Ludum Dare 36
The Theme is:
Ancient Technology

Feedback Friends
Give and receive feedback on your game

LD36 has ended!
Well done to everyone who took part.
1910 Amazing Games!

About sorceress (twitter: @_sorceress)

Software Developer

twitter: @_sorceress


MiniLD #67
Ludum Dare 35
Ludum Dare 33
Ludum Dare 32 Warmup
Ludum Dare 31
Ludum Dare 30
Ludum Dare 29
Ludum Dare 27
Ludum Dare 27 Warmup
Ludum Dare 26
MiniLD 40
MiniLD #37
Ludum Dare 24
MiniLD #34
Ludum Dare 23
MiniLD 32
MiniLD 31
Ludum Dare 22
MiniLD #30
MiniLD #29
Ludum Dare 21

sorceress's Trophies

Too many entries award
Awarded by Sogomn
on September 8, 2014
Interesting Idea Poster Award
Awarded by MadGnomeGamer
on March 1, 2012
Constructive Response
Awarded by galman
on November 7, 2011

sorceress's Archive

Dare to Play LD36

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Sunday, August 28th, 2016 4:25 pm

After LD weekend, some people enjoy live-streaming play-throughs of others’ game entries. (Including making non-live videos for youtube, etc.) We call these people streamers.

If you are a streamer and want to advertise your Channel, Show, or Publication, you may post a link in the comments below.

Streamers sometimes take requests for LD games to play, and if that’s what you do then provide a link so that people can suggest games to you (off-site or in a separate thread please).

If you have a schedule planned, please share it as well, so people can know when to tune in.


NOTE: This thread is NOT for development streams.

Progress Report 2

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, August 27th, 2016 10:20 am

About 6.5 hours in. Map generator is coming along nicely, and I’ve drawn and imported some graphics too. Behold!

Progress Report 1

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, August 27th, 2016 7:56 am

I started four hours ago. I have gotten some base code written, and the beginnings of a map generator. Not much to show yet but a few coloured rects 😀

I’m always in!

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Friday, August 26th, 2016 4:57 pm

No matter that running LD this month will take some of my attention, I’m still up for making a game as well!

And this will be my 16th ludum dare! Here are some gifs of my recent LD entries:

LD35 LD29
LD30 LD27


Last time I opted to take part in the Jam rather than the Compo, and I think I will continue with this decision. Three days gives me time to make the kinds of games I want to make.

In previous I’m In posts, I’ve given tips for the 48 hour Compo, but as I’m relatively new to the Jam I don’t feel experienced enough to offer any advice on that yet :) But this is roughly how I spent my 72 hours last LD, and I’ll aim to follow a similar schedule this time:

  • Day 1 – engine, controls, graphics, music.
  • Day 2 – gameplay features, sound effects, menu, visual effects.
  • Day 3 – level design /content, polish.

I hope you all enjoy your weekend.

Welcome to Ludum Dare 36!

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Wednesday, August 24th, 2016 12:36 pm

Greetings everyone, and Welcome to Ludum Dare 36! It’s almost time to start jamming, but first we must choose our theme. Click the image below to Vote for Ludum Dare 36’s Theme! The highest scorer will be revealed on Saturday August 27th 01:00 UTC (Friday 18:00 PDT | Friday 21:00 EDT | Saturday 02:00 BST | Saturday 03:00 CEST | Convert to your timezone here).

Theme: Ancient Technology

Theme Voting!

For reference, results from rounds 1-4 are available here.

Join us on IRC (#ludumdare on for the theme announcement!

Keynote! This time hosted by McFunkypants

Important News

As you may have seen in recent discussions, PoV is not hosting Ludum Dare this time around. The community was polled and wanted to run an august event regardless. In acknowledgement of PoV’s concerns, the community were willing to forego the game rating phase after the event.

We looked at all of our options carefully for a few days, and (omitting all the arguments here) decided that LD36 will have no ratings phase, so please be aware of that.

