Relay is a simple, little Morse code game built for Ludum Dare 34 that retells the famous ceasefire of Christmas Day, 1914.
You play as a British telegraph technician relaying the status of your troops to your higher-ups. In order to operate the telegraph, you will be provided with a sheet of paper translating each letter into Morse and you will need to send dots with the ‘F’ key and dashes with the ‘J’ key. As days pass, soldiers will die and supplies will dwindle, so you will need to ensure fast and accurate typing to keep the everyone alive. If you’re looking to memorize Morse for any reason (though we can’t imagine why you’d want to), Relay has got you covered. After the third or fourth day, you’ll find you’ll have inadvertently memorized the patterns of the most frequently occurring letters.
The tense atmosphere of Relay pulls you in immediately with its gentle Christmas music contrasting starkly with the ominous explosions that thunder outside. Looking past its fantastic art direction, Relay does have some noticeable problems with providing player feedback. For example, it’s never made clear if your typing mistakes result in more loss of life or not. It also would have been nice to add a secondary layer of management to the game, asking you to choose the messages you send instead of simply punching in the requests. Another minor but annoying issue is the typeface chosen for lettering. The letter ‘I’ especially always seemed to evade us as we cast our eyes about the page for the next letter.
Still, the tension building in the game is palpable. It is easy to imagine what it could have been like to have the lives of so many resting on your shoulders. Being that is now January, you may be burnt out on the Holidays, but we encourage you to take some time to play Relay and experience not only an important moment in world history but proof positive of the good inside all of us.
Download or Play Relay Here (Win, Mac & Browser)