Ludum Dare 19 Theme Voting

Posted by (twitter: @ludumdare)
December 11th, 2010 6:20 pm

Theme voting has begun! Tune in every day this week (Sunday to Friday) for a new set of themes. The highest scoring themes from the first 5 days will be voted on for the 6th and final day (roughly 20 themes). The winning theme will be revealed at the start.

Round 1 | Round 2 | Round 3 *SILLY THEMES* | Round 4 | Round 5

Final Round

Special thanks to Pekuja and Deepflame for doing the majority of the pruning.

Useful links: LD Gathering Discussion

131 Responses to “Ludum Dare 19 Theme Voting”

  1. droqen says:

    I am excited. :3

  2. did you guys know digging is almost as cool as fishing?

    true story.

  3. brandonman says:

    No Zombie option, or EVOLUTION option in an LD Theme Poll? WHAT IS THIS MADNESS??????!!!!!!

  4. droqen says:

    brandonman: chilllllll
    Also, pay attention in class!
    “Tune in every day this week (Sunday to Friday) for a BRAND-SPANKING new set of themes.”

  5. pythong says:

    madness? THIS IS SPARTA!!!


  6. Sos says:


  7. Are the results for round 1 up, or did I miss something?

  8. Dslayer27 says:

    Last LD48, I only got the chance to vote in the final round and never hit just ‘0’ rather than 1 or -1. Does that do anything?

  9. bear says:

    We all know “boy meets girl, they fight crime, they find a talking pie” will win! Is there a single better theme? I think not!

  10. borso says:

    No dinosaurs?

    Apparently, you hate FUN!

  11. MrDude says:

    I can’t wait for round 3! That’s where the gold is. (And the end of the “No X? ARGHWHYDIDYOUDOTHATTOUS!!!” complaints 😉 )

  12. demonpants says:

    I really really hope one of the joke themes win. They are awesome.

  13. Miclee says:

    Pigmen shall win!

  14. Dslayer27 says:

    Yeah, there are many themes I want to try in the “silly themes” round compared to the others. :]

  15. plams says:

    If “Enemas as weapons” is chosen I’m not entering :-) Some of the silly ones are great though; “Title of your game must be a Year” holds a lot of possibilities (though it’d be easy to cheat and glue a year title on some old game). “Get to da choppah!” would be great fun too.

  16. Cosine says:

    Aww, redundancy and redundancy didn’t make the silly list? D:

  17. Ernyz says:

    I would love to try “Text Input in an Action Game”. Would be nice to see how people try to combine those things together 😀

    • MrDude says:

      Actually, that would be a godawful nightmare to figure out that would result in heaps of mediocre games.

      Challenge isn’t always fun. Sometimes it’s just frustrating and gets in the way.

    • RunnerPack says:

      So, I take it no one here’s ever heard of/played “Typing of the Dead” for Arcade/Dreamcast/Windows/PS2? (Note: that’s why I down-voted it, lol)

  18. Cooshinator says:

    Wow, some of the joke themes seem alot more intruiguing than the normal ones. Is that wierd?

  19. illume says:

    I wish there was a button to make voting easier. A [-1 to all except zombies please] button. k, ta, thanks

  20. Entar says:

    Quick note: Looks like “Seasons” appears both in Round 3 and Round 4, albeit in slightly different forms. Dunno if that’s intentional or not.

  21. Thomas Larsen says:

    Zombies for the win! (You can tell I’ve played too much Black Ops Zombies…)

    • droqen says:

      ( I… couldn’t. There are too many zombie games already for me to even know that Blops Zombies exists, let alone then guess you were driven to a mad zombie-lust by it as opposed to one of the many other zombie-themed games, or perhaps even a zombie movie, or a zombie book, or (and this is a big one) ‘zombie fandom’ in general — which exists, I guarantee you; just search ‘zombies’ on facebook and you will find a veritable army of zombie zombies. )

  22. 31eee384 says:

    Wow. We really hate contraception around here.

    As for this round, I want “being lost”, “heist”, “space”, and “universe”.

    “I have no idea where I am, but this is a stick-up! Gimme all the money in this space-bank!”

  23. Pyrrhuloxia says:

    Ugh. I was tired of zombies before Left for Dead 1 came out. I guess for containment I could do some sort of Balance of Power dealio.

  24. aus_mike says:

    Who actually comes up with these themes? most of them seem to be in there to intentionally fail.

  25. joekinley says:

    Go redundancy!

  26. joekinley says:

    Go redundancy!!

