The Machine is OUT NOW! You can get your copy here:

TheMachineGame.com


Please enjoy this playable DEMO build! Controls:

GAMEBOYKEYBOARD  
AZ
BX
STARTENTER
SELECTSHIFT

The Machine is a game about a little guy named Girt. Girt lives in the machine. The machine isn't perfect but it's the only thing Girt knows. Girt can choose any career he wants... as long as he has good enough test scores! By the way, Girt forgot to study for his tests. Good luck! :)

The Machine is a non-linear adventure where you can get different jobs, meet new characters, and try to survive inside the machine. As you progress along different career paths you can learn more about the world and unlock new careers by scoring higher on the test the next time you play. Your choices affect the direction the machine's society goes. If you rise through the ranks you can change the course of the machine's history.

I am calling the genre a 'pancake adventure' because the story tree is an experimental format where it is short but very wide so that on subsequent play-throughs things can be totally different. If you play through the demo a couple of times and make different decision you will start to see the flexibility of the story!

Thanks for playing!

You can also now get the DIGITAL EDITION here: https://incube8games.com/collections/digital-editions/products/the-machine-gbc-d...


Incube8
StatusReleased
PlatformsHTML5
Publisher
Release date Feb 16, 2022
Rating
Rated 4.8 out of 5 stars
(44 total ratings)
AuthorBenJelter
GenreInteractive Fiction, Adventure
Made withClip Studio Paint, Pyxel Edit, GB Studio, Aseprite
Tags8-Bit, Game Boy, Game Boy ROM, gbstudio, Meaningful Choices, Pixel Art
Average sessionAbout an hour
LanguagesEnglish
InputsKeyboard, Xbox controller, Playstation controller
LinksHomepage

Download

Download
Machine DEMO v1_1.gb 2 MB

Install instructions

If you download the rom file you can play it in a Game Boy emulator. I suggest more accurate ones like BGB. Some ones for phones are way too saturated. I like GBC.emu on android.

Development log

Comments

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Viewing most recent comments 1 to 40 of 67 · Next page · Last page
(+1)

I've looked all around the box I got the game in, and I can't find the code for the safe.

I don't want to spoil it for you but I can assure you you have the password. You might need a flashlight?...

Ive looked everywhere inside the box and the manual. Where is this damn code lol...

Using a flashlight is the first thing I thought of doing.

You find it? Im still looking...

(+1)

Email me at benjelter -at- gmail.com if you want more spoilery hints

is the download the complete or demo still?

The download is the demo. If you want the full game click themachinegame.com link.

(+2)

Have been playing the heck out of this on the Analogue Pocket, which it’s been a lovely fit for. Great style of gameplay and storytelling, and while I still have a few things to figure out, like a certain Safe and a certain locked door, it’s been great to delve into this world, and has me considering tinkering around with GB Studios to tell some stories soon.

I'm so glad you liked it!

I little puzzle *spoiler/hint* about the safe

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The safe in the MSS can only be solved with a physical copy of the game. If you have a digital copy maybe ask someone who has a physical copy if they know the answer ;)

(+1)

That was obvious since the message about the code was about requiring real "inside the box thinking".

Hey! I also just got a pocket, I wanted to ask how you have been running these games? Are you using a flash cart or an sd card? Sorry for the questions!! I couldn't find anything simple on reddit lol

The physical edition plays on the pocket but also the digital edition comes with a .pocket file that works on pocket!

(2 edits) (+1)

I played this game when it was a wee demo and finally got the full digital version a few days ago! somehow, I love it even more than the demo. I especially like the mechanic that allows you to see the right answers for the test once you uncover them.


SPOILERS








I need help with the puzzle at the job fair for the MSS job. any help anyone?

(+1)

Hey thanks for playing! Really glad you liked it!

(+1)

Also for anyone who is too stuck on the MSS puzzle I can give you a vague hint that the solution involves starting by sort of working your way from the lower right to the upper left.

i did end up figuring it out after a while, but thanks! Also, are there any playthroughs anyone has made with the full game that you know of? 

I think it might actually be too nonlinear to cleanly do a playthrough of the entire game including all branches. Sometimes you can get back to the same path from multiple starting points and end up with different results. I don't know how someone would approach trying to record everything without a ton of overlapping footage.

The way I solved it was by solving the puzzle one row at a time

Hi Ben,


Great game. I managed to cause a game-breaking bug. Mild spoilers below. The recollections below might be wrong or out of order. I'm working on nailing down the steps to reproduce.


