Skip to content

Ludum Dare 48 staff picks

The theme for Ludum Dare 48 was “deeper and deeper,” which inspired over ten thousand people to create almost four thousand games together over a weekend. As you can imagine,…

Ludum Dare 48 staff picks from GitHub

The theme for Ludum Dare 48 was “deeper and deeper,” which inspired over ten thousand people to create almost four thousand games together over a weekend. As you can imagine, there were quite a lot of entries around digging or falling, but there was also a huge number of very creative (and fun) interpretations. Read on to see play a few of our favorites!

Bonus: All of the games’ source code (including JavaScript, C#, Lua, Haxe, Rust, Kotlin, and GDScript) can be found in the linked repositories, which is perfect if you feel like hacking time, gravity, lives, health, etc.

What is Ludum Dare?

Ludum Dare is a game jam, or “hackathon for building games,” that challenges participants to build a game in 72 hours or less based on a theme. At the end of the competition, all participants vote and give feedback on the entries.

We Have to Go Deeper

Screenshot of Ludum Dare 48 (LD48) entry "We Have to Go Deeper"

Play (Web, Win) · Source (Unity, C#)

We Have to Go Deeper puts you in a tight space with an overbearing professor as you pilot your submarine to the deepest, darkest depths of the ocean. You’re a lowly, unpaid lab assistant who must try to contain your rage! The whole experience is very much like grad school, but a whole lot cheaper.

Deeper and Deeper

Screenshot ofLD48 entry "Deeper and deeper"

Play (Web) · Source (Phaser, JavaScript)

Light on storyline and levels, but heavy on dynamically-lit pixel art and gameplay, Deeper and Deeper is a fun platformer game created with Phaser—a free and open source 2D JavaScript framework for creating HTML5 games for desktop and mobile.

Fun fact: the levels were created with LDtk, a 2D level editor that’s also free and open source (you might be detecting a theme here) from the creator of Dead Cells. Maybe you could create a ninth level? Take a look at the levels.ldtk file.

Nuclear Blaze

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Nuclear Blaze"

Play (Web) · Source (Haxe, Heaps)

And speaking of the creator of Dead Cells, they also submitted a game to LD48. Nuclear Blaze is a platformer with some humor, amazing particle effects, and plenty of fires to put out. This is fine.

Fetal Fury

GIF of LD48 entry "Fetal Fury"

Play (Web, Win, macOS) · Source (HaxelFlixel, Haxe)

You have 60 seconds to escape in the fast and furious Fetal Fury (no, that’s not a typo – Editor). Bring your A game for maximum pwnage, and enjoy some amazing punnage that’s on par with Broforce.

Fun fact: Before its launch and massive success on Steam, Broforce started as an entry in Ludum Dare 23 back in 2012.

Chess Hellevator

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Chess Hellevator"

Play (Web, Win, macOS, Linux) · Source (Godot, GDScript)

Speaking of pwnage, my interest in chess has been renewed by a certain Netflix series and web game with CGA graphics made in < 1024kKB of JavaScript. As a self-admitted noob at the game, despite playing for more than 30 years, I’m often frustrated in the end game when I’m down to my king and a handful of my pawns.

In Chess Hellevator, pawns are granted unholy power and can do whatever they want. Choose from one of three random moves each turn, and descend deeper into …hell (obviously). This game is quite addictive.

Fishing Trouble

Screenshot of fish being punched in punching in LD48 entry "Fishing Trouble"

Play (Web) · Source (Haxe)

Hook some fish in Fishing Trouble, and then practice your right hook to get them to drop money. It’s as easy as punching fish in a barrel. This is definitely one of the most ridiculous fishing games I’ve played in some time.


Screenshot of LD48 entry "Dwammings"

Play (Web, Win, macOS) · Source (Unity, C#)

Nineties kids will no doubt recognize Dwammings. It’s like Lemmings but with less work and more booze. (Seems like @leereilly’s dream job – Editor)

Dig, mine, stop, climb, break, and drink your way to victory! 🔨


Screenshot of LD48 entry "Surface"

Play (Web, Win, macOS) · Source (Unity, C#)

Waaaaiiiitt. Surface isn’t just another Asteroids clone. Here you’re orbiting a planet where the atmosphere is mostly argon, so your oxygen-filled ship is not dense enough to descend deeper yet. You’ll need to make your ship heavier by firing on those meteorites and loading them into your cargo hold.

