Gamefinds: POOM

We love it when we find weird and unique indie games to tell you all about! Our alien friends to the left herald these occasions.

Found by Varyag on kitsunes.club, this may be the ultimate version of the Pico-8 version of other game phenomenon, not a remake of a classic arcade game but of id Software’s DOOM itself. And it has a great name: POOM. It’s made by freds72 on itch.io, and it’s free to download and play. Its levels are not ports of the original room, unless my memory is faulty, but smaller versions, but the general sense is still there. It even has a good remix of the first level music.

It’s a really good name

Brainscraps.net

I think, when you find a blog that’s been around since 2009, and is still being updated somewhat in 2024, that itself is worthy of celebration, and that is the case with brainscraps.net. It’s maintained by May Kasahara, a member of the venerable community webblog Metafilter (where I can also be found posting and commenting as JHarris).

Blogs come and go. Bloggers come and go too; sometimes they lose interest, but sometimes they pass away, such might be the case with oneswellfoop, a.k.a. Craig Wittier. There was a recent Talk post there about the many members who have passed away.

This is not a Metafilter focused blog. I mention all this to say that people’s blogs, and being around to blog, that’s precious, people’s writing is important, it’s a part of them, and I’m happy whenever I encounter it, whether the blog gets 10 readers or a million of them. But it’s nice when people go by there and read them, and I hope that you’ll be inspired to read Brainscripts, and other blogs, and if you don’t already, that you’ll learn to cherish that they exist. They won’t always, their bloggers won’t exist always either. Neither will I, and neither will you. So let’s all enjoy what time we have here left!

But let’s not be too maudlin. May Kasahara also has an itch.io page, with a variety of fun projects on it, like Mary Sue’s Character Casino, and Daisy Doom, and Senpai Simulator, and Legend of Cascadia! I am more than happy to spread the word.

Cosmic Collapse Level After Sun

A few days we linked to Cosmic Collapse, a Pico-8 Suika Game clone that, I claim, is better than the original, or its many many other clones. Its graphics are less cloying, its music is much better, its physics are livelier which adds a greater element of skill, and it has missiles awarded at different score levels that can be used to destroy individual planets.

Cosmic Collapse’s bin is slightly smaller than Suika Game’s, and to compensate a bit for that its “winning” “planet,” The Sun, is only the 10th item in the game, unlike of Suika Game’s Watermelon, which is the 11th of its orbular objects. Nether game really ends at that point, it’s the kind of game that continues until you lose, but it serves as a thematic success point.

But as it turns out, as revealed by a comment by creator Johan Peltz on its itch.io page, Cosmic Collapse has two levels beyond sun. The first is a rather striking animated Black Hole object! After a lot of playing I finally managed to get to it. Here is a screenshot:

Pretty neat! The comment from the game’s creator mentions that there is a level past it, but that they don’t think it’s possible to reach. I don’t think it is either: to get to the Black Hole you have to have two Suns, and to get to that you have to have one Sun plus one Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, Uranus, Earth, Mars, Mercury and Pluto. (I think it’s Pluto. What would it be if it wasn’t Pluto? Ceres?)

So, to get to the last object, you’d have to have a Black Hole plus a Sun, Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune, Uranus, Earth, Mars, Mercury and assumed-Pluto, which probably won’t all fit in one bin. My guess is it’s a guest appearance by some galaxy or something. Maybe someone can look at the game’s resources and find out what.

In addition to playing to get to Sun/Black Hole/Whatever Follows, it’s also possible to play Cosmic Collapse for score. The best way I’ve found to do that is to use missiles to destroy the largest objects when it becomes evident that you can’t do anything more with them. My highest score is nearly 15K. Indefinite play doesn’t seem quite possible, as missile awards come less frequently at higher scores, but it’s still fun to see how high one can get. (That’s not meant as a drug-inspired euphemism. Or a Donkey Kong-inspired one, either.)

Addendum: After writing this, I managed to get to Black Hole again, and got video of what it looks like in motion, which is pretty cool:

Game Finds: Cosmic Collapse

We love it when we find weird and unique indie games to tell you all about! Our alien friends to the left herald these occasions.

A fair amount has been said about Suika Game, an inexpensive and addictive Switch game that has players dropping fruit into a physics-enabled bin. Two fruit of the same type that touch immediately merge into a larger fruit, and the goal is to join them together like this until you create a mighty Watermelon. You can keep going at that point, although with one of those majestic spheres in the bin it won’t be much longer before one or more fruits extends up out of the bin, which brings the game to an end.