Chapter 2, after joining the commune. I was living in the slum, had interacted with the commune a bit, ratted out Art when walking past the druggy house immediately east of the commune (police spontaneously arrived as I was walking past). I had taken Duo's pill myself and not delivered it to the arcade. I got myself hooked and kicked out of the slum. Duo _was not_ waiting outside to apologize for making me homeless. As a result, I had no home (the tent had someone else in it). No home means no bed means no advancing to the next day. Evol was blocking the commune telling me to go inside because something was about to go down.


On an earlier run I had discovered the secret behind the railway track. So naturally I experimented with assigning myself to the tent and advancing the day using the debug tools.


I couldn't get this to work, I think (perhaps in part) because no matter what I adjusted I couldn't unset the addicted flag.


I ended up throwing away my save.


Hopefully there are enough clues here for you to be able to reproduce the issue.


I've also noticed a small town/down typo elsewhere.

Thanks for the great game.

Hey thanks so much for reporting the bug! I will try to find it in the game. In case this happened I did include a failsafe mechanism to restart the game without losing your achievements. You input the Konami code on the map screen and you can jump to the start of the game without losing them.

(+1)

Ha! I should have tried that.

(1 edit) (+1)

Hi! Thanks for the most aweinspiring experience the little Game Boy has ever had! :D

But alas, I have to report a bug. And this bug wasn't resolved with the Konami code reset. It seems that despite resetting, not all variables or switches are reset. For example the railroad chains are permanently cut in my game, even after a restart. And for some reason Art won't remove the ethics chip no matter how much I tell him to do it. He gives the normal dialogue which implies that he did it if I tell him to remove the chip. But once I'm in prison he will not come to save me anymore... He is not in the prison but the news says that the police apprehended him BECAUSE he was equipped with an ethics chip. (If I tell him to keep it, he will be in the prison)

I should add that this was probably caused by me tinkering with the options found in the secret lab.

Hey thanks for the high praise! I really appreciate it! And thanks for playing! 

Basically bugs should be expected at any point in your game if you have used the computers. They're to mess around with the game but in a game breaking way. If you start a fresh playthrough from the beginning and you still find this issue it could be something for me to look into but what you are describing doesn't seem possible without using the computers. That variable definitely gets cleared. I will comb through the code though. Do you have a digital or physical copy?

If you found the secret room it is stored across playthroughs so that you can easily access it. I did that intentionally so that if you wanted to use the computers you wouldn't have to go through that process every time.

Thanks for the reply. Your avatar in the game did clearly warn me of messing up with the game, but I didn't take it seriously. :D I was time traveling a lot because I tried to win the lottery. Well, I guess I'll make a backup of the old save and start afresh. It's okay, I understand the risk involved with wantonly messing up with the settings.

I haven't encountered any bugs before using the computers, so I don't think you need to comb the code for now. I have the digital copy which I'm playing on a Super Famicom through SD2SNES flash cartridge. It has Super Game Boy functionality so I can play GB games on the TV. :D

What a cool way to play! I think my games made in the future with GB Studio 3.0 are going to have pretty nice SGB support. It's kind of somewhere in between an original Gameboy and a Gameboy Color. What palette are you using for the game?

I managed to get every achievement, except the Lottery one... Is there any trick to get it? Or it is just pure luck? Cause if that is the case, it will be something like 0.1% chance (3 random numbers, 0-9)

I don't want to spoil too much but it is mainly luck. I will say that your odds are better than 0.1% but just remember that you don't have to get all of the achievements if they're not fun for you. They're purely optional and I think you've seen most of what the game has to offer. Thanks for playing so much! I'm glad you liked it enough to see so much of the game!

(+1)

I didn't get all endings/achievements yet, but I'm amazed by this game. Great work!

Glad you liked it! Make sure to tell people about it! :)

will there be a steam version? the currency of my country is pretty weak.

Theres's no plans at this time but maybe someday.

(+2)

Wow! Even as a demo, this is one of those games that makes you want to play it over and over again to get every detail. I love this unique game type with so many different branches to play. It's almost overwhelming the sheer amount of choices you seem to get constantly. The world-building is also very well done, making it effectively addictive and interesting to play. Great work! I loved it.

(+3)

Um ótimo jogo merecia até um filme , a história é muito boa, uma dica se tiver versão traduzida para português Brasil pt BR vai vender muito.

(+2)

Eu realmente quero, mas há muito texto, então, se eu conseguir fazer isso, levará algum tempo.

