About alpha_rats (twitter: @alpha_rats)

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Ludum Dare 36
 
Ludum Dare 34
 
MiniLD #62
 
Ludum Dare 32
 
Ludum Dare 31
 
Ludum Dare 30

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First two days

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Sunday, August 28th, 2016 2:51 pm

For the first two days of the jam I had barely any time to work on my project, but there is some progress nonetheless!
I’ll take some actual time to work on it tomorrow.

welcome to the plague network

welcome to the plague network

The idea is a relatively abstract game about the black plague and a medieval “cyberspace”

I’m in!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Friday, August 26th, 2016 5:04 pm

I’ll be doing it quite relaxed this time around, but this LD is an important landmark as I made my very first game two years ago for the LD30!

Looking forward to it :)

Eda – demo available!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Tuesday, July 19th, 2016 12:58 pm

banner

Untitled-1

 

After some time spent reworking the prototype made for the LD33, the demo of my bonsai-growing game Eda is out!
I warmly recommend the desktop version, the game not being optimized for web.

 

> Play/Download through GameJolt

> Play/Download through itch.io

 

Thanks again to the Ludum Dare community for all the feedback and advice during the earlier development stages of the game.

I hope you’ll enjoy the experience!

Reworking my LD 34 entry Eda

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Sunday, June 5th, 2016 7:12 am

I’m currently reworking my LD34 entry, a bonsai-growing game called Eda.

First  of all : thanks a lot to the Ludum Dare community for all the useful feedbacks on the first version of the game!
Many of these insights are now implemented, and contributed dramatically to improve the game and motivate me to push it further.

The LD vesion of the game

The original version (playable here) allowed the player to choose the branches he wished to grow. The player had overall limited agency over the tree’s evolution, and the game presented little variety outside of diverse planting pots.

tumblr_nzepnlW2r91tqwxxoo1_400

My LD 34 entry Eda

The current version of the game

In it’s current state, the game presents two different shaping tools : growing and pruning.

It also features now :

– different varieties of trees to choose from or to grow randomly
– different planters and little carpets to choose from or to randomize
– four seasons with different color schemes, depending on moon cycles
– an in-game screenshot mechanic
– a proper menu and decent UI
– improved graphics
– a more fluid and adaptative camera
– fully rewritten and optimized code

A lot of these ideas came firectly from the suggestions made here on the LD website, so once again: thanks everybody!

alpha_rats-Eda screenshot- main screen 04june

Eda, screenshot : June 2016

alpha_rats-eda-screenshot june20165png

Eda, screenshot : June 2016

alpha_rats-eda-screenshot june20163png

Eda, screenshot : June 2016

Where is it heading to?

The plan is to have a free demo by mid-june and to ship the finished project by September 2016, for desktop and Android.

The main remaining features yet to implement :
– make the tree evolve depending on season cycles (bloom, fall, growing fruits, etc…)
– add some weather elements (rain, snow, sunshine, etc…)
– add more tree shaping and tree care elements
– give more variety to the different kinds of trees, with more varied growing shapes
– have different kind of background scenery, eventually randomly generated

And finally : thanks to Mathis Bouron who did a great job with the soundtrack and sound effects, and continues to do so now for the new version of the game!

 

Mac and OSX builds are now up!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015 3:22 pm

It took a bit of time, but Linux and OSX builds of Eda are now available on itch.io!

Thanks for all the feedback from those who already tried it out, I’ll definitely continue to work on it and apply the great advice received.

alpha_rats-Eda-generatedTree4

 

Post-Mortem : Eda

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Friday, December 18th, 2015 9:16 pm

First of all, I fixed the bugs present in the game, it should normally run well now!

>> Eda: link to the entry (fixed) <<

 

Eda-alpha_rats-ludumdare34_gamedev-banner

What went well :

  • For a second try with the Unity engine after using a graphical programming tool (Construct2), I think it went pretty well and much better than my preceding entry for the LD62.
  • I’m happy with the music and sound effects created by Mathis! Thanks to him a lot.
  • I had to choose a very simple visual style because of the time I planned to spend on the programming (the amount of tutorial reading in the timelapse can attest of my experience in the matter), and it worked out pretty well in the end, with a visual style I’m pretty satisfied with.
  • I managed to set the scope of the game better, and to achieved a more polished game than with my preceding tries.
  • Overall, the working process and time management went pretty smoothly.
  • I did my first timelapse! Which is nice not only for the resulting video, but I realised that all these process screenshots were ideal to document my work and to analyse my workflow to make it better. I was also happy to have a vision of how the tree algorithm evolved with time, when working on it I was too busy with coding to screenshot every iteration!

What went wrong :

  • Due to my incompetence, I ended up with some bugs in the game which caused it to crash for some players, or to freeze. These are corrected now, but for next time, I’ll plan some time at the end of the jam to fix my mistakes! I lost some opportunities to get some feedback this way, and some interested poeple have been deceived, only because of me overlooking this issue when submitting the game.
  • I  spent way more time looking for tutorials/information instead of actually coding, but this is a normal effect of my lack of experience with Unity.

