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Cart #16777 | 2015-11-19 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | No License

Fire & Brimstone is a roguelike with a randomized skill tree

-- GOAL --
You must find the 4x relic parts in the dungeon
Relic parts spawn on floor 2/3/4 + 5/6/7 + 8/9/10 ...
You can also buy a relic part to the shopkeeper for 12 coins.

[arrow keys] move / attack
[z] Swap your active spell
[x] cast a spell

-- LEVEL-UP --
Each level contain a ankh.
Activate the ankh to level-up and unlock a new skill.
unlocked skills must be contiguous.

-- GOLD --
Each monster drop a coin.
You can spend coins with a shopkeeper at level 3 / 6 / 9 / 12 / ...
You can steal coin from monster with the thief skill

P#16746 2015-11-18 18:23 ( Edited 2017-06-30 18:02)

I like this, especially the sound effects! And the graphics. But how do I not die? Seems like the enemies are all faster than me, and they so greatly outnumber me.

I also got an out of memory error once, when picking up an ankh. edit: twice

P#16748 2015-11-18 18:34 ( Edited 2015-11-18 23:39)

Yeah I just noticed the out of memory problem. I will try to solve it asap you can resfresh game to have a normal play.

For now, the game is quite difficult on first two level, focus on getting the ankh and leave the floor quickly. The food can also replenish one of your heart if you were injured in the process.

P#16749 2015-11-18 18:43 ( Edited 2015-11-18 23:44)

:O This is awesome! I love the little animations, it adds polish to the game :)

P#16756 2015-11-18 21:54 ( Edited 2015-11-19 02:54)

loving it!

EDIT: items sometimes spawn after the stairs and are not reachable! happened with an ankh too

P#16757 2015-11-18 22:00 ( Edited 2015-11-19 04:45)

noooooooo an archer destroyed my ankh

also kills merchant

P#16760 2015-11-18 23:41 ( Edited 2015-11-19 05:00)

i'm trying to fix the memory problem, seems challenging :D

function play()

 if hero.dead then


 if btnp(4, 1) then
 if btnp(5, 1) then

adding these lines on play() allow you to use TAB for glow and Q for dying.

steps to reproduce:
-run game
-start game with x
-glow pressing TAB
-die pressing Q
-start game with x again
-glow pressing TAB

P#16765 2015-11-19 03:19 ( Edited 2015-11-19 08:19)

adding 'local' to the variables dx, dy and index used on the for inside glow() seem to fix it:

function glow(nxt)
 for i=1,wmax do
 for k=0,64*128-1 do
  local dx=hero.x+4-k%64*2
  local dy=hero.y-4-flr(k/64)
  local index=flr(sqrt(dx*dx+dy*dy)*wmax/181)
P#16766 2015-11-19 03:29 ( Edited 2015-11-19 08:29)

Thank you to help me for this !
Adding local was not enough to get rid of the bug on my computer, so I also moved the squares init in the _init function and I could play a few games (3-4) without problem. I hope it will be enough !

P#16773 2015-11-19 05:27 ( Edited 2015-11-19 10:27)

This is my new favorite game now!

P#16778 2015-11-19 10:21 ( Edited 2015-11-19 15:21)

Amazing work !
i love it

P#16795 2015-11-20 07:39 ( Edited 2015-11-20 12:39)

Very amusing game.

This happened when I attacked an enemy that was standing over the stairs:

Line 1787: Attempt to perform arithmetic on global ‘ey’ (a nil value)
in _f line 1787
in draw line 1585
in _draw line 1705

P#16808 2015-11-20 13:46 ( Edited 2015-11-20 18:46)

Excellent game, and those visual effects are fantastic!

P#16864 2015-11-21 23:09 ( Edited 2015-11-22 04:09)

I've just spent the last few hours playing this. It's so great, yet again. Amazing work!

P#16876 2015-11-22 03:50 ( Edited 2015-11-22 08:50)

Excellent! I really like it!

P#17031 2015-11-25 10:23 ( Edited 2015-11-25 15:23)

nice one! going to have to study your code to see how you avoided the memory issues.

also, totally beautiful art!

