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Cart [#46170#] | Copy | Code | 2017-11-11 | Link

Dylan Burke is finishing the job his father failed to complete on LV-426. He must be stopped.

Explore planets and collect 12 alien eggs before Burke can get to them.

Sound and headphones are recommended for the best experience


Player manual. Complete with hints and tips!

Browser gamepad support is availble through Itch.io:

Keyboard controls

  • Arrows, Move character
  • Z, Map / Continue
  • X, Use weapon



What people are saying...

"I nearly jumped outta my seat when it chased me..." - @liquidream

"Yeah, headphones are a must" - @enargy

"Hats off to you for bringing that element into your games. Brilliant." - @beetleinthebox

"The game is cool!" - @pineconegraphic

"That's some cute manual action!" - @rtrntospielburg

"You’ve found a really nice style in this one." - @johanpeitz

"Are you still making that damn game?" - @barneysangels


This game has been a long time coming. I started it back in June and worked on it for about a month. Then I hit a wall and got distracted by other stuff...it sat on the shelf. I came back to it after a couple months and finally finished it up. Very happy I did.

The idea got seeded when I read an article in Retro Gamer about the Sega SG-1000 and the game "Girl's Garden". In it you're a girl that has to collect flowers while avoiding bears to keep her boyfriend happy. Somehow that got me thinking about applying that model to an Aliens motif...and I had just so happened to find a spritesheet rip of Rebelstar from the ZX Spectrum that had alien characters in it. I took those and started designing around that.

Prior to this, most of my Pico-8 games have been arcade shooters, so making a maze/map game was new to me (especially one with a story). It was nice to try something different and I learned a lot. I'm not sure I'll try to make another one...while rewarding, this experience was exhausting. I'll just have to spread out my efforts when it comes to this genre.

What I think made the most difference with this game was that I came back to it after some time away. It felt good coming back to something that was a) half done and b) still familiar enough code to dive back into without a lot of re-learning. Plus I could look at it with fresh eyes to determine if it was worth finishing. It held up well and I was motivated to get it done.

But man...the last 10% of development is killer. For one, I hadn't quite figured out the last act and then when I did, Pico-8 compression limits came around and tried to crush my dreams. To combat that, I simply started over...kinda. I opened a blank cart and copied over code chunks one-by-one, inspecting and refactoring each one as I went. I had to trim some design fat but in the end that had little impact on the gameplay and that's what matters. All that effort paid off and I got in under the limits with a solid game.

Since this game has an actual ending, I kept playing and I kept failing to win. Usually that's a sign of the balance being off but this time it was just a good solid challenge. By design or by luck, the game trade-offs worked out wonderfully. The game isn't easy but not too difficult. It never feels overly unfair and has some wonderful emotional impact as well. Even with insider knowledge, it took me quite a while to win but only after plenty of "just one more time" moments.

Thanks to everyone that helped along the way, whether on Twitter on here in the forum...all of it made a difference.

Please see the manual for more credits, acknowledgements and original source material

Super thanks to @pineconegraphic for the character animations
Awesome thanks to @gnarcade_vgm for the original music

Some lessons learned:

  • Use shorter variable names
  • Using the pair() loop is better than the all() loop
  • Large arrays are bad
  • Story text is troublesome, as are long strings in general
  • Code comments seem to count toward compression limits, remove them
  • I need to figure out how to get more use out of tile maps
  • I need to learn more about memory functions
  • Pathfinding is difficult and taxing
  • Aliens chasing you is terrifying, even when they're 16x16 sprites

Please report any crashes you experience.

If you have any questions about how this game was made or what was used, please don't hesitate to ask.

P#45162 2017-10-12 21:46 ( Edited 2018-02-17 00:21)


Cart [#44332#] | Copy | Code | 2017-09-18 | Link

New York City is being overrun by ghosts! Who you gonna call?

Take control of your favorite Ghostbuster and try to stop the onslaught of Slimers through 5 frantic levels of arcade action. Choose from Abby, Erin, Patty and Holtzmann. And if you're good enough, you might just unlock a few of your old Ghostbuster friends too. Good luck!

