John Wolz

The Scouring of Shadowend Manor


Game Designer / Developer / Artist


Spooky 2D Game Jam 2020


October 2020


This game was created for the 2020 Spooky 2D game jam! As I was a 1 person team, all assets (aside from audio) were created entirely by myself within the 48 hour development window.

The theme for the game jam was “escape”, and since games were also supposed to be on the more spooky side, I immediately decided I wanted to make a game similar to a 2D Luigi’s Mansion. In this game, the player is tasked with finding 3 keys hidden throughout the mansion and returning the entrance to escape. Ghosts will frequently try to chase the player, but the player’s flashlight doubles as a weapon to ward them off.

The flashlight is the most important mechanic in this game. It serves primarily as a navigational tool, allowing the player to traverse the otherwise dark hallways of Shadowend Manor. The more the player uses the flashlight, however, the weaker the intensity of the light becomes, making it harder for the player to see. The only way to recharge the flashlight is to turn it off and wait for the meter to refill. The weaker the flashlight is, the longer it takes to ward off ghosts. This causes the player to consciously watch out for their flashlight usage, and forces them to make decisions on when to use it, and when to not.

Another important mechanic are the powerups. There are two powerups. The Eagle Eye Power temporarily zooms the camera out significantly, allowing the player to easily locate keys and other power ups that would have otherwise been off screen. The second power up is the Braker Switch Power Up. This power temporarily turns on the lights in the mansion, which immediately wards off all ghosts and allows the player a chance to refill their flashlight meter without sacrificing visibility.

Finally, I would like to talk about the mansion generation. The mansion is pseudo-procedurally generated each playthrough. The mansion is essentially a 5x3 grid. Each playthrough, one premade section is randomly assigned to each space in the grid to fill out the mansion. This allows for unique experiences each playthrough.

I am extremely proud of the work I was able to accomplish on my own in such a short time. In the end, I placed 8th out of 85 games, and the overall atmosphere I created earned me 1st place in the Spooky category.

Title Card

Dynamic Lighting & Shadows in 2D Environment

A Ghost Currently Being Warded Off by the Player

Example of a Pseudo-Procedurally Generated Mansion

Gameplay Video