearing without reason randomly. If you recruit people for almost every slot (and drag them up) you can still get destroyed on the first enemy attack. However it doesn't always happen and I haven't figured out how it works. The guide says "all three rows if there are enough rebels" but the game just started so I'm not "a jerk" quite yet.

I wish the war didn't take so long (and would play in the background) so I could play some more. Maybe I'll come back to it and play with the source. Anyhow I beat it at least one way! Horray. Perhaps attacking disloyal civilians makes the big difference.

I like the feedback overall with the sfx, and the vo is quite funny. The meter in the top right doesn't seem to do anything (if you tax and increase speed it stays the same as far as I can tell)

Overall an interesting time.. glad to have played.

TheCain says ...
May 6, 2016 @ 11:05pm

I liked the game, but you should work on it some more. Make the interface more clear for one. I'm still not sure what the number in the top left of the soldiers was, because mine disappeared on all the soldiers (I'm assuming it was their level).
I really hope you do make a post compo.

euske says ...
May 8, 2016 @ 7:04am

I recruited a bunch of civilians and used them as an exp grinder. I must be a good tyrant.

dollarone says ...
May 9, 2016 @ 2:03am

Thanks so much for the guide :)

While I managed to win by fleeing fairly easily, winning by elimination was much harder. Not sure if I won by exposing a bug or if it as intended, but hey!

Very original and interesting game. A lot of information to take in and consider, but that makes it interesting in my eyes.

The music fits well and adds to the mood. I like it, good work.

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