Keyboard controls:

  • Use Z to fire your proton beam
  • Use X to throw a trap
  • Up/Down arrows switch levels

Stop the Slimers from reaching the city. Use your proton beam to bust ghosts and destroy the mirror portals. Your slime meter will fill as ghosts get by you. If your slime meter gets full, it's game over. And watch out...you don't want your proton pack to overheat!

You have unlimitd traps but can only throw one trap at a time, so manage your need wisely. And keep an eye out for the Stay Puft marshmallow man...it means the city is almost filled with slime.


About this game:
My 5-year-old daughter loves Ghostbusters and while she's not really into video games just yet, I decided to make her a Ghostbusters game to maybe nudge her along a little bit. She's seen all the movies but likes the new Ghostbusters the most, so this game features the lady Ghostbusters...but don't worry, you can unlock Peter and the gang...just keep bustin'!

All in all, it's a simple game...basically Tapper with Ghostbusters. It's not that difficult but I pretty much made with my kid in mind. It'll be a tough challenge for her but for us "experienced" gamers it'll be a fun but brief playthrough.

Feedback and bug reports are welcome and encouraged. Thanks to everyone that helped in development. Brian Follick for turning the Ghostbusters theme into a Pico-8 track. @BeetleInTheBox for the extra graphics in short notice. And the great Pico-8 community for the support, snippets and encouragement to actually finish a game...thanks!

P#44296 2017-09-17 21:39 ( Edited 2017-10-28 12:04)


Cart [#32425#] | Copy | Code | 2016-11-12 | Link

How far can you make it inside bullet cave?

1) Don't let enemies pass you or spikes will grow from behind
2) Shooting (Z) enemies grows the cave; avoid the walls
3) Use your freeze power (X) to invert enemies and make the cave shrink
4) Collect power-ups to change your weapon and gain freeze power

Can you unlock all 20 items? 10 themes and 10 character ships available


  • Ship designs from @guerragames @qbicfeet @westfellapps @joshmillard @pixelartm
  • Original music by Brian Follick, @Gnarcade_VGM
  • 6 weapons of destruction
  • 20 unlockables

Plays great on the PocketCHIP too, just search for "bullet cave" in Splore.

Please report any bugs in a reply or message @morningtoast on Twitter.

P#32426 2016-11-12 23:31 ( Edited 2018-04-18 03:32)


Cart [#29313#] | Copy | Code | 2016-09-24 | Link

Cart [#29204#] | Copy | Code | 2016-09-23 | Link
Cart [#29213#] | Copy | Code | 2016-09-23 | Link

This is one that only PocketCHIP people will be able to test and use.

By chance, I discovered that the mouse click (touchscreen) detection in Pico-8 looks at the entire screen on the PocketCHIP, not just the 128x128 viewport of the game.

So while the player will always only see the 128x128 box in the middle of the screen, you can detect when the person touches the screen to the left or right of that 128px box. So by all rights, you can make a Pico-8 game that uses touchscreen controls without requiring the player to touch the game screen area.

The width of the PocketCHIP screen is 480px total, so after some quick napkin math, I figured that there's about 176 pixels on each side. I made 2 collision boxes on either side of the game viewport (so -176 and 128, with a width of 176 and height of 127)

Then just a normal collision script combined with the handy mouse click detection function and boom, you have touch controls for your game.

The cart above just moves the little guy left/right and that's it - just proof of concept. Again, you'll have to try it on your PocketCHIP. This doesn't seem to work with the Pico8 client (at least on Windows)...even if you make your window super wide, it won't register the click.

Here's a YouTube video of it in action (couldn't figure out embedding):

And now that I think about it, I think I might add this little feature to my Invader Overload cart. If you're using the auto-fire option, all you do is move left/right, so with this touch thing, you could play the game without ever having to press a key on the PocketCHIP keyboard.

P#29205 2016-09-23 22:09 ( Edited 2016-09-24 17:50)


Cart [#42220#] | Copy | Code | 2017-07-05 | Link

How to Play
Collect 3 of the same the color power-ups to gain a powerful new weapon.
Shoot the UFO and collect the yellow power-ups to kick off fever mode!
Collect enough fever mode coins to enter a boss battle

This game is endless. Survive as long as you can while chasing a high score.

