The Wizardry of Differentiation by mortus

made by mortus for LD28 (COMPO)
There are 180 different spells in the impressive arsenal of our hero the Wizard, but as it goes, on each level He Can Only Get One.


If the game runs slow for you even with low enemy count, please consider trying downloadable swf version. I will really appreciate if you let me know if it's any faster in the comments.


Post-compo changes are very minor and I actually had them planned before compo ended but forgot to add on the last minute.

Added 1 sound effect - enemy death
Decreased electricity damage
Decreased electro nova projectile amount modifier
Increased nova fire delay


Arrows to move.
Mouse to shoot.

After each level you have first to craft one new Spell Gem. Then you select from 1 to 3 of your available Spell Gems to form a spell of your liking.


First selected Gem defines the basic nature of your spell.

Second Gem shapes the form of your spell, attack type.

Third Gem adds minor modifiers to it.


I didn't have horribly much time to spend on balance, so it's far from perfect.

Feel free to share names of your favorite unbalanced spells (you can copy those right from game) in comments!


Coolness 100% 1
Overall 3.80 49
Audio 3.12 200
Fun 3.56 97
Graphics 3.23 343
Humor 2.20 516
Innovation 3.51 151
Mood 3.10 282
Theme 3.07 403


16. Dec 2013 · 13:16 CET
Really enjoyed this. Would like to see this spell crafting system make it into a bigger game.

Good job :)
16. Dec 2013 · 13:39 CET
Extremely good entry - I can't believe you managed to implement such complex mechanics in such little time. The spell combining is very cool in the later levels, great job!
16. Dec 2013 · 14:00 CET
Awesome! This is easily the entry that addicted me the most so far. Really nice mechanic for creating spells, I just wish I understood how it worked a little better e.g which gem controls the firing pattern, which controls the damage type etc. Nice job!
16. Dec 2013 · 14:15 CET
Really awesome realisation in such a short time!

It was one of my idea of game to do but thought it was too ambitious, looks like you done it just right =)
16. Dec 2013 · 15:38 CET
Crafting system is really well made and complex - game is a bit frustrating, maybe I'm not that good! Nice job
16. Dec 2013 · 15:44 CET
Quite liked it. Had some problems with lag that might have to do with optimizations, but it was very creative and really got my interest. Crafting spells is a great mechanic.

My one critique is the lack of a volume slider. Otherwise great.
16. Dec 2013 · 16:29 CET
Its fun to craft, but some spells are very weak and
unexpectedly leads to the dead. Besides, great job!
16. Dec 2013 · 16:42 CET
Nice work! It would be nice if ASDW worked for movement as well but not a big deal :D
16. Dec 2013 · 16:49 CET
Really good work! I'd have liked a visible health meter and maybe a faster movespeed? The core idea is really clever and well implemented given the 48 hours! Well done on all counts :)
16. Dec 2013 · 17:10 CET
This game is amazing
16. Dec 2013 · 17:59 CET
I'm getting lag only at later levels and only with specific weapons and tactics and I was testing on a slow machine, so that's strange. I'll add downloadable swf version in case it could run faster out of browser for some people.

There is a life meter - small hearts in the left-bottom corner of the screen.
16. Dec 2013 · 19:43 CET
i love customization games like this. great game.
16. Dec 2013 · 19:47 CET
Nice 'juice'! Game is fun, cool spell mechanics. Good job!
16. Dec 2013 · 21:42 CET
Fun! The range of spell possibilities makes me want to keep playing even when I get swarmed with dudes.
16. Dec 2013 · 22:41 CET
Pushing novas (anything + air + air) are awesome. This game is awesome. I would have kept playing for hours if my browser hadn't accidentally gotten out of focus - the game kept playing and I died while going back to my window! You should definitely fix this. Just have the gameplay pause when the window's not in focus.
16. Dec 2013 · 23:30 CET
all of the above + i really liked the music. reminded me of DOS games from the early 90s yusss!
17. Dec 2013 · 19:18 CET
Fun and smooth impressive number of stuff on screen, really pleasing to kill and collect (only wish some magnet). The weapon variety was really cool.
17. Dec 2013 · 20:50 CET
This was so much fun! Great crafting system on the spells and great overall variety! Good music, good sprites. I suppose, I would recommend making it WASD movement and adding a sprint feature (if you were to make any post-dare changes)
17. Dec 2013 · 21:28 CET
This was fun! Slightly unbalanced towards Fire in my humble opinion. But then again I always play DPS mage so what do I know ;)

Given more time and some polish, I seriously think that it could be a hit :D
18. Dec 2013 · 08:52 CET
I really love everything in this game: graphics, the roguelike gameplay, music, and simple controls. Aslo addictive.
Quite good given just a short time...
18. Dec 2013 · 13:54 CET
Fun game :) I liked the mechanic and the choice the player gets. The sounds were a bit annoying (the fire spell), but the rest was awesome!
18. Dec 2013 · 14:39 CET
Wow! Very addictive game! Reminds me of Magicka with crafting and looting. Awesome! :)
18. Dec 2013 · 17:57 CET
WOW ! The best game I played so far, and I'm sure it will remain the best ! I can play this for hours. Audio is amazing, graphics are real cool, core mechanic remind me Binding of Isaac, but it's way more funny ! I'm really impressed.

