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Never Rest Studio

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I love the effort put into the story and the mechanics and use of the theme are excellent. I can't quite put my finger on it, but the controls felt a little bit off - not quite as tight / responsive perhaps? - but nothing enough to detract significantly. As mentioned by X1r0m, the music was a little repetitive, but that's pretty understandable within a game jam. Overall, a really nice entry. :)

(Edited 1 time)

Thanks for playing and for the feedback! If you do have the time (and motivation) I'd love if you could try the final submission as I did sneak in quite a bit of improvement in the final day. The 2nd level was only added in the final release (selectable directly from the main menu or automatically loaded after completing) the first level. It is definitely brief though, yes. In 4 days solo work I'm afraid I simply didn't have time to add any more within the game jam, though I do intend to add more going forward. The music...I wrote a few pieces within those 4 days and wasn't happy that any of them fit the game. I've since composed this piece which I'm a bit more happy with but I won't be updating the game until the jam is completely finished. I don't know how it works in terms of the submission, but I don't want to inadvertently cheat by making changes after the jam finished but whilst the voting is still active.

(P.S. The keyboard controls are listed on the game's page. Again, I'm afraid I simply ran out of time to create graphics for both keyboard and gamepad inputs.)

Third time's a charm! Not a style I'm overly practiced at so good to know it fits. Thanks for taking the time to listen and I'll take all the luck I can get!

I've had another go at a main theme for the game. I've aimed for a period-drama style with just a touch of unease. I'd love to know what you think! :)

eripmav (main theme)

Thanks very much! It's my first real go at pixel art and I'm quite happy with how it turned out. Yep, those 4 days went quick! I spent a few hours writing out a prioritised to-do list and I think that was invaluable to getting the most important parts done in time rather than completely "winging it" or just keeping a track mentally.

Sorry about the controls confusion - if I'd had time I would've got the tutorial messages for keyboard done as well. I'm afraid I suffer from RSI and a gamepad is much more comfortable for me than a keyboard and mouse so that is the control scheme I put initial focus on.

Utterly fiendish (assuming I was completing puzzles in the way you'd intended and wasn't missing easier options) and thoroughly enjoyable. Great work.

Very minor suggestions:

  • Playing with a controller seems to be almost entirely fine, apart from the equivalent of the "E" and "V" keys which would hopefully be a quick win.
  • I was getting some quite bad screen tearing which detracted from an otherwise very attractive game so if a v-sync option could be provided then that would be excellent.

I like it! The gameplay is certainly skill-based enough that I found my score improving with each play as well as developing strategies based on the number of and type of enemies around. The music also adds a lot without being distracting or overpowering.

The only suggestion I would have would be to introduce some kind of "dash" mechanic to allow you to dodge rebounded bullets or large groups of enemies but to balance it by perhaps giving it a recharge time and/or having it "overheat" your weapons for a brief time so if you need to dash then you can evade death but it will stop you from retaliating for a while.  Maybe even a point penalty?

Thanks! I absolutely agree. The stupid thing is that, in recent times at least, I've done so much more composition than game development. I figured it would be the part I'd find easiest and I could just slot it in at the end but inevitably I ran out of time. I actually wrote two pieces for it but ended up deciding that neither quite worked with the game and preferred it without over being paired with some "for the sake of it" music. I'll certainly give it another try though.

I'd echo everything Jonataurus said. Very nice work. Maybe the levels don't build in challenge as much as you were hoping but everything is there and it feels like a "complete" game, not just a jam entry.

Thanks so much - that's absolutely made my day! I fully plan to. I ended up really liking what was supposed to just be a bit of fun for a jam and put some time into making sure it was a good base to build on. Unfortunately, that left less time to build more content within the jam time frame, but it should also make it much easier to extend on going forward.

What? No! I'm awesome at games and it was SO easy... Ok, I died a couple of times. :P

I think it was the fact I so frequently found my shields were depleted because there was no time for a recharge between shots. Yeah, balancing your own game which you've played over and over can be a nightmare, and you're almost certainly not going to please everyone whatever you do.

