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SAGiggs

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A member registered Aug 01, 2015 · View creator page →

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Pros:

  • Simple, straightforward idea
  • Good opportunity for Hanks synergy

Cons:

  • Buggy controls / inconsistencies
  • Very short music loop

Misc:

It's a little rough, there are a bunch of inconsistencies that make the game more frustrating than it needs to be, such as the jump not always working in general (I even died twice from seemingly just jumping), or the camera movement being very slack and leaving you in many situations asking for blind leaps of faith. Also the music loop is wicked short which gets tiresome pretty quick. I'm of the opinion a loop should last at least 40 seconds before repeating. I have nothing to back that up. I like the idea of exploring Hanks movies through the mechanics of a platformer, and there are nice touches that try to adopt these IPs into game stuff, but in general it's lacking variety. The different sprites and tilesets are great, but also the enemies are only sprite swaps, as are the hazards. The difficulty in the judging build was wicked high with only 3 lives, and 1.2 made a bunch of small improvements that I very much appreciate. A little more time to explore could have brought a big impact, but as it is, it's a nice if simple platformer. Nice job.

Pros:

  • Cool idea
  • Good use of theme for main gameplay mechanic
  • Good breadth of Hanks

Cons:

  • Finnicky bits cause lopsided difficulty curve
  • Tail counts as body for damage
  • Could use more variety or progression

Misc:

It took me quite a few tries but I managed a 60 second run, where the obstacles seemed to begin repeating. I like this idea as a whole, but the play area is a bit tight and the snake sometimes has a mind of its own. It's possible to fly off in a non-cardinal direction if you hit the keys within a certain window, and being able to accidentally hit the direction that turns 180 feels harsh. The use of various Hanks films as material for obstacles and audio is great, but even though it's very difficult to reach 60 seconds or so it still feels like there could have been more Hanks pulled in. I think if the boot was less proportionally realistic it would alleviate some of the challenge that kicks off as early as it does. This was cool. Boot Snake is good.

Pros:

  • Very cool puzzle game
  • Built-in hints
  • Very good ending

Cons:

  • Some hints though funny are not helpful
  • Accidental pickup on zoom out / mouse wheel doesn't zoom out
  • Lack of speed-up button

Misc:

The first piggie level is pretty difficult, in a good way, and the hint is pretty helpful, but I didn't manage to get the "right" solution, I didn't use the chocolate. I ended up on the platform with the bomb just barely in front of piggie and it never caught me. First face level has a very good solution wrt trapping piggies. The bouncing ball level was pretty frustrating, though I'll admit it was probably my own fault that I didn't think of the solution rather than the game being malicious or anything. I've never played Lemmings or other puzzle games quite like this so it was fresh and interesting. My only complaints are that there's no fast-forward, which causes the game to get a bit tiresome when feeling out a solution, and that the standard zoom is far too close to be useful. Very nicely done.


doom, laid bare before his eyes

Pros:

  • Good writing, funny and charming
  • Fitting music and style
  • Oddball enemies with no explanation

Cons:

  • One (or two?) bug(s)
  • Far too many random encounters in Green's level. Like. Far too many.

Misc:

This was such a pleasant surprise. It was funny and charming and endearing. The mechanics of the combat were a little unfinished feeling. I never had Green land one of his specials (low chance means low chance I guess), and attacks ranged from 5-8 then on crits they were 30-35, which is far too big a jump. I also ran into what I believe to be a game breaking bug: In Green's level, you earn 2 keys, and there are 3 doors. After getting the keys and returning to the typewriter room I opened the right door, had stuff happen, then came out the top door. I tried to open the top door and it put me back in the right room. When I tried to leave the level I was now out of keys and there's nowhere else to get more. I luckily had a backup save by accident, but otherwise that would have been game over for me. Also Mana Swap seems to not work, it caused a UI bug I saw otherwise where my team row disappears and I can't select them, only the enemy.

Ignoring the bugs though, this was a fun and nice experience with silly images for avatars and funny writing and a pleasant art style. Very nicely done.

Thanks so much! I'm in total agreement about sharing or having access to other people's solutions or at least scores, but that idea fell into the abyss and I forgot about it. Presuming I would have figured out how to implement it, that would have been quite sweet.

