Calling Rapunzel

Tower of Rapunzel

OK, so. This might end up being rubbish.

A calendar week gives me so little actual development time. What with work and family and so on.
But that's the challenge.

You can write a poem in a week. You can write a song.
There must be some way you can come up with a game in that timespan too.

So, I'm all about stripping everything back so that it becomes a realistic possibility.
I'm going for a game that's rich in text, sparse on sound, and light on graphics.

Buggy or boring, though? We can't imagine yet where the finger will point.

Update: Instructions for use

Create a Python virtual environment (version 3.7 or above):
python3 -m venv torvenv

Install the game (the version number may differ):
torvenv/bin/pip install tower_of_rapunzel-0.6.0.tar.gz


Launch the server:

You should see this message:
======== Running on ========
(Press CTRL+C to quit)

Point your browser to that address:


Award for inventing a pill that cures rope burn
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Ratings (show detail)

Overall: 1.9
Fun: 1.4
Production: 2
Innovation: 2.2

2% of respondents wished to disqualify the entry.
Respondents: 9


File Uploader Date
Tower of Rapunzel v 0.6.0
tundish 2019/09/28 12:54
Calling Rapunzel
tundish 2019/09/28 12:31

Diary Entries

Kicked off late Sunday evening

About three hours in. The basic idea came quickly, and
then my brain immediately complicated it with all sorts of
pointless embellishments.

I tried to draw it out on paper. Decided on a world with
8 separate locations, and then soon realised you'd have
to jump back and forth between them pretty quickly.

I need to be sure that the game is viable from the outset.
There'll be no time to build it and fix it later. All my
code so far is an attempt to simulate the thing to see if
a satisfying end state can be reached in a reasonable
amount of time.

After tweaking some rules it seems there should be a final
Gold/Silver/Bronze outcome. And you'll have to take a risk
to get the top prize.

Next steps are:

  • build out the game rules from my simulation
  • put in the framework for web interaction

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Second day is just boiler plate

This evening I took the game rule simulation and rewrote it so                     
it can be operated from within the app. Also put in the web                        

Everything is very much more solid now. But I can't say I feel                     
like I've made enough progress yet.                                                

I need to allow two clear days to create music and content. Not                    
sure I'm going to get that at this rate.                      

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Time to buckle down

Good news and bad news.

Firstly, styling. I always knew I wouldn't have time for much.
Luckily, my minimal styling looks OK.

Now the bad news. I took too long to achieve even that. I have to move
away from the technical stuff. If the game's going to be worth the play,
I need to engage my creative side. I need to inject a sense of fun.

I know I can do that, but I need to put myself in a different space.
Away from the code. Into the story. Fantasy time.

I should be going to bed in an hour. I've got to go to work in the morning.
Instead I need to conjure up enough playful energy to knock out 1200
words of interesting dialogue.

Wish me luck!

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The Big Push

Well, the last 32 hours have been nuts.

After writing the preceding diary entry, I decided I'd take the next day
off work, or I'd never make it in time.

I went in to a cafe early and kept topping up on coffee while getting down
on paper literally all the dialogue for the game. It took about two hours.
I was blocked to begin with on Rapunzel's rhymes but by the end the words
seemed to arrive quite easily.

But I had made some false assumptions about how to organise the dialogue.
I had the speech separated out into themes. I thought I would change the
context at different points in the game, and all the characters would
switch in the same way to their appropriate phrases. But that was way too
complicated and required a lot greater wordage than I had time to make.

So when I got back I rejigged all that. There were also some bugs to fix,
in code I thought I could trust. So my perception of progress was never
reliable enough for me to feel confident.

The good news was that having all the words on paper made creating script
files a low-risk process. And in the background I started setting my
drum machine going, to find some beats I could use as a backing track.

By bedtime nearly all the script files were done. Sadly, I never hit on
any sounds that I felt would fit as a backing track. So it looks like
the game will have no music, which is a shame.

Still, it plays better than some of my other efforts. I've just fixed
the death screen. Python packaging is in place. A bit more dialogue
required here and there.

If you want to take an early peek (before release), then the repository is here.

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Grabbed an hour this morning (Saturday) to tweak some dialogue.

I took a screenshot which does a good job of showing the tone of the piece.

Although it would be nice to get some music in there, I'm starting to feel
some fatigue. I don't want to spoil this one with any hasty last minute

So I think I might leave it at that. This will be version 0.6.0.
That's likely to be the version I submit for judging, unless I spot any
glaring issues.

I think in terms of effort the thinking, writing, coding, packaging and
testing took about 24 hours in total.

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