The history of this unexpected Flappy Bird-like phenomenon is laid out in an article in the Japan Times. Until recently the game was exclusive to the Japanese eShop, although that needn’t actually a barrier. People from any territory can create eShop accounts for any other, and play all their purchases on the same Switch, but now I notice that Suika Game is even on the U.S. shop. And of course, as often happens when a simple and elegant game blows up out of nowhere, a horde of imitators has arisen, which a quick Googling will reveal. I count six free web versions just on a quick perusal of the search results.

But what might actually be better than Suika Game is the Pico-8 recreation of it, Cosmic Collapse.

Cosmic Collapse is more expensive than Suika Game, but that just means it’s $5 instead of $3. Instead of happy fruit, you merge together planets. They go up in size from Pluto (an honorary planet), through Mercury, Mars, Venus, Earth, Neptune, Uranus, Saturn, Jupiter and then Sol herself. If you’re wondering, all planets are presented without rings. If joining two suns causes anything to happen I don’t know. (In the comments on the itch.io project, the developer says that there are objects beyond the Sun.)

Cosmic Collapse could be played just like the original, but it adds some extra features. Scoring is modified by a simple combo system: successive planets merged due to one drop have their points multiplied, encouraging the planning of sequences. And, at certain score awards, you’re granted a missile that can be used to destroy any one object in the bin. Used judiciously, it can allow your game lengths, and scores, to greatly increase. My highest so far is nearly 15,000.

The biggest advantages it has over Suika Game is in the polish and the physics. The many web clones tend to play like they were hacked together in an afternoon, but even the original is clearly a low-effort production, right down to its generic, non-looping music. The celestial orbs in Cosmic Collapse bounce around in a lively manner after merging in ways that take some practice to master, and even the smaller planets have their uses. The tiniest of space rocks, dropped at the right spot, can be just what you need to knock two other planets apart from each other, or separate one from the wall of the bin. You see? Pluto’s good for something after all!

Both Suika Game and Cosmic Collapse suffer from a certain unfairness. You don’t get to control the order in which fruit or planets get dropped into the bin. It’s been observed that even a lot of skill and practice can only get you so far if the orb-selection dice don’t roll favorably for you. The best advice I can offer, in the early game, is to try to sort the circles in size from one side of the bin to the other, which at least will make it easier to find a good place to drop things. Also in Cosmic Collapse, keeping the surface of the bin as low as you can helps a lot, since the propulsive force of the spheres, especially the smallest ones, is increased the further it falls, and that can be a marvelous prod to shaking up a static bin.

Cosmic Collapse (itch.io and Steam, $5)

Hempuli’s itch.io Collection

I recently made a Metafilter post with the title Exploring the BABA IS YOUNIVERSE. Having used that pun here already I can’t well put it up again, but the links in the article are good ones, so I figured I’d present them here too, with a few extras. All of these, plus more, are on Hempuli’s (Arvi Teikari’s) itch.io page. Everything here is free and for Windows, unless otherwise noted.

Once in Space 2022
Stumblehill
  • The “gravity-changing platformer” Once In Space 2022, which gets pretty tricky pretty quickly.
  • Stumblehill is a platformer, with striking graphics, where the controls are purposely a little harder to master than your basic example of the form.
Baba Friend
  • Baba Friend is a little desktop buddy/toy who wanders around your computer’s screen while you do other things. It’s much like the classic computer amusement Neko!
  • Rude Chess is another Sokoban variant: some of the pieces you have to move are chess pieces, which shift according to their movement rules when pushed. The rude part applies because, if a piece has a choice of squares to move to, it always tries to pick one that doesn’t lead towards a destination square!
Rude Chess

There’s more too, that I only fail to list here because of time-related reasons, including some physical games and a screensaver. Go on and explore their itch page, it’s brilliant!

Hempuli’s itch.io software (mostly free, most for Windows)

Game Finds: Pacman’s Sky

We love it when we find weird and unique indie games to tell you all about! Our alien friends to the left herald these occasions.

It’s one of those games that was made to fulfill the promise of a pun in the title, but turns out to be fairly interesting in its own right.

That’s not to say it’s perfect. Randomness plays way too much of a role in your success, although that could also be said of No Man’s Sky, honestly.