P#17038 2015-11-25 12:00 ( Edited 2015-11-25 17:00)

I got the ankh! This is exceptional work for the small space granted by PICO-8. :3

P#17058 2015-11-26 00:49 ( Edited 2015-11-26 05:49)


P#17199 2015-11-29 14:49 ( Edited 2015-11-29 19:49)

Those armoured guys kill me every time!

Also, the archer being able to shoot through other enemies seems kinda cheap.

I feel like the game is too hard, too. I always feel like I am constantly one or even two ankhs behind where I need to be to survive.

P#17202 2015-11-29 15:28 ( Edited 2015-11-30 06:10)

The game crashed when I killed a stone guy who was being shocked by the column of lightning. This happens every time, but I finally managed to catch the error:

runtime error
line 1597: attempt to index global 'trg' (a nil value)
in draw line 1597
in _draw line 1705

P#19422 2016-03-26 19:31 ( Edited 2016-03-26 23:31)

This is great. I noticed two bugs:

  1. If you use lightning when there are no enemies on the screen, it crashes with "Attempt to index local 'e' (a nil value) in hit on line 998".
  2. Some of the spell descriptions say "ennemy" instead of "enemy". I noticed it on tornado and lightning, but didn't check them all.
P#19434 2016-03-27 16:28 ( Edited 2016-03-27 20:28)

I keep playing this game even though it seems to have way more unpreventable deaths. Or is there a strategy I haven't discovered? Haven't got past level 4. There doesn't seem like there is going to be any "break through" moment either, the monsters keeping getting steeply more powerful with health and damage, so to prevent dying you need to be getting more damage , more health , and a magic attack. Otherwise a good percentage of the time the random level will generate a monster that you will stumble on way too close and it will kill or maim you. Trying to avoid all monsters doesn't work any better, you will still get ambushed too often, and if you have got extra speed and sight , you won't have health, or the damage or the magic to deal with them.

Ideally roguelikes keep death to sheer bad luck to an absolute minimum; you die and it's your fault for taking your chances.
This game generates waaay too many deaths that there's literally nothing you could do.

Or are other people finding ways to not get killed? Please share tips!
There is game is extremely playable despite this, a pick up rogue game without endless equipment juggling and number crunching.

I feel that it would be improved greatly if it just had 2 ankh per level. It would allow the player to keep up with the monster scaling, but force more exploration of each level (with the cost of food) if they want both.

Other options to make it easier could be full health or 1 heart heals from floor changes or ankhs, or reduce monster health by 1 where relevant.
Or starting with one upgrade.

Anyway you got some serious gaming making chops Benjamin, I've been playing Mistigiri a lot too

P#24381 2016-07-03 04:20 ( Edited 2016-07-03 08:20)

@Scrap princess Well If I remember the gameplay well, choosing early detection skills ( monster or treasures ) and extra move help you a lot with the random aspect fo the game.
Choosing the fighing skills ( attack and power ) will help you to face many enemies but you will need luck to find ankhs and food.

I plan to make a bigger version of this, I will try to keep the unpreventable deaths to an acceptable level. Thanks for your feedback

P#24483 2016-07-03 19:53 ( Edited 2016-07-03 23:53)

good lord, this is outstanding. very playable and extremely fun.

P#24489 2016-07-03 20:14 ( Edited 2016-07-04 00:14)

@benjamin Soulé It's got so many smart touches like each monster requiring a different response to, or the archer being able to hurt other monsters. It's impressive despite the unpreventable deaths

P#24591 2016-07-04 21:44 ( Edited 2016-07-05 01:44)

@benjamin Soulé okay with that advice I did a lot better , got 2 talisman pieces and all the way to floor 6 before I died a death that was completely down my hubris

P#24592 2016-07-04 21:53 ( Edited 2016-07-05 01:53)

those blobs man bonus movement for them might be a bit brutal and do they have some kind of lightning strike as small blobs?
Goblin archers could do with one health

I'm an idiot though and maybe all this is a great challenge.

