DINK GADINK ABINK GADOONK GADOONKA September 29, 2011 12:15 PM   Subscribe

FaveRunner: The Video Game Of Missing The Point Of Metafilter, by ye olde Cortex.

It got axed on the blue, but I hope it's okay here. Too fun not to share.
posted by cashman to MetaFilter-Related at 12:15 PM (87 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite

Yeah cortex was debating where to put it since it's so clearly a sitewide thing but I was all "Really? You're going to make a post about anything favorite related to MeTa? I KILL YOU" and so this was the compromise. It sure is fun, isn't it?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:17 PM on September 29, 2011 [10 favorites]


Those fucking ghost flags are killing me.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:19 PM on September 29, 2011


If Cortex were just to call them "bookmarks" and make them invisible, we wouldn't have to chase after them like this.

Admittedly, that would not make as fun a game.

Can you do a MeFi version of Blobbo? I loved Blobbo.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 12:25 PM on September 29, 2011


Ugh, that's awful wait I mean brilliant oh please not again with the timeout
posted by item at 12:29 PM on September 29, 2011


Can you do a MeFi version of Blobbo?

Sorry, but obesity threads never go over well.
posted by item at 12:30 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Can you do a MeFi version of Blobbo? I loved Blobbo.

I don't remember Blobbo, but I got this idea the other day for a game where you'd actually be running around in a crude, pixely rendition of an actual thread, picking up letters out of comments to spell words that would activate various abilities while bad guys were manifesting by causing the letters spelling their names to glow red and coalesce. But that's a lot more ambitious than "make little guy hop", so who knows.

This was really mostly practice for putting together games for an unrelated project in the future, but it was run to make. By the time I was done putting it together, I found myself wishing I'd used a more elaborate map format so I could give more of the flavors some subtle mefi flavor, but I figured it was better to just get it done and move on to the next thing. There's a pretty great pony level once you get to Metatalk world, though.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:33 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


jessamyn: "I KILL YOU""

In which Jessamyn channels Achmed.
posted by IndigoRain at 12:34 PM on September 29, 2011


On a more serious note, the Projects page is inconsistent. The main Projects page shows it as posted to the blue, whereas the page for the project doesn't have the "This project was posted to MetaFilter by" box. I can see the benefit of retaining the highlighting despite the deletion (presumably it reduces the chance of serial posting & deleting), but the inconsistency appears to be a small bug.
posted by jedicus at 12:43 PM on September 29, 2011


1. Great jorb!
2. There should be a dark version of your avatar who mimics your movements and is an immediate death. That shadow character should be call "Self Link".
posted by 2bucksplus at 12:44 PM on September 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Man do I suck at video games. That aside, faverunner is completely adorable. Thanks!
posted by 8dot3 at 12:53 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm waiting for FlaveRunner. You collect clocks and try to avoid Tiffany "New York" Pollard.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:53 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


I look forward to the how to get rid of a dead body level where you can get 771 favorites all at once.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 12:59 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


something something BRAD PITT something something
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:02 PM on September 29, 2011


look forward to the how to get rid of a dead body level

That sounds like a prime candidate for the next Interactive Fiction event, actually.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:02 PM on September 29, 2011


I assume that it is totally OK to post pony requests for game upgrades to the gray on a near-daily basis.
posted by double block and bleed at 1:19 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Blobbo! I still love you, Blobbo.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 1:26 PM on September 29, 2011


FlaveRunner 2: Avoid the poop on the floor and fight Shaq for the love of Nicole "Hoopz" Alexander.
posted by SpiffyRob at 1:32 PM on September 29, 2011


My banhammering was too traumatic an experience to relive - even in video game form.
posted by Trurl at 1:36 PM on September 29, 2011


Wait, so am I supposed to avoid getting flagged or not? I'm so confused!
posted by The World Famous at 1:39 PM on September 29, 2011


Too funny!
posted by caddis at 1:58 PM on September 29, 2011


Wait -- does holding A down work or not?