Esperando lançar ptbr para comprar

(+2)

I already hate terp with a passion.

Can i play the digital verion on PC?

Yes with a Gameboy emulator like bgb!

(1 edit)

Do you plan to translate it into Spanish in the future?

Hopefully at some point but we are not currently working on that.

Thanks

I am an English/Portuguese interpreter and translator. I could translate this game for free if you would like. Get in touch if you are interested

(+1)

I love the way you can litterally become a hitman

Estou bastante interessado no jogo,queria que tivesse tradução PT-BR ou até mesmo espanhol para entender melhor a história,isso poderia ser possível ?

É possível, mas é um grande projeto por causa da quantidade de texto no jogo.  Espero que possamos fazer isso em algum momento.

I am an English/Portuguese interpreter and translator. I could translate it for free if you would like. Get in touch if you are interested. 

(+2)

wow this demo is sooo good, 25 ending you say? even the demo are this good, the full game will be awesome

Its out now if you are interested! TheMachineGame.com

will there be a pc version? just curious..

You can play it on pc using a gameboy emulator but since it can already be played with an emulator it's not a high priority to port it to pc right now.

Bruh you can't do the job fair?  If you pass the test it deducts 50 points for being on the demo, and if you get a 50 or less you can't do the job fair.

Yeah its a demo so it doesnt have the full game.

Makes sense.  Demo is awesome though cant wait for the full game :D

Thanks! The full game is actually out now. You can get it at themachinegame.com

Thanks!  Cant wait

(+3)

My favorite time is 4:20 now i guess

Can you reach the upper floor in the full game, after the “1”? Is it possible to get to the roof, where the city is?

I don't want to spoil too much but yes in the full game you can access the 1 floor.

Thank you!

OMG IT'S OUT I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR MONTHS SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!!!

P.S. — thank you for releasing the digital version right away!

Thanks for the support! Glad we were able to do a proper digital release so the most possible people could play it.

(1 edit)

Having so much fun with this on my GBC (IPS modded; I am not a psychopath to play on the original screen). Component-wise, the box is sturdy and looks like it has quality finish on it and the sticker sheet is quite thick and looks really nice as well (not the usual cheap thin sticker sheet). The black cartridge looks really too.

The art and graphics in general are beautiful and the environment is nicely interactive. I've finished a couple different story-lines (or runs) and still feel like I have no idea about the various parts, floors and buildings of the machine. I like how Girt changes his uniform depending on the job / task he does. I also like that the perspective changes in larger areas. Needless to say this game 100% pushes the system to its limits (after all, the last GBC game was released more than 20 years ago).

The best thing about the game is to continuously revealing more about the machine while discovering where each path takes you. I feel like this could've easily been released as a PC game on Steam!

The only personal remark I have is regarding the soundtrack. It's certainly not bad and fits the theme well, but I feel like it can be overly dramatic in many cases (and so far in my playthrough it was played for the majority of the game). Also, I can see the game becoming slightly repetitive (especially at the start of each run) after you've done like 10 paths, but that seems inevitable and it's a great trade-off for having this many different endings and story-lines (25+ is what the website states).

Amazing game and I recommend it to everyone reading this comment section.                

(+1)

I have found all the answers  in the demo playthrough, do you guy want to know

I should warn you that its intended to learn the answers as you play so having them all right on your first playthrough might spoil the natural game progression.

sorry about that

No problem it's an experimental game format so approaching it like a normal game can have unintended consequences

(2 edits)

Yes please give the answers

Can you play the gameboy version on super gameboy for snes?

Yes you can but it doesnt have Super gameboy features like a border etc.

(+1)

With the Union, I got paid 4 dollars to sort 3 boxes.

(+1)

can you find all the answers in the demo playthrough?

(+1)

No, I don't think that's possible.

I figured out most of them by trial and error.

It seems like Question 10 in the quiz is impossible to get the right answer to.

(+1)

Thanks for the feedback but question 10 definitely has a right answer that works. I've gotten a perfect score on the test hundreds of times while testing.

I've tried all 4 of the possible answers and still got 90 / 100 as a score

It must be that you are getting one of the other questions wrong in that case.

(1 edit) (+5)

oh my god ı wasnt expecting that. I discovered this game about 4 hours ago and was playing the demo for 4 hours. I thaught this is a short comedy game but then I figured out that this is one of the best games ıve discovered in itchio. I wish it was cheaper so I could buy It. 10 dollar is fricking expensive in my country :/ anyway, that was awesome!

(+3)

This is soooo good! I ended up playing all of your games available here. All of them are great!

