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I couldn’t get it to advance the frames; when I press space it just scrolled to the bottom of the buffer. The arrow keys moved the point, but that was all. Does this require a specific version of Emacs? (I’m on 28.8)

Looks like there are some incompatibilities with Emacs 28 fyi: Symbol’s function definition is void: take

I tried on 28.2; I was able to workaround the lack of file-name-parent-directory (you can replace it with file-name-directory which works just as well; however it also calls the defvar-keymap function which is not present in 28, and it’s less clear how to work around that.

Made me think of this

That’s realism!

I should elect my tech before the Jam starts and figure out packaging and distribution first.

This is really good advice. If you choose a lisp that doesn’t have a good out-of-the-box distribution story, it will eat up a lot of your precious jam time unless you get that solved ahead of time! The jam rules mention this already, but perhaps it could be emphasized more.

While I don’t love Appimage for general-purpose application distribution, it’s actually a pretty good fit for games, especially if they’re single-player.

I worked with my son this time who is 9 this time around.

Also really good advice! I’ve been collaborating with my kids for the past 6 years on this (they were about that age when we started!) and it’s become something of a tradition to play thru all the entries together and talk about what we like and don’t like. Kids are great at finding bugs and noticing when things don’t make sense.

Yes the cover image is generated by ChatGPT (spit!) but so what?

This will probably not be allowed next time. It’s important to credit the original creator of whatever code or art you incorporate into your game, and these tools make that impossible.

Not bad for having changed languages halfway thru the jam.

My favorite thing about this is how you can get a good ways in before you realize that missing the ball doesn’t make you lose.

Anyone who found it too difficult on their first playthru: you can press backspace to activate easy mode where the workers have a higher tolerance for fatigue, hunger, etc.

Spend less on candles. Wait, no–I mean, build more food shops!

Glad you like it. =)

In the interest of fairness we don’t allow the itch uploads to change during the rating period, but you can still edit your game’s description with a link to a version that contains the fix so that people won’t be frustrated while playing.

Thanks. I added a note to the game description indicating the meaning of each of the status icons, but after the jam ends I think I will go back and add hover tooltips.

If it’s just a matter of a few minutes I think we can make an exception. Send me an email at and I can send you a late submission link.

Cool! Maybe this will be good practice for me to learn my hanzi.

(1 edit)

It’s the Tower Institute of Linguistics!

build higher! work together to meet the needs of your community! defy god!

(going back to tic-80 for this one)

If you’re saying you have a pre-existing engine that you just haven’t made public yet, I think that should be OK as long as you can show that the engine is distinct from the game itself. Publishing it in a separate repository would help, even if the repository wasn’t published before the jam started.

It shouldn’t be a problem in terms of the rules of the jam, but it will be difficult to get people to rate your game if they can’t run it on their computer.

It’s happening again this Spring, starting on the 16th of May. See

Because the game only allows 180-degree rotations, it’s impossible for any given face to be anywhere but on either the correct face or the opposite face.

I actually was going to allow for 90-degree rotations originally, but the math needed for rendering that was too difficult for my barely-passed-linear-algebra brain, and then later I realized that it would have made the game too hard to play anyway. The number of possible cube states with 180-degree rotations is a tiny fraction of the total number of possible states of a real cube.

I really liked the write-up of the lore; that was cool.

When I reached the win condition, the game crashed for me:

(mana-break:102426): GLib-GObject-CRITICAL **: g_object_ref: assertion 'G_IS_OBJECT (object)' failed
Gtk-Message: GtkDialog mapped without a transient parent. This is discouraged.
fatal error encountered in SBCL pid 102426 tid 102565:
Can't handle sig11 in non-lisp thread 0x7fcd58a176c0 at @ 0x7fcd7ba06366

Early on I thought I was going to go back and re-align them to get rid of the roughness but then I realized I liked it after all!

Well, it definitely doesn’t have to be self-hosted in order to be a lisp! Emacs Lisp and Clojure are both not self-hosted.

The point is you have data structures, and the code is written using the same notation as the data structures. Interpreter vs compiler is just implementation details imo. Maybe you haven’t gotten around to writing the compiler yet but it’s still the same language whether the compiler exists or not.

Seeing people submit games in lisps they made themselves is always one of the highlights of the jam! Love to see this particular type of creativity. Even if the game itself isn’t finished it’s still very cool to see the process.

Good luck!

Here’s a thread where we’ll announce jams in the future:

Hey folks! We are running another round of the biannual Lisp Game Jam for all you game devs who love or are interested in learning more about the Lisp family of programming languages. This includes the classics like Scheme and Common Lisp but also newer languages like Fennel and Clojure. Some people even submit entries written in languages they’ve created themselves!

It’s running from the 20th to the 30th of October, so you’ve got enough time to work at a more chill pace. All entries must use open source licenses for their code and assets.

See the details at

Here’s the jam link!

Good question! Mostly so far we’ve been announcing it on the #lispgames channel in But it’s understandable if not everyone wants to hang out there on IRC. I’ll start a thread in the main forum about this and we can update it every time there’s a new jam.

But the date for the next jam to start will be the 20th of October. I’ll get it created on itch soon in the next few days.

There is a bug that only manifests in certain clients which breaks /LIST but you can work around it by /msg chanserv list. (I wasn’t seeing this when I tried with ERC tho.) I’ll see about adding a little IRC cheat sheet too; that’s a good idea!

This is wild; thanks for sharing! I learned a lot.

Yeah, I really wanted to add multiple paths forward as well as more hints about where to go next, but I ran out of time. Maybe I’ll do more with it afterwards!

I have to ask: is this a reference to the pong game in the end of the trailer for else Heart.Break()? (because that game was also created by the creator of Carp IIRC)

Thanks; it appears that there’s some kind of bug which only seems to manifest when the server has been running for a while with lots of connections; wasn’t able to reproduce it during the jam but I’ve had to restart it a few times in the past day. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Will try again when I have access to a (real) Linux machine

You shouldn’t need to do that! The game is running on my server; see the game description for instructions for how to connect. The binary download is just there in case my server crashes or something, or if you want to play offline.

I didn’t test the binary very much because of that; I figured most people wouldn’t need it.

If you do want to run your own server, I bet you’d have better luck with the source tarball since building from source has very few dependencies, just make/gcc/curl. (the makefile will automatically download and build the VM for the runtime)

Looking forward to the next installment in the turbo-generic franchise! The skeleton sprites are great.

This reminds me of a previous jam entry from a few years ago which had a similar idea about bees and flowers:

Clever twist on a classic!

The day and night cycle felt very serene, and the poetry mixed into the gameplay gave it a haunting feel.

Great use of a minimal palette! Really set the mood nicely.

Thanks for sharing!

only one other entry that used Scheme at all

I don’t think this is right? We’ve got several other Scheme entries:

Plus I thought I saw one done in Kawa Scheme, but now I can’t find it.