 

Evolution of the tree generation algorithm:

eda_treeAlgoEvolution4 eda_treeAlgoEvolution5 eda_treeAlgoEvolution7 eda_treeAlgoEvolution9 eda_treeAlgoEvolution11

For example, by looking at the screenshots here, made thanks to the timelapse, I can realise that the bigger trunks visible in one of the middle stages were quite interesting looking. For my next iteration of the program, I should allow to have a bigger size difference between branches and their children, to allow trees with this kind of style to grow.

 

The music created by Mathis for the game :

Process Timelapse :

Eda: grow a Bonzai

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Tuesday, December 15th, 2015 10:08 am

Our game is up! Eda is the name given to Bonzai branches: grow and subdivide them carefully to create an harmonious tree, using left and right click.

Come on and try to grow your Bonzai!

 

gif-eda-little_alpha_rats

Eda : Bonzais now looking like trees!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Monday, December 14th, 2015 1:19 pm

Finally, the Bonzais look like genuine little trees!
The game also has a name : Eda, which is the name given to Bonzai branches.
A few hours left now for polish and making them grow leaves.

hurray hurray2

 

Bonzai growing: end of second day!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Sunday, December 13th, 2015 8:11 pm

It’s time for a little progress log for this second day of jamming! For my second game made with Unity I’m taking ages to make anything work but I’m still happy about where it’s heading compared to my previous participations to the ld!

  • planters are now randomized and their designs a bit more polished
  • player can grow branches with left click and stop their growth with right click
  • trunks start to look like bonzai trunks
  • sound is implemented

To finish tomorrow absolutely:

  • grow other branch starts on click
  • grow leaves on branches so they don’t look dead
  • make the reset function / generate new tree work properly
  • if possible, allow to cut some branches to restart their growth and subdivide them

And if time for it: add some polish, tweak the growing algorithm a bit more, etc…

LDJAM-day2-alpha_rats-bonzai-game

little guys and their planters

Good luck everybody with your entries, I’m taking some rest!

First day progress!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Saturday, December 12th, 2015 5:37 pm

After one day of work, the Bonzai-growing game is on the way! I struggled a lot with programming as usual, but it starts to look like something and the music by Mathis is already done and ready.

A few planter sprites

A few planter sprites

First tests of bonzai growing, still not quite there :

screenshot2- bonzai - ldjam - alpha_rat

test 1

screenshot- bonzai- ldjam - alpha_rat

test 2

The growth alrogithm still needs some work, obviously! Back to work!

Taurus submitted and bugfixed!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Friday, October 2nd, 2015 8:05 am

Taurus is up and running!
You can now try out the entry !

After submitting the jam build, I added a bugfixed version on the itch.io page to correct the game-breaking bugs, otherwise the game is exactly the same as the one submitted to the LD62.

Thanks a lot to Hasar de Doria who made the music and sfx for Taurus, JupiterHadley for trying out the prototype in their LD62 compilation!

alpha_rat-Taurus-MiniLD62 gamedev

alpha_rat-Taurus-MiniLD62 gamedev2

Progress update on Taurus!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Saturday, September 26th, 2015 1:22 pm

Now my miniLD entry has a name, the sprites have been  vectorized, and some programming is already done and finished.

Switching from Construct2 to Unity went better than expected! It’s actually very satisfying to have way more control over the whole process.

Here’s a little update in pictures, before the next updates (which should show more of the gameplay, if everything goes fine) :

screenshot

Screenshot : current look of the game

alpha_rat_miniLD62_graphic assets wip

Background assets : building blocks!

alpha_rat_miniLD62_graphic assets player sprite

Little green guy

Boss fight : concept art

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Wednesday, September 23rd, 2015 7:13 am

The game in itself is progressing slowly, but at least I have the character designs ready to be turned into final sprites.

Here are some pictures of the concepts!

alpha_rat- character design sketches miniLD62

Concept art : first boss drafts

concept_boss_battle_alphaRat

concept illustration : FIGHT !

3 stages- concept art- alpha_rat LD62

This ain’t even my final form!

Jumping into the mini LD

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Monday, September 21st, 2015 9:43 am

Starting to work on my mini-LD entry!
Here is a first level mockup so far :)

level mockup

1 day left!

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Sunday, April 19th, 2015 5:02 pm

Last update of the week-end for the Parasite project !

All the main gamplay elements have been implemented – Phew !

What has been made since the last update :
– the host timer
– chasing behavior of guards
– the and queen room and the win condition
– implementation of music and sounds composed by -DEX-

For tomorrow :
– polish animations
– fix a few little bugs
– polish the sound effects
– tuning a bit the AI of the ants
– add instructions to menu

gameplay

 

Some progress

Posted by (twitter: @alpha_rats)
Sunday, April 19th, 2015 8:59 am

Today the main gameplay mechanics have been implemented, and a lot of progress has been made with the sound and music !

Here you can see a parasite infested ant (the player has to infest an ant to take control of it) and an ant changing it’s host !

changing-host

changing host

infested-ant

infested ant

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next steps to implement :

– death of host after a few seconds
– allow the guards to chase and kill the infested ants
– create the Queen Ant room
– setup the score system and a functional menu with instructions

screen

general screenshot

 

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