LD themes report (for my game)

Posted by (twitter: @AlphishCreature)
September 3rd, 2014 7:51 am

Since people seem to post fancy statistics recently, I decided to make some of my own, too. However, I don’t really have an easy access to LD data nor a friendly bot to retrieve these for me, so instead I came back to some idea I had some time ago, but eventually forgot.

So here it is: a complete list of all themes proposed across 4 rounds, with the themes from final round being italicised. Maybe someone will find it interesting. Of course, I wouldn’t mind if you decided to play the game in question first. 😉

Planned and executed (4/81; 2/20):
(themes that I wanted to allude to in one way or another, and succeeded in doing so)

  • Choose A Path (you’re making your own paths)
  • Connected Worlds (guess you have seen this one already); I even managed to integrate it into gameplay, i.e. make it so that without the theme one of core game mechanics wouldn’t have much sense
  • Manipulate The Environment (yay, topology~!)
  • Potato Salad (that’s what Iri’s dad would make, as mentioned in initial dialogue)

Spotted and executed (11/81; 4/20):
(i.e. themes that I was aware would be present in my game, but didn’t really tried to include)

  • Another World (well, duh)
  • Chaos (to be fixed)
  • Do No Harm (quite a feat, considering someone else couldn’t resist making a shooter in relation to CONNECTING PLANETS WITH OPTICAL FIBER)
  • Experimentation (them students…)
  • For Science! (them students again…)
  • Human Stupidity (…and again…)
  • Labyrinth
  • Lost In Space (depending on definition of “space” – it’s very interdimensional)
  • Unexpected Side Effect (…and again…)
  • What Could Possibly Go Wrong? (…and again…)
  • Wonderful Apocalypse (…and again…)

Planned, but not included (11/81; 4/20):
(i.e. uses of themes that I wanted to allude to, but eventually didn’t have time)

  • Artificial Intelligence (overlords in cyan levels)
  • Brainwashed (the people welcoming robot overlords, obviously)
  • Break The Rules (possibly to be personified with some rebel in cyan levels)
  • Destroy The System (similar to Break The Rules)
  • I For One Welcome Our New Robot Overlords (to be repeated word by word by one of people in cyan levels)
  • No One Can See You (kinda planned as one of abilities)
  • The Power Of Machines (sort of; didn’t plan that theme specifically, but wanted machines to have power)
  • Shadows (the No One Can See You ability)
  • Things Are Not What They Seem (cyan levels… kinda sorta)
  • Transformation (one of abilities)Maps
  • You’re Not Supposed To Be Here (wanted to include a character somewhere that would have different colour than surroundings, remarking how it’s probably not the place they should be at)

Unintended, but somehow included (5/81; 0/20):

  • Don’t Save The Princess (clearly, you don’t)
  • Maps (in Theory; though they would be useful in field, too…)
  • Speed (tuuurboooo~!)
  • Strange Physics (very interdimensional)
  • You Can’t Fight Back (you must have something to fight against in the first place)

Ignored and not included (50/81; 10/20):

  • Alchemy
  • Break It, Fix It (only fix it – breaking was in backstory)
  • Day and Night
  • Dreams And Nightmares
  • Don’t Stop Moving
  • End Of The Road
  • Everyone Is A Monster
  • Flow
  • Forgotten
  • Forces Of Nature (unless infinite supply of shruberries counts)
  • Fortress
  • From The Ashes
  • Glimpse Of The Future (pfft, too deterministic!)
  • Growing
  • Illusion
  • Infectious
  • Isolation
  • I Think It’s Alive
  • It’s A Trap!
  • Knowledge Is Power (knowledge = power = energy = matter = mass…)
  • Limited Capacity
  • Limited Control
  • Loot (unless topology circuits count)
  • Love (definitely not as leading plot – it’s pretty overused at that point…)
  • Losing Control
  • No Return
  • Nothing Is Real
  • No Way In, No Way Out
  • Off The Grid
  • On The Edge
  • The Other Side
  • Points Of View
  • Randomly Generated (initially considered, but it would have been way too much mess)
  • Rise And Fall
  • The Space Is Getting Smaller
  • Something’s Out There
  • Strength In Numbers
  • Supply And Demand
  • Survive (several orders of magnitude more overused than Love)
  • This Happens To Me Every Day (no switching light, sorry)
  • Time Travel (too wibbly-wobbly, space is already enough)
  • Trust No One (meh)
  • Under Pressure
  • Unlimited (I’d like to see someone combining this theme with Limited Capacity and Limited Control)
  • What Is That In The Distance?
  • Where No One Has Gone Before
  • You Are Already Dead (no, you aren’t)
  • You Are The Weapon (no, you aren’t)
  • You Can Never Have Too Many (no, you can)
  • You Must Leave It Behind (just got reminded of someone ranting about “You [something]” themes)

(hmm, I really could use some spoiler tag here…)

To sum it up in fancy images, because we all know everyone likes fancy images:
General theme usage
Final round theme usage

I wonder, how about others’ theme coverage; in particular, what sort of other themes appeared the most in LD games in one way or another (Another World, perhaps?), and whether every theme has related game (I know for sure “This Happens To Me Every Day” has at least one). Perhaps we should play some sort of Ludum Dare theme bingo? ^^”


One Response to “LD themes report (for my game)”

  1. My game was going to allude to 30 of the other themes… alas, I only got up to level 17 before I stopped.

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