Caverns


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Rating: 4.6/5 (105 votes)
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DoraCavernsThere is an entire world beneath our feet. The planet teems with life, some too small to ever be seen... or too reclusive. In Caverns, you can give Mother Nature a helping hand as you shape the terrain of an underground cave to discover 12* different species. More virtual sandbox than game, Caverns is still an exceptionally clever little piece of design whose creativity makes up for limited interaction.

The game is controlled with the mouse, clicking to paint blocks of terrain types. You can change terrains by clicking on different ones in the control panel at the bottom of the screen, or by tapping [C] to cycle through them all. Finding out the right conditions for each creature can be a little tricky. The little tar creature will spring forth from the ground on their own, for example, while the blue water creatures need to fall like water droplets. The cavern you start out in can be manipulated and carved out to make the grungy, dark, critter-ridden underground lair of your dreams. Do you think it would help if you Feng Shui-d the lava? We think Martha Stewart would approve.

Caverns was made in ten hours for a Ludum Dare theme, and as such is pretty basic. You're limited in what you can do, and if you're hoping to build an adorable teeming ecosystem of marketable little creatures you can hug and love and call George, you might be disappointed. You can't interact with the creatures directly. But for its presentation it's still big on charm and it's surprisingly fun to work with. Coming across the correct environment to get all the creatures happily coexisting is a challenge, to say the least. Oh little tar creature, why did you kill the tree creature? The tree creature that wasn't hurting you? The tree creature that took me forever to figure out how to grow?! Why can't you be more like little purple blob creature?

While it may be short, Caverns is still surprisingly inventive and worth a look if you're into experimental design. Fans of virtual pet-ish webtoys will also find a lot to like here. After all, who can say they've never wanted their very own cuddly, painful little critter made of burning lava to call their own? Liars, that's who!

Play Caverns

*Update: Now with more species! (Version 0.85)

Walkthrough Guide


(Please allow page to fully load for spoiler tags to be functional.)

Nice game, but the mouse input is *extremely* laggy for me. (64-bit Firefox with 64-bit Flash on Ubuntu.) I found all the creatures by making a big long horizontal platform with some of each terrain, and then sprinkling some of the others in the air and spending a while observing what happened and then making isolated experiments to try to figure out *why* it happened.

How to make simple creatures:

tar creatures crawl up out of black earth.

droplets fall down out of blue water.

yellow critters crawl up out of sand.

How to make second generation creatures:

tar creatures sink into red lava to become red bouncing creatures.

blue droplets on grey stone turn into teal crawly things. (I only ever got these guys on the stone at the bottom of the screen. I don't know if there's another way to make them.)

blue droplets meeting yellow critters turn into a seed.

How to make third generation creatures:

red bouncing creatures meeting blue droplets become purple balls.

seeds planted on sand become, um, sand trees?

seeds planted on grass become trees

How to make fourth generation creatures:

purple balls on green ground (not grass, the solid green one) turn into green worms.

sand trees that are fed lots of blue droplets will produce spiky sand things.

normal trees that are fed lots of blue droplets will produce tomato creatures.

I'm not sure if my definition of "generations" quite matches what the game uses to report achievements.

I found the easiest way to make all the creatures at once is to split the screen into several compartments:

Make a long corridor along the bottom with water for a ceiling. This will make blue droplets and teal crawlies.

Make a chamber for creating sand stuff. Put sand on the floor and lots of rows of water and sand in mid-air so that the blue droplets and yellow critters will all fall onto the sand.

Make a chamber for growing tomatoes. Put grass on the floor again put lots of rows of water and sand in mid-air above it.

Finally, make a chamber for growing green worms. Make a floor of lava with lots of rows of black earth above it so that the tar creatures will land on the lava. Make a little wall one unit high and then a cliff that drops away so that the tar creatures remain trapped in the lava, but when they turn into red bouncy creatures they can bounce over the wall and into a deeper pit. Line the bottom of this pit with green tiles and put lots of rows of water in the air above it. Hopefully the blue droplets should land on the red creatures, turn into purple balls, then finally the purple balls should turn into green worms.

I read all the comments and the walkthrough, and I saw nobody found the last creatures :

Scalactor

Combine a leaf crab with a moldo to get a scalactor

Carni Bori Plant

Combine a scalactor and a targz on acid to get a carni bori plant.

Polly Nolly

Feed exclusively this plant with bouncing flaemme to get polly nolly

Joerons

Feed exclusively this plant with tomatoes and get joerons.

The joerons killing everybody on their path, i couldn't manage to get the 19 creatures coexisting...good luck

123 Comments

pretty fun once you get into it :) I love these experimental games and webtoys so thanks for the recommendation.

I think the tar creatures are bad for the trees.

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I have found:

Water creature: drops from ceiling
Seed creature: comes from sand
Tar creature: comes from tar
Tomato creature: When Water and Seed meet on the grassy floor, a tree grows, and this tree grows Tomato creatures
Crab creature: Similar to Tomato creatures, but when Water and Seed meet on Sand
Lava creature: Comes from lava, bounces.
Rock creature: When Water touches Lava, they create this one.

That's seven, though the game says I've seen 8 coexist, and I only need to get 2/12 more, so apparently I've discovered 10, but I must've missed them.

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I can't draw near the right of the screen: clicking more than about three-quarters right causes it to pause instead.

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Sorry for the double post, but the game now says I've seen 9 coexist, so I think that:

The Tomato tree and the Crab tree also count as creatures

Also:

The Lava creature will only appear when there's lava tiles near tar tiles. Or something. Will investigate further.

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What I've figured out so far:

  • Blue guys drop down from blue blocks

  • Black guys come up from black blocks

  • Yellowish guys come up from yellowish blocks

  • If a black guy dissipates on a red block, he turns into a bouncy red guy

  • If a bouncy red guy meets a blue guy, they turn into a purple guy

  • If a purple guy dissipates into one of those squares that's green the whole way through, he turns into two green snake guys.

