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Team Spaghetti

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A member registered Aug 24, 2018 · View creator page →

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This game is cute and I can see it going places. Right now the majority of what it suffers from is some pretty remarkable opacity regarding what does what and how to do....most things. It also seems like the levels are procedurally generated? Which is cool, but doesn't help at all with the confusion, especially when some of those results seemed potentially unwinnable?

I dunno, maybe my brain just did a big dumb. That happens from time to time. I do like this though, despite my issues with it, and would love to see a more complete, refined version of it.

For a 48 hour jam, this is excellent. You came in with a clear concept, communicated it concisely, and were able to deliver on several increasingly complex iterations of it, all without using almost any language. The score system and value of getting things properly connected was a little opaque to me, but it also didn't hinder the experience at all. High marks from me.

I have mixed feelings about this. As a little short it's nice. It's got a beginning, middle, and end and it gives me very "What Remains of Edith Finch" vibes with its tone and presentation.

But there's ultimately just not much here. It's clear that a lot of work went into making it for the jam, but as a player I put in a total of like half a dozen inputs, none of which seemed all that meaningful. I normally make a point to never disqualify a game for being primarily narrative-focused, but the interactive bits you do have here don't seem to really...add anything, mechanically or narratively in a meaningful way. They almost feel like a bad compromise, as if someone said "Well, people will complain if we don't put something interactive in." 

That said, I actually hope you keep building on this. I don't see much in it as a game right now, but there's more than enough solid craftsmanship that went into this that I can't really see myself disliking anything that comes out of it. 

This is so clever, I'm amazed I've never seen it before and only slightly envious I didn't think of it myself.

It was a little unclear at first; I had no clue that I was supposed to be picking up the other rectangles and had assumed they were obstacles or enemies to be destroyed, but once I figured that out, it clicked in a really fun way.

But oh man it's hard. It's incredibly easy to get overwhelmed, and I found that the further right on the screen I got, the less hope I had of recovery, and it's remarkable easy to lose party members with how spread out they are and how many bullets are on screen at once. 

That said, I hope you iterate on this. Because I would probably play a lot of it.

Oh no! that blows, man, I'm sorry. As others have pointed out, unity games only work on itch if you've zipped up the entire thing, not just the exe. I hope you're able to get your full game up once submissions are unlocked, because it looks cool!

A nice idea and a clever use of ren'py to boot! I like the idea of part of the escape relying on another  character whose state isn't immediately apparent to you. There's a lot of potential in something like that, though I don't feel like it got utilized to its fullest extent.

I've got three notable critiques, all of which should be fairly easy to rectify with a little iteration.

First, I like the art direction you chose, but it suffered from real readabiltiy issues. It's fine if everything's moody and greyscale, but when the player doesn't know what parts of the room they can and can't click on it quickly becomes a random spammy clickfest until something happens. Like the opposite of pixel hunting. Some kind of feedback when my mouse is hovering over something important wouldn't have gone amiss.

Second, I found the progression a little hard to follow. Things happened quickly, sometimes without explanation, and I feel like a lot of the narrative elements could have used a little more time to breathe. It's ultimately fine if we never find out what our beef with Kim is or why we've been jigsaw'd, but just spending a little more time on the how and why on the present action of the game would have gone a long way.

These two issues were fed by the third one, namely arbitrary progression. Or at least what appeared like arbitrary progression. Why does clicking on the closet do nothing at first, but then give me things later? It's okay for this to be the case, but it needs motivation, otherwise we're back to random clicks.

Don't mistake my critiques for me not liking it, I actually did! I've always enjoyed these games and you did a respectable job of putting one together in 48 hours from scratch. There's potential here with a little more polish and care, and I hope you can make something great out it!

Thanks! We're really glad the concept shines through. 

I was not expecting to rate this game as highly as I did, honestly. Like, I wasn't expecting it to be trash, but you got three fours and a five outta me, and I don't give those fives out easily. Actually, you might be the first to get one.

