Playing the Ludum Dare 22 Winners, #8 – Locked Away

Next on our list of top dog Ludum Dare 22 creations is a mostly vertical platformer called Locked Away. Made by MoltenMustafa, it starts out strong, asking the player to choose a color before a difficulty setting. I really liked that, and I went with green and Easy for my first run. We then get some side-scrolling text: They locked me away in here. On Christmas day. All alone. Poor kid. And with that, we’re plopped into the game, ready to make our little lonely avatar climb to the top of the map while avoiding enemies. The graphics are retro and crisp, and the controls and movement speed of the avatar is surprisingly fast and responsive. Touching an enemy kills you, bringing you back to an unannounced checkpoint–all of which happens in the blink of an eye. That helps to keep one playing as you can just keep trying to make that jump up until you get it.

Easy is definitely easy. You learn some of the game’s tricks here, like how to time jumps and hit semi-hidden platforms to open up a new path. It doesn’t take terribly long to get to the end of the map. Normal difficulty, however, proved to be problematic for me; I ended up getting stuck between two platforms of moving enemies and just couldn’t squeeze by them without getting hit. I decided to try Hard out, sticking with the good ol’ green, and this time, you’re falling, trying to avoid hitting obstacles. Kind of like in ‘Splosion Man. You basically have to learn where everything is and memorize it; beating Hard got me an end game screen, which had a house and present box on it, but these were upside-down. Not sure if that was intended or some faulty coding

So yeah, I beat Easy and Hard, but can’t get past one part in Normal. Go figure. Y’all should play it though as it is quick and enjoyable, with tight controls. Just remember to choose green as your color. Green is the only way to play.

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