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the fire is dead. the room is cold.
June 14, 2013 8:33 AM   Subscribe

A Dark Room

Just an interesting web game, somewhat similar Candy Box. The less I say about it the better your experience with it will be.
posted by cirrostratus (117 comments total) 44 users marked this as a favorite

 
Didn't expect to like let alone play this but I do!
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:55 AM on June 14, 2013


Fuck you straight to a Chuck Norrisy Hell. I was just getting over my Candy Box addiction.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:55 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


The inflation is terrible!
posted by goethean at 9:04 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


One of the newcomers proposes building a Dyson Sphere to retain the sun's heat.

-Requires 800 Quintillion Wood, 450 Quadrillion Meat

The noises in the distance are nearly deafening at this point.
posted by Smart Dalek at 9:05 AM on June 14, 2013 [14 favorites]


I was just getting over my Candy Box addiction.

WHY DID YOU SAY THAT
posted by shakespeherian at 9:09 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is this by the same person who made Candy Box?
posted by macrael at 9:09 AM on June 14, 2013


Is this by the same person who made Candy Box?

I don't think so, they're both hosted at different websites.
posted by cirrostratus at 9:20 AM on June 14, 2013


What happens if you let the fire go out?
posted by Iridic at 9:24 AM on June 14, 2013


always on a friday do you post these goddamn things. I HAD THINGS TO DO.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 9:36 AM on June 14, 2013


also this is pretty cool.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 9:37 AM on June 14, 2013


It took me a few minutes to figure this out, but you don't have to wait for a meter to finish unfilling to leave an area.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 9:40 AM on June 14, 2013


SO MUCH MEAT
posted by charred husk at 9:44 AM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


[SPOILER ALERT]

Ewwww, teeth. Also: awesome, teeth!
posted by Elsa at 9:45 AM on June 14, 2013


My tanners are totally slacking. It's definitely Friday.
posted by Elly Vortex at 9:47 AM on June 14, 2013


Why do I love these things? And why can't I build a second cart?
posted by Mister_A at 9:49 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


No really, what do I need to do to get my tanners to make more leather? Give them healthcare and dental benefits? A coffeemaker in the staff room? What?
posted by Elly Vortex at 9:50 AM on June 14, 2013


I think you need to get them to make you a whip to whip them with.
posted by Mister_A at 9:52 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


Why is it that the vendors only show up when I'm broke.
posted by sparklemotion at 9:56 AM on June 14, 2013


10 Hunters for every tanner if you want to keep a balance.
posted by charred husk at 9:57 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Games like this make me realize just how much I love progress bars.
posted by backseatpilot at 9:59 AM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


A Dark Room

Just an interesting web game


Will there be . . . grues?
 
posted by Herodios at 10:01 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Games like this make me realize just how much I love progress bars.

Ever play Progress Quest?
posted by suedehead at 10:01 AM on June 14, 2013


[SPOILER]

There's more to the dusty path than breaking and entering.
posted by charred husk at 10:16 AM on June 14, 2013


A monster ate 8 villagers, but moments later seven came back.
posted by Mister_A at 10:26 AM on June 14, 2013


I'm trying to teach myself Python, and I suck, and people keep saying "find yourself a project! Then you will learn a lot faster."

The projects I've tried so far have all sucked as well.

Would a game like this be accomplishable for a newbie programmer with a poorly functioning logic-brain? Could this be a good learn-Python project?
posted by Shepherd at 10:31 AM on June 14, 2013


Wow, I really need monster repellent - or tougher villagers.
posted by Mister_A at 10:32 AM on June 14, 2013


Would a game like this be accomplishable for a newbie programmer with a poorly functioning logic-brain? Could this be a good learn-Python project?

No, but this would be a great project to learn javascript with. You could do the whole thing client-side and not have to worry about a DB or anything more complicated than JS.
posted by thsmchnekllsfascists at 10:37 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I can't find a pause button.
posted by talitha_kumi at 10:38 AM on June 14, 2013


iron and steel? gonna take forever to build those up.
posted by sineater at 10:38 AM on June 14, 2013


talitha_kumi:
I can't find a pause button.
I think the designer saw Candy Box and thought, "Hmm. What's the challenge if you can just walk away and let it run over night? Let's have a fire they have to keep stoking..."

As for pause, the game saves automatically very frequently, like a few times a minute.
posted by charred husk at 10:40 AM on June 14, 2013


talitha_kumi: I can't find a pause button.

