Overview

In the Untahris Common Playground, you can play several classic fun, simple arcade games, including games similar to Tetris, Snake, Tron, Arkanoid, Pong, Thrust, Bomberman, Rampart, Liero. You can play them both in single player and multiplayer mode (on one computer, local network, or maybe Internet).

Now, Untahris has an original experimental feature, which makes it more than just a bundle of these games! In multiplayer mode each player can play a different game — however, they play all on the same board. This may lead to funny interactions, battles or alliances between them.

The games in Untahris have been modified to make them better interact with each other. Thus, each player is allowed to shoot and collect bonuses, even if it was not a part of the original game this player was based on.

Game released under GPL. Available downloads are:


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Send kudos, flames, ideas, new games, comments, suggestions, and whatever to longuens *at* users.sourceforge.net. I need some feedback to improve Untahris :) I cannot improve it if I don't know how the players play this game, and what things are annoying them. I would like to thank Dmitry Marakasov for maintaining the FreeBSD port, and everyone who sent me bug reports and suggestions.

Note: you can see some of my newer creations (under a different nick) here.

Version history


Main menu

I think the main menu is easy to understand, so most options do not need a long description. All options are saved automatically to a configuration file. You can use another configuration file by giving its filename as a parameter.
One interesting thing is Cell size in pixels. It says how many pixels will represent each game cell. Note that some of the graphics are created by Untahris itself, but some of them (cannons and worms) are loaded from graph.unt file, where = cell size in pixels. The latter are invalidated if you change the cell size, unless you provide the graph.unt file for the new resolution. (See graph-ref.txt for reference about how to draw new sprites.)
You can also change the initial world to SAVED MAP; this allows to use pre-drawn maps, stored in the *.map files. For example, if you type untahris in the map to load field, you will use the map stored in "untahris.map". You can save a map during the game by pressing F2; it will be saved to the file "saved.map" (which can be renamed if you wish).

The main menu has no options to change the game rules, like the speed and firepower of each player type. However, it is possible to change these values manually, by editting the configuration file (config.unt) in your favorite text editor. In case if you break something, deleting config.unt (or a part of it) will restore the default values.


Available graphics styles: LINES on BLACK bacground, and RETRO on GRID background. (GRADIENT on GRADIENT shown above.)


How to move

To edit keys for a player, move to their menu entry and hit 'k'. Each player uses four movement keys (up, down, left, right) and four action keys (instead of being called mundanely Fire, Fire 2, Fire 3, and Fire 4, they are called Fire, Earth, Air, and Water). By default, the first player moves with QAOP, fires with space and his other action keys are 123. The second player moves with arrows, and his action keys are Return, Insert, Home and PageUp.

Additionally, ESC key exits the game, F2 saves the map, F4 pauses the game, F7 regenerates the world, and F8 removes all the balls.

Bonuses

There are three types of bonuses.
  • AMMO (red) gives you extra ammunition, allowing you to shoot several times more (how much ammo you use per shoot depends on the game).
  • LEVEL (blue) usually increases your speed. While this may allow faster exploration, it usually just makes your game harder to control, so usually if you are on a higher level you gain more points for the same actions.
  • The meaning of the green bonus depends on the game (it just gives you points if there is no better idea).

Player types

Selection and Map Editing

First, you have to select your game. Pressing Earth and Air will change the selected game. Direction keys will change your starting position. Press Fire to start.
You can also press Water to enter the Map Editing mode. It works just like player selection, but you can choose an edit option instead of a player character. Press Water again to exit the Map Editing mode and return to selecting a character. (As a last resort you could use the Map Editing mode to play a game like Tic-Tac-Toe ;)
Note that you can also access the Map Editing mode while the game is paused.

SNAKE

You control a snake who grows when he eats green bonuses. Only its head is vulnerable.

UTRON

This is similar to snake, except that it has no tail. The wall created by it can be destroyed by a shot.

THRUSTER

You control a spaceship who is flying through the playground in search of bonuses. The spaceship is subject to gravity: it will fly down if it does not thrust, and crash if it hits something. It has only a limited quantity of fuel for thrusting (green bonuses provide additional fuel).

