Penguins Luv Melons

Penguins Luv Melons is a Nintendo 64 homebrew game released in May 2010 by Sanni. IT involves controlling a penguin that eats a melon on the screen, and that’s about it.

You can download the ROM and source code for this game here by using the password “pangulinmalone”.

Penguins Luv Melons V1

The first version of PLM was released on 02 May 2010 on the NeoFlash forums.

The controls of the game are simple. Walk until you are above a melon, then press the A button ten times until you eat the melon. Then proceed to eat the next.

It only has two levels, after which you get a congratulations screen. No more melons appear but you can still walk around and ‘eat’ them to get points. Both levels give you just barely enough steps to eat the melon.

I first tried the game blind from a list that I have, but I got a game over after touching the melon. I recorded and edited the footage but then I found out that you don’t eat the melons by just touching them, you have to press the A button to actually perform the eating action. Ten chomps later and the melon is gone.

The repost

One bit of information available online about this game is this repost of this old/deleted post from 64 Scener (now NESworld):

NEW HOMEBREW: PENGUINS LUV MELONS

Sanni over at neoflash’ forum has a little game in the works called “Penguins Luv Melons” and I belive this is a quick preview of the mini-game 🙂

I have tested this on real hardware and it works great, however Project64 was unable to show anything on the screen.

May 2 2010 – 7:36 pm (CET) – Posted by Acey

The screenshot and date indicates that it’s talking about version 1 of Penguins Luv Melons.

Penguins Luv Melons V2

After getting some feedback, a second version of the game was released the next day, 03 May 2010.

Even though the gameplay still involves walking around eating watermelons, it is still slightly different from the previous version. The biggest difference is that V2 has multiple watermelons per stage, whereas V1 only has the one. All melons need to be eaten before the stage is complete.

However this brings a few problems, primarily that the hit detection is pretty bad and the penguin can often eat melons that are far away or even clear the whole screen at once.

Melons along the lines will be eaten, even if they are far away from the penguin

I think I found the trick to the hit detection in PLM V2. The key point on the penguin is the top left corner of the sprite (including the black background). If this point is on top of a melon, then it can be eaten. If there are other melons that are directly above, below, left or right, then those will be eaten too.

The game goes up to level 100, after which you can walk around like at the end of V1. This version however, doesn’t give you a congratulations message like the other did.

End screen.

More about PLM

Sanni published this game in an old forum thread which took me quite a while to find. But it reads like this:

I’ve made you a game

You are a penguin and have to eat melons to gain energy, walking around will burn fat so you lose energy, if your energy drops below zero you’re game over.

Controls:
DPAD – move
A Button – eat melons

Has more bugs than levels though 

Edit:

Updated it

Now it has a Titlescreen and after you are Gameover you can restart without resetting the N64 and you also get more life depending how many times you died.

It has about 100 random levels.

Everytime you die and continue you will get a new set of 100 random levels, if you just reset the N64 nothing will change though.
So if you want you can always play the same 100 levels over on over.
Also you have now 1-9 melons to eat pro level.

Bugs:
– The “collision detection” sucks that bad that sometimes you will eat allmost all melons on the screen at once.

Sanni

The penguin used in the game’s sprites is the penguin used as an emoticon in the Neoflash forums.

Source code

The zip files also include the source code for the game. It was developed in Libdragon so it requires that libraries on top of the standard C libraries (stdio, malloc, string, stdint).

Unlike games developed using the official SDK, the library’s functions are completely different and the sprite data isn’t even in a C array.

I played the game on an Everdrive, but the game was developed using an N64 Myth.

Conclusion

This is a lot more than I usually write for a game as simple as this, but there are quite a few nuances to the game that I thought would be interesting. Nobody has really talked about it in depth more than the Sanni quite bove, so I think it deserved a bit more attention.

In my opinion, I think that the first version of Penguins Luv Melons is better than the second one. Though having more than one melon on screen does make the game a bit more strategic, the main reason is that it feels a lot less glitchy. Having melons disappear when you haven’t eaten them really gets distracting after a while.

In a way, the game reminds me of Food Fight for on arcade and Atari 7800, where you walk on a black background eating food. Though this is much simpler, it does give me a similar feel.

Articles across the web

Penguins Luv Melons is a homebrewn Nintendo 64 game made by Sanni and released in May 2010 where you control a penguin that eats watermelons on the screen.
Article published on N64 Squid

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