It autosaves to (I'm guessing) a cookie of some kind. You can just close the tab and pick up again later. YMMV if you have non-standard cookie/cache behavior.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:40 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Forget this division of labor nonsense. EVERYBODY'S on wood gathering duty.

All except you, Builder. You're gonna be making huts like a quarterback.
posted by Iridic at 10:41 AM on June 14, 2013 [8 favorites]


It'd be nice to be able to pause the game so I can go put the kettle on in the knowledge that when I come back no time will have passed so my villagers wont all have starved to death because I wasn't reminding them to check the traps.
posted by talitha_kumi at 10:42 AM on June 14, 2013


Oops. This is a TOTAL CHEAT, but

-- CHEAT CHEAT CHEAT --

If you refresh the page, you can go to "A Large Village" and click on "gather wood" and "check traps", get the 50 wood and 10 (?) fur. If you refresh again, those buttons will be immediately clickable. You can thus continue refreshing and clicking to get a few hundred wood in half a minute.

-- END CHEAT CHEAT CHEAT --
posted by suedehead at 10:44 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Would a game like this be accomplishable for a newbie programmer with a poorly functioning logic-brain?

Yes!

Well, kind of like this.

Start with a command line game that works something like this:

- Every ten seconds it tells you your count of goldmines, dollars, axes, and wood, and asks what you want to do.
- Your choices are to either buy a goldmine or buy an axe.
- You start with one goldmine.
- Every ten seconds you get one dollar for each goldmine.
- For five dollars you can buy an axe.
- Every ten seconds you get one wood for each axe.
- For ten wood you can build a goldmine.

Is that enough like this to be interesting? It will be an achievable amount to bite off, and get you to the point where it's a fun game (I mean, to the extent you enjoy the genre). And then, well, keep making it fancier and you'll keep learning.

(This is how I learned Python and Django, incidentally. Although I had already done a bunch of programming in other languages.)
posted by jhc at 10:46 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


(thsmchnekllsfascists is right that if you want to be able to put your new game online in a browser, doing it in Javascript within a single webpage would be the easiest way. But as a learning project, I would dive into it with whatever language is easiest for you.)
posted by jhc at 10:49 AM on June 14, 2013


iron and steel? gonna take forever to build those up.

Buying resources is inefficient.
posted by sparklemotion at 10:52 AM on June 14, 2013


Uh oh, I have unwittingly established A Raucous Village. My many viewings of It's A Wonderful Life persuade me that this is a moral failure on my part. I am forlorn.
posted by Elsa at 11:03 AM on June 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'm now trying to save up enough furs to buy a compass, in the faint hope that it will be a moral compass.
posted by Elsa at 11:04 AM on June 14, 2013 [5 favorites]


Elsa:
I'm now trying to save up enough furs to buy a compass, in the faint hope that it will be a moral compass.
The compass will lead you to breaking and entering mixed with random murder. So, no.
posted by charred husk at 11:10 AM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


BUT MY DREAMS OF A PEACEFUL UTOPIAN VILLAGE! OH NOES.
posted by Elsa at 11:14 AM on June 14, 2013


No, but this would be a great project to learn javascript with. You could do the whole thing client-side and not have to worry about a DB or anything more complicated than JS.

There's, uh, even a book for this. And it's even in CoffeeScript, which is prettier JavaScript.
posted by Nomyte at 11:15 AM on June 14, 2013


Ok, that took drastic turn from hunter/gather stuff once you hit open dusty path. How far does this rabbit hole go? Is this really another Candy Box, but one you can't leave running overnight? Or save for use on different machines?
posted by jeribus at 11:22 AM on June 14, 2013


Is this really another Candy Box, but one you can't leave running overnight?

You know, you actually can totally leave it running over night. The builder keeps the fire going I think. I accidentally did this with a poorly thought out labor division and ended up with like 10000 leather and 0 everything else.
posted by cirrostratus at 11:43 AM on June 14, 2013


Sadly you can't save it for use on different machines though.
posted by cirrostratus at 11:43 AM on June 14, 2013


Alien alloy? This is getting weird.
posted by charred husk at 11:45 AM on June 14, 2013


Where the heck do you get coal from? :(
posted by saturday_morning at 11:46 AM on June 14, 2013


150 fur for 1 scale?

Fuck you, trader.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:48 AM on June 14, 2013 [3 favorites]


[SPOILERS throughout this comment. Also, I am the grossest, starting NOW.]

Sooooo... if the traps are yielding tatters of cloth along with the meat, fut, and teeth, doesn't that suggest that we're trapping humans or other sentient creatures? And then, y'know, curing and eating that meat?

