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Ampersand Game Studios

A member registered Apr 03, 2018 · View creator page →

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A super big thank you from everyone at Ampersand! It makes us really happy to know that you and your friend enjoyed the game that much :D

The intensity can definitely sneak up on you! The idea was to try and replicate the feeling of bullet hell games, and other games similar to Super Hexagon - where the very fact that you're surviving and extra second, and inching closer towards a highscore, really gets the adrenaline pumping!

Thanks for playing! That's actually a neat idea. Do you mean half the planets still on screen when you lose?

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We're really glad you've been enjoying the game! Thank you so much for this review, it really means a lot to us :D

The Switch came about as a happy accident when we were developing the Wormholes, and has definitely become our favourite way to mess with other players!

We've found that 4 players seems to be the best balance of fun and mess. Past 4 players we've found that the start of the round tends to be more hectic, but then quickly ends up with 2-4 players left racing for most of the round.
We'd love to know how it turns out for you!

Thanks again for playing Star Escape!

We're looking into this as a potential idea for the game!
Thanks again for playing the game, and the feedback you've given us

Thank you for playing the game, and giving us this feedback!
If you haven't given it a go already, you might enjoy the free mobile version of the game for iOS and Android, which is currently only singleplayer.

The idea of offering a more coop oriented mode is a great idea! However, we'd want to keep an element of competition. Do you think a team based gamemode would work? With surviving team members able to somehow revive dead ones.

The stocking up could definitely be a fun, if it was kept as something that gave multitasking an upper hand. However making it be the only way to get through some planets can feel a little unfair. So by making it an optional advantage, instead of a necessary solution, I think you'd get the most out of it!

A fun game, which appears simple at first, but reveals itself to be quite the challenge! The crafting desk and the dragging and dropping reminded me a lot of Papers Please.
I thought the visual language used was very clear and instructive -  the only thing that wasn't clear to me at first( and which caused my first game over :S )was that you had to keep clicking the triangle to get a triangle piece to appear. Perhaps that stands out as it's active, and the square and the cirlce are passive.
The music and sound effects were great too!
Really liked the particle effects for the square, and the fact that you couldn't keep it! That was a super interesting way to test the the player. Although the situation where the planet you arrive at doesn't have any squares, but you need them to craft whatever the alien wants, emphasises the issue I found with the game: sometimes you can't do anything. Whilst in those sitations I found myself just stocking up on shapes - which feels like it should never replace the main objective of crafting for the alien. It also means that when you've got no fuel, and can't craft for the alien, you've essentially already lost the game but have to wait for it (unless there's something I'm missing!)
But overall there's a very promising premise here, and with a few tweaks I think it would be awesome!

Thank you for those super kind words :D
We had a tonne of fun working on the game, and making the gunplay feel juicy and impactful! When balancing the upgrades we leaned more towards over the top effects and power, as oposed to fairness, and we think it's turned out quite fun.
You're definitely right about the upgrades. It needs something extra in order to make the whole turret building process slightly less passive. We're currently thinking about what we can do for that! 

Managed to beat it after a few attempts, and stayed with Failpostive!

I had a tonne of fun with this game! Getting bigger realising I could roll over enemies was really exciting. Unlocking more of the map and putting the bigger battles into different perspectives worked as a great mechanic. I definitely see a lot of potential here for a larger game!

I really liked the premise and the use of the Alien theme, where the humans are the aliens from your perspective!
I was slightly confused about the controls and how to properly interact with the game. The recipes and text often disappeared before I could fully appreciate them. Perhaps they could stick around for longer, or have a "Press X to continue" system.

I really liked the visuals for the fish: they're really creative. I particularly like the pacman-fish (What's its name? I didn't actually get the job to catch one). In terms of controls, I think that control the fishing line is a bit too slow: maybe making it a bit snappier would be a nice quality of life improvement.

I think you nailed all the themes we had: aliens, expiry, and crafting. The character stats and the like are quite interesting, as was range of varied weapons you provided the ability to make (though balancewise I think the detonator was far and away the best, as you said the game still has some balancing issues).

Cool! I think pursuing it will be fun, it's got a lot of potential. Would love to have more Phil the Angel commentary as you play-could provide both guidance and humor.

This game took me by surprise. I was expecting a restaurant in space simulator, and although I sort of right, I was pleasantly surprised by the fact I got to shoot aliens with a grilled cheese sandwich. I thought the alien artwork was great, and I loved the little twist in the game. This game was a bundle of laughs, and although I think crafting should be a bit faster, I enjoyed it thoroughly.