(+1)

I've been playing the full digital version for a few days and loving it. It feels like there is so much depth to the world and possible story lines, plus the great art, humor, world building and all the little clues that keep you poking around for how to unlock and discover more.


Highly recommended.

(As Athanasius mentions in another comment, the Send Owl digital distro the publisher uses is kinda junky. Not something a developer usually has much control over though. If you have any kind of javascript blocking make sure to turn it all off before trying to access your downloads, otherwise you might run out of downloads without getting the file. I had 1 left by the time it worked.)

(+1)

I'm really glad to hear that you like the game so far! I definitely get what you're saying about the digital distribution. I will see what I can do. If anyone loses access to the game after paying for it I will make sure to get it sorted out though.

(+1)

Just confirmed w Incube8 that the download limit has been removed :)

(+1)

Thank you, glad to hear it!

Hey I'm new to itch.io and i just purchased the digital edition but I'm not sure how to play it? Do people download emulators? Maybe I should purchase a GBC so I can buy the physical edition? (Sorry I'm new to this but I love indie games)

(1 edit)

The main options are:

* Emulator (most will probably work, Emulicious, SameBoy, BGB are among the most accurate). You can often use gamepads with them. Or emulators running on other handhelds / gaming systems.

* On real GameBoy / Color + Everdrive (or equivalent flash drive) which you can load the digital ROM onto

* On real Game Boy + the physical edition cart

(2 edits) (+1)

Just purchased the full version. But I wonder: Why is it that there is such a rigid limitation of possible downloads? Why can I only download the game three times? If I purchase something I do expect to have unlimited access to it. Especially as I assume that there will be updates to the game it seems rather unwise to limit downloads in such a way. What happens if I don't have any downloads left and an updated version of the game is released?

I'm sorry, I'm not familiar with the method that my publisher is using for distribution. If you have any problems with downloading the game you can reach out to Incube8 and they will fix it for you. This game is pretty old-school in the sense that since it's being published on a cartridge it was extensively tested before release. It's unlikely that we will have updates unless there is a major bug that was somehow missed.

(1 edit)

Thank you for your reply Ben. That's a relief to hear, thank you. I'll ask the publisher then. By the way: I'm very much enjoying the game on my good old GBC (thanks to EZ Flash)! The atmosphere is impressive, the story original and the production values top notch. You've created a very unique game here! 

I'm glad you are having a good time with it! It's really exciting to see it out in the wild. Original hardware is so beautiful if you have a good light source.

Oh yes, the light source is the main problem with the original hardware. But it's just something very different to play these games on their intended hardware than playing them of any one of the many retro portable devices (Anbernic, Pocket GO etc.).

(+1)

Just amazing, looking forward to the full version.

The full version is available now.:)

is there a wiki or something for this game? its facinating.

Not yet but maybe someone will make one when the full version comes out

(+1)

Fantastic demo! The art style was good an I really loved the walk of the characters. Besides that the storyline was interesting and fun too, I’m kind of sad I can’t download the entire game.

Now you can download the whole game!

(+1)

I've always enjoyed the GBC because it was easy to distinguish the games that seemed to push the limits of the system. This is certainly one of such games, and I absolutely love it! Just like the other comment, I can't get myself to play more than a few minutes of the demo as I don't want to spoil the experience of playing the full game.

Thanks so much! Really excited to start getting the final game out there soon.

this is incredibly incredible cool. I love what you're doing with it, I made myself stop playing the demo because I want to wait for the full game. The design of how the world is connected is just incredibly cool and feels very real, that mixed with the aesthetic is really an amazing thing.

I am very glad you liked it! I can't wait to get the final cartridges in.

(+1)

Same! Super excited to be able to play the full thing!

Probably my favorite Gameboy game so far, and I mean that out of all games I've ever played. Your work is excellent man! Cannot wait for the full version. Such an innovative concept! I also really liked Opposum Country, please keep up your work.

Thanks so much! That really does inspire me to make more stuff.

this is amazing! Is there I way to preorder the digital version? Or will it be available here on itch? I don’t want to forget to grab it once it’s out also did you make dedeus and pine creek as well? Please keep up the great work hope you get tons of support you can count on mine for one

Deadeus and Pine Creek are by IZMA and Carmelo Electronics. I think we all have the same publisher so that might be the cause for confusion. A digital version should be available at some point.

(+1)

thank you for taking the time to reply, will be waiting for the digital, woke up this morning thinking how cool the final game is going to be, good luck and be well

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