  • If a yellowish guy meets a blue guy, he turns into a green seed.

  • If a green seed lands on a turf-covered dirt block, it will start growing into a tree

  • As long as a tree has a steady supply of blue guys, it'll produce orange-reddish fruit guys.

I can't find any more reactions, but this is only up to 9 creatures.

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First-generation creatures:

Tar, Water, Sand

Second-generation creatures:

Tomato-tree, Sand-tree, Fire

Third-generation creatures:

Tomato, Sandcrab, Purple

Fourth-generation creatures:

Snake

This is ten of the eleven creatures that I've apparently seen. I don't know if any seed types count as creatures. I've estimated the generations -- I don't know the game's technical definition of generation it uses for achievements.

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Ok here's all the events I found, got all acheivements, but perhaps I might have not seen a critter.

Primary:

Water - drops from water tiles

Tar - grows from tar tiles

Sand - grows from sand tiles

Secondary:

Water + Sand on grass tile = green tree

Water + Sand on sand tile = yellow tree

Tar dying on lava = red bat

Water dying on the rockbed (the undeletable grey tiles) = green crawler

Tar + any tree = tree withers

Tertiary:

Lots of water + green tree = tomato guy

Lots of water + Yellow tree = sandcrab

Water + red bat = purple blob

Purple blob dying on green tile = green snake

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A Bugs Bunny reference, Dora? YAY!

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1) Droplets: Blue watery guys, drop from blue blocks, feeds trees
2) Seedlings: Round spidery guys, rise from yellow blocks
3) Blacks: Black spidery guys, rise from black blocks, kills trees
4) Green Trees: Green tree with red fruit, let Droplet and Seedling meet on grassy blocks
5) Tomatoes: Red fruit from a Green Tree
6) Yellow Tree: Yellow tree with beige fruit, let Droplet and Seedling meet on yellow block
7) Crabs: Beige fruit from a Yellow Tree
8) Jumpers: Red bouncy guys, let Black sink in a red block
9) Blobs: Let Jumper meet Droplet
10) Worms: Let Blob sink into green block
11) Crawlers: Let Droplet sink into a grey block at the bottom

I've seen them all, yet don't know what the 12th one is :/

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1) Droplets: Blue watery guys, drop from blue blocks, feeds trees
2) Seedlings: Round spidery guys, rise from yellow blocks
3) Blacks: Black spidery guys, rise from black blocks, kills trees
4) Green Trees: Green tree with red fruit, let Droplet and Seedling meet on grassy blocks
5) Tomatoes: Red fruit from a Green Tree
6) Yellow Tree: Yellow tree with beige fruit, let Droplet and Seedling meet on yellow block
7) Crabs: Beige fruit from a Yellow Tree
8) Jumpers: Red bouncy guys, let Black sink in a red block
9) Blobs: Let Jumper meet Droplet
10) Worms: Let Blob sink into green block
11) Crawlers: Let Droplet sink into a grey block at the bottom

I've seen them all, yet don't know what the 12th one is :/

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i got eleven
unsure what the last one was though

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Nice game, but the mouse input is *extremely* laggy for me. (64-bit Firefox with 64-bit Flash on Ubuntu.) I found all the creatures by making a big long horizontal platform with some of each terrain, and then sprinkling some of the others in the air and spending a while observing what happened and then making isolated experiments to try to figure out *why* it happened.

How to make simple creatures:

tar creatures crawl up out of black earth.

droplets fall down out of blue water.

yellow critters crawl up out of sand.

How to make second generation creatures:

tar creatures sink into red lava to become red bouncing creatures.

blue droplets on grey stone turn into teal crawly things. (I only ever got these guys on the stone at the bottom of the screen. I don't know if there's another way to make them.)

blue droplets meeting yellow critters turn into a seed.

How to make third generation creatures:

red bouncing creatures meeting blue droplets become purple balls.

seeds planted on sand become, um, sand trees?

seeds planted on grass become trees

How to make fourth generation creatures:

purple balls on green ground (not grass, the solid green one) turn into green worms.

sand trees that are fed lots of blue droplets will produce spiky sand things.

normal trees that are fed lots of blue droplets will produce tomato creatures.

I'm not sure if my definition of "generations" quite matches what the game uses to report achievements.

I found the easiest way to make all the creatures at once is to split the screen into several compartments:

Make a long corridor along the bottom with water for a ceiling. This will make blue droplets and teal crawlies.

Make a chamber for creating sand stuff. Put sand on the floor and lots of rows of water and sand in mid-air so that the blue droplets and yellow critters will all fall onto the sand.

Make a chamber for growing tomatoes. Put grass on the floor again put lots of rows of water and sand in mid-air above it.

Finally, make a chamber for growing green worms. Make a floor of lava with lots of rows of black earth above it so that the tar creatures will land on the lava. Make a little wall one unit high and then a cliff that drops away so that the tar creatures remain trapped in the lava, but when they turn into red bouncy creatures they can bounce over the wall and into a deeper pit. Line the bottom of this pit with green tiles and put lots of rows of water in the air above it. Hopefully the blue droplets should land on the red creatures, turn into purple balls, then finally the purple balls should turn into green worms.

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The 12th species:

The 12th "species" is the water/sand seed, before it turns into a tree (or disappears if not over grass or sand). It only lasts a few seconds. You can test it by just making a bunch of sand and water creatures and nothing else, and see that there are 2 coexisting species, and then when the water and sand creatures meet, it will bump up to 3 for a second or two.

Funnily enough, I had basically turned off my sand creatures after making the trees, so the "seed" was the last of the 12 species I needed to get the 12/12 coexisting achievement.

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brokenrecord Author Profile Page September 3, 2009 10:38 PM

Is anyone else having problems with the game pausing? About half the time I click to place a tile, the game goes to the pause setting and I can't get back. I really want to play!

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I'm having the same problem as brokenrecord. I'm running it under the latest Firefox on a Mac. If anyone could figure this out that would be great.