Some users expressed fear that this decision would have a negative impact on the number of plays and comments each game receives. While some users felt that feedback was always more valuable than ratings. Taking this all into consideration, we created Feedback Friends. This mini-site recreates LD’s Coolness system, where giving comments on games should earn you comments on your game in return. You’re encouraged to use this mini-site to search for entries deserving more plays and feedback. So I hope each of us will play and comment on games as much as before, despite the changes. :)

Good luck to all participants. See you on the other side!

Credits: Sorceress: LD36 organiser; website maintainance | Tijn: theme slaughter coding; website maintainance | Wan: feedback friends lead coding; web hosting | Rnlf: theme sorting; user moderation | Frozen Fractal: feedback friends coding and support | additional contributions from: Liamlime, McFunkypants

Many thanks to the team for making LD36 happen!

Ludum Dare 36 Theme Voting Begins!

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, August 20th, 2016 1:24 pm

It’s less than one week to go until LD36, and Theme Voting has now begun!

Tune in every day for a new round of themes. \:D/

[ Round 1 | Round 2 | Round 3 ]

[ Round 4 | Final Round ]

* Rounds coloured Gold are still open. If you haven’t cast a vote yet, click the link to do it. End times for each round vary, and many cross over. Rounds coloured Bronze have closed, and clicking the link will reveal the results of that round.

* If you get an error message about needing to log in to vote, and you are already logged in, then try refreshing your browser (CTRL+F5 in Firefox/IE), or in Chrome F12 then Right Click on Refresh and select “Empty Cache and Hard Reload”).

* A total of 8000 themes were suggested, and almost 500,000 votes were cast in the Theme Slaughter.

Warmup Weekend for Ludum Dare 36

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Wednesday, August 17th, 2016 12:33 pm

Hello everyone! Ludum Dare is fast approaching… Are you ready for it? 😀

Between now and the start, you’re encouraged to test your tools. We call this the Warmup Weekend Make some art, import it, and draw it on screen. Make some sounds, import them, and play them on cue. If you’re using a new development tool, figure out the development cycle. Learn how to make a release too!

[ Submit/Edit | Browse ]


Ludum Dare 36 Wallpapers [22]

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, July 16th, 2016 12:10 pm

As always, the community is invited to create and share desktop wallpapers for the coming Ludum Dare in August.

You can upload images here, or if you prefer create a new post.

Be sure to add a link to your wallpaper below, as a comment. Note that users can’t embed images in comments. Just post the url for your wallpaper and/or thumbnail, and I’ll fix it!

Happy drawing, and have fun <3

psst: Last year’s wallpapers are here!

Real World Gatherings for Ludum Dare 36 [16]

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, July 9th, 2016 1:24 pm

While Ludum Dare is typically an online event (where we make games in the comfort of our own homes) many people like to organise real-world gatherings.

Events have limited space, so if you are interested in attending a venue, then contact the organiser ASAP!

If you are organising an event and want to let us know, then write in a comment below, and we’ll add it to the list:

City, Country (State) – Venue name – Link to contact information

North America

Longmont, Colorado, USA – TinkerMill – Contact Details
Troy, New York, USA – Tech Valley Game Space – Contact Details
Perth Amboy, New Jersey (USA) – Life Abstract Studios – Contact Details
Knoxville, Tennessee USA – Knox Game Design Meetup – Contact Details
New York, USA (NY) – Babycastles – Contact Details
Durham, North Carolina, USA – The Iron Yard – Contact Details


Tours, France – MAME – Contact Details
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain – #LDGC – Contact Details
Tartu, Estonia – APT Game Generator – Contact Details
Zaragoza, Spain #GamebossJAM – Contact Website | mailto: [email protected] | Live streams!
Luleå, Sweden – Luleå Makerspace – Contact Details
Osnabrück, Germany – Contact Details


KDU Glenmarie, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia – Contact Details

South America

Brasília, Brazil (DF) – Jungle Coworking – Contact Details
Colatina-ES, Brasil – Contact Details
Curitiba, Brasil – PUCPR (inside Paralympic Game Jam) – Contact Details

Do you want to help?