  27. MrDude says:

    What does it say about me that none of the themes really stood out to me?

    None of them really catch my interest.

    Am I getting… Cynical? :( (Or maybe just really picky)

    Ah well! I’m not really pulling for any one of them at this point. Most could lead to some ideas, but lots of them would like to lots of the same ideas.

    At this point, I’ll just vote and hope for the best.

  28. fydo says:

    Here’s hoping for a landslide victory for Kittens.

    • MrDude says:

      I’m.. Wanting to be cynical. But I can’t. I can’t be grouchy when there are kittens.

      Dammit, man! I was having a perfectly good bad mood until you came along and inadvertently cheered me up!

      Thanks, now I’m going to be happy for THE REST OF THE DAY!!

      I hope you’re happy that I’m happy.

      And yes, here’s hoping that Kittens wins.

  29. bear says:

    WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! “Boy meets girl,they fight crime, Talking pie” DIDN’T WIN!!!!!!!!
    What is this madness!

    • MrDude says:

      That’s correct. It didn’t win.

      It’s an extremely narrow theme and doesn’t lend itself to a variety of unique games.

      Some of us want to have fun *after* the voting is over.

    • Billy Wenge-Murphy says:

      Meh, it’s a decade-old Simpsons reference smashed together with – for the umpteenth time in indie games – zombies

      I’d really rather not wade through 200 people beating the same joke to death.

      I hope some people work it into their games somehow, though. I wanna see Giga Pudding and enemas sprinkled throughout!

      • MrDude says:

        I… Don’t watch The Simpsons, so I’m not sure where the reference is.

        It started with the theme “Boy meets Girl”, then I added “Boy Meets Girl, They Fight Crime!”, and others took it from there.

        Again, I don’t really know where the Simpsons reference comes in, but it looked to me (Reading the pre-pruning theme suggestion list) that it was just a cascade of adding bits to it.

        That’s how it came about to the best of my knowledge.

  30. xhunterko says:

    Okay though, but however question. Why are rounds 4 AND 5 up for voting? At the same time?

    • PoV says:

      Does it make you nervous? 😉

      I like letting the rounds overlap a bit, so people that come late can still get a vote in. That’s also why round 5 started early.

      There will be only 1 day of final theme voting.

      • xhunterko says:

        Ooh. Okay. It’s just that I thought winners of round 1 made it to round 2, and then it went on yadda to yadda from that. This is only my third ludum dare so I wasn’t sure.

  31. Cooshinator says:

    Whoah, how come everyone is voting for almost the exact opposite themes as I am? When I vote, I look for something that I could really be creative with, but not too hard to think up ideas for. I like intriguing concepts (like “inverse”) better than general themes (like “wheather”). What things do you guys look for?

    • xhunterko says:

      How quickly can I wrap a minimilist platformer around this thing and do I know enough about it to have it make sense is what I sort of look for. The other part is ‘I think i can squeeze a game out of that’.

  32. Actually, “boy meets girl, they fight crime” had a lot of potential, and I’m sorry to see it not make the cut. I had some vague idea of a Disgaea clone with the two main characters being the guy (who is kind of squeamish around technology, but can connect with the spirit world and summons ghost allies and whatnot) and the girl (who’s a total skeptic about all things metaphysical, but can McGyver robot allies together from pretty much anything).

  33. borso says:

    Noooooo, pigman is out.

    • MrDude says:

      What about us curmudgeons who want themes that are interesting because of the ideas that come from them, and not the fact that they’re funny?

      We’re pretty happy, I’ll tell you that much. (Well, most of us, anyway)

      • SurplusGamer says:

        I see your point, most certainly. I would prefer an idea that immediately inspires a whole wealth of ideas and such, like the ones of many LDs past. However, I think it only requires a little imagination to see that almost any theme could bring forth great and diverse game ideas, you just might need to try a bit harder with some. Or to put it another way, it’s true that some themes give ideas more easily than others, but I’d never go as far as to blame a lack of ideas on the theme that gets picked.

      • Actually, ‘pigman’ had potental:
        – A game about uncovering corrupt cops
        – A game featuring a were-boar as a boss
        – A dating game where a snout-nosed guy finds love (Porco Rosso meets Harvest Moon)

        In short, some silly themes may actually be as fertle or even better for churning out ideas than ‘real’ ones.

        • xhunterko says:

          Or you happen upon the lost remnants of the pigman world and explore them to the depths as you descend while trying not to die and containing your excitement but your not fooling your kitten and then you discover something embarrassing and unexpected and then you have to get to the chopper really quickly so you use time travel.