Left/Right move
Z shoots your gun (hold for auto-fire)

v1.7.2 - Fixed incorrect hitbox on UFO. Minor cleanup.
v1.7.1 - Fixed a crash bug in the background randomizer
v1.7 - Holidays are over...removed snow and Santa. Few minor fixes.
v1.6 - Holiday edition! Added shield powerup. Better manual fire. Boot up credits.
v1.5 - Bug fix for touchscreen added in 1.4
v1.4 - Touch controls for PocketCHIP. Touch sides of screen to move player.
v1.3 - Added auto/manual option for better PocketCHIP play. General cleanup.
v1.2 - Added boss battles between stages plus boss battle music.

About the game

Programmed by Brian Vaughn (@morningtoast)
Music by Brian Follick (@gnarcade_vgm)
Backgrounds from the Pico-8 Community

This cart is less about the game and more about the people that contributed to it. It's tribute game in more ways than one.

First off, it's a tribute to Space Invaders Extreme that originally appeared on the Nintendo DS. It was Space Invaders kicked up a notch with a total sensory overload.

Second, it's a tribute and thank you to all the great little carts coming out of the Pico-8 forum. In particular, Invader Overload uses several of the carts from the TweetJam thread as manic backgrounds. Designs from zep, NuSan, kometbomb and others are included and create one hell of a show.

There were so many cool little demos coming out of the TweetJam thread that I just needed to find a way to use them. I consider Invader Overload a sort of TweetJam jukebox and hopefully we can all expand on it because you can totally add your own background! There's plenty of room left on the cart so give it a try.

This cart also features some great music from Brian Follick, aka, @gnarcade_vgm. He made a great music track specifically for this game along with a few sound effects, and without that collaboration, this game would have fallen completely flat.

shmup arcade invaders
P#26421 2016-08-03 21:44 ( Edited 2017-07-05 23:22)


Cart [#33510#] | Copy | Code | 2016-12-14 | Link

BuzzKill is a classic arcade style shooter. Stop the onslaught of killer bees using your smoke and fireballs.


  • 10 levels of tough, bee-killing action
  • High score saving
  • Unlockable endless mode


  • Arrows move left/right
  • Z shoots fireballs
  • X blows smoke

You must clear all bees, hives and honeycombs to advance levels.

Attacking uses power. The more power you have, the faster your shots. Stop firing to regenerate power. Keep an eye on your power meter.

Blow smoke to freeze honeycombs, slow bees and block shots. You can only shoot honeycombs when they're frozen.

An extra life is awarded when you reach 200 bee kills.

Complete challenge mode to unlock endless mode and see how long you can last.

Thanks to Robby Duguay for making the music and making it available. BuzzKill features 3 tracks from his Pico-8 Jukebox.

Super thanks to the Pico-8 community. BuzzKill was built on top of many code snippets found on the forums, and without those it wouldn't have gotten this far.

And while you're at it, check out my other game carts including Invader Overload and Bullet Cave.

v1.3 - Enemy shots now at variable speed. Boss now awards points. Few extra sounds. Menu options. Added boot credits.

P#25586 2016-07-19 23:02 ( Edited 2016-12-17 14:27)


Cart [#23524#] | Copy | Code | 2016-06-24 | Link

Cart [#23165#] | Copy | Code | 2016-06-18 | Link

Keyboard controls
Move - Arrow keys
Shoot - Z or X

My first Pico-8 game following the Game Jam...another shooter, and a very basic side-scrolling one. Time limit style to try and get the most points.

This is also a very real "lessons learned" type of game where I took all the things I learned from the jam and applied them here. I also tried to push myself in a few places to get better.

My first goal for this game was to get better and making sprites. My original theme for this was not a flying lumberjack but it turned out that way, so my sprites are squirrels, trees and jet packs...all in all, not too shabby. I at least proved to myself that making my own sprites is not that far off. However, while my art abilities got a shot in the arm, my sound making skill is totally non-existent. No music and the sounds are horrible. If anyone cares to fill in the blanks, please let me know!

