Another simple idea executed almost perfectly, Andrew VanHeuklon's Rerun is a unique mouseplay game of collection and avoidance. And though we have seen this core gameplay mechanic in other games before, it is the creative implementations of the "replay" theme that elevate this title above others of its type.
Simply click "Play" then choose a level to begin, though only the first is unlocked initially. You will have to achieve at least a bronze medal to unlock each new level in succession, which represents 70% of the total points available for the level you are on. A silver medal is awarded for 80% and a gold medal for 90%.
To play, just collect the 'disks' of the same color as your pointer while avoiding all the other disks. Once you're done collecting the first color, you will repeat the level with the next color—up to a maximum of 4 on the later levels. However, with each new color turn, you will also have to avoid the pointers of your previous turns as they whiz around the play field collecting disks as well. Points are lost (equivalent to 3 disks) if the mouse pointer comes in contact with any of your previous pointers.
It's just that simple. But to do well and to reach the higher levels, a bit of strategy, planning, and perhaps even a replay or two will become necessary. There are also some very helpful power-ups to earn and extras to unlock as well.
For each disk of the correct color collected, a meter at the bottom of the screen increases. Every time you collect 50 disks a "Jaybomb" is awarded. Jaybombs allow you to collect all disks of your color currently on-screen when you click the left mouse button during play. Each may be used only once.
By accumulating medals you can earn a few extras that are very helpful in attaining higher percentages in later levels. For example, earning 15 bronze medals allows you to begin each level with 2 Jaybombs instead of having to earn them first. But even more powerful than the Jaybomb is Prediction, unlocked with at least 15 silver medals, which actually shows the paths of your previous turns before they happen, thus making them much easier to avoid.
Analysis: As with a few other entries in the competition, Rerun approaches the concept of replay from the perspective of replaying previous attempts, or turns, in real-time as you progress through a level. And while most of these implementations took a cooperative approach, Rerun goes the other way and turns your previous turns into additional elements to avoid, thus turning you against yourself.
And while the core concept of collection and avoidance is one that we have seen and played before, the reason it performed better over other more original entries in the competition is due to its overall implementation. Rerun is a full-featured, well-polished game that performed well in every judging metric except for accessibility—the version submitted to the competition did not include colorblind mode. Those lost points, however, were not enough to pull it down below 2nd place, and for that Andrew's competition entry has earned the runner-up prize, and well deservedly.
Rerun is a very simple idea executed exceptionally well and turned into a polished and enjoyable game that not only implements the "replay" theme in a uniquely creative way, it includes several extras and unlockables that serve to increase its replay value as well. Good job, Andrew, and congratulations!
dancemonkey - I'll admit it: I didn't quite get this game when I first played. I mean I understood how to play and played through most of it, but I wasn't quite sure why exactly it was supposed to be fun. After seeing how well it did in the competition (due also to my scoring, which ironically was pretty high; that's the nice thing about scoring based on objective metrics!), I went back and played it again all the way through. I get it now, at least I think I do. You have to just give in to the insanity of increasingly complex and chaotic levels. Let yourself go, live free, collect the colored dots and laugh on the inside as your prior hectic movements are replayed again and again. Seeing my prior pointers collect the colored dots I realized I need to drink less coffee. A well-deserved runner-up win.
zxo - Usually, having a great idea for a game is not enough to make it a great game; you also need a proper implementation of that idea. If I could sum up Rerun in 3 words, it would be "high quality implementation." Like dancemonkey, I was a bit surprised when the dust settled and Rerun stood in second place (showing once again how many great entries we received), but looking back at the scores Rerun attained, I see that they were all justified. The theme was well-incorporated, the gameplay was reasonably unique (having to avoid yourself four times over was a nice fresh idea). It may not have had the sheer ingenuity of something like Time Raider, but it was also without all of the flaws, and truly that means something. With the extended prep time for the next competition, I hope that most of the games will have visuals that are as vibrant, audio that is as appealing, menus that offer as much control, and gameplay that is as completely thought-out and complex as these things were for Rerun. And no bugs, no annoyances, not even a perturbation! With his second-place finish here, added to his being the inspiration behind our first competition, Andrew proves that he is one of the premier casual game designers on the web today.