It's a game that does its small collection of things, but does them well. The game is stable, I didn't encounter more than one or two small pathing irregularities in the kids, and there's a good balance between my speed, the kids speed, and the rate at which they'll cause havoc. Honestly, your excellently in-universe tutorial probably clinched it for me though. Diagetic and informative!

That and you clearly have an insight into the daily struggles of a teacher. I swear, I'll never know how they get so many grenades. 

A very good implementation of the theme! You took a new concept and made a very servicible order of operations brain teaser, and that's nothing to sneeze at in 48 hours. I especially like how you took the time to do something many don't find themselves with the time to do, tutorialize, while also being comfortable allowing the puzzle design itself to do some of that work for you. I don't think I was ever unsure of what a given piece did for more than a second or two and any given time, minus perhaps one exception.

I did notice there seems to be a lot of "extra" pieces lying around the board, usually several movement keys I wouldn't touch at all during my solution. I presume this was to allow for not-strictly-intended solutions without adding on that much iterative testing, which is honestly not a bad compromise at all. 

The one thing that I never understood the place of was those pushable boxes. Movable only once, and never into a meaningfully different position from what I played. A leftover? An idea that didn't make it? An oversight on my part? Inquiring minds want to know!

Glad to hear it! Stick around until we can patch it and you may even get to experience a functional ending sequence! XD

Thanks! It's definitely one of those games that's not meant to be "Fun" in the traditional sense, though I did try to include enough content that multiple playthroughs would still see new things (most interactables have different text lines that change both based on how long you've been waiting and how many times you've interacted with them).

We definitely struggled with the visual design some, the lights in particular. Lighting is something we're both still working on getting good at, and there's a lot we weren't able to iterate on/mesh together after we lost our first day. Definitely looking forward to releasing a more polished version after voting ends.

Thanks so much for playing! It came out rougher than we're used to making, but I'm glad the concept seems to be landing well.

Thanks for playing! The doctor returning is meant to be the end of the story, but as you probably noticed, it doesn't fire correctly in this build. I (BAM) can't speak for the other half of the team, but I don't think I'd be opposed to exploring some vignettes of this story beyond this!

Much simpler than I would have thought! I definitely underuse things like the directional transforms.

Unlike these other plebians below me, I have mastered the art of playing with myself. Don't take that out of context.

I didn't have the highest expectations for this game; a lot of jam game that try local multi end up biting off way more than they can chew and produce barely functional prototypes. 

My expectations were not met.

Your game is pretty good.

You focused on the very core of your idea and made it shine. Scope can be hard for a lot of people, especially when you're working on a 48 hour time frame, but it's clear you had a good vision of what you wanted to do and an understanding of how much you could pull off. 

Also it's pretty fuckin' cute. That helps.

My one real critique is I feel it may have erred a little too far on the "out of control" side, especially without vertical or midair options. That's pretty easily worked out with a little iteration, and I gotta say; I hope you keep working on this. 

I braced myself for the worst when I saw that your game was so topical. It's a hot-button issue, especially where I live and it can be easy to mishandle something that's so big and tragic. 

I didn't hate this though.

Your game is really simple, but it manages to do something a lot of other games don't manage; you captured an experience. People running around, not taking precautions, getting infected, and trying to keep things as under control as possible while you try to run the timer out with everyone still alive. You can always add style and panache later, but being able to capture a perspective and present it in a way that others can relate to is a core design thing, you can't add that later as easily, and I feel like you nailed that bit. Good work, my guy.

It's a really novel concept, in fact you got five stars for originality, but I want to strongly, strongly reccomend you find an interesting twist that doesn't make quite as many people nauseous. This was uncomfortable for me to play, and would be a one way ticket to vom-town for over half the people I know.

Like, the game minus the camera was just fine! It really was! There was an interesting challenge and a creative setting. I just...oof.

I enjoy me a good complicated game. Some catan, some alhambra, some war games, and a whole lot of Dwarf Fortress and factorio. I have very mixed feelings about this game. 