Technically, this game was my chance to practice something that wasn't just a bunch of randomness. All the waves, routes and patterns were chosen and defined. I feel I got the concept down but still need to work on architecture to make things efficient...I think I wasted a lot of space/overhead but hey, it's working. I also made use of saving a high score and it's very easy.

I'm happy with this game in that it shows a lot of progress since my last game, Mass 360, for the jam. Hopefully I can take everything here and parlay that into my next game.

Few things I learned for next time:

  • Libraries are great but expensive. I knew this already from my daily job and it still applies here. I used the particle library for the explosions and blood I know it's overkill.

  • Think about bosses and milestones first. I spent a lot of time planning out the waves, patterns and sequences but not a lot of time on the end boss (and it shows). Thing is, by the time I got to the end, I was kind of anxious to get done so I rushed. I was ready to be done so I chose to be and I probably shouldn't have.

  • Splitting sprites into parts is nifty. I was looking sprite sheets from other games and noticed how they would split up their sheets into parts. Like legs moving was it's own sequence, separate from the top half so you could animate them independently.

  • Timers are a bitch. Seems like you need a lot of them...or at least, I needed a lot of them. It feels wrong needing them so much, so I'm probably making them poorly.

  • I can do pixels but not a sound. I have an art background so learning how to paint in pixels is just a matter of time. But poking around with the sound editor is mind-numbing. I'm not a sound/music guy, I'm just not. Boops and beeps for me, so I need to find collaborators for that stuff.

So please give it a play and see how well you can do. It's not a difficult game by any means. Even shooters aren't your bag, give it go.

Any and all feedback is appreciated. Thanks to everyone here for sharing their knowledge. I used snippets from various posts for various things...from timers to particles to large numbers. I really just assembled all these parts into something with flying squirrels.

P#23166 2016-06-18 23:38 ( Edited 2016-07-19 13:07)


Cart [#27319#] | Copy | Code | 2016-08-24 | Link

Cart [#24872#] | Copy | Code | 2016-07-08 | Link

Cart [#21578#] | Copy | Code | 2016-05-28 | Link

This started out as something entirely different but morphed into something pretty personal. It's not the best looking thing and it gets really hectic near the end, even for my shmup tastes, but wanted to get this up sooner than later. I might not return to this before the Jam deadline...hopefully I will.

Arrows - Rotate player
Z - Fire
X - Continue
P - Options menu

Auto-fire is enabled by default. Use the options menu to toggle auto-fire and music.

Feedback is welcomed. I have a short list of things to tweak like better sounds, difficulty balance, level transitions and extras like power-ups but otherwise there is a goal/end so if I'm unable to get anything else done before the deadline, it is a complete game.

Each level is randomly generated within some parameters I set in the code. And shy of the title screen, there are no sprites...not that that's special, just saying. I think it'd be neat to see this game with some actual art behind it.

v1.0.1 - Changed up a few difficult settings to make progression a little better. You start with less time and damage takes away more time.

v1.2 - Several wish list things like sounds, transitions, feedback, etc. Plus lots of code cleanup.

v.13 - Added music, courtesy Brian Follick. Minor cleanup and balancing.

p8jam2 shmup
P#21290 2016-05-24 23:16 ( Edited 2016-08-24 22:21)


Cart [#20318#] | Copy | Code | 2016-05-08 | Link


  • Arrows move you around
  • X will start a new level

This is my first game of sorts. I made it for my preschooler and as a way for me to learn some P8 basics. There's not much to it. Presents release food, then collect all the food until you get them all. There's no end, per se, the collection goal just keeps going up. If this ends up being something she enjoys, I'll add things to it but if nothing else this is a great reference for my future projects.

And thanks to everyone here on the forums...I learned a lot about some the nuances of Lua and it came in handy.

I used the animation function from here:

I copied food sprites from here:

I couldn't find the thread where I got the collision function but thank you!

Once nice experience I had with this program was the refactoring. My first dive into this game was just hacking through new commands and learning. Once I got that to a workable state, I refactored it in about 2 hours to be pretty nicely laid out, IMHO. Still learning where to gain efficiencies but hey, it's a start.

P#20319 2016-05-08 13:59 ( Edited 2016-06-06 22:32)

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