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Hello Folks,
I hope you enjoy my first Pico8 game. I’m really pleased with how it came out and I’ve found Pico8 excellent to use: as a result I think it’s the first of many games I’ve started making that actually gets to something like finished. This is my tribute to the games I grew up on with the 48k ZX Spectrum in the early 80’s, so if you were around at the time you’ll spot quite a few references I hope.


Cart #53768 | 2018-06-24 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | No License

The Legend of Dracenstein!

Destroy either Van Helsing (found in the Cathedral) or Victor Frankenstein (found in the Castle)

Get High Scores by collecting Blood Goblets, Completing Levels Fast or Destroying the hated enemies! 18 Levels (though you’ll likely see around half a dozen on a play through as each screen has two possible exits).

Evade Captain Nemo in the Nautilus!

Sacrifice The Artilleryman to his own washing machine and collect his blood!

Beware the Ossuary!

You have six Franks and six Dracula. Exit levels by using the blue box or brown pool portals (I wanted to make these sparkle a bit to draw attention but ran out of time and tokens)

Arrow Keys to move - movement is based on Pacman/Hungry Horace in that they'll keep moving until you change direction or hit a wall. This enables players to swap between characters while the other is still in motion. A breakable piece of wall can be used as an anchor.

X switches between Frankenstein and Dracula
Frankenstein + Z = Punch doors, open cracks in walls, break crucifixes.
Dracula blows up if he goes near a Crucifix.
Dracula + Z = Teleport through two squares worth of the same material.

Let me know how you get on (and thanks to everyone who offered advice and assistance, and to chowyunbrent for pointing me in the direction of pico8).

Best, Paul @paulxthompson

P#53354 2018-06-07 08:48 ( Edited 2018-08-15 14:06)

I have no idea how to finish the first level.

P#53361 2018-06-07 22:16 ( Edited 2018-06-08 02:16)

Apologies, yes, I'm new to this and what's intuitive or not clearly gets lost when you've been staring at nothing else for a fortnight.

You get out by putting both Frank and Dracula onto the blue circle/pool thing. On all other levels there are two possible exits.

Suggestions welcome!

P#53373 2018-06-08 03:35 ( Edited 2018-06-08 11:02)

Positive : unique game feel !
Negative : unequal difficulty. Hungry Horaces, for example, seems very difficult for a third level.

P#53414 2018-06-09 14:50 ( Edited 2018-06-09 18:50)

Good gameplay - having to think for 2 characters is fun!
Note: I feel the tileset/sprite sheet a little too busy (imho)

Now let's call the "token police"...
Your game uses a very similar way of declaring data as mine - good thing for you as the version below is about 3400 tokens :]

Cart #53437 | 2018-06-10 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | No License

The trick is to convert all your data to json (works well as you use named table attributes) and plug a little json parser.
To edit your data:

  • copy string into a text editor (say VS code)
  • format it as JSON
  • edit & convert into to single-line json (alt-m in VS Code)
  • replace text in pico-8

Note: I fiddled a lit bit with the tileset before fixing the token thing - sorry :[

P#53438 2018-06-10 04:46 ( Edited 2018-06-10 08:47)

Agreed Firefly - the level progression isn't right, I'll work on re-ordering some of them and making the earlier ones a bit easier (and some of the later ones too). Thanks for giving it a go!

P#53451 2018-06-10 11:49 ( Edited 2018-06-10 15:49)

Thanks for the pointers Freds72 - didn't know we could JSON, so that's good. I've never designed low res sprites before now, so figuring out how to use the colour palette for legibility is a steep learning curve for me - thanks for the pointers!

P#53452 2018-06-10 11:50 ( Edited 2018-06-10 15:50)

To be exact, pico doesn’t have native json support (you’ll notice your code has now a little json parser embedded!)

P#53453 2018-06-10 11:59 ( Edited 2018-06-10 15:59)

Updated - some bug fixes, some responses to feedback, implemented freds72 json data compression, most levels easier, a couple harder, persistent high score!

Cart #53768 | 2018-06-24 | Code ▽ | Embed ▽ | No License

P#53769 2018-06-24 14:23 ( Edited 2018-06-24 18:23)

I'm not sure but I think some exits are swapped. Also, just killed Dr. Frankenstein, but didn't win. Did I miss something ?

P#54167 2018-07-14 15:10 ( Edited 2018-07-14 19:10)

in the first panel (tutorial), if you teleport above with dracula, the game crashes

P#55181 2018-08-15 09:54 ( Edited 2018-08-15 13:54)

good game but it's missing a small something to make it great

for example the time tracking for me is not a good thing (I complete the level entirely but I get 0 points cause of time :P)

P#55182 2018-08-15 10:06 ( Edited 2018-08-15 14:06)

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