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 3, 2009 11:34 PM

I do enjoy this one, it really is kind of fun to figure out all of the creatures (I got all but one the 4th-gen ones on my own). And I am pretty pleased that I got all of the achievements after that -- I had to tinker with the balance a little to get one of everybody going at once.

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 4, 2009 12:06 AM

Ooh, I just found the console, it tells you the number value of every square. You can copy them into somewhere else to save them, but sadly you can't actually do anything with them from there. As far as I can tell, you can't edit the numbers directly or otherwise save & load.

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Thanks for the review.
I can't begin to tell you how happy it made me :)
I woke up at 5AM with insomnia and suddendly you put in my face a smile that just doesn't wear off.

Also I had a ~2k visits spike on the page (pretty rad for a guy that just gets 20-30 hits per day)

It's amazing that someone took the effort to create a walkthrough. Kudos to that person for the precision, I couldn't have wrote it better.

Just some clarifications (because of your interest <3):

The generations are exactly like in the walkthrough except that "watered seeds" don't count as a different generation.
So, if you move plants to the 2nd and tomatoes/crawling leaves to the 3rd, it's how generations are computed.

The "12th race" is the temporary greenish seed that comes from watering the speedy seed with legs.
It's not that intuitive but it was the easiest to program in the timelapse to avoid making a whole different set of interactions just for that little seed.

Thanks for your support and everyone that tried the game!

-Martín
Two bananas and milk

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this game is wonderful!

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this is great and all, but I wish there was more to it, like a toggle button thats makes the races fight eachother or somthing.

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Grant Thurston Author Profile Page September 4, 2009 2:07 PM

It's not letting me play like it should, it keeps on randomly pausing when I click anything. D:

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Hey, I follow this site a lot, but never bothered to comment or anything. I figured I would share a screenshot of my success in case anyone just wants to complete all of the achievements.

Screenshot

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The game pauses itself if it looses focus.
Sometimes a program can do that without you being aware of.

For instance, Pidgin makes Flash loose focus when you receive a message, even if the window is not on top of your browser window.

Or maybe it has to do with HTML layouts. I've changed them (and about to upload them) just in case.

Regards

-Martín
Two bananas and milk

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New update!

v0.8
+ 4 new creatures
+ 1 new plant
+ Some races now can kill each other
+ New donation scheme: Get stuff for your bucks
* You can now see the next hint (in case you can't figure out the current)

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I found at least one other creature I didn't see mentioned (unless I missed it in a post)

Try "feeding" a red tomato-y creature to the green worm creature. Don't know yet if you can do anything with it from there.

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Actually If you mix a lava jumper with a sand critter first generation, It'll make a salt-like creature... That's the third generation, I think.

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 4, 2009 11:53 PM

Yay, version 0.8 is out and there are new animals!

When a caterpillar and a tomato collide, they become a butterfly. Those must be caterpillars, not worms.

When a flaming bat and a spiky sand guy collide, they flame white for a bit and make a little white thing with a squarish head.

When a tar guy and a spiky sand guy meet, they make a temporary black spirit that floats upward.

There is some sort of squarish, rolling, light-green thing. It appeared a few times for me, usually on stone, and it rolled around on any stone wall for a while. I can't figure out yet how to make them.

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 5, 2009 12:06 AM

Aha, figured the creation of that last creature that I couldn't figure out in my previous post.

Spiky sand guy + stone critter (from water & stone) = wall-crawling green square.

New plant? Oh I will have to find that . . .

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Fourth Generation:

Sand crab + red lava creature = grey thing
and I somehow managed to make a plant that grew in fire and was withered by water, it produced orange fire creatures ??
I have 1/18 creatures left to find

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 5, 2009 12:18 AM

And there's the plant and another critter.

Get a little white thing by smashing flaming bat and spiky sand guy together, then make sure the white guy dies on a fire square. A plant arises! Feed it flaming bats, and keep water off of it. A good supply of flaming bats will result in seeds that turn into little flames that crawl around for a while.

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Version 0.8 Walkthrough

First Generation:
Blue Droplets fall down out of blue water
Yellow Critters crawl up out of sand
Tar Creatures crawl up out of black earth

Second Generation:
Tar Creatures sink into red lava to become Red Bouncing Creatures
Blue Droplets sink into grey stone (stone bordering the screen) to become Teal Crawly Creatures
Blue Droplets meeting Yellow Critters turn into Seeds
- Seeds planted on grass begin turning into Green trees
- Seeds planted on sand begin turning into Sand trees

Third Generation:
Red Bouncing Creatures meeting Blue Droplets become Purple Balls
Green Trees watered by Blue Droplets produce Tomato Creatures
Sand Trees watered by Blue Droplets produce Sand Crabs

Fourth Generation:
Purple Balls sink into green earth to become Green Worms
Sand Crabs meeting Tar Creatures turn into a Black Spirits then disappear
Sand Crabs meeting Red Bouncing Creatures turn into White Critters
Sand Crabs meeting Teal Crawly Creatures turn into Yellow Round Wall Climbers

Fifth Generation:
Green Worms meeting Tomato Creatures turn into Butterflies
White Critters sink into red lava and begin to turn into Yellow Plants

Sixth Generation:
Yellow Plants watered by Red Bouncing Creatures (withers if watered by Blue Droplets) produce Orange Flame Creatures

[Edit: Please post only once. If you're not a registered user, your comment goes to moderation and can take some time to be published. Thanks! -Pam]

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The green worms made with purple blobs make a butterfly, but I don't know how. Mine was made on green ground, though, so that may be part.

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Ahhh, I was wrong earlier. The caterpillars eat a fruit and become pupa, then butterflies. Also bouncing fires meet pointy sand-tree fruit to become shining things that, if they die in lava, grow into a plant that you can't water but must fire. These bear orange flames.