I had the moderately farfetched wish of implementing a Zachtronics style leaderboard which would show average performance, and I wish I remembered to implement either a screenshot-taker of solutions or ability to share layouts so that it would be easier to show your ability to easily best my times. Thanks for playing and proving my hypothesis that I'm not very good at puzzle games (even when I design them :V)

Pros:

  • Good walking
  • Good Hanks
  • Good idea

Cons:

  • Lack of camera control induces claustrophobia

Misc:

After my first run I thought I was scored purely on time, though I had collected several bottles on the way. I wasn't entirely convinced that the bottles provided more speed, but I played it a few more times, and the speed never went down. My brother suggested the idea that you're supposed to play it a few times, that it's part of the design, which I entirely accepted and appreciated. I read the game page after and it doesn't seem to be that way, but I'll choose to believe it regardless. It's fun and simple, and after 3 or 4 runs, Gump is wicked fast. I tried finding walls off map or holes, and eventually far north of the map Gump began his eternal fall, his doom in a way, that will never end. Good.

Pros:

  • Impressively broad
  • Simple yet well explored puzzle design
  • Whole buncha art and dialogue

Cons:

  • In general a bit slow (dialog option for accepting a match takes seconds to show)
  • Whole lotta RPG maker stuff that isn't used yet remains in-game

Misc:

I had to read the game page which isn't visible through these jam pages (Why, itch, why?) in order to realize how to play. After I got it though, it was good. There's a lot here in terms of raw content with dialogue and art for the intro/cutscene stuff. I loved the cameos, though I admit I have no clue who Barb is. I played a handful of random NPCs, never once getting to go first, and then realized the Convention Center was where I needed to go. I beat a couple people there then started the finale. I beat Hanks first try thanks to accidentally deft strategy. But then tragedy. I went to hit PrtSc to take a screenshot but instead accidentally hit F12. Because fate is a horrible demon, this resets the game. I hadn't saved, and attempted to start over, but as of right now I'm too annoyed with myself. I'll give it another go to see the ending, but in the meantime, very well done. It's an interesting idea for a puzzle/card game, though the 3x3 board feels a bit small, there's little in the way of shifting momentum or building to more complex strategy, but for a jam game it's a neat experience and the fact that there are rule variations bring a lot to the table, no pun intended.

Pros:

  • Goofy art
  • Funny writing and style

Cons:

  • Bit short
  • Very short music loop

Misc:

There's a bunch of charm in this entry, from the flailing Woody-as-Hanks-body animation to the use of some of the various Hanks roles as other characters. I think some sort of ending sequence, even slide show, would have a big impact for the player and given the excessive breadth of Hanks films to build on there's tons of material to use to this end. I don't play point and click adventures, and I was pleased that this game had very few of the frustrating tropes that some feel are a staple of the genre. The TV was a bit of a stretch to ask of your players though, I think it's pretty easy to miss.

Pros:

  • Interesting concept for a puzzle game
  • Simple and clear mechanics

Cons:

  • Kinda drops the concept for the puzzle game
  • No audio

Misc:

I liked the idea of having the mechanics change from level to level, becoming more limited as you progress, which would force you to consider other ways of completing the same or similar tasks. Unfortunately this idea isn't explored very far, and the various levels feel more unrelated than as if part of a progression. The lack of audio is also a bit of a bummer, even having a simple song playing in the background makes the game far more immersive. I enjoyed the various Hanks imagery plastered about.

Pros:

  • Hanks audio & theming
  • Good bonks
  • Hanks models

Cons:

  • Dialogue volume very low esp relative to other sounds
  • Wilson fell through the earth
  • Guard placement is very far apart

Misc:

After several attempts of getting 3 goons I took a stab at using Wilson and coconuts and it went well. After two successes I was still at full health, then I threw Wilson and it fell through the world. In terms of referential humour: A++ very good. In terms of gameplay though, less good. The difficulty overall was a bit high for a jam game, especially with the guards seemingly being unable to miss, but a little patience goes a long way. Overall it's a nice game, but a few small things cause some unneeded frustration.