I regularly get to level 4 or 5 now and die mainly because I run into a monster I haven't learned enough about or my own dumbness

P#24597 2016-07-04 23:35 ( Edited 2016-07-05 03:35)

no lightnings for blob but I think the game is not so clear when you get attacked many time on same turn. For the blob I think you need either extra move to escape the big one ( it's really slow if I remember well ) or extra attacks to deal with the bunch of small ones. If you have none of them, blobs are pretty hard to defeat.

For the talisman I think you really need to save the money to buy at least one from the merchant. I'm not sure you can finish the game by getting 4x talismans in the levels.

P#24608 2016-07-05 04:32 ( Edited 2016-07-05 08:32)

@benjamin Soulé I'm definitely learning how to play smarter , got down to level 10 before a ninja flat out killed me. I shoulda looked at the ninja's stats but I thought I knew what they did, as previous they had either popped out in front of me and I had killed them or they had got behind me and killed me. This one did the "monster seen you noise" but wasn't showing and then was in front of me and did 3 damage. So that's a learning experience .

P#24628 2016-07-05 10:41 ( Edited 2016-07-05 14:41)

@benjamin Soulé I got all 4 parts of the relic! The last one I bought from a shopkeeper, though one was visible on that level so conceivably I could of got all 4 on levels. Though I had tried to buy the last piece on level 9 and it wouldn't let me even though I had 12 gold. Next time I tried I had 14 gold. So that was weird. Blobs definitely have an extra move (the boot symbol in their stats). The lightning thing is was actually a bug that if you have the lightning power you gain trigger it post death, possibly even if you have already used it.

Having double extra move power up seemed to be the key to success, otherwise blobs +others start cutting you off.

This game seems to get the 5 "lunch time roguelike" concept far more than desktop dungeons and some others that escape me.

The difficult seems about right for people that play a lot of rogues or similar learn by dying /beg for mercy from the RNG games. Others prob gonna bounce off how a lot of things are against you , I nearly did , but as the game is so quick to play and death either felt unlucky and without so much time invested I think compelled to try again OR immediately due to a bad decision.

Unlike other games that you are not sure where you fucked yourself but it was many turns ago , and so feels more frustrating.

I guess now that I've completely it I can't say it's too hard! And my early comments about 2 ankhs per level seem too much. Now I guess if you wanted less people to bounce off it , talismans give a bonus? (except maybe the bought one?) or +1 health each dungeon down? or a few hearts shaved off some of the monsters (arrow goblins, armour goblins) maybe the movement bonus of the slime?

Whatever , I'm likely trying to hold on my previous stance as this game is too hard.

Thank you making this game and I will keep an eye out for anything you make in future

P#24706 2016-07-06 06:34 ( Edited 2016-07-06 10:34)

Just have the second Ankh per dungeon be a drop from a reasonably tough enemy - one that sometimes you'll have the strength or resources to beat, and sometimes you won't. This way, there's some risk associated with the extra reward, and it's not a consistent 2-per-floor that the player gets. ;)

Easy early-game balance adjustment: Start the player on the skill screen with one free skill/Ankh. :) There ya go.

P#24761 2016-07-06 21:33 ( Edited 2016-07-07 01:44)

@TonyTheTGR I want to leave a way for a total dodge build ( jump, moves, detection etc ) and I dont think this build is good enough right now. If I put ankh in monster hands I will increase this problem.

@ScrapPrincess I think the game is too hard too. I think roguelike should be hard, but many of my friends stop play this game because of the high learning curve. I would like to preserve this difficulty and give the player a feeling of progression on first tries so he want to try again. Like giving him his maximum floor number and a "reward" when he reach floors ( new class ).

Well your detailed comments really makes me want to make a 2nd version of this... thx a lot ^^

P#24762 2016-07-06 21:50 ( Edited 2016-07-07 01:50)

@benjamin Soulé
I can keep adding additional thoughts as they come to me if it's still helpful?

At the moment I've noticed I only complete it if can get 2 (higher chance with 3) move power ups . Biggest problems are slimes if I don't have a double move (though having lightning and the fireball makes it okay) and archer goblins without a move upgrade.

