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A jam submission

RunToTheStairsView game page

a dungeon racing game with roguelike elements
Submitted by Gerhard Wonner — 2 days, 3 hours before the deadline
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RunToTheStairs's page


CriteriaRankScore*Raw Score

Ranked from 3 ratings. Score is adjusted from raw score by the median number of ratings per game in the jam.

Judge feedback

Judge feedback is anonymous and shown in a random order.

  • Run to the Stairs is a tidy, small game that adds some nice gamifications around a simple central mechanic. And a quick note up front before discussing the game proper, the author has done a lot around the central game to add to the experience of play: there is a long and interesting description of the mechanics on the game’s page, there are clear information panels in the game itself, and the author has also implemented a sort of bespoke leader board on the itch page, all of which add to the experience.

    The core mechanic of this game really worked for me – using diagonal movement and player decisions to outsmart pathfinding AI. I also think that it was wise of the author to focus on refining this central premise, rather than trying to add too many bells and whistles. The inclusion of the “fastest” line, the granular calculation of racers’ speed, and the simplicity of the power ups all contribute in a clear way to the central experience of racing. I did find myself wishing for slightly more visual polish. The choice of typeface for the ascii-characters I found particularly sharp and vertical, and the colors could have been chosen with more care. More substantially, because the game hinges so completely on moving across corners, some visual indication of the grid would have helped ease the eyes, rather than having rooms and walls exist as just large contiguous sections of black and grey. Regardless, this game is definitely worth a play.

  • This one is quite original. And addictive. And not as simple as you might thing from the description. The only feature that is IMO absolutely required, but missing is the ability to pan the view around. The game is technically all about finding an optimal path that short enough and have number of collectibles maxed. But you can only rely on the very restricted field of view and pathfinder. I wouldn't mind at the very least have some kind of predicted pathfinder, see where it will path if I'll go there. Right now deviation from the main route is always a gamble.  There can be different path from that nook, then you are fine, or it can be dead end and then you are screwed. There were roguelikes without combat, there were roguelikes about getting from point A to point B as fast as possible, but in this format, probably not. Let's call it moderately innovative. But I think there could be much more to the game. More upgrades, some way to hinder AI players... As much as the game tries to squeeze into formal rouguelike definition, I think it is too shallow  to be called true roguelike.

  • An interesting take on the RL genre, and a well executed one. Little techniques and tricks here and there to get the advantage and good use on the nitro makes it very fun and interesting to play. I would say that it feels overwhelming the more you play by placing the enemy units way ahead and also giving them an increased scaling speed over you that can be really hard to beat. Strategy can take you so far, since you can't see far ahead to calculate better paths and if upgrades worth your position investment. Overall I had a great time playing and it's a concept I would love to see improved on and grow into an actual game.

Successful or Incomplete?


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This concept is very interesting also tough very... I would be interested to see if this game could evolve afterward. But who knows! Its an interesting world.


Thank you for your nice comment. I consider to implement the following things:

  1. Some kind of limited wall-destruction: Maybe I could introduce another collectible item called "drill" which enables you to remove one wall element by bumping it. I think the drill must be consumed when being used. But analog to the nitros the player can collect many of them, allowing him to dig longer tunnels by investing the corresponding amount of drills.
  2. Support of a tileset. Maybe optional since some people could prefer the clearer ASCII-Look.
  3. Support of additional keysets to better allow players who are lacking a numpad to enjoy this game.

Pleas feel free to suggest other things to be considered!


I think enemy types could be fun.

Developer (1 edit)

Thank you for your proposal. I will consider what enemy types could match best to the concept. But maybe it would be hard to balance them.