Dastardly Diver – post-mortem

Posted by (twitter: @Spierek)
December 17th, 2012 12:40 pm

Alright, here goes:

What I did well:

  • going with a really simple idea. I managed to barely finish it 30 minutes before the deadline, and I devoted enough time into polishing it.
  • stocking my fridge full of food before the compo. Saved me time that would be lost during grocery trips.
  • (mostly) choosing tools that I’ve been kind-of familiar with. I’ve dabbled a bit in SFML 2 before, I’m doing all of my other C++ work in VS2012, and I’m able to work efficiently in Photoshop, so I didn’t need to learn much. The only exception is in the BGM category – this was my first time creating music at all (except some prior experience with Audacity and voice recording), and I decided to go with Soundation. An hour of playing around resulted in a four seconds long loop, that – to my surprise – was actually praised in the comments. Yay for that.
  • choosing an idea working for the most probable themes. This one could’ve been easily adapted to “Outer Space” (you are an alien, trying to deliver a bomb to the Earth) or “End of the World” (you’re a… actually, there wouldn’t have been any changes!). So that’s good.

(more after the break)

What I did wrong:

  • little experience with creating games. ┬áThis was actually my very first self-coded and self-released game, so I had to quickly adapt to a lot of new concepts, which has also resulted in:
  • messy code. I know it’s Ludum Dare and probably more than a half of submitted projects is a mess when it comes to code, but mine is like a Jenga tower that looked fine until the 36h mark, and after that the earthquake hit, causing the blocks to fly everywhere (actually, this would’ve been a pretty good metaphore if I used Code::Blocks for programming).
  • procrastination. Even though I was coding hard, there were those moments of staring at walls, trying to figure out what to do. I need to work on my concentration.
  • using C++. I like the language, and it’s the one I’m most fluent in, but Web is the way to go when it comes to Ludum Dare. Next time I’ll try using Unity or Flash.

What could’ve been changed if I had more time:

  • mine explosion animation.
  • an intro to the game (skippable, of course) that showed your submarine being lowered into the water, as the villain (you) was explaining his grand scheme.
  • a satisfactory outro (and not something that was mashed up in Photoshop in five minutes right before the deadline).
  • other enemies (I was on throwing in some torpedoes, or horizontal lasers for more variety)
  • better enemy randomization (a matter of tweaking).
  • making sure that you can’t get blocked by a wall of enemies – you should’ve been able to pass every enemy in every scenario.
  • voice acting (a villain shouting “NOOOOOOOO-” during the game over screen; I was actually close to doing that).

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

[cache: storing page]