How do ninjas work? or the stealth enemies in general? It seems you get a "creature noticed you" warning on a square and then if you move beside that square with movement left (due to upgrade) you can get an action in before them.

The ninjas kill me out of the blue 50% of the time. I'm not exactly quite sure what is happening. Sometimes they just appear in front of me but I act first other times that happens and they kill me and I've got 3-4(?) health. I'm reasonably sure I don't always get a "creature notices you" warning first.

UPGRADE comments:
Like this is my upgrade purchase behaviour that could be influenced what I think is hard.

Of the upgrades I've never purchased the push enemies back option. It seems rarely more usefully than other options.

I've purchased +1 rabbit a couple of times but it's always right near the end of the game and I've either died or completed it, and I've never seen them yet.

Never purchased +1 Flask or Mana potion (or if I did I died very soon afterwards). Always had the option to purchase +1 heart or purchase a spell or worry about something else

Having non-ideal purchase options seems okay though, sometimes going after something in the corner might force it that choice and opportunities to learn to make something different work to your advantage

Player starts with one ankh seems like a really good difficult adjustment but I think additionally some health and movement needs to shaved off some of the enemies too.

P#24790 2016-07-07 02:30 ( Edited 2016-07-07 06:30)

Awesome look and effects. What could be more obvious is the mission of the player without reading any manual.

P#24794 2016-07-07 03:52 ( Edited 2016-07-07 07:52)

The shadow skill remove vision range and the ninja have 2x of this. You need a vision extension to be able to see him at a normal range. Id you dont have any the best solution is probably to run what you think is the opposite direction :) I need to make all of this more understandable.

The Tornado can also kill ennemy if you push them into lava. Mana and Rabbit are not so great, it needs more tweaking.

P#24795 2016-07-07 04:32 ( Edited 2016-07-07 08:32)

No, it's not a learning curve problem. The game just isn't balanced yet.

Your friends probably stopped for the same reason I stopped. See, I love rogue/hack/larn/etc and I've spent years of my life playing them and their derivatives. Unlike most games, I'm good at these, since I'm very experienced and it's not a genre where my aging reflexes fail me. This particular game, though, gives the AI so many buffs and underhanded moves that my skills and knowledge just don't matter.

You can't learn to survive attacks where the skeletons always seem to get initiative and, because they have two health, always get to hit you twice before they die. This is on stage 1, where I should be fighting yard trash. Rats and skeletons are yard trash, really, but it only takes two skeletons, or a skeleton and a fast-moving rat, and that unbreakable initiative they keep getting, to kill you before you you can leave the first stage. Finding the ankh or the food requires some luck, so there's often no chance to heal before the second opponent effortlessly kills you without taking a hit itself. You can't learn to get initiative. You can't learn to find the ankh faster.

Don't even get me started on the ninja. Appears out of nowhere and kills you before you can take a turn. Sorry to be blunt about this, but that's just bad design. If he's going to be that stealthy, you can't equip him to take four or more hearts off of the protagonist in one go, which is what happened to me in the final game I played. Every single time I felt like I was finally getting somewhere, a ninja appeared next to me and OHK'ed me.

(BTW, I normally pick the +5 vision upgrade before anything else, if I can, so it's not like that was the solution to the ninja problem. I either had it and it didn't help, or I didn't have it because I couldn't.)

The short story is this: the game currently stacks the deck against you. To some extent, it's supposed to, but not to this extent. A challenge is one thing, but this is a game that forces the player to fail over and over. That just isn't fun. No one's going to want to keep playing a game that does that.

That's a shame, by the way. You've really done a stellar job writing it. It's slick, responsive, multi-faceted, the upgrades are really fun and well-balanced against each other (with a couple of minor duds), it's very good at being a roguelike, the graphics are excellent (both the drawing and the code)... I mean, I really want to play this game. I love this kind of game, and you've written one that looks and feels absolutely amazing, but it sorely needs a balance patch or I can't see myself ever running it again. Please, work on it some more. :)

I think you only need to tweak a few things, actually, but it'll require careful consideration to decide exactly what. It feels like it's close, but because you're always walking the razor's edge in these games, it doesn't take much to put it off balance.

