Ludum Dare 36
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Ancient Technology

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LD36 has ended!
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Planet Gravity

Posted by (twitter: @jens_n)
April 25th, 2012 7:13 pm

Yeah… Somehow I managed to not write the final status update until now 😀

I will give you a summary of my weekend instead.


I joined the Jam 24 hours late due to some real life (well, university) work. The original plan was to work through the weekend, but when seeing the theme “Tiny World” I was in love and just had to hurry up to be able to join.

To get a overview I did a short sketch on the whiteboard . It was a “planet” – a circle with a house on the side and a tree on the top. I decided to skip over to coding. My motivation obviously came from “building a planet”. Making a game was really secondary on this jam, my interest was art-, style- and tech-related.

After posting an on this blog I started modelling a simple planet. Then I wrote the first version of the force field and added greyscale shading (greyscale because I had no motivation to teach my obj-loader to import materials).

The state at the end of the day:

The next day I fixed the loading of colors and almost instantly went back to greyscale because it looked like a plastic world (though fixing payed in the end when I had to emphasize the gameplay-relevant items). I still had about twelve hours to go. Time to implement shadow mapping! The light shining through the planet was really annoying and I already wanted to play with it for some months.

8 hours before the deadline Nick (@urahziel) visited to look at my progress and decided to join me. A three hour break later (last chance to make a break :D) we returned to work, this time with a game design idea (credits to Nick) and the motivation to implement it – knowing that I would get a model from a skilled modeler really gave me a push. Though I still had to finish the shadow mapping first. I just had to do it 😀

The story ends with last-hour-gameplay-implementation and last-minute balancing. So last-minute I actually forgot to fix the game name on the title screen from “Tiny World” to “Planet Gravity” (though I silently fixed the download before anyone could notice :>).

What to take for the next ludum dare? I had no idea what to expect from this jam. If I had known how good the perception of the game would be (based on the current comments) and I would definitely have saved some of the long breaks and taken this project more seriously from the beginning.

I will definitly keep the nine hours of sleep on the last night. Being wide awake during the final stressful hours was super-helpful and I can absolutely recommend it.

So that’s it. Let me finally I invite you to play Planet Gravity!

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