The game itself is good. Sure, some of the ai trades are a little wonky, but that's an AI balance thing, not necessarily a reflection on the design of the game itself. The art and styling is gorgeous, very Hermaeus Basch, and with some tinkering I even think this could be adapted for live tabletop play pretty successfully. 

I'm a big believer that games as pieces of software should generally stand on their own though. Part of my criteria for this is going in blind without reading anything beyond the jam description and while your game stood up on a lot of fronts, it fell just short there. 

I know it's a jam and things get left out and honestly? It's one of the only hangups I've got about your entry, but for a game this intricate, instructions are nearly as critical as the game itself. Even just what you wrote in the comments on a static little menu somewhere would have made all the difference.


Taking off my critic hat for a moment, this is good work. For real though, I go in blind because I know as a developer that it's what most people do when they play a game, but this is a solid ruleset implemented solidly. I hope you don't take my hardness for dislike.

Your build is borked and that's unfortunate. As someone who also put out a borked build, I sympathize. Your art's nice though! I do hope it didn't get prioritized over things like build stability, but it's a nice little 16-bit style regardless. 

Obviously this game didn't go quite as you hoped, but the idea is solid. Throw on some affordances like cooldown timers and part descriptions and then a whole heap of iteration and polish and you just might have something here!

Now this was cute. I enjoyed this quite a bit, not gonna lie! It's got a few problems with it mechanically; The potion on K refills just as the shield runs out, for instance making it 100% possible to just spam it until the timer runs out, but it managed to charm me regardless. I do wish the fire potion had more of a kick as an "Oh fuck" tool or a crowd thinner, and the speed potion just seemed like a losing proposition, but you guys definitely seemed like you had a vision for what you wanted out of this game. Not a bad go at all!

I'm a big fan of the risk-reward idea of more damage = more power. This obviously came out a bit rougher than you might have liked, but I can see potential in this and the Hotline Miami influence does manage to shine through. 

That health meter though. That health meter was less than helpful.

It's a fairly straightforward game and it doesn't quiiiite meet the theme for me, but it appears to run as intended and you know? I didn't dislike playing it. Not a bad go, friendo.

As the others have indicated, it seems there's only the mac build available for download. I'm not going to downvote you just because I can't play your game, but do consider changing your platform tags.

Hey man, listen. Your game might be fantastic, but this is a game jam. We're all here to practice doing what we love and appreciate and learn from the efforts of others doing the same. I normally wouldn't make a thing out of something like this, but a jam like this isn't the place to get your work appreciated if you're going to charge for it. 

I have been tricked into doing math! I feel so betrayed! I signed up for fun video games, not balancing equations!

Dialing back the drama a bit, even though math + stress = ??!?!? for me, I was still kinda charmed by your game. It feels a little bit more like Math Blaster than a game I'd pick up for myself right now, but a little time spent on the presentation and affordances might just clear that right up.

That said, just because it didn't rub up against my personal biases, I won't dismiss that feeling like an edutainment game isn't necessarily a bad thing. There's a reason people like me remember things like Math Blaster or the Jumpstart series, and if that's the direction you want to go then I think you're off to a good start.

You know? I think you've hit on something here. It's true that there doesn't seem to be any escalation or even really urgency, but I get the feeling that wasn't your priority for this jam. You made a solid, well-constructed prototype for an idea you thought might work, and as far as I'm concerned, it did.

I see as well you intended for there to be a "bullet budget" so the player couldn't overspam bullets and trivialize the game, but I wonder if you shouldn't lean into that. Give players a shooter with no ammo restrictions and they'll fall back on the classical ABS method: "Always be shooting." What would be more engaging? Suddenly losing your ability to shoot because too many bullets are on screen? Or using that as a tool to avoid getting overrun? I know for my part I had a good time manipulating the stream of bullets to shoot around corners, and I don't know if that would be as enjoyable otherwise.