I guessed that was what was happening and I think it's a good idea. Perhaps the only issue is that it meant that the very first enemy you come across, from my personal experience, was harder to take down than the following 4, which as an introduction / tutorial piece didn't quite feel right. Maybe just that very first enemy could be slowed down to match the speed the following 4 will be firing at initially so that you have 1 easy enemy then 4 easy enemies which gradually become harder as you take them down, to really ease the player into it? It's a very minor gripe though, and quite possibly a personal opinion that isn't shared.

Brilliant stuff. The gameplay was a lot of fun, though oddly much more difficult when there was only one enemy than when there were loads. The inclusion of a more fleshed-out plot with voice acting was a very nice touch.

Thanks, both for the kind words and taking the time to play and comment! Yes, due to time constraints, I didn't get around to creating graphics for keyboard inputs yet. I have listed the keyboard controls on the game's page to hopefully help with any confusion, but I'll certainly be looking to address that in a future version.

Ok, I'm done for now. I may well pick this up again later because I really like how its come together but, for the purposes of the jam, I'm finished. Didn't get through everything I would have liked to but I probably did get through a lot more than I expected for what was approximately 3-4 days work. I've had an absolute blast with this and I think learned some important things about how I work best which should aid me for future projects.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy it, even if it is short, and congratulations to everyone else who managed to get some really great looking entries together.

I couldn't resist and found some more time today so I have another update.

I have added a main menu with level selection, level flow (so completing level 1 automatically loads level 2), sorted out scene management to handle asynchronously loading levels, added animated light sources, improved performance and visuals by actually carrying out rendering at the correct resolution for the pixel art rather than the native resolution of the monitor, and started work on a second level where water is used in place of the mirror as the reflected world you can jump in and out of.

I hope to flesh out the 2nd level a little more tomorrow, still in time for the end of the jam, but am very happy with the advances made today. It is feeling like a "real" game now.


Well, the time I have for this game jam has more or less drawn to a close. It certainly isn't finished but I'm pretty happy with how this project has turned out, especially considering how quickly it has come together and how out of practice I am, so I could see myself continuing work on this when I get a chance. I've finished the design for the level, added a final layer of polish, a basic set of tutorial messages that appear at appropriate moments, and the ability to "interact" with your victim. Not every feature I'd wanted but a fully playable level none the less.

It's been a lot of fun working on such an interesting theme and keeping up with the excellent progress everyone has been making, so thank you to everyone! :)

Thanks! My current plan is actually along the lines of the player being quite fragile - the AI will be equipped with crucifixes, holy water, stakes, etc. and if you get close to them with them aware of your presence they'll charge at and attack you (one-hit kill), forcing you to rely on stealth. At the very end of the video you can see I dropped down in the reflected world because there was no light on that side, allowing me to get right up to the target before switching back to feed / win the level.


I'm running out of time for this game jam but I've got enough features in place now that I've started constructing a playable level. New features include a cool effect when changing between worlds, sound effects, tweaked controls and collisions, highlighting objects that only exist in one world by rendering them with a special shader in the other world, and a light-based stealth system with lights that can also exist in both worlds or just one.


Starting to come together now. Along with a potential victim for the vampire, too busy admiring her own reflection to do anything about the peril she's in (or perhaps that's just a bad excuse for having not written any AI code yet...), the controls have been improved and crates can now be either pushed around or picked up and moved.

Some of the puzzle aspects now come into play. If you want to balance 3 crates on top of each other but 2 of them only exist in either the real world or the reflected world then you have to make sure the crate that exists in both worlds is in the center as the other 2 would simply pass through each other.

Other puzzles may involve jumping from a surface that only exists in one world, switching worlds in mid air, and then landing on a surface that only exists in the other world.

Looking forward to doing some more tomorrow!

Here is the result of my first few hours of work. (I'm afraid I'll only really have this weekend to work on it but wanted to see what I could do anyway.)

You play as a vampire who has no reflection but is able to switch at will between reality and the reflected world. Through stealth platforming and puzzle solving using the dual-world mechanic you must satisfy your blood lust. Some objects, like yourself, have no reflection whilst other exist only in the reflected world. At this stage I've put together this basic mechanic along with some initial pixel art work.