Pros:

  • Cute and fun

Cons:

  • Slightly unpredictable

This is a very cute execution of a staggeringly embarrassing and destructive reality, which is probably the right way to go about something of this subject matter. It's a blast to have the NOG-GUY launch himself, typically butt first, across the levels. It's a bit odd playing fullscreen and having the cursor be able to go offscreen and for that to seem like it's necessary for some of the puzzles, but it wasn't too far of a stretch. It's a bit short, and I felt that there was some randomness as to when or how hard the NOG-GUY would respond to clicks regardless of distance, but when it counted it tended to work and that was good. Well done and welcome to the AwfulJams, I hope to see more stuff of yours in future!

Pros:

  • Great audio/visual polish
  • Flashy effect driven movement

Cons:

  • Lack of telegraphing

Very good logo treatment. This looks and sounds great and it plays really nicely. The effects surrounding movement and transitioning between the normal world and the plane of zippy-dooing (astral? ethereal?) are quite slick. The stealth mechanics work pretty well, though some small issues arise such as desynchronizing rotational views which leave a significant gap and make it trivial afterward. Ignoring that though, the only issue I found was with not getting any hints as to the existence of TVs. At first I thought the TV by the tree was a safe-door which is entirely on me, because … why? But even still I had no reason to believe that moving to a particular spot and then hitting a movement key would activate a thing. On top of that the behaviour seems to be different for the parents depending on if the TV is on or off (or perhaps if they only witness the switch?) The end got me to chuckle, and as a concept for this theme this was really nicely done.

Pros:

  • Cool control scheme / mechanics

Cons:

  • Lack of feedback / juice

The gameplay is neat (pun unintended) and the improvements over the original submitted version go a long way to improve on the issues I had with it, but the lack of punch or effect from outcomes leaves me a bit underwhelmed. I know it's just some superficial stuff but I think it'd elevate the experience quite drastically, given that otherwise there's nothing to modify the event as there's no fail state and just the timer. I had a bug (?) where a patron wanted two different types of drinks, the second listed as Gins & Tonics where the card only showed the Gin portion, and the typical ratio of 1.5 : 2 didn't provide the correct drink, nor did straight gin. Dubstep remixes of holiday jingles is what I really wanted, what I craved, what I needed for my soul while roleplaying as someone who knows about alcoholic drinks and lives to dole them out in these trying times of various cheer-entrenched-ordeals. 

Pros:

  • Funny and varied

Cons:

  • When trying various combinations becomes a bit clunky

This is a well written little game and enjoyable to experiment with. I lucked out on the first real attempt with something I couldn't improve upon. After that it was just wild experimentation to see what combinations produced what and to read the responses, but given that it's just the one selection, it became a little tedious to click through to get back to the one selection screen. Having 65 or however many results is great for chance to express itself through the player's choice but also makes it too daunting a task to make seeing all of the possibilities worthwhile. It maybe doesn't fit as well with the theme of the game but if you selected 3 dishes for the meal it would help sate my curiosity for all the different options. The names of the especially troublesome dishes are great in themselves, let alone what MOM has to say and at some point I just want to read through everything! Very festive and pretty accurate MOM-shaming.

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Pros:

  • Very tight and responsive

Cons:

  • A bit too easy

The controls are a huge part of games like these. I got pretty into CSD 1&2 this last year and this taps into a similar frame of mind of not-thinking-while-still-recognizing-required-components-then-hitting-buttons-real-fast-and-accurately. I never lost a life though, which is due to how quick it is to visit the barrels and then land at the bar to toss it back. It also takes a bit of a while to get started, and it maybe could have benefited by making the last wave or two difficult enough to practically force losses of lives but still be just winnable. That might be too much to ask for, especially in the difficulty of gauging that … difficulty for a broad range of people who'll play this game. I thought the voice acting was nicely done, someone was seemingly doing their best Nelson Muntz impression for one line that I couldn't stop hearing. Very solid, nicely polished and responsive.

Pros:

  • Fun whimsical music really enhances the concept

Cons:

  • Computer tellin me what good Art is

It's just uncontrollable enough to be fun and not infuriating while trying to actually make a good snowman (yet still failing). My best was "Good try" but something was always off, understandably. One time it judged that the biggest snowball wasn't on the bottom when it seemed by any measure to be clearly below the rest, but that's a matter of perspective I guess. It would have been a nice little extra to be able to spin the snow-bomination around at the result screen to really inspect what was clearly a manifestation of my complex feelings on Kantian aesthetic autonomy so that I could more acutely experience what it means to shove it in Kant's jerkass face for real but that's my baggage I suppose.