Also, if you're willing to share, I wonder what technique you used to curve the bullet paths? It was really consistent, even when I tried to mess it up. 

Unfortunately, it seems like this game didn't come together like you probably hoped. I don't feel the need to go over its shortcomings, I imagine you're acutely aware of them. I do want to still congratulate you for turning anything in at all. 18k+ people entered this jam and just over 5k submitted. You may not be the proudest of your end result, but that's what jams are about; finishing the race and learning from your time running it. 

While your idea has merit, I almost feel like you took the concept a bit too far. Near the end of my play, I actually took my hands off the keyboard and just let the game play itself. It seems like you might have been trying to deal with the question "In a game about shooting everything, what's the consequence for randomly firing?" and your answer was "It won't shoot otherwise." This makes logical sense, but doesn't end up being great fun in practice, especially when you start removing the player's locomotive option, hence the keyboard hand removal.

I think this idea is worth exploring, but might need a more subtle touch. A way to steadily remove control from the player without actively disengaging them. If this were my game, that question of "What's the consequence of randomly firing" would be my first consideration.

I'm sorry friend, you worked so hard on this game, but didn't zip it up before uploading it. That's gotta feel like shit :-(


That said, 

"How does your game fit the theme?"

"Yes."

I respect the balls on that.

Part of your description says this is barely done, and it's definitely that. I'm not going to focus on that though, because I think your design is much more interesting than its shortcomings. You've got this two player semi-asymetrical game. Players can choose to play as either a horse, who is fast, or a dino, who's the win condition for the game. As a fun little party game that's actually pretty compelling to me. It's fast, it's easy to pick up on, and there's a level of light strategy to it. You may not have finished your project in much of a state, but I do think you hit on something kinda cool here!

It's a good concept; this is basically lemmings on crack with one lemming and one mechanic. This is definitely a good job for a 48 hour jam!

Just a couple of things ended up killing it for me though. First, the camera wibble made aiming my shots and predicting timings maybe a bit more difficult than it needed to be. It went beyond making it harder and began to feel more frustrating than challenging. Second, aiming my shots resulted in a lot of things getting in the way that I hadn't been able to consider. It's a bit of a tough design problem, because just making your shot always land where you click might remove some of the positional play you've got going for you. A good aid for the player might be introducing an aiming line that goes from the wand to the eventual target, intended or no.

A good time regardless though! Well done!

Portals in puzzle games aren't breaking new ground, but they really don't have to be when you do them well! This was a pretty well-considered game from the ground up and I could tell you spent some time considering the portals' positioning. That could have easily been a breaking point in the design. The game also controlled well, especially for a 2D platformer played on my keyboard. Well done!

I share most of the same thoughts as my partner in crime so I won't belabour them here. I just wanted to say that I enjoyed this! I think flashing blue would be a great way to telegraph and that you've got a novel little platformer if you decide to develop it more!

Thanks! We had such a good time working on this that we immediately started polish and bug fixing after the dev period ended. It's definitely the first jam game we made that we really wanted to get more out of.

Thanks for checking it out! This game is partially autobiographical so it means a lot for people to relate to it.


I've got the bugs fixed on my end and we'll be dropping that as soon as voting ends!

You know? Now that you say that, I'm remembering that was a popular request last year, too. I'll put it on my list for the post-jam patch!

It means a lot that you feel this was able to capture that feeling. I've spent a good amout of times in hospitals and waiting rooms myself, and I'm glad we were able to translate that into Unity, albeit somewhat jankily.

Oh no! It's like the universe waits for the last half hour to start making problems. We had our main computer crash mid-build right near the very end. 

I really like this idea! It's just a few tweaks short of being really good. If you were to continue working on this (and I hope you do!) the first things I'd address is probably the over-active physics on the crane rope and the tendency of cars to pile up in a way that becomes unmanagable. Those are both fairly straightforward fixes though; the core design is solid and can be heavily improved upon. Great work!