I found an invincible gem: Wind then fire then electro. You can't get hit with this one :p

Spell: Enlarged Windspray
Combined level: 124
18. Dec 2013 · 17:58 CET
WOW ! The best game I played so far, and I'm sure it will remain the best ! I can play this for hours. Audio is amazing, graphics are real cool, core mechanic remind me Binding of Isaac, but it's way more funny ! I'm really impressed.

I found an invincible gem: Wind then fire then electro. You can't get hit with this one :p

Spell: Enlarged Windspray
Combined level: 124
Denis Chakarov
18. Dec 2013 · 18:56 CET
Cool game! Congrats! :)
I just wish there was a way to see what spell will you have when you combine the gems, before you actually enter the dungeon. So you could check the possibilities and choose the one you most like.
18. Dec 2013 · 23:33 CET
I liked the crafting system, reminds me of magicka, however, I'd like to have different strategies when fighting enemies(besides choosing the spell). You get to capture a feeling of empowerment with this game.

P.D.: I want to invite you to replay our game ("The sidekicks"). In the settings menu people can customize the difficulty and create crazy rules. We added this feature because we didn't have time to balance the game. It's a cool feature and some users missed it.
19. Dec 2013 · 10:43 CET
Thank you for the kind feedback, everyone! It motivates me quite a lot, especially given that I wasn't so enthusiastic about the final state of the game myself when I finished it.

Ludipe: that's great news, I really liked your game concept and was sad it's so easy. I will surely check it out once more!
19. Dec 2013 · 13:46 CET
Great game ... I really had fun ! You should continue the dev
19. Dec 2013 · 20:01 CET
Good job ! I like this game! I like nonprestressed sound and very cute graphics!
19. Dec 2013 · 20:08 CET
Really good one. Loving to explore new spells, although some of them are insanely weak. However its understandable given the limited time. Hope you will take the game further.
19. Dec 2013 · 20:21 CET
Pushing Fire Nova FTW!
20. Dec 2013 · 10:08 CET
Very nice spell mechanic. Sure has a Magika vibe to it, but it's streamlined in a good way.
20. Dec 2013 · 14:02 CET
Very nice game with great replay value :D
21. Dec 2013 · 16:36 CET
The number of different effects you created in that short time is really impressive. I had a blast playing it and may actually be revisiting it to test some more gems :) Good job!
22. Dec 2013 · 05:20 CET
This was a ton of fun. I really liked the spell mechanics. Great for 48 hours. The trap form is really underpowered though and is the way I almost died every time.
22. Dec 2013 · 12:09 CET
Great fun game, really well done.
Your particles system is working perfectly and the procedurally generated levels are correct.

My favorite spell so far is the burning wind nova (lvl 150).
27. Dec 2013 · 18:00 CET
Awesome and very addicting game. The crafting system was really cool. I also love the graphics and the sound effects.

I don't know if monsters become stronger or I just used a wrong combination that make the spell seemed pretty weak sometimes.
27. Dec 2013 · 20:23 CET
Wow great mechanics ! Amazing work !
28. Dec 2013 · 20:57 CET
I enjoyed trying different spell combos and seeing what happened.
29. Dec 2013 · 17:01 CET
great entry! this was neat and looks really polished. i love the concept of only having one spell per level. it would be cool to get a clue as to what you will be fighting next so you can strategize and choose the right spells/gems
01. Jan 2014 · 18:10 CET
The concept is a really nice one and it was fun to test out the different combinations. If you continue working on a post-compo, I would fix the following things: make the character move faster and add a lot of juicyness like effects on hitting enemies or getting hit, more soundeffects etc.
van noctar
03. Jan 2014 · 22:54 CET
Waouh! Very addictive!! Congratulations for gameplay and graphic design!
06. Jan 2014 · 05:54 CET
*slaps your wrists with a metal ruler*
And let THAT teach you not to make a mouse aiming based game without WASD movement. Ow my wrist. Neat idea. A little stretching of theme. And at first I didn't think there was an ending because I kept dying. This feels like it could be explored further though.
07. Jan 2014 · 00:57 CET
Controls were a little annoying but great spell system which made it fun to keep playing.