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For the butterfly:

worm + tomato = butterfly

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I've made a cave which can create all creatures and co-exsist at least 12 races. I have no idea how to upload pics to webs or anything like that, so if someone knows how, I can email the pic to you and help me publish it.

Brief discription for now( see first walkthrough for things like "planting trees" or "tar and fire", or if your creatures don't involve.)


Upper left:

tar and boucing fire zone, and an opening only for fire to go to upper middle. Only goes to upper middle compartment.

Upper middle:

create a light green floor with water blocks on top, with a hole in the floor which connects to a long corridor extending to the lower left but some distance from bottom. If the fire and water meet, it should create a purple blob which goes down the hole and at some time die and become two worm/ catapillers. Connected to top left and lower left.

Upper right:

plant sand trees and give a constant flow of water. make one hole to the left of the zone. This should make the spike things made from trees fall down but not water. Make a narrow way down until you're close to the bottom with any material, but remember to break the fall or the spikes will go to the bottom, which is too much downwards. Connects to Bottom right.

Right side:

make a tar "production line" just right of the hallway for spikes, then let the tar drop to the bottom right part( on top of fire blocks). Seal the rest of the passages. Connects only to bottom right.

Left side:

on top of the green road made earlier, plant tomato trees about two spaces above the road. make a one-block hole under the tree. This should make most tomatoes fall to the green road under( but not the tree or water). If all of above are successful, your tomatoes should meet with the worms and become butterflies! Connects to the green road below.

Middle:

mostly free space besides possibly a few bypassing roads. Not much.

Lower left:

free space. You can use the stone blocks to make teal creatures with water, or other things you want.

Lower right:

using the tar made in middle-right zone, make another tar and fire zone at this corner but seal the whole thing off instead; then make a way for the spikes to let them in and meet with the fire. This should produce a white thing and later it becomes a yellow plant. Once that happens you can close off the supply of spikes and connect the spikes to the lower middle part. Feed the yellow plant fire( don't feed water!). It should produce orange flames. Room connects to middle right and spike passage( upper right).

Lower middle:

make a room for teal creatures like the lower left, but connect the spike passage to it so once the teal things and the spike meet, it'll bacome a yellow spike thing that crawls onto walls. Connects to spike passage.

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w00t! I got 18/18 co-exsisting! It was hard because of the little blobs that come when seeds and water forms, but my stragity was to aim for making the later generation creatures, and if you get it right, the others will happen along the way.

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why is everyone calling then "black spirits", to me they look lik when people type cursewords @#$!%# and stuff like that.

I think thats what the creator means by some creatures killing eachother.

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I can only get 12/18

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GASP! it updated!

butterflies, sand wheels, fights, oh my!

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 5, 2009 2:38 PM

Alright, all 18! Of course I had to let it cook overnight to randomly get all of them at once (yeah there's probably a more efficient way). Anyway, I am kind of pleased with my setup because I am pretty sure it is quite self-sustaining. If the trees die, they will eventually be spontaneously remade in nearby locations. So here is my solution: http://www.folds.net/marie/caverns.gif (I supposed this will be obsolete in under 48 hours when rev 0.9 comes out :D ).

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>> why is everyone calling them "black
>> spirits", to me they look like when
>> people type cursewords @#$!%# and
>> stuff like that.

>> I think thats what the creator
>> means by some creatures killing
>> each other.

And you are right!

Wow, you guys are ninja-fast to discover new creatures :D

Good luck!
-Martín
Two bananas and milk

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I found a weird purple chicken thing that flies! not sure how seemed to come out of mould (solid green)

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Havoc Master/Chaos Master Author Profile Page September 6, 2009 10:04 AM

Wow, I'm really liking this game. It's fun tweak around with everything and eventually create a self-sustaining system.

It's a shame that some creatures just can't be created and sustained without
intervention.

Did anyone get all the creatures alive at one time?

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 6, 2009 11:38 AM

@Chaos Master:
Me :). I got all 18 at once, and I think somebody further up the comments did too. See my previous post & picture two above yours. And actually, although it would take a while, I think my setup would just spontaneously get there without any interventions.

The trees are fairly self-sustaining; if one dies, there will be enough seeds and plenty of water that one will spring up eventually in the small areas that I have reserved for them. The plants aren't quite as well organized, but something must have been working properly because there was still a plant when I looked at it in the morning, after hours of no tinkering.

I think the trick is to figure out all of the combinations of creatures that interact with each other to create new ones, and set up a system that allows all of those combinations to happen naturally. That's tricky, because mostly you only have gravity and chance to help you, but for the flying red creatures you can set up short obstacles so that nothing else gets past those barriers.

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Another good obstacle is leaving a single gap in a plant room so the fruits fall but not the seeds. They are to fast and walk over them.

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if you get the tomato guy and the green worm guy to meet the make an egg that hatches into a buterfly looken thing.

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What would make this game impossibly more easy would be to make gates of some sort that only certain generation creatures could pass through.

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In case someone is interested: v0.85 is up :)

It has a new life forms bio page for unlocked creatures now; You can access it at the main menu.

I don't mean to be rude, but if you're really enjoying this game and have some spare change, consider making a small donation.

It had zero donations so far :(

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Played for a while, but I still can't find any of the new creatures. Anyone have any ideas?

I donated. :)

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I just wanted to let you guys know

that when you create a flower/fern that produces 'fireys'(the little balls of fire) you can nourish it with 'targz' (the tar critters) if they die near the plant and you can also feed it 'leafers' (the sand crab things). B.T.W. I am using the names the author used in the latest verson (0.85) which includes the 'life forms bio'.

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I donated, too. :D
Thanks for a wonderful game, Martín!

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Here's my setup that will get you all creatures:

http://img405.imageshack.us/i/critterscomplete.png/

Presumably, it would eventually have all 18 creatures at one time, I was just too impatient to wait for it. However, the only problem with it is that it doesn't look very nice. It looks more like a factory than a cavern. So here's my first attempt to make it look more cave-like:

http://img179.imageshack.us/i/critterscave.png/

It still has many problems, though. The crabs don't crawl down tunnels fast enough (they die too quickly), the seedlings still get everywhere (my seedling traps don't work as well as I'd hoped), and I need to find a better way to water trees without making it look unnatural.

