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Cart #21732 | 2016-05-30 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | No License

ISOHOPES is a puzzle/management/simulation game where you must set up and maintain a chain reaction in a nuclear fission reactor. Try to make as much profit as possible, without having a meltdown.

Fuel rods emit neutrons and heat when struck by slow (white) neutrons, control rods eat neutrons and coolant conducts heat and slows neutrons. Control rods are free, but the rest is going to cost you.

The coolant changes colour as it gains and distributes heat. It will boil away if it gets too hot, so keep an eye on the blue meter to monitor its level. You can check your reactor's highest temperature with the red meter. If that meter maxes out, you will meltdown and lose everything.

You can spark neutrons to ignite your chain reaction using a fuel rod, add or remove coolant with a control rod, and retire when you think you've made all the dosh you can by going to the pump in the top right.

Help and contextual prompts are built in, but music and other levels are not... yet.

Good luck, have fun, and keep splitting those atoms!

P#21737 2016-05-30 02:48 ( Edited 2016-09-20 15:49)

Very well done, I love the idea although I really suck at playing. I can't figure out what kind of patterns would make money, I just go into red a lot. But the concept is awesome, I'd love to know how to play good.

P#21742 2016-05-30 03:06 ( Edited 2016-05-30 07:06)

I realy like the idea of a "physic" simulation that can go wrong and explode. I didn't get how to make a money-making system, but seeing the water heat is prety. Ah and you dollars count wraps around when bellow 32 billions, witch made me think for a while I was doing ok ... but no.

P#21757 2016-05-30 05:04 ( Edited 2016-05-30 09:04)

Thanks for the kind words. It can be quite difficult to get a profit, but since that's the fun of it so I don't want to give it all away. Here are some tips, though: keep making changes during the reaction; if you drain some coolant, neutrons will last longer so their odds of hitting a fuel rod will increase; and think about the problem in terms of probability.

Last of all, don't feel bad if you can't make a profit, and there's no shame in just making the most spectacular explosion you can!

P#21764 2016-05-30 05:55 ( Edited 2016-05-30 09:55)

Cool game. The hardest thing for me was learning how to keep up the reaction after preventing it from melting my reactor down - i.e. getting more neutrons again after I inserted too many control rods. Once I figured out you can calm the reaction by adding coolant, it was pretty easy :).

What did you have in mind for future "levels", as you called them?

P#21766 2016-05-30 06:44 ( Edited 2016-05-30 10:44)

I'm not sure, it's maybe my "design", but the higher the coolant, the higher the resction is going, which is not the expected behaviour, and the lower the coolant the lower the reaction will be

P#21809 2016-05-30 14:12 ( Edited 2016-05-30 18:12)

Thanks Krajzeg, that means a lot. I built it so I could pretty easily have different reactor sizes and properties, I just didn't have the time to expose them.

Godzil that's generally correct. The common reactor design I built Isohopes to simulate uses coolant as not only a heat transferer but a mediator. The role of the mediator in any reactor is to slow the neutrons emitted from reactions so that they can split atoms.

So, provided that there are enough fuel rods that one will be struck in a shorter lifetime, the more mediator, the more reactions.

And since it conducts heat, the higher the the coolant, the faster heat propagates.

This may seem counter intuitive to you, but it's an important safety feature of this design: if it gets too hot, the coolant boils away and that prevents further reactions.

P#21836 2016-05-30 18:59 ( Edited 2016-05-31 00:40)

Nice game - maybe a few screenshots on examples of good designs would help folks get started.

I loved the menu by the way - neat way to add a tutorial.

P#21859 2016-05-31 00:24 ( Edited 2016-05-31 04:24)

Alazoral: Oh ok, make sense! It's just counter intuitive :D

P#21910 2016-05-31 09:41 ( Edited 2016-05-31 13:41)

It took me forever to actually make a profit XD

P#22085 2016-06-02 04:44 ( Edited 2016-06-02 08:44)

This game could use some mouse support!

P#22478 2016-06-07 22:54 ( Edited 2016-06-08 02:54)


I managed to find two designs that are profitable and that I can semi-control :) I like the theme and love the mechanics - the counter intuitive thing that you can simply drain the coolant to stop electrons from getting white and actually reacting was a nice thing to discover after a few play sessions :)

P#22627 2016-06-10 17:54 ( Edited 2016-06-10 21:54)

Super interesting game. I included it in my Pico-8 Jam #2 compilation video series, if you’d like to take a look :)

P#23229 2016-06-19 14:42 ( Edited 2016-06-19 18:42)

Thanks so much Pricemarioone, Elven and Jupiter, your comments mean a lot to me. :) I will have to come back and add some features and stuff once the real world lets me.

P#23351 2016-06-21 02:09 ( Edited 2016-06-21 06:17)

http://i.imgur.com/XLphszm.gif I got a stable design. As of $8,000mil I've only added coolant to it once.

P#25031 2016-07-10 07:06 ( Edited 2016-07-10 11:06)

I really like this! I want to try all the combinations to get out of those negatives! It did take a playthrough to get what was happening but I picked it up. Thanks for putting in the work!

P#25078 2016-07-11 00:29 ( Edited 2016-07-11 04:29)

This game has some high expectations. It tells you to manage a nuclear reactor and then when you have a meltdown it calls you an idiot.

I was making some good money for a while though. :L

P#25202 2016-07-12 17:50 ( Edited 2016-07-12 21:50)

I'm finding this strangely addictive.. 820.342 Million

P#26857 2016-08-13 15:23 ( Edited 2016-08-13 19:23)

Well, I tried several designs and only blew up once, but never made money.

Lots of fun though, thank you! :D

P#28843 2016-09-19 23:46 ( Edited 2016-09-20 03:46)

less coolant: more particles
more coolant: less coolant
zero coolant: particles will zero after hitting controll rods but no money is made

P#28871 2016-09-20 11:49 ( Edited 2016-09-20 15:49)

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