(I mean this for this game and for Mario... have I not been getting the joke this whole time?)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:00 PM on September 29, 2011


My god, I've only just picked up the nerve to play Gears of War 3 online - which I suck at - and now you give me this - which I suck at - damn you all to hell. To hell.
posted by Elmore at 2:06 PM on September 29, 2011


'tis fun though.
posted by Elmore at 2:07 PM on September 29, 2011


So I guess this means Cortex doesn't sleep. How else would he have time to make this. So, he must be a vampire-pirate-zombie-ninja thingy...
posted by Elmore at 2:09 PM on September 29, 2011


yo dawg we heard you like gaming the system so we put a game on your system so you could game the system while you game the system
posted by not_on_display at 2:11 PM on September 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


Wait -- does holding A down work or not?

It works the way it worked in Mario: if you get past the first major World, holding A when you start the next game will start you at the first level of whatever world you got to. So in SMB, if you died in world 3-2 and did an A-restart, you'd start in 3-1. If you die in 1-4, you'll restart at 1-1 like starting a brand new game.

In FaveRunner, you can restart at the beginning of the Ask Metafilter or Metatalk levels if you get that far before dying; if you die still in Metafilter, you'll end up back at the start of Metafilter.

Other things about the game that may help to know:

- Only the red flags actually chase you, and they don't do so in any particularly clever way so you can use the terrain against them if you're clever. If they fall off the bottom of the screen, they'll warp back through to the top, so beware that sometimes It's Raining Flagging Flaggerson.

- The green flags and the ghost flags accelerate at random, and your best weapon against them is patience.

- Your flagged count gets reset when you beat a level, so if you see a path to that last + or two that has a flag in the way but you can still take a hit, you can damn the torpedoes and go for it.

- Flags disappear when they hit you, so while avoiding taking hits is obviously the best plan, taking a hit from a red flag might be the best of the bad options in a tight spot since at least you won't have to deal with that guy again for the rest of the level. This is particularly worthwhile on levels that feature only one or two red flags.

- You're invulnerable while flickering—for a few seconds at the start of a level or after you die, and for a couple seconds after you take a hit. You can use this to get through an impossible-looking spot with just a little damage instead of a deadly amount if you're quick about it, since for those brief seconds you can storm through as many flags as you like without getting hurt.

- The position of the flags and the faves in each level is randomized each time you play. Upside: replayability. Downside: levels can be unpredictably easier or harder.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:14 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Why'd you make it so fucking hard?
posted by to sir with millipedes at 2:17 PM on September 29, 2011


'cause he hates us. Who can blame him?
posted by Elmore at 2:19 PM on September 29, 2011 [5 favorites]


Thanks -- I was truly asking, not realizing I'd died right before the first major world ended, and then I was sure that not only did it not work but that the whole Mario A button thing that had shocked me so much the first time I read it here was just a joke, so I felt doubly...maybe triply stupid... beyond the fact that I was pounding away on a spacebar enough to get the attention of everyone three cubicles over.

Fixel looks superneat and I'm going to try to figure out tonight if I'm smart enough for it to be any use -- or at least programming aware enough that I can do it (somewhat) easily.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:32 PM on September 29, 2011


Will MCMikeNamara finally create the Atari 2600 style Doctor Who game that's been in his head since he was 12? Stay tuned.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 2:33 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's fun even though I completely suck at it.
posted by rtha at 2:40 PM on September 29, 2011


- The position of the flags and the faves in each level is randomized each time you play. Upside: replayability. Downside: levels can be unpredictably easier or harder.

Or, in rare circumstances, unwinnable.

posted by Partial Law at 2:40 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Interesting live preview bug I just discovered: If you open italicized text with an [em] tag but close them with a [/i] tag, live preview shows it as closing correctly, but preview and post do not.
posted by Partial Law at 2:43 PM on September 29, 2011


Nice! Can I get actual favs for all the favs I collect? I love my favs like peaches on a hot summer day.
posted by Ad hominem at 2:45 PM on September 29, 2011


GRAARRGH FLOATY GHOST FLAGS HULK SMASH
posted by elizardbits at 2:45 PM on September 29, 2011


I was truly asking, not realizing I'd died right before the first major world ended

Yeah, no, I dig it. I originally gave them just numbered names like "1-1", "1-2", etc. but changed it to injokes, but maybe I'll make them have BOTH, to maybe make it a bit clearer.