Who would've thought that aesthetics was another challenge in the game?

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I won the game! i found the tar creatures the fire, water, sand, worm, purple blob, tomato, sand crab,and orange fire creatures. Oh, and the buterfly creatures. Tell me if i missed any.

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HELLO, first i want to thank the creator for such a great game, but now with the question, Do anyone notice that, the creatures stop growing after "x" period of time?, like, the water creature's growing rate becomes slower and then, no growing at all?, is something that i'm dont know? like the size of the square with the proper color, or they need more mud to grow, etc?, thanks.

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Yes Jose, I have noticed that the growth of the creatures declines over a period of time but it never completely stops. It is annoying but I found it didn't affect my cavern creature ecosystem much.

As for special conditions, I am pretty sure there are none. You just need the right block

e.g. the water block for the drippy's

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Does anyone know what the "Friendly only mode" means?
(its in v.0.85 in the menu) You can turn it on and off but I have no idea what it does.

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Guest77: I'm pretty sure that the friendly mode just makes it so the creatures wont attack each other?

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 8, 2009 10:45 AM

@Jose & Guest77
I have noticed that there is something really odd about the growth rate of the creatures, and I think it is a little weirder than in earlier revs of the game. I have definitely noticed it.
@Guest77 & Kegan04
I also thought that "friendly only mode" meant that creatures wouldn't kill each other, but no matter which way I toggle it, those black spirits still happen if I let a sand creature and a tar creature meet.

Has anybody else noticed that in earlier revs, creatures would only appear on top of tar and sand, and below water, but now they often appear inside of these materials? I don't think it works as well as the earlier versions, it means you lose a lot of your creatures if there's stacked material (for nice visual effect).

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I love this game, but it really needs the ability to save and share caverns!

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Found another one:

If you manage to feed the green worms with tomatoes they become butterflies.

Also a theory:

What if you manage to feed the bottom crawlers with sand-fruit? I haven't been able to do this yet. Or sand fruit to butterflies?

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New update!

* The growth rate was bugged in v0.85.
Also some creatures appeared inside other tiles. It has been solved now.

* Friendly mode wasn't enabled in v0.85. It's now implemented: It disables killings between creatures and withering of plants for certain creatures.
It's sort of an easy-hard switch, also cool if you don't like violence in your cavern ; )

Thanks to all of you, for your follow-up and the time you take to play the game. I'm glad you're enjoying it!

Special thanks to Jay and Kegan04 for donating : )

Changelog: v0.89
(I should update the achievements, currently some are near impossible)
+ New life forms: 1 plant, 2 creatures (hard)
+ Friendly mode option (No killing between critters, plants don't wither with critters)
* Seedy creature now always jumps 1 tile gaps (or it should)
* Fixed bug: Spawn locations were never removed (leading to bad spawn points and bad spawn timing)

Good luck!
-Martín

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Billy_Kane September 8, 2009 6:28 PM

As for the new creatures, all I know is that

A NEW seed is produced by a scalactor and a targz, but I don't know what surface it can grow on yet.

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Billy_Kane September 8, 2009 6:38 PM

Wow, Martin, you really had to make things difficult.

The seed I mentioned above grows on Acid(solid green surface) and blooms into...

a venus fly trap. which obviously means it feeds on butterflies (although I have yet to test this, but it's a hunch).

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now the spawn rate is ever worse

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Billy_Kane September 8, 2009 7:34 PM

It turns out that the carni bori plant will eat mana-manas, orugees, and fire moths along with wingies (there's probably more, but that's all i have). I somehow got it to produce some sort of bouncy tubesock-like creature. I'm guessing that feeding it something else with produce something else (Yeah, I read the hints).

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YAY! thanks for the answer, and now i have the carnivore plant and the blue dudes with big teeth, but i'm noticed that the growing rate is better but still weird, and Martin, one question how do i donate money? cause i dont have a paypal account. thanks.

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You need to have critters spawn'd faster, even more so than the original version. It was pretty difficult before, now its pretty much impossible.

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Thanks for clearing that up OrigamiMarie.

I'm with Wolf on the spawning rate. It needs to be much faster.

I also wanted to ask if anyone has a good layout for a cavern to support all the lifeforms. I could not find any logical or sustaining way to support the previous critters and the

Carni Bori, Polly nolly's and Jawrons.

Also, has anyone donated and submitted an idea for another lifeform? Its one of the choices for donation. I would love to donate and submit an idea but I don't have a paypal account. :(

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Love this game! Just a great idea - reminds me almost of viva pinata without all the bumf of money etc. Just exploring and finding creatures!

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 9, 2009 11:17 AM

@Guest77
I haven't tried it yet, but I do have an idea that is a lot like my previously-posted image that might work for helping all of the current creatures survive and thrive.

The difference is this: there are sort of two logical halves of that scene that don't actually interfere with each other at all, and I think I would switch those to halves left-to-right. It would be kind of tricky because there isn't a line down the middle that makes a tidy division, but something could be worked out. Then at the bottom, a new area would be made that involves targz, acid ground, and a little obstacle to get in that only the scalactors and fliers could get into. With some luck, that should result in well-fed new creatures.

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Hey, I'm intersted in your opinions. Exactly why you don't like the spawn rate? (It's a bit faster than before, max: 1.33/sec)

I don't have a comments section on the page yet but you can always drop me a line through e-mail (contact link on top of the game).
I'll be glad to hear from you!

Some screenshots:

@Jose: You could use Western Union I think, but the fees make it prohibitive for small amounts.

@Guest77: Same answer as for Jose. Please notice that the addition of a lifeform is the most expensive donation. Are you willing to donate that much?

I have just editted the donations page to avoid confusions!

