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Feb 15, 2013 | 8:38 PM EST
  • Daily 4th Place February 17, 2013

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Author Comments

"Ode To Pixel Days" is about a teenage boy, Hans, having a crush on a cheerleader. Hans gets rejected by the cheerleader, because he is ugly, and not charismatic. Hans tries to change this by building a machine that will make everyone look the same. When everyone looks the same, he can have the girl of his dreams! But of course, in reality, things don't work that way; and Hans is about to get into some bitter experiences.

The game is played in a castle, that represents the world created by Hans' mind. The game's artistic goal is to put the players in Hans' mind, to make them play through his emotional experiences, hopes and dreams. The core experience of the game is the feelings a boy goes through when he gets into puberty; loneliness, sadness, low self-esteem, the desire to change things about you and everything around you.

This game is made completely by one person, and that is me.

Reviews


LovelessavengerLovelessavenger

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars March 14, 2013

I'll be honest, I wanted to ragequit so many times. But I'm stubborn and I went through the whole game ~ I'm glad I did, it was actually quite fun and inspirational; it made me feel like there's a little Hans in everyone :)
Thank you for a wonderful game
+ The part where Hans was 'flying' with the music and his other selves was wonderful!


talhakaya responds:

I often get frustrated with a lot of games, so I know how you felt. I wanted to miniize the frustration but as games try to be challenging, they'll be more frustrating. I hope I'll do better in the future!

The flying scene is my favourite, I think it has something special in it. So I'm very happy you enjoyed it. Cheers! :)


sapsasapsa

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars February 16, 2013

great story about being diffrent and not


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talhakaya responds:

glad you liked it :)


SlendyisourfriendSlendyisourfriend

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars July 3, 2013

Twas a good story. I was captivated by the story, and the game was enjoyable. Hope for more story's like this~


talhakaya responds:

Thanks, very glad you enjoyed it :)


TheWanderingShadowTheWanderingShadow

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars February 18, 2013

It is a well written, well designed game. I can say I was touched by the story and enjoyed the clever way it was implemented with the shrinking mechanic. However, I'm not so ready with my praises.

The game falls under the same category as Braid and Dys4ia, in that it does not give the player a chance to easily experience the emotions of the story for themselves. Instead, the story is spoonfed to them through narration. The player has to either personally relate with the story or have a strong sense of empathy to really be affected by the story. It is arguably more important for the game mechanics to reflect or inspire the emotions that the plot intends to evoke, and I just don't really feel like this game did it too well. The final puzzle and confrontation was the worst case of this. The gameplay during that level was just jarring and didn't mesh with the powerful themes that the game was throwing at me while I played through it.

It is possible to have your game tell a story through gameplay instead of words (Limbo didn't need words, did it?), and I feel that is often more effective. There can be a balance between the two (The Company of Myself did this well, especially in one moment), where the gameplay fully reflects the narration, and I see a bit of it here. But it's done a little ham-handedly most of the time, such as Hans stomping on his own "ugliness", and the other times the puzzles don't really correspond to the story.

Let me reiterate, I enjoyed this game. The puzzles are well designed, the writing is clever and humorous at the right times, and I genuinely liked the story. But the the narration is so present and the game so linear, that I feel this leans a more towards interactive story than an actual game.

I hope my review doesn't offend, and I hope you continue making games in the future! :)


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talhakaya responds:

thank you for your very thoughtful comment. I can easily say that I agree, sadly. I'm trying to find better ways of incorporating the story to gameplay for my future games. I'm not really fine with the puzzles in this game, it still feels like forced challenges to me, not very much to do with story at all. I've tried my best to actually give some meanings to the puzzles through narration, yet it's not enough.

I don't think Limbo had a proper story, it was too vague for my taste, even though it's a fantastic game. It just didn't need a proper story to back the game. Like QUBE. If you want a proper story told without words, look out for the upcoming game, Monochroma. Although it's early to tell, I think they will do it well.

Company of Myself did storytelling perfectly. Hotline Miami did pretty good. I hope I'll do it good one day, I'm definitely working on it. Thanks a lot for the very kind comment, glad you enjoyed the game :)


GoodockGoodock

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars February 16, 2013

I thought it was pretty great, especially the idea of becoming more pixelated being desirable for someone with image issues. Of course every guy knows what it feels like to not have your feelings returned. A twist on this story appears in the film Cinema Paradiso, which I recommend. (But don't ask me what it means). Perhaps even had the cheerleader accepted him, what he really wanted (acceptance) would be sated and he wouldn't even want her anymore. You allude to this at the end of your story when he begins to focus more on himself, however I simply couldn't understand why after he discovered himself the world turned gray.


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talhakaya responds:

your interpretation of it great! Just what I wanted to do. But I decided finishing with the "gray world" to tell that the real world is still a dark place, and Hans has to adapt to it.