Lode Runner

Quite a few years ago I got my hands on the game “Lode Runner Online: The mad monk’s revenge”. It’s pretty old and actually an update to an even older game. There’re quite a few iterations of Lode Runner but I only played that one version and back then it was a pretty good game.

The game’s mechanics are simple: You have to complete levels by collecting all the gold. Levels don’t span over multiple screens and are allways the same size. You can collect items to help you get through the level and to fight off enemies (the monks, duh). Since it’s actually a puzzle game as the game progresses you’ll end up spending more time to find a suitable solution to levels.

Since this version was only an update because the original game only ran on DOS and windows 3.1 it doesn’t feature many new things, most noteably the online multiplayer. “online” and “multiplayer being very generous terms since you can only play through a local network or dial up modem and only with one extra player. Obviously a game like lode runner wouldn’t make much sense with 20 players.

Anyways the game is pretty cool and can keep you occupied for quite some time especially since there’s a level editor where you can create new and modify existing levels. That’s where I put the most time into since the game itself gets pretty difficult. Nowadays the game doesn’t run on anything beyond Windows XP anymore which is a little sad since you can get the game for free on the developer’s website. So since I was already working on making a small 2D engine with SDL2 I thought “Why not try and remake that game”. Pretty far fetched goal and someone actually already did exactly that. But When I found that out I already spent too much time on it so I’ll just continue to work on it.

So far I’ve gotten dynamic menu screens and scaling done which for me is pretty big achievement since I’m writing all of it in C++. I also got SDL2 to play nice on both Windows and Linux which is also a first for me. Currently I’m trying to figure out how the game saved it’s levels so the game can load the old file format into my engine.

The game running under Windows

You probably can’t tell much from that screenshot but the menu screen is loaded more or less dynamically with tooltips and button textures and it all scales nicely from 1x to 2x. Technically it should scale up to any round number but I can’t test anything beyond 1080p. Sadly other than the menu structure I don’t have much to show off but I hope that I can get this to a useable state. Also unlike quarkrobot’s remake mine is opensource, so if you want to take a look (even though there’s not that much there right now) feel free to do so.

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