Thanks for your comments!
You can drop me a line if you liked the game.

-Martín
Two bananas and milk

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I think the spawn rate is partially time based and partially based on how many spawning tiles you have on the screen. If you start making screen-wide rows of water you can hear the drip sound everytime a water guy spawns. As you add rows the time between hearing the sound decreases and then stops decreasing at around the 5-6 row. Then it seems to cap out. If you add some tar stuff you can see that whenever a tar guy spawns the dripping misses a beat.

So I recon it's not efficient to add more spawning tiles after about the 250-300 mark, cause that just spreads out the spawns that you will get.

To get all the creatures you need, say, 1 fire plant, 1 tomatoe plant, 1 sand plant and 2(?) of the new plant. This gives you about 50-60 spawn tiles to feed each plant. But then you need to create all the other creatures so, say, 40 tiles for each plant? Then 20 to produce the purple guys, 10 for the mold guys and 10 to produce seeds... and then you need to get plain lucky and have everything onscreen at once >

This is me just thinking out loud, anybody else have any ideas?

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Here is my current working cavern
http://yfrog.com/0ppicture1crp
The only guy I havn't found is the other creature the new plant makes because I have no idea what to feed him. The water tiles in the bottom left are just placeholders until I figure out where to add them

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I feel like I'm spamming :P (why no edit button)

Here's my map which will getcha all the races onscreen at once

Also concerning the new plant

If you feed it the red jumping guys it'll produce the pink things.
If you feed it tomatoes it'll produce the blue things

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--- Update: v0.90 is up! ---

I think I'm unable to post for some reason.

I wanted to tell you that the growth rate/weird inside material spawned has been solved now in v0.90

* Semis (legged seeds) now also jump 1-tile gaps always (or should!)

Also I wanted to post a screenshot of a automatic self-creating self-sustaining enviroment for the 22 lifeforms I achieved.

I hope this comments gets through! Maybe it was all the markup I was using the problem.

I wish to hear from your opinions, please write me an email if you want!

Regards
-Martín
Two bananas and milk

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To clear your doubts, a little snippet of code to make por clear how the spawning speed works:

= -0.027901786 * + 7.4743304 (in seconds)

Clamped between 0.75 and 10.

Good luck! Check the new version! Any comments are welcome!
-Martín

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Hey, I'm intersted in your opinions. Exactly why you don't like the spawn rate? (It's a bit faster than before, max: 1.33/sec)

I don't have a comments section on the page yet but you can always drop me a line through e-mail (contact link on top of the game).
I'll be glad to hear from you!

Some screenshots:

@Jose: You could use Western Union I think, but the fees make it prohibitive for small amounts.

@Guest77: Same answer as for Jose. Please notice that the addition of a lifeform is the most expensive donation. Are you willing to donate that much?

I have editted the donations page, it was too confusing.

Thanks for your comments!
You can drop me a line if you liked the game

To clear your doubts, a little snippet of code to make por clear how the spawning speed works:

[spawn delay] = -0.027901786 * [spawn location count] + 7.4743304 (in seconds)

Clamped between 0.75 and 10.

Good luck! Check the new version! Any comments are welcome!
-Martín

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Awesome, I was pretty much right on.

This means that if you have more than 241 spawn blocks it's inefficient.

@Martin: In your pics how do your plants survive? So little water, so many plants (also if you put some lava down the bottom near the fly-trap plants you wont waste so many of the black guys :)

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 10, 2009 11:42 PM

Oh cool, thank you Merve. That works very nicely. I have gotten all of the creatures to appear, and I think I'll let it run for a while and see if I can get a perfect combo.

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Thanks for the reply Martin!
Im glad you are interested in our opinions.
About the spawn rate, I would just feel comfortable if it were a little faster...but maybe thats just me. I think, in retrospect, that its ok when you find a good layout for the cavern. So sorry for that.

Also, about the donation, I had quickly skimmed through it without remembering the prices. When I went to the page I got a surprise! If i could I would love to donate that much but obviously I cant (I don't even get pocket money XD). I just wish I could get some of the creatures made up into the game. It would be awesome!
(Maybe a creature editor could be in the final release? That would go down splendidly!)

Oh and Martin, in my opinion the adoption price is a bit high because I'm sure thats the choice most people would want to donate for. But don't take the wrong way! You definitely don't have to change it.

And finally, I was a tad disappointed when you put up the bio. I think names like scalactor and polly nolly are good but wingy, firey and fire moth are a bit dull. No offence. I was also expecting a bio with a description of a species not a description of a character. You have written it as if there is only one of each creature.

So those are my ideas and sorry if I sounded a bit harsh.

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About a new plant:

There's a plant which will grow on lava. It will make some kind of flameguys.

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it won't load it 4 tic and stop plz help

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Did anyone say Secret Achievements?... ;)

(You'd probably go nuts trying to find them, finding them by chance is the better approach, they're more like easter eggs :)

@Guest77
Thanks for that long analysis!
By no means I feel offended by it, quite the contrary, it's really cool that you and all the other guys are enjoying this game and discussing about it!

-- Maybe a creature editor could be in the final release?
-- That would go down splendidly!
;D heh.
Not in this game, but I thought of making a sequel in which the user has more interaction with the nature of creatures and not just the enviroment :)

I know the adoption price is a bit high, I'll see how that goes after I release the final version and start publishing it in portals.
There are only 22 and you get to be a part of the game forever.
If no one pays that price I'd probably lower it.

You have a good point on the bio. Some names are a bit crappy and treating them as single entities is senseless. I'll see what I can do about that.

You guys have been awesome :)

Best regards
-Martín

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Im glad you weren't offended by my thoughts Martin! I'm also very happy you even take them into consideration!

I will be very happy when the new names come out! Look, don't worry about the creature editor. That was just me being silly. I know it would take a lot of work. It was just an idea for if you ever were out of ideas!