Maybe buy your friends some pizza and ask them to play while you watch. Take notes. Fix the things that make them say "Wha...?" or "WTF!" or "Where the did he come from?" or "Bull!" You need a focus group. You're too close to the game to see it properly, I think.

P#24822 2016-07-07 12:13 ( Edited 2016-07-07 16:16)

@Felice I mean you're right but one quibble is no iniative , so if you move beside a skeleton it will get to go first but if it moves beside you , then you get iniative. So you should generally be able to kill them with one heart lost by moving away or diagonally until it's in range.

P#24881 2016-07-08 06:13 ( Edited 2016-07-08 10:13)

@benjamin Soulé okay wind pushing enemies into lava is my new favourite thing. Makes sense that you don't get gold from them when they are killed that way, but that the slime still gets to make slimelets seems unfair.

I'm winning about 1 time in 10 and only when I can get a double or triple move upgrade. Ninja's not a problem if I have the spare upgrades to buy sight upgrades though that's a very Long Live The Queen game design aspect.

P#24882 2016-07-08 06:18 ( Edited 2016-07-08 10:18)

@Scrap princess:

You can't move on diagonals. If you and the skeleton have one tile between you, it's impossible to close the gap without giving it initiative. Moving away maintains the gap, moving towards gives him initiative, moving perpendicular just puts you diagonal to him, and you can't move/attack diagonally. Something like that, anyway. I'll have to play and figure out the details again.

It would be nice if there were a "skip turn" option somehow. Maybe as the first option in the spell list or something. I know there's a spell that skips+heals, but I just want to skip.

P#24921 2016-07-08 18:05 ( Edited 2016-07-08 22:12)

Finally beat the game today. Love the design from top to the bottom - especially the sounds effects and power-up system. It's hard and I lost a lot before winning, but it's so fast and fun that losing always made me want to play one more time...

Right now, my favorite PICO-8 game. :)

For what it's worth, I think buying the Rabbit early is a great upgrade: never worry about running out of movement, heal one extra heart per level, and a free coin? Awesome - as long as you are fast enough to catch him.

You are correct that it's not possible to just skip a turn and wait unless you have a certain spell, and having an odd number of tiles between you and an enemy can be a daunting problem.

One solution is to not fight - run and look for an ankh, because many power-ups will help in this situation. Boots for faster movement speed, swords that let you attack multiple times, or just sucking up the extra hit and using a heart to heal (and extend) your health after battle. You can also heal one heart by eating meat, or use various magic spells to affect combat. Or maybe you'll get lucky and be able to trick an archer into shooting him for you.

Having an option to skip turns would make things easier, but I don't know if making tactical choices easier means "better". I really like the way this game play now, and wouldn't make significant balance changes... but obviously others feel differently.

P#25313 2016-07-14 17:48 ( Edited 2016-07-14 21:48)

I actually added a "skip turn" spell that you get by default. It does make the game better, but not because it makes it easier. It's because it kinda takes me out of the game when I think, "This doesn't make sense, why wouldn't I be able to tap my toe for a turn instead of moving?"

P#25314 2016-07-14 19:16 ( Edited 2016-07-14 23:16)

I think with skelemans I was just running away and cut corners until the pathfinding ai made the skeleman take step back or forward.

I got a
runtime error
line 1597:attempt to index glob
al ‘trg’ (a nil value)
in draw line 1597
in _draw line 1705

at about floor 13 ?

