Lepton’s Quest postmortem

August 28th, 2012 6:21 am

Doing the Jam in Ludum Dare 24 turned out to be an experiment of sorts. A proof of concept. We wanted to see if we could make a game, but also involve anyone in the Minecraft community we run at indiesquish.com. We’d gather all the troops and set them upon some empty worlds to build sets for use in the game. They’d have a custom texture pack that eliminated all the textures, leaving just coloured cubes, looking very similar to the final output after rendering the scenes in Blender.

All this turned out exactly as planned. They showed up, they planned and built a grand assortment of buildings, NPCs, monsters and UI elements.

The theme was “evolution”, which I naturally assumed would result in loads of high concept stuff from other devs that I would not be able to do. The engine I used is intended for 2D point & click adventure games, so we had to do something that stuck to those mechanics. The plan was to build the “evolution” part into the plot, and make a simple RPG with Japanese style turn-based combat.  Thus Lepton’s Quest was born.

Sadly, as the end of the 72 hours approached, we started leaving out more and more of the planned features, with the aim of at least shipping something by the end of it. And we did. Not great, but as a proof of concept I think it worked well.

 

What went well

1. The artwork. A bucketload of players showed up to help with the building, while our best builder  Nidhux coordinated most of it. We’ll post some videos from the livestream at some point.

2. Livestreaming everything. We had a livestream on twitch that showed the building and development work. It helped builders visualise their construction against the rendered output, and generally kept everyone motivated.

3. Community. We hadn’t given the sound/music any thought beforehand, and had several people volunteering to do music and sounds. Kas/Kong also hopped in on day 3 to create the lovely into and outro.

 

 

What was left out 

1. Combat system. It was to be a simple turn-based system. You have two attacks and one “drink potion” action. You get to pick one per turn. First is a basic damage attack with a chance to miss. The second is a low-damage attack with a chance to stun.

2. Monster encounters. The community built some awesome monsters, and in the spirit of the  “evolution” theme made variants on each type of creature. It would also feature random livestock around the village which would become mutated monstrosities.

3. NPC animations. This was never going to be too complicated, just enough to make them less static.

3. An underground aquaduct system. Down the well at the end would have taken you to an aquaduct system. You’d have had to defeat a boss monster (two headed crocodile) before being able to free the villagers.

4. Some sound engineering. The levels are way off… soft this, loud that.

5. Flavour. The plan was to add more flavour-dialogue to NPCs and add things for Lepton to look at and comment on.

6. Some added plot exposition. There was actually more plot to it, but we skipped some parts.

 

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One Response to “Lepton’s Quest postmortem”

  1. BenW says:

    That is a phenomenal way to generate art assets.

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