Link Dump Friday


Link Dump Fridays

DoraNow that Summer is over, the cool embrace of Autumn rushes up to enfold us in her comforting arms. Maybe you squandered the hot months, and now you're finally ready to do something productive. You know, more productive than alphabetizing your game collection or prank calling that neighbour you hate. (Dinkleberg.) Maybe now is the time to get out there and change the world!

... nah, let's just play some games instead. Viva la dilación!

  • Yet One WordYet One Word - Another prototype from Gambit, this little platformer is about words and the meanings we ascribe to them... maybe. Type the words that appear on various platforms, then hit [enter] to jump to them, gaining various powerups along the way. Unfortunately, typing "explosion" nor "zombie" gets you neither. From time to time the game will ask you a personal question, and your answer is incorporated into the game somewhat. It's cute, and it's arty, and it might make you think about your life... even if what you wind up thinking is, "This game needs more explosions and zombies."
  • The Deeplight ExpeditionThe Deeplight Expedition - Years ago, an evil mage used an ancient artifact to plunge the world into darkness. Although the mage has been defeated, it's up to you to descend into the labyrinth he left behind, and recover the artifact before it's too late. Fortunately, you're not the sort of person to let countless deaths, fiddly wall-jumping, and countless more deaths deter you. I wish I had a labyrinth. When I'm finally struck down, all anyone is going to find are the comfy Pokemon pajamas I should have thrown out years ago, and my collection of embarrassing fan-fiction. Incriminating, perhaps, but not as cool as a stone that controls the sun. I need to step up my game.
  • Porch Escape 2Porch Escape 2 - Apparently you like it when we include escape games in Link Dump Friday, and we here at Jay is Games live for two things; to rock, and to serve you. Nyan (of Nyan and Wan fame) has gotten locked on the porch after chasing a ball, and it's up to you to find a way out. There's no changing cursor, so you can expect some pixel hunting, but how can you possibly be upset at a cat when he's hanging from the door like that?
  • You MIGHT Get NervousYou MIGHT Get Nervous - Alternate title: You MIGHT Want to Snap Your Keyboard in Half. Deceptively simple but devilishly twitchy, the game starts out by asking to you avoid red squares, but soon starts demanding more of you the longer you play. How long does it last? Well, until you take a hit or miss something. Not recommended for those of you who are bad at multitasking, or have had a lot of caffeine in the last hour or so.
  • EludeElude - Another Gambit prototype, this unconventional platformer aims to raise awareness on depression. You control Martin from Questionable Content a despondent fellow wandering through the woods, whose only means of communication is calling out to the birds, which inspires him to climb higher through the treetops. Despite the somewhat uninspired gameplay, it's visually striking and might just resonate with you, and is definitely worth a look.

67 Comments

The Deeplight Expedition can be made easier by:

Using the teleport [C] after you pick up a key/tablet at the end of a difficult section (you can tell by the level layouts that the game wants you to return the way you came). The trade off is that you'll have to navigate some of the easier passages multiple times.

Porch Escape is so cute! But for some reason I got the third ending (which apparently is the hardest) first. And I don't know how to get the others. Weird.

Oh, nevermind. Got the other two endings. :D

And Yet One Word is simple, but the questions are really reflective and did have a bit of an impact when all are shown to you after the game. Gives the impression of postsecret as a game.

Wow. Elude kind of freaked me out. To quote Forrest Gump: "That's all I have to say about that."

Oh man. If you've lived with depression, Elude is pretty powerful. I'm not sure it would have as strong an impact others, though. Anyone with relevant experiences?

Also note that there are two endings.

LMAO! Good call on Marten from QC. If only there was a game with Pintsize destroying everything... get to it masters of game making!

I fail to see the point of YOW. The gameplay is unpolished and just plain horrible, as a typing exercise it's severely sub-par and if it is supposed to be deep or artsy in some way then I definitely do not have the patience and perseverance to wait for it to reveal this depth.

So if I can quote that schizo cat from the Porch Escape 2 - ha-ha..it's useless.

The Deeplight Expedition had me until a stage mysteriously became easier after I died in it about 20 times.
Or maybe i'm just going crazy. Who knows!

I have major depression, and the depression part of Elude is a pretty accurate simulation of what it feels like going into a depressive episode. The lifting up part, not so much - I wish I had a collection of magic tweetie birds that lifted my mood. I know it's metaphorical, and perhaps I'd appreciate it more if I wasn't in the middle of an episode now. I'm not the target audience though, it's aimed at friends and family, and if you know someone with serious depression then you should play it. It'll give you some idea of what's going on in their heads.

