Recurrence (Indie Game Maker Contest 2014 submission)

June 30th, 2014 by Tommy Gun

recurrence-titleRecurrence is a free game I created in ~30 days for the Indie Game Maker Contest!  You can view the contest page if you’d like, but don’t download it there (that’s the old version).

I received my scores from the contest, and it placed in the top 20 for one judge, and top 30 for the other — out of 800 entries! It also came in second place in the NeoGAF RPG Maker contest!

This game will be expanded and enhanced!  While this version is a “full game” in that it has a main storyline and an ending, it was always my intention to fill out the rest of the city with people and quests, upgrade the graphics, and release it as a FULL game. Please comment and share if you like it!

I made a HUGE update to the game, mostly focusing on adding music and background sound, which was the main thing I ran out of time for. Please get the newest version below!

OS: Windows only. May work in WINE, etc.
CRG server: Recurrence v1.02 (includes RTP) – 242MB (most users should download this version)
CRG server: Recurrence v1.02 (RTP required!) – 60MB, RTP required (If you don’t know what this means, get the other version of the game)

Click here for old versions and the changelog


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Story Overview
On the day of your brother’s kidnapping, a malfunctioning wrist teleporter sends you into a time loop, forcing you to repeat the same day over and over again (in the vein of “Groundhog Day” or “Source Code”). Master skills, gather information, and socially engineer your way to his location. Can you break the cycle and save your brother’s life?

Note: Despite being set in the future and using a time loop, this has absolutely nothing to do with the new movie “Edge of Tomorrow” (as far as I know; I haven’t seen it).

I have been working on this game full-time this whole month (June) just for this contest, and I can prove it! I have been recording vlogs every few days to show my progress, which I will compile into a “making of” video at some point.


  • Open World – explore at your own pace, and see things in the order you choose.
  • Time Mechanic – rewind (restart) the whole day at any point. People will forget your mistakes!
  • Social Engineering – experiment with different dialogue choices and socially engineer your way through!
  • Single Open City – most of the game takes place in a single large city map. Enter a building and the roof disappears with no loading!
  • Integrated Hint System – call or talk to your uncle for help at any time.
  • Memories – when you rewind time, the only thing you keep are your memories. As you gather information, these will open up new dialogue choices.
  • Learn Skills – what do you do when you have all the time in the world? Become an expert.

Note: some of these reviews are based on the contest submission (v1.0), while others played slightly updated versions. The full game will address all of the minor annoyances (it will add fast-travel, quicker ways to do things, more quests, etc.).

From the NeoGAF RPG Maker contest (I won second place):

Best story: Recurrence. Smartly written, doesn’t rip off too terribly much from other works with the same concept, and really makes you want to see the main character succeed.
Best tone: Recurrence. A lot of these games went for comedy value, and I don’t blame them. A lot of the games went for a dark “stop the approaching danger” and didn’t let up. That’s good too. But Recurrence had a good mix. The protagonist is in a strange situation, has some fun with it, but never takes his eyes off the very serious prize, and in the end you can see just how much it affects him.
Best overall: Recurrence. Should come as no shock that the game which won two categories was the best overall.

From the RPG Maker Web forum:

Indrah has been livestreaming all of the games posted on RMW, and finally got to mine! She’s a bit caustic in a funny way, so you shouldn’t take her too seriously because she rushes through all the games and her videos are more entertaining than informative/critical. Also, I sent her the newest version, but she played 1.0, so it’s missing music and stuff. Her video also seems to get way out of sync with the audio, so keep that in mind. You can watch her play Recurrence here, and you can read my response on the forum.

Jesse – PVGames | Score: 3.9/5 | Read my response to this review

Click here to read review

Alkorri | Score: 4/5 | Read my response to this review

Click here to read review

From the IGMC comments section:


I just finished the game. It was amazing! It took me more than an hour but I loved every second of it figuring out what to do next
I just voted this game. If you come up with sequels for this game or expansions for it with more puzzles. I would love to play it.

Great job!

Amazing game! I gave your game a shout out on my game page. I hope you win! way better than my game although it is also good


Click here for credits