Thanks a lot! XD

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 12, 2009 12:41 PM

With slight tweaks to Merve's setup, I got 20 to coexist. I can't seem to get above 20, I think I would need more space and/or faster generation to get all 22 at once.

http://www.folds.net/marie/caverns2.gif is my modified setup. I played with the platform for the leafy palm, now it is more likely to retain Semis but let new Leafers out. I streamlined the plumbing down from the palm and water, allowing more space for water and tar. I did the same Semi-retaining trick to the lower-left palm, and gave it more water. And I have slightly more Targz coming down to the lower-right fire pit, so now both Carni Bori plants are likelier to survive. This is especially good since everything gets out of sync if you let the right-hand one die (it mostly keeps there from being new Scalactors). Very little change to the upper-left area, and what did change probably doesn't matter.

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I've gotten 19 to coexist, which gave me the "all species" achievement - and also there's only 19 species listed on the bios page - what are the other 3 to get to 22? Am I missing something?

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 13, 2009 11:09 PM

@Alex
Seeds. Those very temporary lumps that turn into each of the three kinds of plant (yeah, I know there's four plants, but the two palms come from the same seed) all sort of qualify as extra species, but because they are so temporary, they aren't getting counted for purposes of the achievements. I was lucky and eventually got 20 (after hours of just letting a stable system work), but I don't think I'll get up to 22.

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 14, 2009 11:38 PM

Yay, it has a 'save' feature!

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 17, 2009 11:18 PM

I see .95 is out, and yow

those Jawrons are mean now!

I think I am just going to have to switch to friendly mode.

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Cyclothymia September 18, 2009 2:57 AM

Here is my design:
http://tinyurl.com/ksryx3

19 out of 19 can be achieved within an hour without intervention. I believe that the several subtle tweaks in the design allows for this to happen through negative feedback of certain species in a probabilistic way =)

With the same setup I have also gotten 21 out of 22, after running it overnight. Of course, now that we have v0.95 it doesn't really matter anymore.

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If you play with it a little you can separate the blue guys. Here's what I'm working with atm http://img15.imageshack.us/img15/6808/picture13qk.png

I love the fact that it keeps running even when you click off it. It's also amusing that drippy is sponsored by "Your name here" :P

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 18, 2009 11:10 AM

And my latest also spontaneously gets all 19 in under an hour:
http://www.folds.net/marie/caverns3.gif
The trick was

to contain the Flaemmes in the lower-right corner so that they do not use up all of the water in the pit while there is not yet a Carni Bori there to eat them.

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flowerdoggie Author Profile Page September 18, 2009 10:20 PM

This game reminds me of Minecraft.

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Cyclothymia September 19, 2009 5:15 PM

Update: After rerunning my design, I discovered that it can reach 19/19 within 15 minutes! =D

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fire guy + sand crawler thing=ghost guy

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sand crawler thing+water crawler thing= green wall climbing thing

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how do you grow the plant w/ the springy things?

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I accidentally made a thing called "Ghostomp"
anyone know how this was made? O.o

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OrigamiMarie Author Profile Page September 25, 2009 12:07 AM

. . . and my very latest for really efficient creation of all races: http://www.folds.net/marie/caverns4.gif

I donated!

@moopa

You get a Carni Bori (plant w/springy things) by combining a Scalactor (green wall climbing thing) with a Targz (the black one that comes out of the tarry black ground). You then feed it Flaemmes (Targz that spent too long on red squares), and eventually you get pink springy things. My picture shows a setup that does it.

@rerere284

You got the Ghostomp by combining a Flaemme with a Leafcrab. Trap it on red squares for extra entertainment.

Hey I see one tiny bug. When you finish with the Life forms bio and click the Return to the game text, it registers that as a click in the game area. So you end up coloring or deleting one square unless you plan well.

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hey, just wondering, has anyone figured out what the 20th and 21st monsters are? cause ive got a screen shot of page that says i have 20/19 creatures and i cant spot the 2th, and ive heard people talk of the 21st. so if anyone can clear this up i would be very helpful.

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i found a what i think is a 5 generation plant

make a whit guy from hoping fire guy combine (mate) with a sand crap thing
let it die on lava then make a fire guy touch it and you got a fire flower

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If you feed the caterpillars with tomatoes you get a butterfly.

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I've noticed that purple blobs EAT sand crabs. So, I may be wrong, but I think feeding a lot of sandcrabs to a purple blob makes a new creature.

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Versailles December 29, 2009 2:14 PM

How many different

trees can you make? I've heard of(but haven't yet made) lava trees but I've got normal trees and sand trees (they grow on sand but the tomatoes that they drop are normal).

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I think its updated or something now but anyway there are 19 species to get and by getting a tomato and worm to meet it makes a butterfly i hope this helps

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I read all the comments and the walkthrough, and I saw nobody found the last creatures :

Scalactor

Combine a leaf crab with a moldo to get a scalactor

Carni Bori Plant

Combine a scalactor and a targz on acid to get a carni bori plant.

Polly Nolly

Feed exclusively this plant with bouncing flaemme to get polly nolly

Joerons

Feed exclusively this plant with tomatoes and get joerons.

The joerons killing everybody on their path, i couldn't manage to get the 19 creatures coexisting...good luck

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I made a sort of hollow around my screen so creatures fell on the bottom, but something, instead of teal crawlies, made round yellow-green 4-spiked creatures that crawls up walls. Also, if creatures fall fast they go through stuff. I'm calling my new creatures "spikies" so that is the official term for them now, kay?

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Woah! I just saw a moose fall through the bottom!
Also, can anyone explain creatures getting glued to each other? It would really help. Last note;
Some animals can move right through other creatures.