Oh no, Dinkleberg! :D
The Gambit games were interesting, there's also Seer by the same maker of Yet One Word (there games are based on the story of Oedipus Rex).

The typing in YOW might have been a bit sticky at points, but I found the game oddly affecting, especially in the use of your answers to replace the "word clouds" through which your jumping.

I'm not sure the piece 100% works as either a game or a piece of art, but I genuinely respect the effort and thought people making experimental games put into finding new directions for the medium. If someone at a later time builds on this and creates a masterpiece, the folks at Gambit will be one of many to whom thanks are owed.

And many of us will appreciate that future masterpiece more from having seen some of its predecessors.

Pure: I've lived with depression for many years, thankfully medication has done wonders for me. This game definitely hit home. Happiness is effortless but fleeting; when you're in that dark place, there's sometimes nothing you can do but plod downwards and hit bottom before you can be normal again.

I did not see the second ending, the game was a little slow to play through a second time. My game went like this:

After a few rounds of Normal and Happy, I tried to elude the dark tendrils coming from the ground but they were finally unavoidable. Then in the dark underground there was no where to go but over a firy chasm, presumably symbolizing suicide.

Dora ... thank you thank you thank you for adding escape games to Link Dump Fridays. Your links almost always include something for everyone, but an extra escape during the week is always welcome!

That said, Porch Escape was very cute and entertaining! I got stuck a few times but managed to figure out one escape (not sure which one it was ...)

Thanks again, Dora!!!

XD I love Questionable Content!

Porch escape was a nice Friday break (at 9am :P) I got all three endings a few hints

Easy:

once you get the smart keycard, simply use it on the front door

Normal:

There should be 4 clues you have to have found involving letters

Use the three letter clues to replace letters on the paper (i.e. D in Dive becomes F or Five). This is the intercom code

The hints I found were D->F R->HR and A->I O->I and DIVETREENONESAX

you're lazy on Friday? ok...5369

Hard:

The computer has all the clues

there's a hint in game that the 4 notepad items are somehow related to a clock

Draw a clock face on a piece of paper, for each note, trace a line in the sequence listed on the note (i.e. 12-4-8-12 produces a triangle pointing upwards)

That should help a little to those stuck at the last little bit

My game took the same route as ottoman's. I am curious to know what the other ending was?

Okay, I've opened the closet in Porch Escape 2, the only logical puzzle I've found so far, and have no idea what to do next. Is this a game that requires endless pixel hunting?

It took me a long moment to figure out what was going on there too, Username. A couple hints:

The porch is clean, but there's a smudge on the floor of the closet

it's awfully dark in here, but I know you have an otherwise useless item in your inventory that can help

Just finished Deeplight Expedition... little over an hour and a half game time, with 100% exploration and all the tablets. It's fun and challenging, but not enough to drive me to ragequit (usually...), and the music is excellent. Great way to spend my Friday afternoon.

A couple of minor gripes:
- The walljumping is a little quirky. It's easy to do when you want to, but also easy to do when you DON'T want to. A lot of times I'll be falling down a wall and WJ without meaning to, killing myself.
- The warp points work kind of oddly. A lot of times I have to hold the warp key 3-4 times to get where I'm trying to go. Some sort of selection menu or way of choosing a warp point would work better.

Those are just minor complaints, though. I still loved the game. Reminded me a lot of the Knytt games.

@ottoman @kaylie

Once you're in that last stage with the fiery pit,

A light will shine on the left side where you came from, and I believe the music changes slightly. Going toward the light will give you the 'good' end. I assume the metaphor is that you've found a way out from your depression.

I too found Elude to be a fairly accurate metaphor... I immediately shared it with my Twitter list after I got done playing it.

On Elude, when I reached

the chasm

I noticed

a light coming from up the other way

so I turned and followed that instead. After that, the scene changed again and showed something like a map of up and down movements with a link to return to the main menu. I assume that was the second end.

Man... Elude is a powerful game. The depression bits were scary beyond all reason for me. I get depressed quite often, and feeling is bad enough. But seeing it? *Shudders* It was an excellent game, but I don't know that I can play it again. Too scary for me.

@Username

Try:

using the cell phone in the closet as a source of light

*

At the very end of Elude, there is a minor decision to make that determines the ending.

In the last section, you are on a slope nearing a cliff. As you near the cliff, a light appears behind you. You can either take a few more steps and go off the cliff or climb wayyy back and get back to where you started. It takes a little while, and it's hard to tell that you're making any progress up the hill. There's a different quotation and the graphic charting your "path" shows you ending up at forest again.

I really want to love Deeplight. I really REALLY want to love it, but I just can't. There just seems to be something wrong with the controls that I can't quite figure out. Maybe it's the physics, or the one hit deaths, strange wall jumping, or something...... I dunno. I just can't seem to reliably put my character where I want him.

I love the style. I love the world. I love the dangers and enemies. I especially love the big rune doors. Fix/tweak the controls, and this game is worth its own review, IMHO. As it stands, I cannot continue to play it, which makes my heart sad.

The decision at the end of Elude is a suicide allegory. Going over the chasm into nothingness (i.e., suicide) is the "easy" way out. Getting back to normal is a long, hard trudge back uphill. Again, a fairly accurate impression of what a major depressive episode feels like.

OK, "You Might Get Nervous" is awesome. But WASD controls? :bangs head on desk: Go ahead, YOU play with the A, D, comma, and semicolon keys. Gah.

Ah, arrow keys work, nevermind. Sorry for the rant.

Elude doesn't seem to be working for me.
What is this "firey chasm"?
Ending? The whole thing just restarts. If I manage "happy" long enough, the leaves and flowers disappear.

And the game is slightly misleading about depression. Most people associate depression with sadness (often suicide). NOT EVERY DIAGNOSED WITH DEPRESSION IS LIKE THAT! It could be anger management, or simply total lack of interest in anything.

I couldn't stand elude. It was just to depressing for me to play again for the second ending. The depression zone is as scary as hell.

SkylerF, that is incorrect. Depression is loss of interest AND low mood (sadness, helplessness, etc.) They are both necessary for a diagnosis. There is no anger management issue associated with depression.

Unfortunately/fortunately (I can't tell which) the game gets depression spot on.

Is anyone else experiencing, in YOW, after typing start, you get stuck at where there should only be 3 more blue bars left, and then flash crashes entirely?

No, it IS correct.
I have clinically diagnosed depression. I do not have problems with unusual sadness.
I should know. I have been to numerous psychologists and doctors over the last 10 years, attempting to find the right medicine to treat my depression.

Yet One Word is maybe a little TOO cute at first for something based on Oedipus Rex... can't wait to play the others. Good haul this week.

Ooh! I was unhappy with a clipped response (it was too long) so I restarted, and Yet One Word is actually procedural... the level is different the next time!

Nice.

I'm really stuck in Deeplight at one spot. A little help, please, JIG?

http://img714.imageshack.us/img714/2029/helpb.png

Friendly tip: in Deeplight, press 0 to turn that horrible, horrible music off.

You're welcome...

Okay, well, it looks impossible but if you are lucky, you can land below the bouncing yellow spikeball and IMMEDIATELY jump to clear the spikes. Once I did it, I was relieved...

Next hurdle! In the Fiery Traverse (to the left of the place where you start) how am I supposed to open that glassy crystal box? Major disappointment after navigating those annoying platforms and fireballs-dead ended. =(

This is a really great batch of games this weekend. I don't think I'm going to sleep tonight, but is anyone else up? I feel bad to keep on hitting F5... Deeplight is frustrating. I enjoy it somewhat, but I had to take a break after warping out of a particularly impossible bit that I'm going to have to repeat at least two more times (once to get another thingy, and once more to get to the next zone after the Sandchamber)

Instead, I moved on to Porch Escape.

Oh, look, it's that cute pair from last time! Hey, at least the A.C. still works this time around. =) Might want to take down all that mylar and steel studs from the walls, though, I guess... Haha, be sure sure to check the door, it's adorable.

Oh, and thanks for the hint, Acebates-that was exactly where I was stuck! :/

Two final impressions:

Porch Escape was really cute, and that clock puzzle at the end was very clever, wasn't it? I managed to figure it out myself~

Elude reeeeally feels like a poor rip-off of Limbo to me.

You could even compare the happy portion to the end of Limbo where there's a "hope spot" before you cruelly realize that the kid is back where you and he started... and the alternate endings in Elude are really unsatisfying. Seeing the chart compared to the level with the ups and downs is a neat little visual metaphor, but just giving me a different quote for each ending? It's like Doodle God's weak reward method...

I wanted to like the game... I think that artistic polish on the depression level is good, the happy level is fitting, and damn the art looks bad in the "normal" level, why didn't they try a little harder on those trees?

My last pet peeve? You can never reach the top of the happy level, no matter how hard you try! That's right, the leaves and flowers will just evaporate spontaneously! Lame.

I feel kind of useless here...
on porch escape, I've

found the number in the closet by using the alternative to a flashlight

However... I have no idea where or how to use them.

The blue box only has 3 numbers available, and putting in the matching numbers from the floor does nothing. The cat-skill thingy is the only other thing where you can input things, but only after finding a clue, which obviously is not the numbers from the closet floor..

This was a really good bunch of games.

Yet One Word gave some good personal questions that made me evaluate myself.

The Deeplight Expedition had a good backstory and decent difficulty level.

Porch Escape 2 quenched my thirst for a good escape game this weekend.

You Might Get Nervous was surprisingly well done for how basic it was.

Elude did give me a better understanding about the cycles of depression.

I usually find only a couple of the games in the link dumps to be entertaining, but this week all of them held my interest to the end.

In the Deeplight Expedition, I can't figure out how to walljump, so I'm stuck on the right hand side of the first lake. It's telling me "You will automatically grab onto ledges during a jump". Is there something I have to do to enable this automatic grabbing?

barbara, no.
It is tricky, but if you are close enough to the ledge, your character will grab on.

BCS, I have found two of those crystal blocks. There are runes next to each. There are four tablet/key thingies. Each rune unlocks a particular stone.

This might sound really dumb, but I'm having a little problem with Porch Escape....

Specifically, the clock puzzle. And the clue of 27:45 makes no sense to me

Gabe,

You have to adjust the time of 27:45 so it will fit in the 3 digits available on the blue box.

Subtract 24 hours to get 3:45.

Thanks SkylerF, maybe it was just knowing there was no trick, but I managed to jump up to that ledge. It needed a running jump. I'm sure I'd tried a running jump before, but I guess it wasn't doing it right.

Now I've got a bit farther and had to do real walljumping which so far seems relatively easy. ...cCue scary music ... from what I've read, it ain't gonna stay easy.

You will want to be careful when playing Deeplight Expedition. If you unlock doors in the wrong order, you get stuck.
I locked myself out of two single rooms, each with a key inside...

Thanks, barbara. I must;ve put it in wrong or something 'cause that's what I thought the code was (although, I had gotten it by converting the time from 24-hour to 12-hour, which resulted in the same answer). Now, I'm having trouble with...

...the intercom. The hint, even the answer given wasn't being accepted

I'm not sure, but I may have reached another ending in Elude. During my second run-in with the tentacles I was able to jump high enough to get into the tree canopy, which put my character back into the "happy" area. The game ended with a quote about an "invincible summer" after I fell back down. Possibly a bug? The up/down chart did chart it as ending back in the "normal" area, so I somehow suspect possibly so. Maybe I'm wrong.

Deeplight Expedition is one of my most HATED games now. Poor gameplay design and wretched controls have turned me off completely.

For starters the game is simply too hard. There are death traps everywhere, and I'm convinced that many of them skip their own timing just to kill your character, or pop out of nowhere for the same reason. Their timing is horrid to begin with and the difficulty is for me what any Halo game on the worst difficulty would be for a three-year-old: TOO MUCH.

And the controls? Most of the time, they are too slick. I've run into more stuff than I care to think about. At the same time, though, they are also too stiff. I'll end up going too far, but then cannot change direction in time and end up dying.

I've quit now that I've discovered that I've used up all of my keys and I'm faced with three locked doors and a Crystal Gate that won't open and no runes or keys to be found.

Terrible game. I recommend avoiding it like the plague.

Elude is brilliant. I didn't find the second ending, and I don't want to play through again today... But it was amazing. I've never been diagnosed with depression, but I have felt depressed many times, stuck in that endless pit of despair, like when the character is continually sinking into a smaller and smaller pit. I know the feeling of flip-flopping emotions, like in the 'happy zone' when the character is flying above the trees. I also know the feeling of plummeting down. For whatever reason, your emotions change and your soul feels dark and unhappy. I found myself shuddering and reliving during this game. Thanks for sharing.
Also, Yet One Word will not load for my. I've tried twice, and after typing 'start' and going into the loading screen, it will not go past the 6th bar. :( Sad, because I wanna play it.

