Matt Sephton (the developer of Playdate titles such as Circular, Sparrow Solitaire, and Bender) has just released their latest game for Panic's tiny handheld device. And it looks to be right up our street.
Named YOYOZO, the game is a loving homage to Cano-Lab's 1999 cult classic Pendulumania. This was a Japanese game released for Windows PCs that tasks players with maneuvering a ball on a string to hit a bunch of coloured objects that appear on the screen.
The new game transplants the action from the rather drab wooden backgrounds found in the original to space, and sees players take control of an interstellar Yo-Yo with the goal of grabbing up all the nearby stars. The game features frantic slingshot-style action, dynamic sound effects, and music (from the musician Jamie Hamshere), in addition to a useful online scoring system. It also remarkably has a file size of only 39KiB in total, making it one of the smaller games on the handheld.
"The drive to produce a small game started after I sent the first playable version to testers from the Playdate Squad Discord Server. Steve at Scenic Route Software, purveyor of quality video games, commented how tiny the game was. At that point it was 18KiB, but had no music or sound effects or polish. There was a long way to go.
"Even so, I wondered how doable it would be to build the game out with an eye on keeping file size “low”. I thought back to the days of my youth where whole games would fit on a single floppy disk, with room to spare. If they could do it, shouldn’t I give it a try?"
You can grab the game now from Playdate's store for $8. Sephton has posted a video of the game in action, which you can view in the tweet above.