Nettle

Macabre's picture
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Game File: 

Tall and slender... The greatest grass, nettle! This plant deserves its own tribute game. Read the txt for instructions!

Made For: 
An event

Comments

this is really nice!

you did well

Macabre's picture

Thanks! Enjoy the game!

Thanks! Enjoy the game!

sergiocornaga's picture

Excellent nettle art. But if

Excellent nettle art. But if there's a way to beat that one part, I sure haven't found it.

Macabre's picture

Thanks! You mean the battle

Thanks! You mean the battle part? It's mostly luck-based, but getting closer to calendula so that more your spike shots will land as soon as possible may help, or alternatively keeping the distance and dodging the petals while shooting - calendula has significantly less health than you. If you mean the sacred dance at the beginning, you just need to wait a little (25 seconds, moving - but not colliding - is okay).

sergiocornaga's picture

I did mean the battle, but

I did mean the battle, but wanted to avoid spoilers (even though the readme mentions shooting). I managed to reach the end now, but I needed to use an autofire application that I dug up from an old computer.

Something about the implied narrative of this game comes across as curious to me, but I can't nail down what it is. The initial characters are all nettles, but the protagonist nettle seems to be an outsider of sorts, unaware of nettle rituals(?) and unable to participate in the sacred dance. Then, by crossing over to the 'other side' of the nettle grove(?) and defeating a calendula(?) this nettle becomes the hero of the nettles and is able to dance. It seems to resemble the monomyth, but maybe there's something unusual about it!

Oh yeah, and the MIDI soundtrack in this is excellent, great work making it.

Macabre's picture

Whoops! Yeah, I actually

Whoops! Yeah, I actually thought about PMing you to avoid spoilers, or using the spoiler code, but I don't know if there is one or how to use it... I hope it wasn't too bad. I'm very glad that you liked the music! The battle is hard, I admit - I experimented with various mechanics and chose one that I thought was optimal, but now, though battle is winnable by normal means, obviously it's still too hard, and dissonates with generally calm spirit of the rest of the game, like mkapolk mentioned. Yess, the strange narrative part is something I had in my mind - I designed the protagonist as nettle, yet the story implies that you're not actually a "true" member of the nettle thicket. In fact the closest interpretation, in my opinion, is that you ARE an observer, outsider, but through your imagination and force of belief you imagine yourself a nettle and dive into the nettle "grove". In the process of imagining yourself a plant, you go through such stages as assimilation with and respect of their culture, getting familiar with other kinds of plants - strangely, by "fighting" them, but it's still a form of interaction, and the calendulas aren't enemies here actually, they are just "another" type of plant society which IS present, but which you don't wish to explore for now. So, then you want to study nettles more, and you return to them, this time merging with them better and becoming a "full-time member" :) It does resemble a myth in a way, yes, now it's very interesting that you mentioned it, since I am a philologist and it's very exciting for me to read an analysis of my game based on narratology! It's not strictly an "initiation of a character" though, it's more like merging with a tribe by learning their ways. There's something "ethnological" about this game - normaly plants can be studied in ethnobotany - their usage by tribes etc., but here the PLANT has its tribe! The battle is not necessary for initiation, it's just something you encountered during your travels, but thanks to that battle and your desire to return, you earn respect from nettles! There's also an interesting thing, a bit of a secret - the two dancing nettles are the young (violet) and old (olive) plants, while your character is a green nettle in the prime of life - I did it mostly just for diversity, but it may be hard to notice, and you are free to interpret the presence of differently aged nettles as you wish!

mkapolk's picture

I really liked the subject

I really liked the subject and the first level. The combination of having to purposefully avoid interrupting in combination with the way the readme is phrased gave it a really magical feeling. I enjoyed imagining the secret society of plants. The shooter level seemed out of place. I guess there's supposed to be an animosity between the nettles and the calendula but I didn't understand it.

Macabre's picture

Thank you for checking it

Thank you for checking it out! It's great that you found it atmospheric. Yes, I agree that the battle takes away the calm, meditative aspect of the game (and it seems to be needlessly hard too), but it actually comes from the feeling of revealing something unusual in the darkness of growing plants. The real "nettle grove" which served as an inspiration for the game actually has a few calendulas growing nearby - they aren't enemies, at least I think so, but in this game I tried to make it so that you lose that society of nettles for a while, and have to "return" to it after being lost in the society of calendulas... Also, I added this adventurous element because I wanted to know how to make battle levels in TGF... To be honest, I also had an idea of adding caterpillars of Aglais Urticae (a butterfly whose larvae feed on nettle) as a gameplay element, and it had the potential to make the game simply unsettling, so I chose calendulas instead!

speedos's picture

i half expected a screamer

i half expected a screamer at some of these parts lol
very cool game, especially the midi music was really calming
what program did you use for this?

Macabre's picture

Hehehe! The world of nettle

Hehehe! The world of nettle might be stingy and spikey, but not jump-scarey! Thanks for playing! For my MIDIs I use Anvil Studio, a free and very simple to use program http://www.anvilstudio.com/ .