I was trying to get the "alternate victory condition" of getting every upgrade ,was about 5-6 away. So I knew I was pushing it

I've managed to get a regular win without getting a double move upgrade really early on (like within 3-4 upgrades) once now

P#25323 2016-07-15 01:23 ( Edited 2016-07-15 05:23)
P#25391 2016-07-16 05:44 ( Edited 2016-07-16 09:44)

@benjamin Soulé
current thoughts of monster nerfing:
Goblin : only encounter after level 2, if pool of 3 monsters needed for level 1 suggest slimeling or (nerfed) spider
Spider: one heart rather than 2, can appear on level 1
Armour Goblin : No movement upgrade
Arrow Goblin: No movement upgrade
Big Slime: No movement upgrade
Slimeling: No movement upgrade
Ninja: 2 damage rather than 3 and either requires only one sight upgrade to see Or 2 hearts rather than 3
Movement upgrade should appear less (but atleast once) on Upgrade board, with less movement upgrades appearing in monsters , being able to double speed over everything would be a bit too good. But at the moment goblins and slimes having movement upgrade feels like it forces a particular build too much.

Other upgrades : Possibly merge mana and health potion into the one potion? Seems pretty underwhelming. Though health potion as a merchant purchase seems fine.

+2 on first attack: seems almost too weak, could it also work if you hit an enemy the turn after they spot you? Or recharges if enemy loses track off you? Would have could synergy with stealth and jump upgrade

P#25850 2016-07-25 06:13 ( Edited 2016-07-25 10:13)

Got the same runtime error others have reported. A real bummer because I was almost certain to win with lots of cash, food, and power-ups.

This remains one of my favorite Pico-8 games, and gets regular play. :)

P#28479 2016-09-13 20:19 ( Edited 2016-09-14 00:19)

I haven't found any errors myself, minju, I'm having difficulty getting past level 2. The concept of carrying your HITS as an item is a novel one and one I had planned years ago back in QBasic.

The problem now that I see it in action is, they get munched up pretty hard by opponents.

You could do what I had planned. When you were attacked, one RANDOM item from your inventory is hit. It could be your weapon, your armor, or your starting out at 3 HEARTS.

If your heart was hit, it gets stunned. It heals over time. If it is hit AGAIN, then it is damaged and must use a potion, level up, or some other method to recover it. No heart is ever removed once it is gained but if all your hearts are damaged, you faint and appear at the level just before you touched stairs.

By the opponent choosing a random 'item' each time, the more items the player had, the better their chances of survival. Naturally if they hit the player's weapon twice, the player is out of a weapon and must find another.

Different weapons had different abilities.

  • Dagger, quick, you always get initiative, but low damage.

  • Sword, slow, opponent hits first, but double damage.

  • Spear, you can hit from two spaces away for normal damage. Critters however could also do attacks from a distance.

  • Normal bow, you can hit from four spaces away, but requires ammo and is low damage.

  • Magic bow, you can hit from eight spaces away, has infinite ammo, and damage is same as sword.

Naturally the magic bow was the best weapon but could only be found on the bottom level of the dungeon.

Some critters had distance attacks. Spew acid or venom. Shriek and create a field of disturbance, or shoot a magic missile at you no matter how far away you were if they were a Wizard.

You had to recover a Life Jewel from the bottom level, then return back up. If you die, instead of you going back up a level, if you are planning to go back up, instead you appear at the next lower level to hinder you.

This is a rough layout of what I had in mind with the game. A type of rogue in itself.

... Also, I haven't found any LIFE or MANA potions on any level despite it being an option to be increased when you find an ANKH.

P#28486 2016-09-14 01:03 ( Edited 2016-09-14 05:16)

too short, very good game

P#42107 2017-06-30 14:02 ( Edited 2017-06-30 18:02)

I got an error when I used the lighting bolt when there was no enemies

P#63557 2019-04-15 23:14

@benjamin_soule when you use the lighting bolt when no enemies are near you get this error and this ankh is impossible to reach

P#122469 2022-12-15 14:29 ( Edited 2022-12-15 14:33)

Hi @benjamin_soule:

I am taking another crack at this. I will tell you now when you die you do not get a score, just an option to restart.

Could you please have some type of score appear based upon your existing items, the number of monsters you defeated, and the number of stairs you have crossed ?

Thanks !

Also I didn't give you a gold star earlier for this superb Rogue. I am doing so now.

P#122482 2022-12-15 17:58 ( Edited 2022-12-15 17:59)

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