This game made me laugh a lot, I had a lot of fun, from the intro to the gameplay. One thing I had a problem with was that the order of combinations when building things mattered: I think it wasn't necessary given the simplicity of the game. That said, it also showcased a really good part of the game which was you provided a pretty comprehensive guidebook that cleared up these misclarities (and the guidebook was also entertainingto read)!

This game was very visually satisfying.  A good feeling of character progression, thanks to the sword building mechanic. The voice acting at the beginning was great, and kept me engaged with smurp's story.
It's an easy to pick up game with a simple, concise explanation of controls.
I found manoeuvring Pompom so he would not get stuck was sometimes annoying - perhaps  some sort of pathing is implemented for him. I would also suggest increasing his speed, and player's speed aswell, as it would make exploring more engaging.
Another suggestion would be to focus on the combat. Upon engaging the nocts, the music changes to an epic, combat theme, which I really liked, but the combat itself wasn't very exciting. It doesn't feel like I'm hitting anything, perahps because of the lack of animation.

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Thanks! We always try to find an excuse for giving the player some companions, and this game was all about building them!

The card crafting mechanic is really interesting, with lots of tactical potential.
I also really liked the music in the background, I think it fit it very well.
The only problem I had with it gameplaywise is that you can't "take back" a card once you've played it. I found this to be a problem for the movement cards, because you can only see the grid you move on when you have the card played. So when I predicted a distance to be longer/shorter than it actually was, I was stuck with it.

A great game. I definitely wasn't expecting it to be as much of a thinker as it turned out to be!
I went from recklessly parading around the map to spending minutes on each turn.
Oh, and I loved spacebar to blink :D

Controlling the ship was nice and fluid, and scrolling to control the throttle felt great! Having to go into your inventory to keep equiping ammo became a little annoying, and kept breaking the nice flow of the game. Perhaps R or another input could be used for loading in the next item automatically.

I thought this was a really cool game! I found the recipe tablet a little awkward to use, and often it was difficult to find the exact recipe I was looking for - perhaps the recipe for what you currently need to make could be on the HUD.

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Thanks! We put a lot of effort into making the the gun feel good to shoot, with solid heavy bullets

Fun game, really liked the concepts and mechanics you used in it: the visual way you demonstrated the countdown until your death via the reduction of the size of the ball was really cool. I also really liked that each area did have some ways to use powerups from other areas. I think the game could benefit from some checkpoints, particularly because since you can't see the entire map at once sometimes you have to run in one direction and hope medkits are there. If there aren't any, you die and have to go back.

Combing different materials and finding out what they make is quite fun and exciting!
Unfortunately the artwork for each object made it difficult to tell them apart - resulting in having to go through each item many times. Adding colour might really help with this!

The starting music was extremely loud, and the menu functions don't seem to work. I also wasn't sure what to do in the game-I saw the flashing sword at the crafting table but didn't know what to do. One thing I did find very cool though was the day/night indicator at the bottom.

Cool concept with the tribe management system. One problem I had was that I couldn't find out the recipe for any weapon besides the spear, and didn't know the relative difference between them. Might be cool to have gotten them unlocked eventually so I have a better idea of my options.

Never finishing the to do list - the curse of gamejams!

Excellent game on every front, and very polished! Great visuals and game feel,  which really get you into the beat.
I really enjoyed the cute story with Failpositive :)
The boss fight I found to be quite difficult, and at times it seemed like taking damage was innevitable? Although it could be that I just don't have enough inner rhythm!

Really liked the music!
I found the text was a little hard to read at times :(

Excellent audio, could listen to the music all day! It works amazingly with the visuals to create a mysterious atmosphere. I loved finding out what was lurking in the dark.
I'm on the fence about the jumping - on one hand it plays nicely with gravity and momentum, to give a nice sense of jumping on a low gravity planet. On the other, it can be a bit awkward at times, and make it hard for me to get where I want to go.
Overall, great game!

A very chill game.
I didn't find out about scrolling down to the bullets until late into the game haha - might be good to put those at the top of the list ;)

The restricted use of colour and contrast really helps bring the focus to the key elements of gameplay - really like that.
Interacting with the different parts of the game was very clear, and taught the the player quite well!
Using health as a form of turn currency, where you're forced to spend it to get past enemies is an excellent mechanic! Made the gameplay a great mix of platformer combat and puzzle.
Tapping the arrow keys to cover long distances can get a little repetitive though!

Thanks for playing! We're really happy you had a good time :D
We're heading straight to play your game now!