Pros:

  • Nice puzzle-y elements

Cons:

  • Quite fidgety and harsh

On the one hand there are nice little moments like gathering the bones for the dog to get at the present in its house, and then on the other there's a maze where the vision of the player is so reduced it's practically blind. The solution for the kitchen is also a bit of a twist given that there's no indication that the stove is interactable or requires a button press (I think I activated it with the spacebar but it could also just have been by touch). Overall it's a solid if short game, but I became pretty frustrated with it when I was discovered while no one's bars were full and forced a reset, or attempting to poke at the present in the kitchen to figure out the solution also caused an instant failure. Polish in stealth games is pretty crucial because the genre is so focused on expectations of the player that when anything unexpected happens it feels like the game is cheating. All that whining aside, this is a nice and solid first entry to jams, so all that other stuff will come in time. Keep it up!

Pros:

  • Nice visual and audio work
  • Concise little story

Cons:

  • Bit predictable

This was a pleasing experience, namely with that visual effect of the snow on the road and intro screen, it's quite nice. The audio is nicely chosen and mixed and feels believable and acceptable as well. My only confusion was due to the change of character without any indication, even though there was only dialogue boxes to work with, which was jarring for the 20 seconds before I realized what was intended to have happened. Ignoring that though, it was a nice and simple game with a sad tinge that is rarely well explored, especially in jams. Cool!

Pros:

  • Simple idea with some challenge

Cons:

  • Challenge is higher than it needs to be

My forearm is actually sore from clicking. After my second attempt I adopted a pro-playing-posture of moving the mouse with my right hand and tapping the hell out of the button with my left. It's quite a difficult game, and sometimes if you're gifted more than one black gift in a row it's a serious challenge to get them off before simply losing. Allowing more than one gift to pass would definitely make this a far more accessible game. The feedback of clicking on the gifts could also make a significant difference, because even though I had the instructions on screen at all times (probably didn't need that) I still wasn't sure for a few rounds that the HP listed is the boxes HP, and that it's the number of clicks before it is catapulted. That being said, despite the excessive difficulty of the game I enjoyed it mechanically and ended up with a best of 1,100 points. Managing the difficulty really is the key with games like this. I haven't tried it, but I would probably suggest people use an AutoHotkey script to convert mousewheel scrolling to mouse clicks to actually make it feasible to play. 

Pros:

  • Kid hitting
  • Satisfying / Strange obstacles

Cons:

  • Control is a bit wonky
  • Time restraint slightly difficult

Well, I got them kids, but it took a couple tries. I'm always up for Krampus, and the kid hitting in this game is pretty high on the list of games wherein one hits kids. The mechanics are a bit stiff and sticky feeling, so the wall jumping can handle unexpectedly and feel sluggish, also the small gaps in between some platforms feel like obstacles in themselves when they should probably just be smoothed over. Finding the kids was fun enough and I appreciated the scenery lying about where kids may or may not be. My favourite part of the game however simply has to be the spinning platform. That was a nice moment and surprise. This game leaves an impact appropriate for the amount of time available in the jam. Nice.

The Data folder appears to be misnamed, causing an error when trying to run the game when downloaded. It's called KrampusRumpus_Data but needs to be KrampusRush_Data.

Pros:

  • Simple game with a clear purpose
  • Nice positive theme use

Cons:

  • Performance gets pretty choppy near the end of time
  • Sad people transformation could be more responsive

If I had to guess, I'd say that the particle effect for the fountain or something similar is causing the game to run pretty slowly by the end of the timer. The gameplay is simple enough to understand easily, but the game itself doesn't explain that you need to be standing on top of the sad people to gift them a spirit while pressing e. In hindsight the "e" makes sense, but because of the delay with the transformation into not-sad people I had convinced myself it was a number key for my first attempt. After I looked it up though it was a pretty smooth little game. Nicely done.

Pros:

  • Nice consistent style
  • Simple, fun and engaging gameplay
  • Great use of theme

Cons:

  • Difficulty of Uncle Tony's stage is a bit steep, relatively

This is a really tight little package. The game is intuitive and simple but the controls allow for some nuanced movement which feels satisfying, such as controlling a descent through the bubbles while maintaining horizontal velocity. The subject of the game is really nice and fitting, the sound is effective and doesn't wear, even when you're mashing the buttons to float. Very solid. Took two tries to beat it, but I'm glad. It was satisfying.