  34. elmernite says:

    This is the first Ludum Dare that I have ever attempted. One quick thing I hope someone can clear up for me. Does MUSIC also have to be create by yourself?

  35. Martoon says:

    If the first Redundancy wins, I’m assuming the theme will actually be based on the second Redundancy?

  36. This is going to be so much FUN. So many wonderful themes this time.

    My favourites were the joke themes and themes that were verbs. I came up with a game idea for each and every theme in seconds. No matter what is chosen, if you are a creative person you should not allow a theme you don’t like to get in the way of having fun and creating an original and fun game.

    If you don’t like the theme that wins, please don’t complain about it.

    Just use your imagination! The possibilities are endless! =)

  37. SurplusGamer says:

    Why was it changed from ‘Title of game must be a year’ to ‘Game based on a year’? the former was much better.

  38. Martoon says:

    Aww, my “Enemas as weapons” didn’t make it to the finals. :(

  39. Kuppo says:

    If “Text Input Action Game” wins, I’m out. >:(

  40. aus_mike says:

    All of these themes seem to ‘open ended’ or to vague. Which wouldn’t really make them challenging.

    Say if you had set out to make ‘generic side scrolling shooter/slasher’. You could easily interpret all of the final round themes to fit into that game with almost no changes.

    Aftermath – change the back gorund to grim looking wasteland.

    Being lost – same game, your just not told where you are/why your there at the start.

    Containment – all the enemys are infected with generic virus, so you have to kill them (same game)

    Created but never destroyed – main character is a super soldier, and cant die (just regenerates health or some bs)

    Demolition – no change needed. (super generic name)

    Depth – you under ground or under water but its still the same game.

    Digging – main character is a miner escapeing a mine with infected workers or some such.

    Discovery – you discover stuff as you blast your way along (no real change)

    Don’t die – your not meant to die (super generic name)

    Elements – the backgorund/foreground weather changes from raining/sunny etc (makes minor changes in gmaeplay)

    Energy – you pick up simple ‘power ups’ as you scroll along (same could be said for elements)

    Evolution – same as above, you kill enemys and they cause you to evolve (power-ups, speed/strength)

    Game based on a year – if the game is a grim future waste land, just call it 2142

    Sacrifice – you die at the end to save mankind (the whole game up to that point would be the same)

    Seeds – whenever generic enemy dies, he/she drops ‘seeds’ that cause trees to grow in the fore/background. (the mission is to grow trees to save the world or some BS… but its still that same side scrolling game)

    Text Input Action Game – every so often you have to type “open door” or “reload” etc…

    That was unexpected – game ends at arbitrary point with a unrelated picture on the screen (probably an unpleasant one)

    The Unknown – Same as ‘Being lost’

    Time travel – every so often you pass through a “time portal” and the backgorund/forground

    Vulnerability – your vulnerability changes as you pass through different sections of game makeing them more dangerous.

    end cynical rant–

    • PoV says:

      Being “Challenging” isn’t necessarily the goal either. If you’re looking to just make a straight-up platformer, then you’re right: most themes can be used as exactly that, themes. But if you gut the run-and-jump, most themes can be reinterpreted in interesting ways.

      – An Aftermath game could have something to do with comparing scene A against scene B (the aftermath).
      – Being lost could encourage unique use of mazes.
      – Containment is certainly the “more than zombies” zombies theme, but could be thought of like a box containing things (grocery store bagger).
      – Created but never destroyed, you build/place something to solve problems, but those things you placed become the new problems (frog, snake, bigger mammal).
      – Demolition, make it and break it, or just break it.

      And so on.

    • Torquil says:

      Whether or not you choose to interpret the theme in such a rigid way is up to you, but you will lose votes, especially in the theme category, for doing so.

    • SurplusGamer says:

      It is a capital mistake to design before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist themes to suit ideas, instead of ideas to suit themes.

  41. madk says:

    If the theme is the action game in text or whatever and I can’t find some creative way to make something totally different and still consider it following the theme, I’m going to scream. After spending months on an flexible and vastly featured ASCII graphics engine if all I use it for is a simple text adventure/action game, I will not be pleased.


  42. Starspell says:

    Hey everyone.

    This will be my first LD. Hope that it all goes well and I’m looking forward to playing everyone’s games.

  43. Nugsy says:

    The suspense is killing me! Roll on 2am!

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