Yet when the trekking party on the dusty path STABSTABSTABS the gaunt man with the crazed look in his eye, we aren't given the option to collect the meat along with the teeth and cloth, even though we are given that option with the unidentified beast. Does that mean it's okay to be unwitting cannibals but not knowing cannibals? That it's fine to eat unidentified beast-meat and unidentified bits of once-clothed meat, but not known-to-be-human meat?
posted by Elsa at 11:48 AM on June 14, 2013


this is so LOOOOONNNNGGG

just waiting for the master or the scout to swing by again. I have your damn fur and cured meats now!
posted by leotrotsky at 11:48 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


saturday_morning:
Where the heck do you get coal from? :(
If you're exploring the dusty road you eventually fine an iron mine and a coal mine. Just keep exploring.
posted by charred husk at 11:48 AM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yeah traps producing cloth is a bit... unseemly.
posted by Mister_A at 11:51 AM on June 14, 2013


The first time I played this, I used an incompatible browser, so the game almost worked but did not work. But I knew it was like candybox so I figured I just needed to be patient. I spent like 4 hrs stoking the fire you guys.
posted by prefpara at 11:52 AM on June 14, 2013 [7 favorites]


Is that an euphemism, prefpara?
posted by Mister_A at 11:53 AM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Sadly, no.
posted by prefpara at 11:53 AM on June 14, 2013 [4 favorites]


Another thing that will probably be helpful to know for some of you (I've been playing for hours and only now realized it): You can dual wield. Each weapon has its own cooldown so you can basically attack twice as fast.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 12:39 PM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


You can dual wield.

WAT
posted by komara at 12:41 PM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


Actually, no: triple. Maybe more. I don't know.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 12:41 PM on June 14, 2013


I'm carrying a steel sword, an iron sword and a rifle and I can use each one with its own cooldown. So three attacks by the time most enemies have gotten off one. This...changes thing.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 12:42 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Quadruple even.
posted by Mercaptan at 12:42 PM on June 14, 2013


Yeah. I'm now finding that it has to be different weapons - you can't do it with two irons but you can do it with an iron and a steel, et cetera.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 12:44 PM on June 14, 2013


Anyone have a clue where the save is done so that it can be transported between browsers / computers?
posted by komara at 12:44 PM on June 14, 2013


The cue to do more exploring is when you run out of stuff to make.
posted by charred husk at 12:55 PM on June 14, 2013


I just robbed a shop owner, cut down a frail man, and murdered a traveling youth.

Something tells me I'm not the good guy in this story.
posted by backseatpilot at 1:06 PM on June 14, 2013 [2 favorites]


backseatpilot:
Something tells me I'm not the good guy in this story.
It took a while for me to figure out this was post-apocalyptic. More of the setting is revealed as you go.
posted by charred husk at 1:11 PM on June 14, 2013


Something else I noticed - it also never says you're human. Or, for that matter, that anyone is.
posted by wanderingmind at 1:20 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Something else I noticed - it also never says you're human. Or, for that matter, that anyone is.

Yeah, I just stumbled upon the alien alloy and realized that there is a lot more scope to this game than I originally assumed.
posted by Elsa at 1:21 PM on June 14, 2013


That would also explain why you can get scales off of a killed bird.
posted by komara at 1:27 PM on June 14, 2013


There's actually quite a bit of strategy to the exploration part. You have to establish safe havens to replenish your food and water at by conquering cities and suburbs so that you can venture farther out and not starve before returning.
posted by charred husk at 1:28 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


I seem to have hit an exploration plateau - I've gotten some alien alloy, but can't build anything with it yet. Everything else in my home village is maxed out - traps, huts, etc - nothing left to build there (I've actually got *thieves* leeching off my wood reserves). I'm able to clear out houses and suburbs on the map, but cities and/or the military base just murders the hell out of me (bullets hitting for upwards of 15 hp, ratswarms with 60hp hitting me 8 times a second). Is there something I'm supposed to do with the alloy to get to the next tier of survivability?
posted by FatherDagon at 1:34 PM on June 14, 2013


Just took the sulfur mine and the military counter attacked and killed 15 of my peeps. Things just got REAL.
posted by charred husk at 1:34 PM on June 14, 2013


I've gotten some alien alloy, but can't build anything with it yet.

Hold on to that, you'll need it.

As for the exploration plateau, once you've got the best gear you can make from the iron, coal, and sulfer mines and are carrying multiple weapons you'll be much better at surviving.
posted by cirrostratus at 1:38 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


cirrostratus:
Hold on to that, you'll need it.
OMG you're not kidding. OMG.
posted by charred husk at 1:45 PM on June 14, 2013


My hand hurts from so much clicking. OMG. OW

clickclickclick
posted by Admiral Haddock at 1:56 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


must quit. will not otherwise go home.
posted by leotrotsky at 1:58 PM on June 14, 2013


By the way, if you want to bring this home with you, you can probably copy your game state from one machine to another. In Chrome, right-click, choose Inspect Element, click Resources -> Local Storage, and copy the value for gameState. You should then be able to do the same thing on another machine and restore your current game -- although it might be tricky to edit the value and refresh quickly enough so it gets loaded.
posted by jhc at 2:15 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Augh! I lost my scavenged rifle. That's bad news.
posted by painquale at 2:16 PM on June 14, 2013


Go home, or take advantage of the newest menu option... that is the question.
posted by sparklemotion at 2:19 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh...so for those of you who think that you might be passing a point of no return.... don't worry, you get a second chance.
posted by sparklemotion at 2:24 PM on June 14, 2013 [1 favorite]


you can probably copy your game state from one machine to another. In Chrome ...

This totally worked, so thank you. It was easier than expected - at the beginning of the game it's not refreshing every few seconds so pasting and confirming the changes worked a champ.
posted by komara at 3:16 PM on June 14, 2013


I went zoom and then I ended up back at the beginning? All right, but I don't think I want to start stoking the fire again.
posted by little cow make small moo at 4:27 PM on June 14, 2013


Finito! I was hoping for it to keep continuing, but perhaps it's for the best that it didn't.
posted by painquale at 5:54 PM on June 14, 2013


Wow, I am so bad at exploring.
posted by rollbiz at 7:10 PM on June 14, 2013


Finally done. I'm wondering if all of my villagers got left behind.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 7:15 PM on June 14, 2013


That was really well done; I got to the end point and was amused when I wasn't anymore.

Really nice iteration on Candy Box!
posted by caphector at 8:17 PM on June 14, 2013


I love the Oregon Trail quality of the ending.
posted by thesmallmachine at 1:14 AM on June 15, 2013


I am not a game player. Hower years ago I enjoyed tose escaping from room type games.
I am not particularily dextrous so speed coordination shoot em ups leave me cold.
This seemed promising but not really ''grokking'' what I was up to frustrated me. i spent hours tryong to build up my piles of wood / fur to get other stuff and after an hour of clicking everywhere got bored and went to bed.
Does anyone want to take my hand and try and explain to an aged game novice what I am supposed to be doing?
posted by adamvasco at 1:21 AM on June 15, 2013


i spent hours tryong to build up my piles of wood / fur to get other stuff

That's pretty much the point. You add on a more exploratory/combat mode once you have obtained the right items, but patient resource management is still a main component. These types of games are certainly not for everyone.
posted by Rock Steady at 4:44 AM on June 15, 2013


do you need to continually keep stoking the fire? it doesnt really seem to have an effect on anything
posted by fuzzypantalones at 7:12 AM on June 15, 2013


Every once in a while you'll get a message saying that the room is warm; stoking the fire seems to get it hot again. I don't know what happens if the room gets cold again; I assume all the villagers leave.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 7:27 AM on June 15, 2013


I don't think anything happens if you don't stoke the fire. I left it running overnight, and it says, "Builder stokes the fire" if you're not there.
posted by sneebler at 8:13 AM on June 15, 2013


I cannot for the life of me find the coal mine.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:19 AM on June 15, 2013


adamvasco: You've got to get enough villagers that they can keep gathering wood and checking traps. Make all the stuff that Builder suggests you should. Once you can make a couple of those things, the game opens up into something new. I guess I don't want to give spoilers, but it's pretty cool. It turns into a type of game that I am often frustrated with, but having the Village to go back to makes that kind of game a lot, lot, lot more fun.
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 8:25 AM on June 15, 2013


Well now that the alfabet thread has risen to the most commented post Evar I guess can waste my time a little more on this later this evening. Thanks for the indications.
posted by adamvasco at 8:48 AM on June 15, 2013


Oh holy shit motherfuck.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:24 AM on June 15, 2013 [2 favorites]


Is there a way to make the map scroll down? I walk towards the bottom and eventually disappear...
posted by Scattercat at 9:37 AM on June 15, 2013


Scattercat: not that I know of - it's a fault on part of the game's designer not to realize that some people's screens (like my laptop, for example) would not be tall enough to see to the bottom.
posted by komara at 10:32 AM on June 15, 2013


I had to make Firefox go fullscreen to see the whole map.
posted by painquale at 11:43 AM on June 15, 2013 [1 favorite]


I have a question:

###BEGIN SPOILER###

Does anybody know what the energy cells does?