Flixel is totally decent, I'm liking it. The one major headache I encountered over the last few days in getting started was that the current Flixel API (the 2.5 branch) is a fairly recent release that significantly alters some of the available methods in the various Flixel objects, and a lot of the existing tutorials people have written were for the previous API version and so just flat out break in various spots. I spent as much time figuring out what had changed from the old version to the new version in decoding tutorials as I did actually digesting the parts of the tutorials that work.

FaveRunner started out as EZPlatformer, with only minimal if any versioning-related headaches, before sort of getting out of hand as I fiddled with various library features and started theming things up. The expressive power of the Flixel for basic 2D gaming objects and mechanics is really neat.

Or, in rare circumstances, unwinnable.

Oh blast and damn, I had found that already after making the Projects post and thought I uploaded a fixed version. Of course, that's no help if you've got the current version running. Sorry about that!

Your best bet is to suicide and restart from Metatalk's starting level, which is a pain but at least means you can make progress again.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:47 PM on September 29, 2011


If you open italicized text with an [em] tag but close them with a [/i] tag, live preview shows it as closing correctly, but preview and post do not.

The same thing happens with strong and b, I think.
posted by jedicus at 2:48 PM on September 29, 2011


The cat butt was amazing.
posted by munchingzombie at 2:58 PM on September 29, 2011


Oh, another fun thing about Flixel and simple platforming mechanics: you can have it create a 2D tile map (that is, literally the graphical tiles that make up the physical space of the level) by feeding it a black-and-white bitmap image. So all of these levels were created as hand-drawn 40*30 images that I just then reference within the game code as my map assets. Makes creating and editing them really easy, though it's also an inherently limited way to go since you can only have two tiles, a solid one and a background one.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:30 PM on September 29, 2011


Can I get a version with a professional white background?
posted by davejay at 3:35 PM on September 29, 2011


Someone clearly hasn't beaten the game yet.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:36 PM on September 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


I've tried the A button trick twice so far and it hasn't worked! Got all the way to MetaTalk, but got dumped back at the start despite holding it right after dying. Are you supposed to wait until the main menu to start pressing A?
posted by Rhaomi at 3:38 PM on September 29, 2011


You hold down A on the title screen and hit space. I cannot vouch for what happens if you start holding down A before you get back to the title screen; I can tell you for sure that pressing and releasing A and then hitting space won't work in any case.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:40 PM on September 29, 2011


Just tested it -- you do have to *start* pressing at the main menu for it to work; holding it the whole time starting from death doesn't do it. It's a little confusing, because when you die you get the "press space for brand new day" message and it's not clear if that's what restarts the game or not. Also, I think the first time I died I tried pressing it at that point, then let go when I saw I was at the menu, then pressed and held it again before starting, and it still sent me to the beginning.

(I love the Moderation Training level, btw. THINK FAST.)
posted by Rhaomi at 3:48 PM on September 29, 2011


That is awesome!
posted by spitbull at 3:49 PM on September 29, 2011


Weird, Rhaomi! The hold-before-hitting-title-screen thing doesn't shock me, I guess, it may be that the keyboard handler's state gets flushed automatically during Flixel's switchState() routine, but I can't think of a reason why it wouldn't work for a key press-and-hold from the actual title screen regardless of what happened before. But it's a new library to me, I'm full of assumptions waiting to be proven wrong at this point.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:53 PM on September 29, 2011


Encountered a bug where a green flag starting location was inside a brick. Doesn't affect gameplay to much, except make it a little easier, maybe.
posted by BurnChao at 4:00 PM on September 29, 2011


