There is a temple. Cave. Dungeon. You know. Whatever.

At its depths, a hidden treasure of immeasurable value. Isaac, the great newt wizard, wishes to purloin this treasure. But between Isaac and their prize lie all manner of ancient traps, or at least as many as I could cobble together in 48 hours.

Can Isaac make it through these dangerous chambers? I sure hope so! I playtested at least, like, once.

Isaac's Descent is a puzzle-platformer for the PICO-8 that I made for Ludum Dare 36, and my first published game that I made entirely by myself. I copied the engine from Under Construction, and everything else was made in 48 hours. Given that, and that I'd never made music before, it came out pretty dang well.

It does suffer a little bit from the PICO-8's very limited set of buttons. Sorry! (If you're not familiar, the PICO-8 is an imaginary 8-bit-ish console, and it only exposes pretend X and O buttons and a d-pad — games can't read directly from the keyboard. Also, X and O are actually the X and Z keys, but they can also be other keys, so I can't just say X and Z.)

Despite my best efforts, it's possible to get stuck in one or two places. Press Enter to bring up the menu, where you can reset the room. Also, up and down cycle through the inventory — there's a little UI hint that tells you this, but it doesn't always show up

A couple puzzles are a bit clever, but not too difficult (with perhaps one exception), so the game is only five or ten minutes long.

I plan to port the game to LÖVE and expand it into something a little meatier, so stay tuned for that.

Code licensed as MIT; assets licensed as CC-BY-SA.



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hellppp i dont know to get past the 3rd level ahhhh

whoops ok im dumb i found it disregard my stupidity


Really well designed levels! 

However, it was really frustrating when I would screw up jumps and things (forcing me to keep retrying puzzles I knew what I had to do to solve) when my muscle memory kept trying to use the up arrow instead of X to jump. This is an easy fix: change 'jump' to up arrow and 'switch item' to X. Alternatively, offer a way to input controls (if that's possible with PICO, I'm not sure). 

It's a testament to the great puzzle design that I didn't give up immediately when I ran into these issues, though. Overall, really great game, and I'd love to see more!

This is a bit tricky since I've also seen people explicitly ask for ↑ to not be jump in PICO-8 games — it makes jumping while moving difficult on a controller with a d-pad  :)  Still trying to come up with a way to make everyone happy on that front.  Thank you though, I'm glad you liked it!


this is great! good puzzles, interesting powers and just well designed levels. 

would go hunting for sabre again!

Thank you!  I'm hoping to expand this into a more serious game someday  :)