###END SPOILER###
posted by tickingclock at 11:59 AM on June 15, 2013


tickingclock:
###BEGIN SPOILER###

Does anybody know what the energy cells does?

###END SPOILER###
###BEGIN SPOILER###

You eventually find laser rifles.

###END SPOILER###
posted by charred husk at 12:01 PM on June 15, 2013 [1 favorite]



SPOILERS ******************************

Oh guys I'm so disappointed :( :( I was doing super well - I had the armory and all the mines maxed out, I had built everything, I had tons of resources, and I had upgraded the alien ship to the max. I was just stuck on exploring the southwest corner of the map, and I was having trouble - the world kept "fading out" even when I didn't run out of water or meat, and I wasn't killed. I decided to fly the spaceship, and it took me in to the exosphere and then the game ended. What was in the southwest corner of the map? And what about the laser rifles? I had energy cells but I never found the laser rifles.
posted by Cygnet at 6:11 PM on June 15, 2013


Cygnet: the map is apparently procedurally generated so none of us have had the same one as you, and I can't tell you what was in the corner. You probably didn't miss anything grand. For example, I found one (and only one) bayonet once. It might have been something that insignificant. As for the fading out, I couldn't say. Probably just a glitch.
posted by komara at 6:23 PM on June 15, 2013


komara: Well, that makes me feel better. I had loads of bayonets, somehow...
posted by Cygnet at 6:26 PM on June 15, 2013


So uh I actually didn't sleep because I was playing this.

MeFi you are a bad influence.
posted by solarion at 5:21 AM on June 16, 2013 [1 favorite]


The conclusion was satisfying, but I am a bit sad that it's over. Neat!
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 8:28 PM on June 16, 2013


Very satisfying indeed.
posted by mrgroweler at 5:59 AM on June 17, 2013


Also, I must register my dissatisfaction that there were no Dyson spheres as advertised.
posted by solarion at 6:55 AM on June 17, 2013 [1 favorite]


Okay, I'm slow. Why can't I build any more huts? I'm stuck at A Raucous Village, and can't get it to large.

Also, how the heck to make steel, instead of simply finding it?
posted by jrochest at 12:20 AM on June 18, 2013


And where the hey did all my cured meat go? I have Charcutiers out the ying-yang.
posted by jrochest at 12:26 AM on June 18, 2013


-Raucous is actually the largest possible village size -- I passed through "large" on the way there.

-You make steel by finding iron and coal, and then there'll be a "steelworker" villager option that comes up once the mines are both running.

-Your miners are probably using up all the cured meat.

-It is 12:36 a.m.

-I am playing the game again

-The fire is roaring

-The room is hot
posted by thesmallmachine at 12:38 AM on June 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


And where the hey did all my cured meat go?

You can hover over any item in your inventory and see who's producing and who's consuming.
posted by komara at 9:41 AM on June 18, 2013


some stuff from the creator:
posted by jeribus at 2:20 PM on June 18, 2013


And where the hey did all my cured meat go?

> You can hover over any item in your inventory and see who's producing and who's consuming.


And even when you have your ratios of resources-to-tasks balanced, stocks will occasionally diminish unexpectedly because [SPOILER] someone is stealing from the storeroom.
posted by Elsa at 2:47 PM on June 18, 2013


After coming back to it off-and-on for the last few days, I finally won the game. Most addicting game ever.

I WANT MORE.
posted by Elly Vortex at 8:27 AM on June 20, 2013


I love the way the game quietly, gradually unfurls the world and backstory.
posted by doctornemo at 2:11 PM on June 30, 2013


So glad I finally finished this game...it was killing my productivity.

Like the nice little hints about the nature of the protagonist throughout the adventure. If you read closely, the story provides some hints about why you're able to wield multiple weapons at once. :-)
posted by lord_wolf at 1:21 PM on July 3, 2013


For those interested in cheating, run this in your Javascript console:
$.each(State.stores, function(e,i) { State.stores[e] = 100000; })
(from the reddit thread about this game)
posted by cyberscythe at 3:30 PM on July 3, 2013


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