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Ludum Dare 32
 
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Sticky Bomber – Post mortem

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Monday, April 20th, 2015 2:07 pm

Day 1 summary:
I do like the theme, yet still struggled a bit with ideas. Finally decided to make a ‘Rube Goldberg’ style puzzler where you deliver a nasty substance onto a victim’s head. I started prototyping. Problem 1: liquids are hard to simulate (I have no ‘base code’ for it). Problem 2: good puzzles are even harder to design. Got nowhere, gave up. Assumed this was the end of my LD32… #Fail.

Day 2 summary:
Back in the game! As often happens, I woke up with a new idea that might just be doable in a day. Worked super-hard in the morning to prototype it. Hmm, it’s kinda fun! Most of the work was in the Unity editor, with only ~150 lines of code. Relies a lot on physics + randomised levels.

What worked:
New game idea was simple enough to do in <12 hours without cutting corners.
Focused on 1 core game mechanic. Got it up and running quickly, established it was fun. This really boosts your confidence.
Didn't require complex level design or a lot of content (randomised levels).
Graphics all easy to draw.

What didn’t go so well:
Everything on day 1. Need to prototype or design on paper asap, and be realistic.
Wasn’t up to speed on Unity5 changes, ie new particle systems, UI/canvas stuff.
Not as adventurous as I could’ve been, fairly similar to my other games.

Plans: Might put it out on mobile after improving and tweaking a few things, + after seeing feedback.

Tools used: Unity5, Inkscape, GIMP, Sfxr, Audacity.

Thanks for playing! I’ve just rated my first 50 games, there are some really great ones, very imaginative.

Sticky Bomber – done!

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Sunday, April 19th, 2015 4:10 pm

anim1
[click to view anim gif]

Will write a proper post-mortem tomorrow, but having given up on the jam yesterday I woke up with a new idea! Had to be basic, but I’m pretty happy with how the game mechanic turned out.

Link to game page

All the best to those still working hard,
baz

Release the Yeti – Post mortem

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Tuesday, December 9th, 2014 12:26 pm

yeti-gif-cap newlogo-sml

Theme/idea: Ok, so I totally expected ‘Snowman’ to win and had a few ideas relating to that (mountain climbing, sled racing…). I struggled with ideas for the actual theme. So many games are already ‘one screen’, so I really admire devs who found clever innovations using this.

Anyway, I looked through the other final-round themes; ☃ + Death is Useful + Everything Falls Apart + You Are Not Supposed To Be Here + Chaos + You Can’t Stop, and combined them all! :)
The cinema overlay idea came on Day 2. Not super-original I know, but adds the theme again.

Day 1 summary:
Was a tough start, trying to get my ideas together. Prototyped the rope swinging and did a few graphics. Wrote almost no code, just used the Unity editor. Wasted time on a Unity line rendering issue. Very slow progress; thought about packing it in, but slept on it…

Day 2 summary:
Up early. Needed to be super-productive all day, and was! Got working on enemy code. Game seemed fun. No major coding headaches. Added the movie theatre theme, changed name to ‘Release the Yeti’. I knew by early afternoon that I could deliver the game. Uploaded it around 10pm.
(more…)

Release the Yeti – DONE!

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Sunday, December 7th, 2014 3:28 pm

yeti-itch-cover yeti-ss1 - Crop

After a slightly dodgy first day, had a super-productive 2nd day and got everything done in time. Game plays pretty much as I’d planned. I added the ‘movie screen’ theme for some extra silliness. Even had time for an intro scene where he escapes from the crate. Did more with audio than previous jams; made some vaguely decent sounds in cfxr, plus mixed together a music track.

I will write a post-mortem tomorrow – I’m gonna get some sleep now.

Play/rate it here: http://ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-31/?action=preview&uid=36950

Good luck all.

Day 2 begins – Release the Yeti

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Sunday, December 7th, 2014 12:21 am

Decided to push onward, and hope for a productive day. Had a couple of ideas overnight, but I need to do things in a sensible order in case I run out of time.
Also changed the name to ‘Release the Yeti’, since thats what happens (plan is to start him in a crate). ie you avenge your captors. I recall reading a good article saying that your game’s name *is* your story, however small. ie even ‘Space Invaders’ tells you exactly the story.

logo-sq

Good luck everyone!

Yeti game – slow progress (end of Day 1).

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Saturday, December 6th, 2014 3:13 pm

Fought with some weird Unity issues, and generally wasn’t very productive I think.
Slightly concerned I’ll need to cut this game so much it just won’t be what I imagined :(
Gonna sleep on it.

Yank the Yeti (or something). Prototype.

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Saturday, December 6th, 2014 7:54 am

Got something running at least. The game is ‘Yank the Yeti’ or ‘Yeti dangling’ (*send me name ideas pls*!). Basically, cause chaos with that yeti, destroying stuff whilst keeping the chopper safe. Simple stuff.

Really struggled with the theme. Plenty of ideas, but nothing that *really* does something amazing with it. But, you could say it uses the main theme + ☃ + Death is Useful + Everything Falls Apart + You Are Not Supposed To Be Here + Chaos + You Can’t Stop. :)

“Escape the Dream”- Post mortem.

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Sunday, August 24th, 2014 11:50 am

Unity, ~300 lines of code.
Other tools: Inkscape, GIMP, Sfxr.

What went right:
For my 2nd Ludum Dare I wanted to be more adventurous, thinking harder about the theme interpretation than I did for LD 29 (where I just made an arcade game which vaguely used the theme). I did not use my first few ideas, or rush into it. I went away from my desk to think. Finally, I decided on a genre new to me; a slower-paced puzzle/adventure based on dreams, with some narrative elements and a real ending.

 

Overall, I’m fairly happy with the end result, and I enjoyed working in a different genre. I think the game successfully conveys what I was aiming for, and uses the ‘connected worlds’ theme in multiple ways. I took some inspiration from games like Journey and Dear Esther (walking simulators..?), and even the ‘P.T.’ teaser — all those repeating doors and riddles!

 

icon1-lrge
The controls are simple, no complications there. The graphics took a long time to make, but I was aiming for a dream-like style. However, some of the filters are used to simply hide my dodgy drawing :( . I did not attempt 3d models this time (next time!).
There were no major problems in Unity, except my general lack of experience and a few crashes. The scope of the game was correct for the time available, I didn’t feel too rushed on the 2nd day. I only wasted a bit of time on mechanics that didn’t make it into the final game.
I created just 2 sound effects, but I thought it was enough (less is more??). Bad music would just detract from the game.

 

What went wrong:
I originally planned to use a range of interactions, e.g. having the player’s controls transfer to the other people/items in the scene. However, my initial attempts just didn’t look or work right, so I had to re-think it all on day 2, which is never the best idea.
The creation of the graphics was both good and bad; its not quite as nice as I would like, but it has a mostly cohesive style. The colors and shapes could’ve been stronger. The game doesn’t really use full 3d, all the graphics are flat sprites in the 3d scene.
Didn’t get a chance to get much feedback from players before submitting the final game.
Finally, I slept really badly on Saturday night (ironically enough), so I wasn’t exactly feeling 100%.

Play it here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-30/?action=preview&uid=36950

 

** SPOILERS!! Play game before reading! ** The stages in the game are of course a metaphor for sleep stages and trying to wake up. The other figures are memories of friends etc in your dream, or perhaps other dreamers. You cannot trigger the final stages by passing through the windows/portals alone, you must enter just after another figure has passed through from the other side, i.e. whilst you are both still glowing (‘connected worlds’ again). Who knows, maybe this process helps you sort out your memories, then finally conclude your dream… :)

 

Stroppy Swan – Finished! Mini post-mortem

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 11:47 am

menu-finalv1

By about 6:30 pm my Todo list was empty, and I could then do final tests on a range of browsers. Luckily, no awful bugs appeared so far (touch wood!). It runs fairly smoothly, but I don’t really optimise for browsers much.

I’ll admit I aimed fairly low for my first LD48, but saying that I think it was a good simple project to do; I didn’t have any new tech to learn, or new algorithms to work out. I could just enjoy watching it take shape. It has a single ‘level’ (randomised enemies), and 1 core game mechanic. Rather than try to draw realistic birds, water etc, I went for the ol’ retro look, but with some glowy filters on top (Inkscape). I did plan for more bird sprite animation frames, but I just went for the simplest approach.

I actually spent a lot of Saturday on graphics, whilst formulating the gameplay ideas, 90% of the coding happened on Sunday. I went for a long walk on Saturday and changed some key ideas before writing any (wasted) code.

Originally I mentioned wanting lots of different power-ups (hence the different food colours), but I soon changed to just a ‘score dash’ type game for v1. Power-ups could be fun to add later.

I was pretty ‘lazy’ with sound effects, just a few clicks in cfxr and tweaks in Audacity, it suits the retro style I think. Music… didn’t happen this time.

The final game is ~400 lines of MonkeyX code. My Congo framework saves me a little time (available via my site + github).

PS my top score is 800… 😉

Latest screenshot (Stroppy Swan).

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 2:54 am

wip3

The swans cross the screen from random edges. You click/touch to move your swan to any point (it eases/tweens to that location). My plans for fancy powerups etc will prob be cut for v1.0 , but I want to add combos since that would introduce more gameplay tactics. Its v simple 😛

Day 1 WIP on Stroppy Swan.

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Saturday, April 26th, 2014 1:24 pm

wip2

I have a swan on the screen, and it moves! Ok, yeah, not that much progress. I sense a busy day tomorrow. Screenshot shows html5 output from MonkeyX. I use my own Congo framework, but MonkeyX has a few good frameworks to choose from.

baz

Mockup… swan game.

Posted by (twitter: @GoodReactions)
Saturday, April 26th, 2014 6:13 am

wip1

This is just in Inkscape, no code yet. My idea is that the screen will be full of swans grabbing coloured food items, each having a different ‘powerup’ effect, some good, some bad! Simple controls, just click/touch a position to whoosh there.

I use MonkeyX for coding, Inkscape/Gimp graphics. Probably sfxr for sounds.

I’ll use pixel style gfx just for simplicity (+ I can’t draw birds). This is my first ld48 so don’t expect a miracle 😉

baz.

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