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Dan Sanderson

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A member registered Jun 12, 2017 · View creator page →

Creator of

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Hey thanks for playing!! Really enjoyed watching your play though. 

Thanks for playing! I enjoyed your video. All I understood was "Jesus fucking christ" but I get the gist :) Next game will have Polish translations too!

Thanks so much for the kind words!

Thanks Ynsin (and Sam). Enjoyed watching your video and your interpretation of the cassette tapes (which was spot on). 

Thanks for making the video! Cheers BerryDeaf! 

Thanks Nakarama. I checked out your video, was great fun. I'm glad you enjoyed it, thanks for playing,

Jacobs ladder is one of my favourite films! Thanks for giving it a shot! 

thanks for the video buddy! Glad you liked it. 

I have no words to describe the happy feeling this message gave me. 

Does it say anything else? Like is it about not a trusted developer? If that's the case open MacOS Settings and go to Security and Privacy. There should be button there to open it "anyway".

Thank you!

Thank you! Hopefully I can expand on it. 

You might be able to open one of them 😉

I rebuilt and re-uploaded.  Thanks for letting me know. Please try again. 

Longer than that!

Don’t run. Walk. Go towards the chirp. 

I’ll put a Mac version out today. I haven’t tested it and it’ll probably run like crap but at least it’s there! Will give you a nudge when it’s up. 

Hi T-0400TP.


Thanks for purchasing and playing First Winter. It means a lot when people not only play my games but theorise the meaning behind them. I’ll do my best to give my interpretation and the narrative I had in my head when building it. I think it might be the first time I’ve spoken about it actually. 

SPOILER ALERT

First up (if you haven’t already) I’d suggest you play my first game Pacific. It shows the green shoots of what First Winter would become. In that game, rather than playing as a particular antagonist you are more like an observer, a spirit if you will. An explorer in a peculiar, dream-like, post-apocalyptic purgatory. Wandering around strange, morphing rooms and corridors which appears more like a museum than a Nuclear Bunker. 

Despite your spirit-like qualities however, you are able to interact and have influence to a certain extent over your surroundings. 

These same mechanics and game personalities persist throughout First Winter where you’ll recognise quite easily many scenes from Pacific. In fact I rebuilt (apart from the 2nd to last scene) the entire game for First Winter. That being said the extent of the Pacific-like personality depends on which world you’re in. 

For example when inside the Apartment scene you are a more literal,  tangible element of game, able to pick up and interact with pretty much everything you can see. Whereas in Pacific you’re more like an unsuspected visitor to that museum of the dead. 

The Submarine scene is a mixture of both, where you are indeed witnessing situations unfold but also have quite an influence over future outcomes (quite literally when it comes to codes). 

The cassette tapes are your main clue when it comes to working out who’s who and who’s responsible for what. 


Cassette Tape 1: Talks about proximity threats and merely backs up what the guy on the radio said. USA is bound to protect itself against an enemy if it’s close enough, even if it’s not doing anything. 

Cassette Tape 2: Talks about the best way to get your foe to do something he doesn’t want to do. It gives an example of a child not wanting to tidy its room. The child is far less likely to tidy its room if you scold and shout. In diplomatic terms you need to guide your enemy to the solution you want them to take and make them think it’s their idea. It’s a way of them saving face and feeling like they’ve won even when they’ve lost. This tape tells the story of the two countries trying to handle the situation of the Nuclear Submarine being too close to the Los Angeles shoreline. The Soviets can’t merely retreat without looking weak. 


Soviet Note found in the Submarine: This note gives us more of the story. Mission Commanders are contacting the captain onboard the Submarine and informing him that he’s over 400 miles off his course and he should get back on course immediately. This implies that this is not a Soviet mission but perhaps the ship is lost, or something more sinister. 


Cassette Tape 3: This recording confirms the suspicions raised by the note. It speaks of mutiny. Somebody or bodies are deliberately not following orders. The Soviets are not directly responsible for this situation but as the recording goes on to explain, it’s important to not let the Americans know of this embarrassing development. Whatever the actions of the insubordinate individual it’s highly important to appear to endorse their actions. If the Soviet navy appears to be compromised it risks damaging not only the reputation of the military but of Communism itself. 


You’re then shot in the face by a guy who’s deliberately concealing their identity. Unlikely the captain or an officer with the clothes they are wearing. This is an intruder or a crew member gone rouge and/or crazy. This explains why you’ve seen so many dead crew throughout the submarine. The Nuclear Submarine (and its weapons) are in the hands of someone else who’s motives we do not know. 

Cassette Tape 4: This is quite self explanatory. It talks about the stalemate and how the two sides can’t agree to back down. It’s the folly of war. USA do not realise that the submarine is out of the control of the Soviets and the Soviets don’t want to tell them. If they did then a solution is more likely to be found. Reputation and suspicion takes preference though. The United States could be responsible for the submarine takeover as far as the Soviets are concerned. 

So then you enter the control room and again see the masked mutineer. Who is he? What are his motives? Who knows. But he intends to launch nuclear weapons at the United States, not to destroy the West but to start a thermo nuclear war and with it the destruction of the entire civilised world. 

Alas; we enter the first nuclear war. 



Take what you want from that. Hope it helps 😉

Thanks for the message dude. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’m afraid First Winter won’t ever be Free. Its not that I need the small amount of money that it earns (and it’s not much) but whenever I do withdraw funds from itch I donate it to charity. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no Ghandi; it’s just that I know someone else can use $100 more than me (I’ll probably spend it on beer or bills). 


It’s already very cheap considering how much time and energy was invested into making it. It’s a bit like if you wanted to buy GTA or Call of Duty. You know how it’s really expensive but you still find the money to buy it because you want the game and you don’t have access to the developers to ask for it to be free? Well it’s like that except First Winter costs less than a Big Mac or a Starbucks coffee. In fact if your friends saved 1 cent every day from now on they could afford it by May next year! It REALLY IS not much money is it? Less than $2... Maybe since Christmas is coming up you could by them each a copy? Season of good will and all that! 

Thanks for the kind words. 

Thanks for your kind words. It’s an odd game which is entirely based on how many people have played it. For every key (combination) that is used is then deleted. But it’s not deleted until that person makes a key of their own, so in theory there should the same amount or more of combinations. That being said, I might’ve got my code wrong. It might be frustrating but if you spend long enough spamming diff we ent combos you’ll eventually find a key. Try 1234 first. I get an email every time someone adds a new key and you wouldn’t believe how many people use 1234. Think like a human and you’ll find a key. Thanks for playing and be sure to leave someone a key. 

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I failed! 35kb... I spent so long on this and it was coming in at under 20k and then today when finally finishing it off I got 55kb!!! WTF?! Anyway, I can't be bothered to trim it down any further so consider this disqualified but give it a try anyway. I'm proud of the submission despite it being too big, but I'm excited to finally move onto something else now!

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Nooooooo! I bit off more than I can chew and like a student at University left it till the last minute! My game is like the movie Alien, sort of and FNAF mashup. Fisher is stuck on their ship, it’s lost all but vital power and there’s an alien onboard trying to eat her! You’ve got to get her to docking station to escape before the alien catches her. Using CCTV you have to guide her away from the alien using chat commands. The more cameras you use, the more power you lose! 



also, great for sharing it on your GitHub 

54 days ago! I’m such a bad host. I haven’t played your runner yet, I’m going to wait till the deadline and then take a few hours to play all of them! The file size you’ve achieved here is incredible! You could squeeze it into an 80s Casio watch! Great work Ben! 

Good for you for trying it!

Your minecraft clone looks awesome by the way! Look forward to playing it.

Well rules are there to be broken, but I'd prefer it if you bundled the brun just to make it easier for people downloading your game. Unless you specifically let them know in the description and give them a place to download it from. I suspect you'll get more downloads and plays if you make it a single bundled EXE.

Thank you so much. That's very generous of you! 

Hey Josh. Sounds like you’re well equipped for the job! 32k though!! What a challenge. 

Hey Alex. Glad you’ve joined! Hope you enjoy the challenge. Can’t wait to see what you come up with. 

Welcome Namgo and welcome to itch.io! I'm looking forward to seeing what you come up with. Be sure to keep us up to date in the Work In Progress thread.

Actually I'm going for Size on Disk. As you can see here, my EXE file for a game I'm working on is 33kb on disk. 


Yes it is valid if you can zip it to 32k or less. 

Let's keep it to zip so people don't need to install 7zip or any other software.

Let’s post some screenshots here, both of your games and the code! Love seeing some old IDEs (if you’re using one). 

Welcome Ben! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with. 5kb?! You could do 6 and fit on the agc. 

Welcome Nealith. Glad to have you onboard. Sounds like you've got lots of options to play with. Looking forward to seeing what you come up. 

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Hello everyone. I'm Dan. I've made a few games now, one or two for game-jams but mostly just for fun. You can check out my other games here. The longest game I've made was probably about 45 minutes play time, but normally they come in at around 10 minutes. 

It's always intrigued me about fitting content on such small hard drive space, but maybe that's because I'm an 80s kid so used to waiting for the Amstrad cassette tape to play through before the game was loaded. 

I'll be using QBasic to program my "game" in... Not sure still what I'm going to make but made a little progress already.