Pros:

  • Plenty silly
  • Varied vignettes

Cons:

  • Broke on me near finishing
  • Rough around the edges

The humour hits pretty well, the silly animation and low quality texturing/modelling work together with the frankly pretty nice vocoder for spoken dialogue. The minigame stuff is all pretty simple, but it's also short so it's neither frustrating or feeling like a timesink. I went for reindeer at full difficulty and got a couple, but when I went back to finish it up I "captured" all the available reindeer and the saws left, with nothing to do but quit out. For a week, this is a decent amount of work done, nice.

Pros:

  • Fun narrative compliant with theme
  • Simple and straightforward platformer

Cons:

  • Hazards don't telegraph their attacks
  • Score count sound effect is quite grating

A nice product for four days work, this game has a nice cohesion in visual style that is difficult to pull off in such a short time. The movement feels heavy but is easily acclimated to, though having some more levels would help to give the player more of a chance to really get into it. The sound at the end of the level is pretty harsh and there's what seems to be a period in the top left of the text and score screen. It's fun and challenging to collect the items, but because the enemies attacks are on a timer and travel through objects, and they cannot be eliminated, it can be frustrating to have to guess when they'll send out a note in your direction especially when they're right on top of you. We can all appreciate the ending sentiment.

Pros:
  • So much dang content
  • Fun and customizable experience
  • Huge variety in strategy
Cons:
  • Enemy ship randomization tends to be overpowered
  • Randomness leads to extreme rareness of items
  • Divergent paths compound the above
Here & There:

This game is crazy, you put so much stuff in this, it's just simply impressive. This is what having an idea of what you're going to do can lead to, and it's mostly a blast to play. The art style isn't particularly inventive but it is consistent throughout which is by far the most important attribute a visual style can have and it's very well done. I got to the second area, but picking a path that is devoid of shops or treasure and having random drops mostly give blocks led to a few runs where I was all but doomed, especially when the enemy ships tend to be at least slightly more powerful than I was. I spent quite a bit of time playing this, hoping to make some real progress but alas I was unable to get too far. I don't want to misrepresent things or whatever, but with some balancing tweaks, altering of the randomness and progression this could easily be a sellable product which you might want to look into doing. I have no experience to back this up, but it's as close to one that jam games get from what I've seen. Excellent work.

Pros:
  • Wonderful old-school palette and audio treatment
  • Complex designed system of table-top-like attributes and variety of upgrades
  • Engaging and only sometimes aggravatingly challenging
Cons:
  • Sometimes aggravatingly challenging
  • Lack of checkpoints
  • Difficulty ramps in steps
Here & There:

The best I've managed so far is to handily beat the green variants. Some starts to runs go south real quick and others don't, depending heavily on the drops and enemy spawns in the middle of taking an airfield. I got to a point where I was easily dispatching greens and then the first reddish tank I saw utterly ruined me, freaking my gourd 10 ways from Sunday. I did get frustrated sometimes especially when the CPU got some crucial critical hits while I flailed away in hopes of surviving their attack, but this is genuinely the most engaging game I've played this jam. The sound is great, the UI is intuitive and nice, and it says things like 3+2D4 which I have a soft spot for. I'm really into it and I'm looking forward to progressing quite a bit. Really the only issues are small quality-of-life things so I'd say you ought to be proud of this, it's pretty great!

Pros:
  • Very clean and colourful art
  • A very good name that simultaneously fits the theme idea perfectly and hilariously
  • A homage well paid with the world construction
Cons:
  • Controls are a bit swimmy and heavy
  • That homage in world construction is quite confusing
Here & There:

There's a lot of nice components to this game, and I need to doubly express my joy at the name being such a perfect fit while simply shifting the letters over by one… it's just serendipitous. The art is fantastic and though the music is curated it fits quite nicely, though I've definitely heard that Kevin Macleod song before. The movement of FU is a little momentum-heavy and so it slides a bit more than I'd like, and the neck extension works but not in the intuitive way it would seem to. I tried keeping track of each area to know where to get the last cartridges but they're just big enough and separated by walls enough that it gets a little too difficult to keep it all in my head while going through. I managed to find the last cartridge after only a couple minutes of wandering and also made my way back to the start without much trouble but some sort of aid in that regard could be hugely impactful. The shooting feels nice and has a nice punchy impact. The enemies could stand to telegraph their attacks and damage taking though, as it feels like you're encouraged to spam shots that while fun is a little more mindless than it has to be. Some variety in that respect would have been cool too, if even a sprite swap to something other than the standard enemy. For some reason I expected the outro to be that FU gathers the carts only to then burn the planet entirely but I guess I'm just a maniac that thinks those kinds of thoughts. A fun if slightly confusing romp through the park. Nicely done!

Pros:
  • Beautiful aurally and visually
  • Nice writing for the characters
  • Fun and enjoyable idea and experience
Cons:
  • Camera is quite loose
  • I-frames for enemies are significantly longer duration than the player
  • Very short range attack
Here & There:

It's all been said before, but this looks wonderful, you did a great job on the character portraits and making the tileset cohesive with everything else. The characters read like JRPG characters, the music sounds like JRPG music, etc. It's all very nicely put together. The range of the attack is woefully short though, and in conjunction with the stopping on each attack it feels both stilted and inefficient. The enemies also have such long periods of invincibility that at some points, especially with the slimes, you feel like you're just waiting until you can kill them. On the other hand, in the final fight, you can take damage from every round of attacks from Pretzel, even twice in one combo with the lightning and fireballs which feels unfair to some degree. I forgot that on the Gong Show Jon went back to the shop and we saw that you could buy a lantern, so I also went into the cave not remembering that that item existed, and the game doesn't let you know about a shop which fits with the narrative but also leaves the player in the lurch. The ending got me to chuckle and overall this game is really very well done. Great work you two!

Pros:
  • Nugget the Duck Jr.
  • Feed a duck its own poop
  • Nice fun music
Cons:
  • Lack of scold option
  • Foods all seem to be pretty bad options
Here & There:

On the whole this is most of a tamogatchi style game which is cool to see, and the theme adherence of being a sequel to a hilariously terrible 3D model on the Unity asset store is something else. Nugget Jr is a definite improvement. The game is a bit too simple, where the only real goal is to get the duck to poop in the sandbox, but because of what I assume is RNG sometimes the duck just doesn't poop in the box because of its default low potty-trained score which means it's mostly a game of waiting until it does finally poop correctly so you can praise it. Having a scold option could cover this where if it poops poorly then you can scold it at a penalty of happiness and other attributes but get the potty train score up a bit so that next time you can praise it instead. The different foods didn't seem to be good for the duck regardless and it definitely threw up with the pizza and bread, though I can't remember if the butter caused it too. I enjoyed rubbing my duck with butter. Wowsa. GarbageMouth will live on forever in my heart, though only in my heart because it died after eating poop a few times and littering the place with more poop. Sweet dreams GarbageMouth.

Pros:
  • Unique and interesting concept
  • Nicely written sci-fi story
Cons:
  • Difficult execution of the second part
  • Lacking impact music could achieve
Here & There:

This is a really cool idea. The first half however seems a bit on the long side which makes the second half much more difficult. By the time I got to it I had forgotten the details of the first half, such as where the car was or the when the cow was heard, and then on top of that you need to be wary of letting you see yourself in the UFO which causes a fail state. On the one hand maybe the second half could have been easier if it was more like a series of questions but the impact of doing it in real time definitely has a significantly more powerful impact if done well, though it brings pitfalls with it. This was probably the most interesting game I saw in the jam given its unique take on the theme and mashup of gameplay genres. Very cool.

Pros:
  • Funny concept and writing
  • Decent puzzley-strategy
  • Unique visual style
Cons:
  • Lack of variety
Here & There:

I don't know what the alien in the outro was talking about, this game is not garbage. I enjoyed it, at least. There's definitely room to grow and explore given that there's just the peashooters and lookout stalks (I forget what they're called), but the areas were designed in a way that they felt different from one another, though there were a number of spots where one could cheese the predators by firing upon them at a distance. I liked the hand-drawn style and I felt it fit quite well, but again some more variety would have been cool. It's simple and the alien is written like a real dumbass but it's solid in concept. Predators are not sexually desirable, I will remain adamant on that point.

