Charlotte Gore’s Screened Made Me Scream

Screened is a fiendish little free platformer in the vein of Super Meat Boy with a scratchy, itchy post-punk soundtrack that’s a perfect match: both are like fingernails run down a blackboard, yet both unavoidably draw you in.

The game was built for the Ludum Dare 31 game jam, the theme of which was “the entire game on one screen”. Screened spins its single screen out into multiple levels by moving around obstacles and barriers every time you reach the exit, with each new spin on the screen throwing new challenges into your face whilst laughing at your incompetence and displeasure.

Apparently most people don’t even get past the pools of water on the fourth screen. I’ve managed to reach a couple of screens after that point, but I can tell there are still plenty more to go. I don’t feel too bad about not having beaten the game, though, since Gore describes herself as a Super Hexagon champion and the best I’ve done at Terry Cavanagh’s maddening reflex game is last about 60 seconds on the easiest level. Sigh. Such games are not for me, but I still keep playing them.

Screened is playable online, and those who’d like to know more can find both a post-mortem and a playthrough on the Ludum Dare site.

8 Comments

  1. LTK says:

    What went badly:

    Controls: The controls felt great to me, felt very organic and fluid.. but the inertia of the player character is proving quite bizarre for other players. Whoops.

    No kidding! I immediately thought the controls were just deliberately so to make it harder but apparently not. The combination of mid-air control and inertia is really weird and I don’t like it at all. If the movement was quicker then it might be more feasible to predict your trajectory but it’s no faster than wading through water, which makes the inertia so dissonant. Four screens in and I’m also done with it.

    • hexagore says:

      Hello, I made this game and because it was a 48 hour competition I didn’t have time to tune the controls based on testing feedback which is a shame so sorry you struggled with it!

      There’s a post-competition version which has far more conventional controls that I’d rather people who aren’t judging Ludum Dare games played. It’s still pretty hard but it feels a lot fairer!

      • Canazza says:

        I did Ludum Dare too this time, and I’ve found this with a lot of the platform games I’ve tested (and my own entry). Either the player is too slow, or too fast, or too floaty, or not floaty enough.

        With only 48 hours, testing is generally the first thing out of the window, and you’re so used to playing it by the end you don’t notice many of the niggles.

      • -funkstar- says:

        The post-comp version was much easier – also, very impressive work for 48 hours, I must say.

      • LTK says:

        Well yes, I pulled the quote from your post-mortem so I was aware that you knew people had issues with the controls. :) I’ll check out that post-LD version, thanks!

      • smike says:

        People struggled with the original water pools? I.. I am self-confessedly bad at platformers but I actually liked this control scheme. The momentum worked for me, even if it was very unforgiving. Managed to reach the black screen in under 40 mins so may have been slow.

  2. Jakkar says:

    Yep, those controls… The low-gravity bouncing combined with the fact you can’t jump unless you’re touching a surface gets me killed too frequently. Legged entities absorb impact upon landing so while there’s some small bounce it’s absorbed in the flexion of the leg and said entity remains in contact with the ground, able to turn the bounce into a new jump or a high speed run or roll… This makes games in which you play a bouncing, rigid object sort of infuriating, as you lose the ability to turn one jump smoothly into another – and it’s that leaping from point to point with grace and daredevil agility that makes platforming games fun.

    … on the rare occasion that they are…}

    Nice presentation, colour scheme, good music, but the basic gameplay here feels like the platforming equivalent of driving a milk float, compared to something like N.

  3. AXAXAXAS MLO II: MLO HARDER says:

    I could hardly play it, it’s harder than The Floor is Jelly!

    …Why is everyone staring at me like that