To get this settled right off the bat: this LD was great fun, regardless of my troubles. I’m happy to say that I finished the (very much incomplete) game Beyond Our Sacred Sun.
I did some coding, and frankly was amazed at the functionality GAE provided. I had to do some tinkering to set up a Lubuntu VM as a development server (I’m bad at configuring dependencies in Windows), but after that, I was able to continue on a decent pace for a while.
At about 36 hours in (and countless showstopping bugs) I had a decent framework to make my game in. Stars moved in a stellar map, and were synchronized by the server automatically. An event system was apparently functional. “12 hours left–I’ll have to cut down on features, but at least I’ll probably have some gameplay by then! With multiplayer in a persistent world, no less!” Of course, things soon tanked.
My game, at its peak of development.
At around 36 hours, I hit my first solid, unbudging handicap. I exceeded a GAE server quota: database reads. My code wasn’t efficient (not surprising, it being my first web application) and I had committed some unmentionable sins during solar map generation. If the google servers couldn’t handle development debugging, there was no way they could handle LD traffic.
“…there can be no true despair without hope.”
At the realization that I couldn’t use GAE for my LD game, I frantically scoured the internet for another way to host it. When I found AppScale, I breathed a sigh of relief. But then I saw the downloads page. “Torrents? Well… ok, I guess.” I started it up, and to my dismay found that there weren’t any seeders–only 16 penniless peers. After more searching, I found something promising: a blog post from Wolfire on AppScale. Unfortunately that post was 3 years old.
My development process’ new theme: Abandoned
With that discovery, I took up another of the suggested LD themes and abandoned my project. With only 4 hours left, I decided to replicate some of the basic ideas of my game and make Beyond Our Sacred Sun.
And that, my friends, is how I ended up with a stripped-down Galcon clone.