How many meteorites will you need to destroy? I’m glad you asked. Taking into account the composition and molecular weight of oxygen and argon, and the dimensions and mass of our spacecraft, and the gravitational pull, and the frames per second, and …

GIF of complicated math symbols floating past man's head

Figure ƒ: @leereilly trying to do Math in his head again – Editor

You’ll need to destroy quite a few.

Bunny Bunny Dig Dig

GIF of LD48 entry "Bunny Bunny Dig Dig"

Play (Web) · Source (Unity, C#)

Bunny Bunny Dig Dig is an action RPG, and as the name may suggest, you control an energetic bunny digging for treasure. Watch out for the bats and bombs!


Screenshot of LD48 entry "Ziggeraut"

Play (Web, Win, macOS) · Source (Godot, GDScript)

Not sure if the player here is a rabbit too, but it certainly looks like a very pixelated rabbit. Ziggurat is a nice little platformer with great pixel art and music. Astute readers might point out that ziggurats typically go up, not “deeper and deeper,” but in this game, you’re journeying into the depths of your own mind. Pretty deep.

Into the Castle

GIF of LD48 entry "Into the Castle"

Play (Web, Win) · Source (LÖVE, Lua)

Jump deeper and deeper Into the Castle to dismiss the OP evil wizard king. Watch out for the bats and the… glasses though(?)!


Screenshot of LD48 entry "Micronaut"

Play (Web, Win) · Source (Rust)

A recursive maze written in Rust? Yes, please! Micronaut might be short and sweet, but the mechanic is marvelous.

Physics Breaking Boxes

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Physics Breaking Boxes"

Play (Web, Win, macOS, Linux) · Source (Godot, GDScript)

Physics Breaking Boxes is a Sokoban-style game with some twists: recursion and reusable boxes.

Inside the Box

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Inside the Box"

Play (Web, Win, macOS, Linux) · Source (LÖVE, Lua)

On the subject of boxes, Inside the Box challenges you to go deeper and deeper inside each box to find the keys and escape.

Sweet Dreams

GIF of LD48 entry "Sweet Dreams"

Play (Web, Win, macOS, Linux) · Source (Kotlin)

Face your fears, or rather, Sally’s nightmares in Sweet Dreams, a great little platform game written in Kotlin by first-time Ludum Dare…r(?) @LeHaine.

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Sleepie Cookie Eatie"

Play (Web, Win, macOS, Linux) · Source (Godot, GDScript)

Unlike Sally’s nightmares, some dreams you don’t want to wake up from. Dig deeper and deeper into a cookie mine with Sleepie Cookie Eatie. Be sure to snack along the way. The more cookies you eat, the better you dig.


Screenshot of LD48 entry "Drillmin"

Play (Web, Win, macOS, Linux) · Source (LÖVE, Lua)

Drillmin is a monochromatic and flat-out fun game where you drill your way downward while avoiding the lava.

Blue Cheese Lunar Descent

GIF of Ludum Dare 48 entry "Blue Cheese Lunar Descent"

Play (Web) · Source (Phaser, JavaScript)

Keep the generator full of gas, repair the various machines on the drill, and throw objects at your enemies. Blue Cheese Lunar Descent has you looking for cheese on the moon. Ya dig?

Sunk Cost

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Sunk Cost"

Play (Web) · Source (Unity, C#)

Sunk Cost throws you in a submarine and has you dive into the deepest, darkest depths to discover why the fish are becoming so aggressive. Keep your eye on your hull integrity and pressure though, or… DEAR COD!

Submarine Bean

Screenshot of LD48 entry "Submarine Bean"

Play (Web, Win) · Source (Unity, C#)

Submarine Bean is a cute game where you explore the ocean in your submarine.

Did you know: This was @IcosoDev’s first time participating in Ludum Dare. Here’s a little bit more on how they made it:

Ludum Dare is beginner-friendly! You should try it yourself next time. The next game jam starts October 1.

That’s just twenty out of 3,866 total games submitted. Be sure to view the complete list, and consider leaving some feedback if you enjoyed the games. Until next time!

Like this post?

You might be game to browse more open source games written in all sorts of languages:

Explore more from GitHub



See what’s happening in the open source community.
GitHub Universe 2024

GitHub Universe 2024

Get tickets to the 10th anniversary of our global developer event on AI, DevEx, and security.
GitHub Copilot

GitHub Copilot

Don't fly solo. Try 30 days for free.
Work at GitHub!

Work at GitHub!

Check out our current job openings.