Pros:
  • Tons of evocative and nice 3D work
  • Exciting music
  • Fun theme idea
Cons:
  • Balancing issues
  • Very fast continue countdown
Here & There:

The neverending story was nightmare fuel for me when I was a kid, to the point where I've never bothered to give it a second chance because it creeped me the hell out so thoroughly. This game brought back some familiar if forgotten memories and feelings which was cool and I believe a testament to the accuracy of the 3D work. Some of the enemies feel too strong for how annoying they are, namely the bats which are relatively difficult to hit, fire projectiles at the player, spawn in bunches of 3-5, and take two shots to kill. I've never played space harrier and so it took me a while to get used to the aiming, but the crosshair isn't terribly useful because it doesn't convey the line of fire very well. The projectiles to dodge also don't have any shadows or anything that displays how close they are to the player and it results in a chaotic and blind-feeling experience where I'm just trying to stay as far away from most things as possible on the chance that I'll take a hit. When fighting the turtle-rock-boss-thing the PC moves up and down so much that it's rarely possible to dodge the shots from the side. My only real gripe is the continue countdown. I wish it wasn't there. I got a call which distracted me long enough to die, I picked up the phone and all of a sudden I'm on the title screen, having lost all my progress. As a kicker I believe I thought I was on the final boss when this happened, so at least it was as effective an accidental annoyance as possible. Some little tweaks that even out the challenge would be cool for a game like this, especially considering I only played on Normal. Like with other games in this jam, the idea of resetting the score on death is a bit too extreme in my books because it effectively nullifies everything prior to the death, and if you die near the end of the game then your score will be so low that it might not be worth finishing. Maybe a penalty of 50% each death would be better, I'm not sure.

Pros:
  • Moody and atmospheric exploration
  • Surprisingly large area to explore
  • Piiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiss bottles
Cons:
  • Darkness is very dark, perhaps too dark when dark
  • UI a little drab and unfriendly
Here & There:

This game is comfortably long and by that I mean it's long enough to add to the feeling of substance while not feeling padded or prolonged which is a nice balance to achieve. The darkness adds to the tension when you're diving in these narrow caves deep in the water, but it's also so dark that it's impossible to see much of anything which leads to taking damage that feels unearned. On that note it feels  like the day is significantly shorter than the night, but that's likely due to bias from typically being underwater where it's darker by default. After the 4th seed the arrow points left and mentions a cliff, and heading left you end up in a little cave system but what you actually need to do is get to the left half of the world and then go looking for the seed which felt a little unpolished. A map would have been cool, but would take away from the exploration. What you could have done maybe is add a very undetailed minimap that outlines geographical shapes in a limited distance which would alleviate the sort of issues I had immediately following the 4th seed. I enjoyed the writing which didn't feel like forced humour and didn't resort to memery which I will always appreciate forever. I don't know if I read in the chat on the Gong Show or in the Discord or somewhere, but I vaguely remember reading that the PC is the little girl and the skeleton is Kevin Costner. I don't know if I'm making that up or not but if I'm not, that's a good-ass idea. Well done.

Pros:
  • Very silly and fun
  • Name of the base as a reference to the border of hell or underworld or whatever is A+
  • Tragic ending
Cons:
  • Only two minigames
  • I can't dunk the head
  • I keep trying but can't dunk the head am I the problem
Here & There:

There's small things like the fact that clicking through the dialogue doesn't instantly finish the current line but instead skips to the next line, or that the last minigame is impossible for me to get apparently, but otherwise this was a very enjoyable little game. I honestly felt it in my heart when I messed up the dunk the first time I tried and had some triple-S score waiting to be awarded. Then it happened again when I failed the head dunk. I was concerned there might be a different ending I was missing and tried a couple more times but alas I cannot dunk the head in the fire no matter how hard I try. Looking at the included files I don't see any images to show a different ending, so I think I'm good on that front. I definitely would have enjoyed more minigames and/or variety but overall it's a fun game with an enjoyable narrative, especially considering the dog doesn't make it☺. I saw the  title and couldn't think of what the hell it meant until basically the ending, so, that's disappointing for my brain.