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whoo! i finally got the polly nolly! and i got a weird one i didn't know i had, cause i didn't see it in my cavern, but it was white-ish and its name was ghostomp i think, i never saw it on my board so i don't know how i got it, but it said i had it in the my life forms bio. here are all the creatures i have so far, including higher generations: Targz (tar walker), Drippy (water droplet), Semee shi (sand runner), Flaemme (fire jumper), Moldo (teal buggish), Mana-mana (purple blob), Orungee (green worm), Tomoto palm (grows Tomotos), Leafcrab palm (grows leafcrab), Tomoto (tomato like walker), Leafcrab (sand crab-ish thing), Alasis (red-purple butterfly) Now more hard-to-get ones: Scalactor (green square, climb walls), Ghostomp (i never seen it in action, but this is what the info said: Never care where they're at, as long as well accompanied; and its white), Carni bori plant (big plant with teeth, produces polly nollys), and last: Polly Nolly! ( small purple worm, flips to walk) thats all i got. some hints: TURN ON FRIENDLY MODE, IT WILL MAKE IT A LOT EASIER. and make certain cavern rooms to where only a specific creature grows and make a trap for when it grows

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oh, i saw the ghostomp and how to get it. its kinda easy, for me that is. and i got the fire flower and the Fyrith out of it! THANK YOU GHOST OMP! the only creature i need now is the joerons and THATS IT!

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gaming german Author Profile Page April 11, 2010 11:43 AM

For this post I am going to use names from the life forms bio;
first generation:

-drippys out of blue water blocks
-targz out of black tar blocks
-semee shi out of sand blocks

second generation:

-flaemme from targz dying on red lava block
-moldos from drippys dying on grey stone blocks at bottom of screen
-mana manas from flaemmes and drippys running into each other
-seed from semee shis and drippys running into each other
-tomato palm from seed being on grass block
-leafcrab palm from seed being on sand block

third generation:

-tomato from tomato palm getting enough water
-leafcrab from leafcrab palm getting enough water
-orugee x2 from 1 mana mana dying on acid/ mold

fourth generation:

-alasis from tomato and orugee running into each other
-scalactor from leafcrab and moldo running into each other
-ghostomp from leafcrab and flaemme running into each other
-fire flower from ghostomp dying on red lava brick

fifth generation:

-fyrith from flaemme or leafcrab running in to fireflower
-carni bori seed from targz running into scalactor
-carni bori plant from carni bori seed being on acid/mold

sixth generation:

-polly nolly from flaemme running into carni bori plant 3 times
-joerons from tomato running into carni bori plant 3 times

animal descriptions:

drippy-water droplet
targz-black slime with legs
semee shi-sand colored ball with legs
flaemme-fire bat
moldo-3 eyed teal thing
mana mana-purple ball that rolls
seed-green ball
tomato palm-green palm tree
leafcrab palm-sand colored palm
tomato-tomato... with legs
leafcrab-sand colored moose, crab, spikey thing
orugee-green caterpillar or worm
alasis-purple butterfly
scalactor-lime green square/ball with spikes
ghostomp-white humanoid
fireflower-flower with orange petals
fyrith-flames
carni bori plant seed-green seed with orange outline
carni bori plant-venus fly trap
polly nolly-purple caterpillar
joerons-bluish purple snail

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gaming german Author Profile Page April 11, 2010 11:58 AM

yet again life forms bio names;
enemies:

mana mana-moldos
any palm-targz and orugees
fire flower-drippys and orugees
carni bori plant-semee shi and leafcrabs

I do not know anymore enemies but there may be some I normally keep it on friendly mode so I can't observe it, if you would like there to be no creatures attacking each other click menu and turn on friendly mode. Please post more enemies if you find some.

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gaming german Author Profile Page April 11, 2010 12:36 PM

correction on the joeron description

jawron-blue packman ghost

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did someone found a white creature i found one but did not found out how it was created. i think its the 12th one

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repairmanman Author Profile Page July 6, 2010 3:30 PM

can someone please post the way they got all the creatures in a screentshot. kthxbai

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ninjakitty July 11, 2010 4:13 PM

this is my config for caverns. Red line is where the lava should be when the carni bori plant is not there on that side. Gap in rainbow circle should be filled with grass when cari bori plant is not on that side.
http://i858.photobucket.com/albums/ab147/ninkatPK/random%20pics/th_HNI_0002.jpg?t=1278878182

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ninjakitty July 11, 2010 4:36 PM

by the way, my config DOES get you all 19 creatures! now to find those secret achievements... but im on a hunch that one is

for jarwons killing all other creatures at least once, they kill everything for a reason right?

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ninjakitty July 12, 2010 10:06 AM

sorry about the tiny pic let me try again:

http://s858.photobucket.com/albums/ab147/ninkatPK/random%20pics/?action=view¤t=HNI_0002.jpg

"instructions" above.

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I followed Cyclothymia's design (first page) and got all achievements within 15 minutes!

http://images.jayisgames.com/hs_jm_caverns.gif

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I discovered some sort of tree, it's like a sand palm but it has two colors: Green and yellow at the same time... It's not the tomato tree. I dont know how it grows... It's not carnibore plant because it didn't grow in the acid, but it grows in the normal grass.

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It lagged a LOT for me.......

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The server at www.tbam.com.ar is taking too long to respond.

on the two days I dropped by

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Sneaky Sneaky> Lori.h Just as you escape with your best haul yet, a group of thugs stop you before you can spend your reward. Sneak around to recollect your loot and trick your enemies to meet their makers sooner than they would have liked and if you do so strategically, perhaps you'll end up with more than you stole in the first place. And isn't that every thief's dream?  ...
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Crossy Road> Dora Endless arcade action meets classic Frogger style gameplay in this free iOS game where you control a series of hapless unlockable creatures trying to cross some very busy and very deadly roads and rapids. With a sense of humor and vibrant voxel graphics, it's both charming and hard to put down.  ...
Find the Escape-Men Part 126: The Special Property> Dora The apartment in this escape game's rent is suspiciously low, and there's a weird smell here too... so it's probably not a good sign your realtor has locked you inside! Experience a whole lot of weirdness (and a jump scare or two) in this very silly game from no1game.  ...

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