A BLACK BOX I SAW A BLACK BOX IN A META TALK THREAD A BLACK BOX EVERYONE A BLACK BOX
posted by nathancaswell at 4:06 PM on September 29, 2011



There should be a dark version of your avatar who mimics your movements and is an immediate death. That shadow character should be called "Self Link".

oh my godddddd
posted by curious nu at 4:06 PM on September 29, 2011


I'm pretty sure my frequent mention of Flixel on certain irc channels is what turned cortex onto it. I've used it for a bunch of things. There's a bunch of neat things in the API that make programming games easy.
posted by hellojed at 4:07 PM on September 29, 2011


I knew MetaFilter before it was a clunky 70's videogame.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 4:18 PM on September 29, 2011


A BLACK BOX I SAW A BLACK BOX IN A META TALK THREAD A BLACK BOX EVERYONE A BLACK BOX

Saw it too!! I'm taking credit for that bad boy.
posted by Ad hominem at 4:39 PM on September 29, 2011


How about a countdown timer on the game, if you don't complete the level you get a red box. Also if you get too many flags you get a sudden death meta level, if you clear it you get to go back.
posted by Ad hominem at 4:42 PM on September 29, 2011


I don't know what emotion is stronger. The feeling that I belong in an amazing community of polymaths that force me to try and do harder or the feeling that you're all so bloody brilliant & I shouldn't really try - because hey, what's the point.
posted by seanyboy at 4:46 PM on September 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


Make a Facebook version and get a zillion dollars.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 5:11 PM on September 29, 2011


In the Facebook version, you press jump and then you have to get three friends to sign up to help you jump.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:19 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Man I want to play but my right-arrow key is broken.
posted by KathrynT at 5:32 PM on September 29, 2011


In the Facebook version, you can buy in-game favorites with real money.
posted by box at 5:36 PM on September 29, 2011 [3 favorites]


Holy crap -- I love it! Did you tell everybody about this over at MFC, cortex? If not, please do!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:01 PM on September 29, 2011


That was fun, thanks.
posted by dragonplayer at 6:05 PM on September 29, 2011


Best $5 dollars I've ever spent.
posted by Sailormom at 6:09 PM on September 29, 2011


Did you tell everybody about this over at MFC, cortex? If not, please do!

I've been chatting incessantly about in #mefightclub the last couple days and begging bugtests off folks in there, but I didn't know if there was really any appropriate place to be all HA HA LOOKIT MY GAME on the mefightclub.com site itself. Is there a Check My Shit Out thread?
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:10 PM on September 29, 2011


I think HA HA LOOKIT MY GAME would be a cromulent thread title!

Also, I don't think I've visited the IRC channel in like 2 or 3 years. I didn't even know it was still active.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:34 PM on September 29, 2011 [1 favorite]


Metatalk: Your best bet is to suicide and restart from Metatalk's starting level.
posted by jacalata at 6:51 PM on September 29, 2011


Is this one of those situations where we all THINK we're playing a game, but in reality, we're being trained to be mods?
posted by roger ackroyd at 7:07 PM on September 29, 2011


No.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:14 PM on September 29, 2011 [4 favorites]


That pony level is nasty
posted by rollick at 7:56 PM on September 29, 2011


It's lovely, but where's the rain of fire? There was supposed to be an earth-melting rain of fire!
posted by maudlin at 8:19 PM on September 29, 2011


I just want to say that this is great and I have no coordination.
posted by arcticseal at 8:33 PM on September 29, 2011 [2 favorites]


You guys ever consider hiring hype men to jump start threads? They can go in and get the crowd fired up

"Yes Yes Ya'll and ya don't stop"
"Just wave ya guns in the air"
"when I say me you say fi" "me" "fi" "me" "fi"
"now somebody scream"
"if ya like to drink soda lemme hear you say coke-a-cola" "coke-a-cola"

Because that would be cool.
posted by Ad hominem at 9:17 PM on September 29, 2011


MetaFilter: A clunky 70's videogame.
posted by wallabear at 9:22 PM on September 29, 2011


That was fun! I didn't finish it, though quite a bit.

