Spelunky

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Spelunky
Spelunky
Title screen of the original Microsoft Windows game.
Developer(s) Derek Yu
Andy Hull
Blitworks (PS3, PS Vita, PS4[1])
Publisher(s) Mossmouth
Composer(s) George Buzinkai
Jonathan Perry
Eirik Suhrke (XBLA, PSN)
Engine Game Maker
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X,[2][3][4] XBLA, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, PlayStation 4[1]
Release date(s) Microsoft Windows
  • WW September 1, 2009
Microsoft Windows (remake)
  • WW August 8, 2013
Xbox Live Arcade
  • WW July 4, 2012[5]
PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita PlayStation 4
  • NA October 7, 2014
  • EU October 8, 2014
Genre(s) Action-adventure, platformer
Mode(s) Single-player
Local Co-op (remake version only)
Distribution Download
Spelunky screenshot comparison of the classical version from 2008 (left) and the HD remake from 2012 (right).

Spelunky is an indie action-adventure game created by Derek Yu and released as freeware for Microsoft Windows (with two unofficial ports to Mac OS X). It was then remade for the Xbox 360, with ports to the PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita and then back to Microsoft Windows. The player controls a spelunker who explores a series of caves while collecting treasure, saving damsels, and dodging traps. The first public release was on December 21, 2008.[7] The source code of the 2008 Windows version was released on December 25, 2009. An enhanced version for Xbox Live Arcade was released on July 4, 2012. The enhanced edition was also released on PC on August 8, 2013 and for PlayStation 3 on August 27 and 28, 2013 and for Playstation 4 on October 7th, 2014.[5]

Gameplay[edit]

Players control an unnamed adventurer, known as the spelunker. The aim of the game is to explore underground tunnels, gathering as much treasure as possible while avoiding traps and enemies. The spelunker can whip or jump on enemies to defeat them, pick up items that can be thrown to either attack enemies or set off traps, and use a limited supply of bombs and ropes to navigate the caves. Levels are randomly generated and grouped into four increasingly difficult "areas", each with a distinctive set of items, enemies, terrain types and special features. Later areas contain more valuable treasures, secret locations, and items. If the player loses all their hearts or runs into an instant-kill trap, they will have to start from the beginning.

Enemies include animals like bats, snakes and spiders of varying sizes, other characters, and monsters like yeti, man-eating plants and ghosts. The player can collect many items, mainly gold and jewels which add to the player's score, but also useful objects including bombs, guns, climbing gear and archaeological artifacts. Some of the latter have supernatural abilities, including kapalas, hedjets, crystal skulls and golden ankhs, though many of these special items can only be gained through secret methods, like combining other items together. Some items may be purchased or stolen from shops scattered about the caves, though the shopkeepers become powerful enemies if you steal from them.

The player can also encounter damsels in distress trapped in the caves, who can be picked up and carried to an exit. Successfully doing so returns health to the player. It's possible to unlock the damsel as a playable character; gameplay is identical, except that the player encounters spelunkers to rescue. Another unlockable character is the "Tunnel Man", who possesses a mattock instead of a whip.

The Xbox Live Arcade, as well as the PlayStation Network versions of the game feature local multiplayer (co-op and deathmatch) for up to four players.[8] There are 9 different characters to play as.

The original Spelunky also includes a level editor, in which players can create their own non-random levels to share with others.

Influences[edit]

Spelunky draws from La-Mulana, Rick Dangerous, and Spelunker for its visual styling, character design, gameplay elements and general mechanics. Essentially a dungeon crawl, it also adds elements from the roguelike genre,[9][10] including randomly generated levels, a lack of save points, frequent and easy death, and discovery mechanics. It draws equally from the 2D platformer genre,[9] including real-time interactions with enemies.

Development[edit]

Spelunky was created by Derek Yu and released as freeware for Microsoft Windows on December 21, 2008.[7]

The source code of the 2008 Windows version was published under a software license permitting noncommercial distribution and modification on December 25, 2009.[11] Based on this source code the game community created a community patch which added support for Mac OS X.[2][3] Since the game source code became available community members have created many modified versions, or mods, of the original game. Most of these are available via the forums on the website for Derek Yu's video game company, Mossmouth, where a list is maintained of finished mods.

An enhanced remake version for Xbox Live Arcade was released on July 4, 2012. The enhanced edition was also released on PC on August 8, 2013 and for PlayStation 3 on August 27 and 28, 2013.[5]

Reception[edit]

IGN gave the XBLA version a score of 9.0 and an Editor's Choice award, calling it "a superb 2D platformer that's as easy to hate as it is to love."[12] GamesRadar gave the game 5/5, praising its gameplay and constant sense of discovery.[13] GameTrailers gave the game a score of 8.3, praising its design but criticising some control quirks and throwaway multiplayer.[14] 1UP.com gave the game an A ranking, saying "it offers the same immediate, pick-up-and-play fun of Geometry Wars, but demands much more than the simple reflexive reactions of your lizard brain."[15]

PC Gamer UK chose the remake of Spelunky as its 2013 game of the year.[16]

The spelunker, the main character of Spelunky, is one of several indie game characters who can be unlocked and played in Super Meat Boy.[17] Referred to as "Spelunky" in Super Meat Boy, the character has the special power of explosive jumps (referencing the bombs he carries in the original game),[17] and he is exclusive to the Xbox Live Arcade version.

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Spelunky Coming to PS4". Sony. 2014-04-30. 
  2. ^ a b Sarkar, Samit (2012-10-12). "Spelunky unofficially patched with Mac OS X support". polygon.com. Retrieved 2014-08-07. "Spelunky, Mossmouth's renowned roguelike platformer, is now playable on Mac OS X, thanks to an unofficial patch from the game's community." 
  3. ^ a b "Spelunky v1.3 (and Source) - Now for Mac OS X and Windows". 2012-09-12. Retrieved 2012-10-05. 
  4. ^ "Game Maker Mac Ports". j-factor.com. 2012-01-06. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  5. ^ a b c "Major Nelson Xbox Live Marketplace Release Schedule". Retrieved 2012-06-26. 
  6. ^ a b "spelunkyworld Twitter". Retrieved 2013-08-19. 
  7. ^ a b "Official web page". Retrieved 2010-03-26. 
  8. ^ Derek Yu (2011-04-23). "Mulitplayer!". Spelunky World. Retrieved 2011-10-19. 
  9. ^ a b Matthew Kumar "Best Worst Games you've Never Played". "One Life Left". Season 4. Episode 91. 39:30 minutes in. Resonance 104.4 FM.
  10. ^ Frushtick, Russ (2012-06-22). "Spelunky: The everlasting Platformer". polygon.com. Retrieved 2013-10-25. 
  11. ^ http://www.spelunkyworld.com/files/COPYING.txt
  12. ^ "Spelunky Review". IGN. Retrieved 2012-08-22. 
  13. ^ "Spelunky Review". GamesRadar. 2012-07-05. Retrieved 2012-08-22. 
  14. ^ "Spelunky Article Review and Ratings". GameTrailers. Retrieved 2012-08-22. 
  15. ^ Mackey, Bob. "Spelunky Review for 360, PC from". 1UP.com. Retrieved 2012-08-22. 
  16. ^ "Game of the year 2013: Spelunky". PC Gamer UK. Future plc. 1 January 2014. Retrieved 2 January 2014. 
  17. ^ a b "Character roster update!". Official Team Meat blog. 2010-09-18. Retrieved 2010-01-10. 

External links[edit]

Official website