UTETRIS

Blocks of various shapes fall from a hole in the ceiling. The player can move them left-right and rotate them. A new block appears when the last one falls to the ground.
The standard rules of Tetris are changed a bit so that it makes more sense against other games. In the original, when a full horizontal line is created between two pieces of undestructible wall, then this line disappears (all blocks above fall) and the player gets points for it (but his level increases too). Here, it happens also when a horizontal line without any holes of length at least 15 is created. Don't forget that you can shoot!

PAD

Pad is known from games such as Pong and Arkanoid. It is able to reflect a ball. Press AIR or EARTH to create a new ball.
The pad dies if it does not successfully reflect the ball, i.e. the ball fell behind it.

BOMBER

A bomber is able to place bombs, which explode (in four cardinal directions) after some time passes, or when something hits them (it can be an explosion of another bomb). The green bonus will make his bombs cover a larger area. Contrary to other players, the Bomber does not have limited ammunition. He is restricted in the number of bombs he can place simultaneously — the red bonus gives him one bomb more.

WORM

A ninja worm soldier, equipped with a shovel, a rope, and a bazooka, similar to ones appearing in games like Liero or Soldat (and Worms, except in real time). The keys are:
  • Left and Right move the worm left and right
  • Up and Down adjust the bazooka's firing angle. Press both of them for fine aiming.
  • Fire shoots the bazooka.
  • Water shoots or releases the ninja rope.
  • Air allows you to jump (when on the ground) and climb the rope (when on the rope).
  • Earth allows you to dig. The angle of digging is the same as of the bazooka.

XUNUX

Very loosely based on the game of Xonix. Xunux is a guy who is able to walk inside walls. While he is not inside the wall, he leaves an unstable trail behind him, which is very vulnerable: most objects who touch it destroy the trail and kill Xunux (including Xunux crossing itself, or an enemy Xunux who wants to kill him). This trail stabilizes once Xunux reaches a piece of wall (either permanent or breakable), after which it becomes a normal wall (contrary to Xonix, this wall can be broken by everything that can break walls, including balls).

CASTLE

This is based on the classic game Rampart (which has clones named Castle Combat and Kajaani Kombat). However, it has been modified quite a bit (the original game has three phases — I feel that a game with phasses would not play well against other games here, instead you can switch these phases anytime you want).
The player can do one of three things (switched with Earth):
  • build castle — This is done by placing blocks on screen. Enclose an area with your bricks to add it to your castle. (You can get some help from a friend, like Xunux, Tron, or another Castle, but then the last block which encloses the area must be placed by yourself; otherwise, you can place a block inside the enclosed area in order to claim it.)
  • place cannons — Cannons can be placed in the castle area. You need to enclose an ammo bonus and wait some time before you can place an additional cannon. (Cannons are hard to destroy — it takes 8 shots on average)
  • shoot — This is quite simple. Just shoot with your cannons to hurt the other players.
You should enclose bonuses inside your castle:
  • AMMO bonuses will generate ammo, which you can use to shoot or produce cannons
  • LEVEL bonuses will make your cannons shoot faster
  • OTHER bonuses will provide you with energy
The game is lost if you don't manage to enclose any energy bonus before the energy runs out.

Games possible

Untahris is aimed at multi-player experience. However, if you have noone to play with at the moment, you can also have fun with it. Snake is quite fun, you could also try your skills at navigating Thrusters (although you would probably need a pre-drawn map for that). If you like Breakout-like or Tetris-like games, you can play UTETRIS or PAD. If you want to have some opposition (or help?), try placing some balls.

All player types should be quite fun when played against a friend who is using the same type. There are also other interesting multiplayer combinations, like:
  • Sneaker: Worm versus Castle on a field of asteroids (i.e. neutral balls).
  • Hanging Sneaker: three players, Worm is hanging on the Bomber, and they fight against the Castle.
  • Bridge: Two versus two (probably needs network play, or at least two keyboards). Each team contains two players of different types, for example, a Snake and a Bomber.
Use your imagination to invent other games :) Untahris does not set strict rules, but rather allows the player to create games themselves.