Is it safe for my kids to play or are there hardcore taters in the later levels?

Is the end boss Givewell (or Tom Cruise)?
posted by misha at 9:53 PM on September 29, 2011


roger ackroyd: "Is this one of those situations where we all THINK we're playing a game, but in reality, we're being trained to be mods?"

jessamyn: "No."

Dammit, I'll still play it anyway. ACKROYD YOU'RE BANNED CLEAN OUT YOUR DESK
posted by not_on_display at 10:52 PM on September 29, 2011


....DONT LET THE BUGS EAT ME DONT LET THE BUGS EAT ME DONT LET THE BUGS EAT ME....
posted by not_on_display at 10:53 PM on September 29, 2011


I didn't play many video games as a kid, so I'm not so great at this kind. But man, it was fun as long as it, well, I lasted. Thanks, cortex!
posted by deborah at 12:06 AM on September 30, 2011


/spells c-word with ladders
posted by obiwanwasabi at 4:32 AM on September 30, 2011


Oh my god. I have work to do, damn you.
posted by zennie at 5:42 AM on September 30, 2011


Metafilter: If you die still in Metafilter, you'll end up back at the start of Metafilter.
posted by SpiffyRob at 6:06 AM on September 30, 2011


On multiple occasions, I hit the ! thinking I was about to land on a +.

This game is too much like real life; I can't handle it.
posted by nickmark at 9:07 AM on September 30, 2011


The Hold A trick (at the restart screen) doesn't work for me. I'm sure it's my fault somehow.
posted by zennie at 9:31 AM on September 30, 2011


***** SPOILER!!! *****























This game is really fucking hard.
posted by slogger at 11:00 AM on September 30, 2011


I think I should get three lives for every sockpuppet.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:04 AM on September 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I better get a really, really big cup of coffee for finishing that last level. Yeesh.
posted by pemberkins at 4:48 PM on September 30, 2011


You're a true champion, pemberkins. I honestly haven't quite been able to beat the game myself since the release, though I had a couple agonizing close calls.

I am now working on a Scorched Earth knockoff which, while not really Metafilter-themed, could be considered a strained metaphor for when threads go bad around here.

The original Scorch had a customizable message queue where you could put in a list of sentences for the tanks to randomly select a line to yell from, when they were firing nukes at each other. Maybe I'll replicate that and we can feed it taglines.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:08 PM on September 30, 2011


I got to 'the glue factory'.

I'm pretty sure I caught two flags at (nearly?) the same time on a couple of occasions, so invulnerability didn't save me there. Bug?
posted by Anything at 11:46 AM on October 4, 2011


Also in my opinion on every level there should always be a few easy favorites that are always in the same place.
posted by Anything at 11:51 AM on October 4, 2011


It's entirely possible that there is some sort of race-condition bug that makes rapid double-flagging possible. I hadn't noticed it in testing or play since release but I tend to be pretty conservative about my flag interactions. Actually, hmm: if you hit two flags the same, that might indeed trigger two damage events before invulnerability turns on. Which means if you were really clever you could probably suicide on a trio of flags.

And yeah, if I get around to designing a more proper platform game with a similar random-item-collection mechanic I'll actually lay out valid and maybe weighted item placement positions as a map layer, both to make gameplay more consistently fair and balanced and to make it possible to have more interesting level designs.

For FaveRunner my random fave placement algorithm is absolutely naive: it tries a pair of coordinates on the map, and if that's an open tile directly above a ground tile, success, stick a fave there and move on to the next fave. Which means I couldn't have "floor" space anywhere that wasn't explicitly accessible from somewhere on the map (even if only, like on Glue Factory, accessible by holding hard right at the moment of spawn). That meant no closed-off cavities, which is why the O in "NO" on Glue Factory is a filled circle instead of a proper O, for example.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:57 AM on October 4, 2011


« Older The Times is tightening the rules.   |   Weird synchronicity? Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments