"Alpha Channel" (LD 18 entry). A game showing the world the cruelty of Red!
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Alpha Channel

Spooner’s entry for Ludum Dare 18 – “Enemies as weapons”

This is my first LD. This game is quite simple, but has some concepts it may take a couple of games to understand.
By taking control of your enemies, you can block and kill the other enemies that are nearly as tough as you are.
Unfortunately, while controlling an enemy, the other enemies will continue to attack you so you need to protect yourself
AND make sure you don’t run out of energy, freeing your slave! Sometimes running away for a bit is the best plan…

Best, though, is play and figure it out for yourself! Press F1 for in-game help.

License: GPL v3
Website: http://spooner.github.com/games/alpha_channel/
Author: Bil Bas (http://spooner.github.com) (bil dot bagpuss {at} gmail.com)

How to run the game

  • Windows:
  • OS X:
  • Linux:
    ruby bin/alpha_channel.rbw
    (see below under compatibility for requirements).

NOTE: The game saves settings and high-scores into ‘~/.alpha_channel_spooner’
NOTE: The game will upload your high score if they beat one of the 20 global high scores for the difficulty you are playing on, along with the name you type in and the time. No other information is recorded.

Ingame help

Press F1 or Help for full instructions and control information.


Runs in a 640×480 window (or full-screen at that resolution).

  • Windows: Native executable (.exe) available.
  • OS X: Native executable (.app) available.
  • Linux: Can run from Ruby source + libraries + Ruby gems
  • Install Ruby 1.9.2 or higher
  • Install libraries needed by Gosu (see http://code.google.com/p/gosu/wiki/GettingStartedOnLinux)
  • Install library needed for managing online high scores:
    sudo apt-get install libopenssl-ruby

    You may alternatively need to install the openssl package with rvm if that is what you are using:
    rvm pkg install openssl
    rvm install 1.9.3 −−with-openssl-dir=$rvm_path/usr
  • Install Ruby gem dependencies
    bundle install −−without development

    If bundler is not installed, you may need to do so beforehand:
    sudo gem install bundler


  • Special thanks to KanonBaum for the music!
  • Thanks to Outrider from #tigirc for helping debug the OSX package.
  • Thanks to everyone who tested the game!

Tools used

  • Ruby 1.9.2/1.9.3
  • Developed using JetBrains RubyMine IDE
  • Sounds created with sfxr and converted to Ogg Vorbis format with Audacity.
  • Windows executable created with the Ocra gem.
  • Images created with GIMP.

External assets

  • Gosu, Texplay, Chipmunk and Chingu gems (libraries) [Included in executable versions].
  • pixelated.ttf (font by Affinity and Epsilon – benepsilon {at} gmail.com) [INCLUDED]


This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version. This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details. You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see <http://www.gnu.org/licenses/>.

Full text of the license is provided in COPYING.txt