Weekend at Chompface's

let-off-studios's picture
chompface_01.png

WEEKEND AT CHOMPFACE'S, an HTML5 joint made for Grid Grind 2020. It plays in nearly any browser. The description:

You are one of the ghosts, and instead of tagging out Chompface like you usually do, you ended up killing him. You gotta get outta Dodge, but first you need to find and collect all four tires to your getaway van. Until you do, you can't raise suspicion. Play it cool so that ZEZMERON and MS. CHOMPFACE aren't any the wiser, and don't do anything too wacky or you risk your arcade cabinet being rebooted!

[NOTE: updated to include more clues about how to reduce suspicion. Thanks for all the feedback and critique, folks!]

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This is a "Pac-Man/Weekend At Bernie's Mashup Parody Action Puzzle" made for the Grid Grind 2020. Collect all four tires before either the red bar or the purple bar reach 0 (the detectors for Zezmeron and the arcade game player, respectively). There are four different endings for you to discover. I wrote and sang a song for this game. Grid Grind 2020 features included:

  • Medicine
  • Edible Rocks
  • Utopia
  • A Van

I kinda didn't follow the rules to the event, and in fact the game morphed a lot in the past couple months. I finally settled on "reverse Pac-Man" and the rest of the game kinda wrote itself. I beg your indulgence. I had too much fun making this to start worrying about that stuff.

Additional credits:
"Frosty The Snowman" karaoke tune found on YouTube.
Car engine sound effects from Clickteam sample libraries.
Background music for menus and end screens made by me in a MIDI music program some time ago (I can't remember the name).
If you're wondering how DEVO fits into the soundtrack, I reversed the sound of the siren at the beginning of their video for "Jocko Homo."

"THANK YOU FOR PLAY!" [sic]

Event Created For: 
Made For: 
An event

Comments

mkapolk's picture

That was amazing. The

That was amazing. The off-putting, looping music set the tone of trying to maintain appearances while walking alongside a walking corpse. I was expecting it to be a bit more like Spy Party, as a reverse-turing-test kind of deal, though I suppose that having more rigid mechanics for that aspect is probably better than some unintuitive heuristic that attempts to simulate "computeriness" but ends up feeling arbitrary. Thematically though it's an extremely cool idea.

The voice acted cutscenes (and the song!) were a wonderful way of adding more character and narrative. I was a little sad that once I manage to get Mr Chompface and Ms Chompface together there wasn't a special "Oh my god he's dead!" cutscene though.

sergiocornaga's picture

A couple of times, I tagged

A couple of times, I tagged Chompface and he didn't respawn! I think it was when I was hanging around the respawn point. But the second time, I managed to collect four tires in time anyway, and escaped before the player realised how broken the game had become!

let-off-studios's picture

Responses

Very cool to see you all are playing. Thanks for the compliments, Marek. :)

@segiocornaga: CHOMPFACE has a limited number of lives, but the game keeps going when there are none left. The arcade player grows suspicious when the game doesn't end - which you may have noticed if you reached that ending. I didn't want to end the game for the (real) game player at that point, as I felt it's a situation where they can still eke out a win: see below.
Here are some responses for you:

  • Regarding MS. CHOMPFACE: This week I will add in some kind of on-screen feedback to let the player know she's growing suspicious. I have her on-screen appearance as something that causes the suspicion of the arcade player to take a hit, but it apparently isn't obvious enough.
  • Regarding tagging CHOMPFACE: When the game continues but there are no lives remaining (no more icons next to the game score), both ZEZMERON and the arcade player meters will drop. Again, I think this is a case of no on-screen feedback letting the (real) player know they are now under a tremendous time crunch to grab that last tire and escape.

A little more user interface improvement for this, and it may help in these situations you all pointed out. Thanks for the feedback!

fizzhog's picture

I really like this. Probably

I really like this. Probably played about ten games so far and I've got three tyres a couple of times but not four. I did figure things out - like the limited lives - but I agree that a little bit more detail in the instructions or player feedback might be a good idea. The concept was great, really nicely implemented but it is the voice acting and the song that make it something special. I've been wanting to do more with voice - I've done a little in a couple of games - but this inspires me to do progress an idea I have where voice is more central.

Alchiggins's picture

This has so many interesting

This has so many interesting layers! I don't know if I've played anything where the performance of maintaining appearances was central to a game, let alone in such an intricate way (your tabletop design experience definitely shows in this one). Pretty tough; I've only gotten to three tires so far, but I wanna keep trying. The voice acted scenes are great. Super interesting!

let-off-studios's picture

Updated!

I added in sound cues and on-screen hints for certain triggers. Hopefully these are suitable guideposts for players who want to look for all four endings.

Thanks again to you all for the feedback! It helped improve this game.

Capt_hastings-Chrissy's picture

fun

This game was so adorable. I love the song, the ghost having their own agenda outside of chompface, and especially having to get ms. chompface out of there. The reverse pac man theme was very novel.

let-off-studios's picture

Similarities

I'm glad you had a chance to play this, Capt! When I made it I couldn't help but reminisce about a certain crime thriller game I had played years ago, featuring a gigantic gorilla and a spiteful plumber... :)

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