Pros:
  • Nice clean execution of an idea for theme adherence
  • Fun uses of random selection stuff
  • Good ambience and style
Cons:
  • Sometimes confusing controls
  • Lack of variety over time
  • Instant fail state
Here & There:

As far as the theme adherence goes, this was nicely done. The execution of the each-level-is-a-new-game concept is very well done and doesn't cause the player to feel a slog between each iteration. The outro for each level was cool, but also could have used some more variation, and the one part that I feel was lacking was the intro paragraph which only changes the name of the planet on each successive level. This text could have utilized some random generation to good effect I think. I got to Exodus 8 but then gave up because the price to continue was getting up there, and the boost upgrade drop was just too rare that it felt like it was taking a long time to get the 350 to proceed. I think the system layout stays the same after 5, though I might be mistaken, that's another small thing which could have helped solidify the feeling of progression between each level. The instant death is a bit harsh too, considering that asteroids coming from below can't really be seen to be avoided when at speed. It's a really clean looking game though and with some tweaks could be put up on a mobile marketplace or something, I do believe. Nicely done.

Pros:
  • Mostly good humour
  • Nice expressive drawings between the games which helps present an enjoyable narrative
  • Decent variety in gameplay
Cons:
  • Audio is very quiet except for the gunshot which is relatively very loud
  • Some of the games are too basic
  • Some jokes feel without merit
Here & There:

I played the fixed up version instead of the judge's build. The Veteran's Day game started off tame enough with a decent set-up and the disrespect the flag minigame but by the end it seemed pretty extreme. It's not that I think these are things that can't be joked about, it just felt that it was leaning more towards simple edginess rather than a set up and constructed joke. I think it may have been a better idea to have the Culture Festival just happen first because it's much less extreme in its humour. That way people would see more of the game and be perhaps eased into the Veteran's Day jokes which for some people are just not going to land. I found most of the game funny and enjoyable, but a couple minigames were too simple to be carried by the joke, like the concert part of the Culture Festival where it's just holding down one button with little else and two dissonant audio files playing together. The PUA conversation minigame was funny in the right way, being obviously stupid and making fun of it. The shooting game on the other hand doesn't really provide a punchline other than "you're shooting the troops" which is what I'm talking about in my earlier points. I really liked the drawings of the Grinch et al during the cutscenes as they were expressive and nicely stylized. It's always fun playing your games in these jams and I look forward to the next one.

Pros:
  • Cool idea
  • Nice visual style
Cons:
  • Mouse sensitivity is very low
  • Strategy suffers as a result of the mouse controls
Here & There:

This is a neat concept but the execution is unfortunately pretty rough. The mouse sensitivity is low enough that for me it nullified the use of the mouse. I died on the first mission before realizing that there was no limit to the number of shields, and so I relied on placing as many shields as I could. Also because of that, aiming shots is near impossible to do effectively and so I couldn't make use of it. The last enemy on level 3 just flew into my ships quickly and nearly caused me to lose despite having only having 10-20 deaths up until that point. That could use some tweaking in terms of its power. On the final level I made an effort to aim at the dodging baddies and so was throwing the mouse around my desk in order to move it enough to actually hit them which has caused me to misuse my mouse for the last several minutes while writing this which is pretty funny I have to say. Overall the balancing is just too punishing. I liked that the enemy pattern thing showed where the enemies would be, but I couldn't tell if it always showed up or not before the wave came in. It's a nice looking game with a cool idea but doesn't give the player much opportunity to enjoy it. Seeing your progress through the jam was cool and with some more polish I'm eager to see what you can come up with.

Pros:
  • Music is very nice
  • Good narrative intro
  • Fun implementation of Lunar Lander and physics based stuff
Cons:
  • Don't get to carry over your efficient fuel usage
  • No hidden stuff after the ending or outro
Here & There:

I beat it after only several attempts. It was nice and neatly challenging given that the fuel is set at a determined value at each spot, but at the same time there's no reward to the player for having flown more efficiently in the prior stage which is a minor nitpick certainly, but could help ease the difficulty by rewarding smart play. I enjoyed learning how to use my momentum and positioning to minimize fuel cost for the upcoming part and tossing things all over the dang place. I flew around after winning but couldn't find any secrets which I think could have had a great impact. Like, uhh, horses walking around with helmets or something. An outro describing the fate of the horses would also have been cool. The vocabulary for the different components was very neigh-se. Sorry. Good game fun time great job.