Pac-Man is stranded on a maze-like planet. The maze wraps around vertically and horizontally, but there are no helpful tunnels here to slow down the ghost pursuit, for the screen is always centered on Paccy. There is an escape rocket in the monster house, and the way inside opens up when you’ve eaten a sufficient number of dots. I wouldn’t bug out immediately though; as you eat dots, and also ghosts made vulnerable by the consumption of randomly-placed Energizers, you fill up a fuel meter in the upper-right corner of the screen. You want it to be as full as possible, especially in this first maze, where the game is still fairly easy.

For you see, when you enter the rocket, you blast off into a 2D universe of other planets, and you need fuel to travel between them. (A bit of advice: the rocket’s thrust is always to the right! Press up-arrow to go forward, and up and down to steer.) Use the map in the lower-right to pick the next planet to crash onto, and explore a new maze. You don’t want to run out of fuel! Although you have a total of four Pac-Lives, if you run out of fuel in space, you lose regardless!

You’ll soon find that most planets are much larger than your starting world, and the game sends in a number of ghosts proportionate to its size! You could end up fleeing from nearly two-dozen ghosts! Fortunately, there are new colors of ghosts in the mix, and none of them are as avid a pursuer as the classic hues, although their meanderings will often block escape routes.

Your goal is to collect Cherries, which are sporadically scattered throughout the planets. You want to eat at least 10, then launch with a full fuel tank, and then press the Space Bar to warp out of the universe, and the game.

As I mentioned up top, randomness plays a huge role in your success. Cherries are placed completely randomly: you might find Cherries in the starting maze, you might find a planet with four Cherries on it and all you have to do is find them, but many planets will be Cherry-less. The best strategy is to scout each planet you visit for Cherries as quickly as possible, snarf up the ones you find while refilling your fuel tank with dots, then quickly evacuate and move on to the next planet.

Some tips:

  • If you return to a planet you’ve already been on, it’ll be in the state that you left it! This usually makes it harder to refill your tank since there’s fewer dots, so get what you can and launch again.
  • To help you avoid revisiting planets, I suggest targeting particular planet colors first.
  • Energizers are placed randomly, and like Cherries, some planets don’t have any.
  • Ghost vulnerability times are roughly on a par with those of the first maze of the original game, but with so much more terrain to travel through it’s usually highly difficult to make a clean sweep of all the ghosts, even if there’s only the normal four.
  • The class ghosts have largely the same personalities as in the arcade games: Red chases you directly, Pink looks in the direction you’re facing and tries to get in front of you, Blue seeks to be on the other side of you from one of the Red ghosts, and Orange sometimes loses interest in attacking you when you get close.
  • The new colors have ghosts that try to lurk behind you, ghosts that try to travel in straight lines regardless of what else is happening, ghosts that just bumble around, and even ghosts that just try to get away from everyone else, Pac or ghost.
  • Like arcade Pac-Man, the ghosts periodically enter “Scatter Mode,” and give up the chase for a few precious seconds. Unlike the arcade game, the ghosts don’t reverse direction when either entering or leaving Scatter Mode. Your only clue to the behavior change is them turning away, or turning back towards you. That makes them a little less predictable.
  • Beware! Once in a while you’ll find a ghost that, instead of the usual blue eyes, has an Among Us visor. These ghosts will be one of the other colors, and the same personality as that color, but when you eat an Energizer, not only do they not become vulnerable, they also speed up greatly! If it’s one of the more vicious colors (Red or Pink), this makes eating an Energizer extremely dangerous!
  • Ghosts become dangerous again the moment they reform from their eyes in the home. If you’re venturing in to get to the rocket, and a pair of eyes rushes in behind you, you can easily lose a Pac without having much control over it. This happened to me several times, it’s worth being wary of.
If you want to play in the universe of this victorious game, you can enter this seed at the title screen. It had one planet with four Cherries!

Pacman’s Sky (itch.io, $0)

Game Finds: Mobile Suit Baba

We love it when we find weird and unique indie games to tell you all about! Our alien friends to the left herald these occasions.

Hempuli, the creator of the indie hit Baba Is You, certainly has been busy! He made a number of solitaire games, some with Baba characters; then a number of board games. Now he’s returned to the Baba Is Youniverse, with another charming game that uses some of the ideas and rules of Baba Is You, with a helping of Into The Breach mixed in! The result is Mobile Suit Baba:

Ha ha! You said it Baba!

The scenario goes something like this. Baba and his friends now pilot a number of giant mech robots that look like them. An invasion of Skulls threatens their laid-back society of agrarian animal creatures with fruit theft. Baba and company leap into action to protect their food stockpiles. This is communicated with dialogue from the various characters, which is all adorable.

A simple puzzle, that relies on Baba’s ability to throw other characters over blocking terrain.

Each character has slightly different abilities and movement ranges. The mind-bending, rule-changing aspect of the original game is back: levels have noun and property objects in them, as well as the keyword IS. A noun IS property sequence arranged in order from top-to-bottom or left-to-right makes that sentence instantly true, for better or worse. It’s back, but it is a bit diminished in importance. A couple of levels don’t even have words this time, which in Baba Is You would result in a completely broken level.

As in the original, the difficulty rises fast, although this one is easier than it looks.

In the original, the most important property is YOU, because it assigns agency to one or more of the characters in a level; without [something] IS YOU, you can’t affect the game world. Here though, that dire need to make sure someone IS YOU at all times is gone. Now, all of your characters are considered to be controllable. But you still have to manipulate rules sometimes, to affect the properties of the terrain.

Once you have some other characters unlocked, you can sometimes choose who you want to bring into a level.

Also, you usually have more than one character to control, in a turn-based sequence. And your characters have different movement ranges and abilities. And you have a strict time limit (although it can be made less onerous in the settings). It all feels, like its inspiration, Into The Breach, but derandomized, and turned into a puzzle game. There’s no real combat; instead you manipulate your enemies so their objectives are not met.

A Youtube trailer gets the mood across nicely:

Choose your teammates carefully!

It’s all extremely charming and worth a look. While its sale price will be a paltry $4, for a few days Hempuli is giving it away for free on itch.io! Even at full price it’s worth it.

Mobile Suit Baba (itch.io, $4 [$0 temporarily])

Game Finds: Ghost Hunter

We love it when we find weird and unique indie games to tell you all about! Our alien friends to the left herald these occasions.

Another game jam entry, Róger Goulart’s Ghost Hunter is a short and silly game about a young lady who loves ghosts, maybe a bit more than she should.

Here are some opening screens:

Take a moment to enjoy this screen.
They may have a point.
And a new unholy quest begins.

Most of it is a kind of guessing game. Each of three cemeteries has tombstones arranged around it. You go to each one and dig it up with your Shovel of Resurrection. If it’s a friendly ghost, then it emerges and you get one credit towards your quota. If it’s a cursed tomb however, an angry ghost comes out and chases you for a bit. If it catches you, you take a point of damage.

How do you tell the difference? Well, usually you can’t. But there are these orange tombstones placed around each level, and when you dig one of those up you get a random powerup for a short time. (Usually: once in a while you’ll find an angry ghost in one instead, but that’s rare.) One of the powerups shows you whether a tomb has a friendly or angry spirit in store. Other powerups slow angry ghosts, disguise you so they don’t chase you, refill your health or make you walk fast for a short time.

Level 2 has periodically appearing sludge ghosts that must be destroyed by digging up waterspouts to block them. Level 3 has annoying bat enemies that must be avoided, and a higher quota than the other levels.

My tips:

  • When you stop digging up a grave in the middle of the process, the digging you did before isn’t forgotten. You can sneak in a little extra digging when running from angry ghosts this way.
  • You tend to lose a whole letter grade at the end of a level from taking damage, so be safe.
  • The best powerup is the one that reveals the cursed graves. When you get one, I suggest just wandering around for a bit, looking for the mean ghosts, and remembering where they are so you can dig up friends in piece.

Spoilers for the ending are after the download link!

Ghost Hunter (itch.io, $0, web and Windows)

A shame, but they asked for it. Also, what happened to their faces? They’re scarier than the ghosts!
And isn’t that all that matters?

Little Runmo: The Game

Last year for Sundry Sunday we linked to Gooseworx’s video game-inspired cartoon Little Runmo. In summary: a platforming character discovers that the peril-filled world he’s tasked with traversing is part of a system designed to support the life of a grotesque ruler. They turn it off, but other circumstances happen, and in the end things don’t go too well. Here’s the video, again (16 minutes).

A little green person off on a dangerous journey.

Little Runmo was made four years ago and has amassed 30 million views. Much more recently, a month ago Gooseworx made a pilot for a show to be called The Amazing Digital Circus, which in that short time has gotten an incredible 147 million views. Presumably it’ll get a series, but who really can tell these days? We have one major media company that thinks it’s worthwhile to make complete expensive productions then purposely kill them before release for a tax writeoff, but these are not the pages to discuss that.

Pointy things: the bane of all runny jumpy people

Over on itch.io JuhoSprite has made a platformer game inspired by Little Runmo, constructed in Godot and (it seems) with Gooseworx’s permission. Here is the trailer (2 1/2 minutes):

You might think it’d be a simple recreation, in game form, of the original, but it’s got its own things going on! Its platforming is pretty sharp. In addition to basic running and jumping, pressing an action button in the air gives Runmo a forward dive that gives a slight bit of extra height and some forward distance. On the ground while ducking, this move turns into a forward dash that can get through low ceiling passages.

Even with all the thematic deconstruction happening in Little Runmo, we never find out why Runmo has to traverse dangerous worlds. Presumably the evil king their deaths supports has set up some social pressure to convince his people to traverse spiky obstacle courses. Maybe the local rulers are in cahoots with him. BTW, it’s fun to say “cahoots.” Cahoots!

The game is divided into levels, but they aren’t clearly announced, and to a limited extent you can explore the areas as you wish, in a different order than as presented in the cartoon. The game world isn’t exactly as the cartoon presents it either, with the areas much larger, and containing a decent number of secrets to find! It’s usually worth it to poke around out of the way places if you can figure out how to get to them.

There’s a section with Mario-style timed alternating blocks, although here, if you’re inside a block when it appears, you just die.

The game starts out fairly chill, but gets pretty difficult. It doesn’t seem like an unfair level of difficulty, although it may take you a few plays to build up the skills to conquer it. Here is some advice to playing it:

  • If you haven’t seen the cartoon, you should know that the above ground area is only a small part of the game. The wide pit, the first one with the alternative spike wall over it, is the entrance to the rest of the game. Pikit’s message hints that that’s the way to go (press up to listen to it).
  • Unlike as seen in the original cartoon, you have to use the midair dive move to get past the pit, it’s too wide to cross with wall jumps alone.
  • Get used to hugging walls on the way down, to slow your descent. This can be used to scout out pits for secrets, to see if the scrolling continues.
  • If you press towards most walls but keep jumping, you can climb them easily. Get used to doing this all the time.
  • If a ceiling has a one block overhang, you can get around it with a jump off the wall and a dive back towards it.
  • Watch the cartoon, and think about ways to explore regions that the animated Runmo doesn’t go to.
  • There is at least one place where there are extra lives hidden off the top of the screen.
  • While running out of lives doesn’t erase your metaprogress, it just sends you back to level 1, the game does not save its state when you exit it. If you quit out and reload, you’ll be at the very beginning.
The Meatball Man is one of the funniest parts of the cartoon. It is possible to complete his room, but it’s optional in any case.

If you don’t care to see the game yourself, this 100% completion speedrun shows off the locations, although of course it doesn’t waste time talking to Pikit or exploring unnecessary places. There don’t seem to be any unnarrated longplays around yet, so, best to sharpen those skills if you want to experience it all.

Little Runmo: The Game (itch.io, $0, Windows & Linux)

Here is a secret room. What is this place? A possible reference to The Amazing Digital Circus?

Decker

The history of computers is filled with great transformative ideas that never took off, or sometimes, were even actively sabotaged.

One of those ideas was Hypercard, a “multimedia authoring system” for Mac OS Classic. One way to describe it is like an individual website, contained within a file on your computer, that you could click around and explore. Unlike websites, instead of learning a special language to create documents in it, it has its own creation system that allowed users to wield the Macintosh’s powerful UI to make things.

Hypercard was an early version of several different things. Of course its concept of linking between different “cards” of information was influential to the design of the World Wide Web. Its method of placing controls onto cards and attaching code to them is reminiscent of RAD development environments like Delphi and Visual Basic. And its multimedia capabilities allowed for the creation of full games, the most prominent example of which, of course, is Cyan’s Myst. Hypercard also could be seen as the inspiration, with varying degrees of directness, of a swath of creations ranging from TWINE to alienmelon’s Electric Zine Maker.

But wait! Don’t we live in something rich people call the “free market?” Aren’t superior products supposed to make their creators (and, of course, investors) billions of dollars? Why aren’t we all making Hypercard stacks now, on our Macintosh System 29 computers? Of course: it’s because good things are not necessarily profitable, that corporate politics matter much more than the intrinsic worth of a technology, marketing is grotesquely powerful yet also somehow overvalued, and finally, the World Wide Web came out and essentially did it one better.

Yet Hypercard still has its fans even today. Decker (not Docker), the subject of this post, is a kind of homage to Hypercard made for current OSes. It looks, on purpose, like it’s a program for early versions of Classic Mac OS, with 1-bit graphics and copious use of dithering. Yet despite that it’s still reasonably powerful. So, rediscover the promise of computing circa the late 80s, with Decker.

Decker (itch.io, $0, for Windows, Mac and Linux)

Game Finds: Feydome

We love it when we find weird and unique indie games to tell you all about! Our alien friends to the left herald these occasions.

EDIT: there was a WordPress display glitch that was causing images to overlap the text. I’ve changed the formatting a bit to keep it readable.

There’s hundreds of new games released every day, and there’s no way to can even find out what they all are, let alone try all of them. So there’s an inescapable element of randomness to what meets my eyes, and thus to what I bring to you. It’s useless to ask, “Why did you link to that silly little trifile when Important Game by Known Developer goes without remark?” Our finds are always going to be kind of idiosyncratic.

So it is with this one, Feydome, a slight but fun game made in two weeks for a game jam. It’s a laid-back 3D exploratory experience where you’re a barely-garbed, at first, fairy, searching an eerie abandoned village for clothes to wear. Movement is by WASD, with the Q and E, or else the left and right arrows, rotating the camera. Yes, it’s an exploratory dress-up game!

At the start your fairy is weak and can barely fly at all. You find glowing orbs that each grant a tiny bit more wing stamina, but never enough that you can fly indefinitely. Each orb very slightly extends the amount of flight time, by around one or two frames. So you’re always tied to the ground, but there are a lot of orbs to find, and that extra time adds up.

The fairy can glide if you hold the fly button down, even when out of energy, and if you keep tapping the space bar you can glide much further, which is a huge help. It helps to devote one hand to this, while using the other to move forward.

While you can rotate the camera, you can’t adjust the angle vertically, so you can’t look above or below, and there is no mouselook. The developer says that an expanded version is being made, maybe these control oversights will be addressed in that.

The pieces of clothing, 29 in all, are in weird chattering spheres that are stuck all over to the walls, floors and ceilings. When collected, a sphere stops chattering, which is of great help in tracking down the last few. Clothes go into your Customize Menu. You start out with just a Tied Fiber top and Leaf Panties bottom, but each item you find helps to make your wee friend more presentable in polite society (if there were any in this game).

There are no enemies, and no moving objects besides the fairy. While it’s difficult to get around at first, it’s surprising how even an extra half second of flight time expands their horizons. Mind you, there is no reward for finding all of the clothing. There is no ending; the journey is entirely the point with Feydome. You’re left alone in the abandoned world, you and your wardrobe, until you exit the game. There’s no save function either, but the game’s so short that it can be finished in one sitting anyway. Maybe 40 minutes in all, if you focus on finding everything.

But it’s fun to explore! It’s a satisfying gameplay loop, finding orbs, using the extended flight time to find yet more orbs, and punctuating the process with occasional new clothes. I’m sure this kind of gameplay has been done before, but this is a neat example of it, and it doesn’t cost anything to try.

Feydome (itch.io, $0)

itch.io: Folder Dungeon

Folder Dungeon, on itch.io, is a short and not-too-difficult game where an adventuring cursor has to dig through the folder structure of a hard drive to find an important file. Each window is a room of the dungeon; entering a Door folder takes you to another room down. You can go back the way you came using the back arrow icon at the bottom of the window.

In addition to doors, rooms can contain items, which can be picked up by clicking on them. Gold is among the items, the value of the coin indicated by a number. Some items cost money; if they do, they’ll have a coin and a number on the item. Some items, notably Health Potions and Ice Cream, take affect immediately; they never enter your inventory, but work immediately on your stats whether you needed it or not.

And, some of the things in rooms are monsters. If you do something other than attack a monster by clicking on it, then every monster in the room has a percentage chance to attack you; if you attack a monster, then it always counter-attacks if it survived the attack, but other monsters in the room don’t get the chance to attack.

Somewhere in each folder structure is an Exit icon. When you find it, you can only enter it once all the monsters in its room have been defeated. You don’t have to defeat all the monsters in a room to leave it, but it does give the monsters in the room a chance to attack you.

The most interesting play mechanic is, every action you take generates “heat.” You can only take so much heat. If heat reaches your maximum capacity, you take one damage per action until you leave the level (which resets heat to 0) or you lower your heat by collecting an Ice Cream.

Note, as you can see in the above screenshot, there’s a display bug in the current version that cuts off the left and right sides of the screen. Or is it a bug? It didn’t actually prevent me from playing? Maybe it’s an aesthetic choice? Anyway, I managed to finish the game on my first attempt, but it was close.

Folder Dungeon (by Ravernt, itch.io, $0)