To the people who are having trouble loading Yet One Word:
it does take a little while to load past the sixth bar because it generates the whole map at once - but it should load eventually :)

I've been playing Deeplight Expedition and I've explored 100 % of the labyrinth, collected all keys and runes, and all the tablets...except a very elusive #3. I must have missed it somehow, so could someone please tell me where on the minimap I should look to find that last tablet?

Also Dora, his name is Marten, not Martin. :)

Ahh. Not an additional ending. Just got the "normal" happy ending, same quote. Looks like I just found a bug.

Themepark, I made a note of where the different tablets are (but 18 and 19 got mixed up...).
To find #3:

warp back to the beginning, go right through an open door, right through the next door, then up and left. The tablet should be close to that door.

There is also a link to a (vague) map included in the game description on Kongregate and Newgrounds.

But I am finding it REALLY hard to navigate the room at the bottom left to get the

last rune. The bridge is a pain. Sometimes the fireball trap totally glitches. Once the ground-sensitivity messed up and my character began jittering all over the place, ignoring walls and floors, but warping corrected it.

I can't get YOW to load, either.

Ah, power of posting. I found some safe spots in The Bridge room. Deeplight shares I Want To Be The Guy's OMG-SO HARD RAGE QUIT! attitude, but the traps are usually obvious and there is more of a storyline and sense of progression.
I'd give it a five. Immensely frustrating, but highly enjoyable because of it.

The particle effects for some segments of Deeplight too graphics intensive, ruining the player's timing and making stages way harder than I think they're supposed to be. I also get the impression that the bouncy suns are eating up more data than they should be, because I'll sometimes get lag in areas with those things as well. Someone involved with that game may want to go over the code and try optimizing things. And while they're at it, taking these "definitely not alive" obstacles off the random number generator would be nice.

I mean, come on, if you stick some eyes on half those "inanimate" obstacles, you'd have most of the enemies one encounters in any other game that has "living" enemies. The novelty falls flat when it's entirely superficial.

Overall though, it shows a lot of promise. And I'm a sucker for pixels.

I'd love to say I was as frustrated as the Deeplight-haters here... but since it doesn't seem to be possible to get past the first lake (where Barbara said she was stuck), I guess I'll never know.

No amount of wall jumping (which the guy flat-out refuses to do on that cliff whatsoever, 100% of the time, for no apparent reason -- it works just fine everywhere else) or attempted ledge-grabbing (again, inexplicably doesn't work in just that one spot) gets you through there, so I'm forced to assume the rest of you know a secret, because there's absolutely no way over that cliff normally.

Oh, well, they must not have wanted anyone to actually play it, anyway.

For the record, I've got to say I loved Deeplight. Apart from when I was cursing furiously at how tricky parts of it were.
best mini game I've played in ages :)

For Deeplight Expedition I can't find tablet 16 anywhere. A little help?

I'm ridiculously stuck in Deeplight, any idea how I get back up?

http://tinypic.com?ref=5x3bef

[Link fixed. Please just post the URL, not all the HTML code that the image hosting services give you for embedding. Thanks! -Jay]

I'm not really sure I"m getting the point of "Yet One Word".

Deeplight is great, don't really understand the complaints. I'll admit the controls are not perfect -- I probably died twice as often because of them -- and I also experienced slowdown when there were too many moving objects onscreen, notably in The Bridge (rebooting made it somewhat better, so I was able to pass that room, but it was still laggy-feeling). Everything else about the game, however, worked so well that I was happy to keep plugging away at it. Finished with 100% explored, all keys, runes and tablets in about 2:57:xx

Having a little trouble making sense of the ending in story terms, though:

So the hero "fixed" everything right before the first stone ran out of power...but Syal is still out there with the second, fully-charged stone, right? Seems to me he could just bring the light back and keep on ruling the world. The funereal ending music doesn't do much to dispel this idea, either. Alternative interpretations/theories?

Definitely deserves its own review. 4/5 stars!

Tedric: Regarding Deeplight.

According to the opening text, Syal has been defeated in a "final, heroic assault", but his Deeplight Stone was lost. Probably happened during the conflict, was perhaps hidden by Syal, or it might even have lost his power and he destroyed the obsidian afterwards. In any case, "defeated" I suppose is open to interpretation. I personally think it means what it usually does in all stories like this: Bad guy got his butt whipped and is now either powerless or dead.

@BCS

Well looks like someone missed the point entirely with Elude.

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