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Friday, June 10th, 2016 12:29 pm

Linked below is a form for people to offer help with building the new Ludum Dare website. The purpose of this is to keep all offers of help together in one place, so it is easy to refer to. Hopefully this will make it easier for PoV find whatever assistance he needs over the coming months.

So if you feel you have a valuable skill to offer, and the time and willingness to do so, then click.

August LD – You Decide!

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Thursday, June 9th, 2016 3:18 pm

Greetings Ludum Darers,

PoV has said that if I want to take charge on this, then I should start a thread. So here we are…

I have prepared a voting form for people to give feedback on four options relating to whether we should host an LD in August or not.

I urge you all to first of all read the recent blog post by PoV, which should be stickied at the top of the front page. In this post, PoV has highlighted his reasons for wanting to cancel the LD in August.

Some people in the community believe it should go ahead regardless, in one form or another. Whatever the outcome, PoV has made it clear that he will not be hosting any event in August, so that task would become the responsibility of trusted others.

I’m in favour of polling the community, and seeing what you all think. Please try to understand the problems PoV has highlighted. Take time to weigh up the pros and cons of running an LD event anyway. Please try to take all things into consideration when voting.

The provisional date we have for an August LD is the weekend of August 26th-29th. But note that we have not yet decided if the game jam will go ahead at all. The purpose of the poll is gather community feedback, and help us decide what to do next.

The poll was closed Tuesday 14th June, at 20:00UTC.

Over 600 votes have been received.


  • Overall, the community very much wants the August LD to go ahead, and to happen on this website, in one form or another.
  • The community understand PoV’s concerns and is willing to forego the game rating phase after the event.
  • The community is opposed to hosting the August LD elsewhere.
  • The community is strongly opposed to cancelling August LD completely.

Also note: Even though option 1 isn’t the highest scoring, it is still quite positive. So on the whole, the community does not feel PoV’s concerns are sufficient reason to have anything but a normal LD.

The next step:
The next step is decide how we are going to make this happen. Several people have the necessary permissions to create jams, but there are things which we cannot do without some minimal cooperation by PoV. For example, we cannot make theme announcement using the @ludumdare twitter account, nor do we have access to the new theme hub.

LD is cancelled?

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Tuesday, June 7th, 2016 5:20 pm

Greetings, Ludum Darers!

It’s not often I post here, but I’m hoping we can get some discussion going about this.

PoV tweeted about one month ago: Linky

While there hasn’t been any official word on August LD being cancelled, there is this and a few other scattered tweets.

I’m seeing these tweets cause a lot of confusion, especially visitors to IRC. On one hand, many are unaware of these tweets, and are expecting and preparing for an LD in August. While an equally large number of people are convinced that there will be no LD in August.


Triangles say Yip – postmortem

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, April 23rd, 2016 10:47 am

For LD entries, 2015 was not a particularly successful year for me, so I decided switch to the Jam this time, to give myself that extra bit of freedom.

Theme Announcement: With the new theme voting system, we had no insights as to which themes were favourites, and I didn’t like this very much. When we have 4-5 “favourite” themes in mind, we can familiarise ourselves with each of them, and think about what each allows. But we couldn’t do that this time.

The idea: My first idea was a character who changed form, from man to bird, like in the ZX Spectrum game Alchemist. But then I felt that mechanic would be very commonly seen this LD, so I rejected the idea. My second idea was something with literal shapes, like block sliding puzzles, or pegs through holes, but I feared those too would be commonplace, and they’re not the kinds of games I make for LD either. My third idea involved a world of shape people, and you had to change shape to ‘fit in’ with different groups. Some kind of story driven adventure game. That was the idea I went with.

Day One: Day one for me is generally a day where I draw all the graphics+animations, get an environment on the screen, with character controller, then compose music before bed time. And that was pretty much what I did this time. I decided to make a game with Game Boy styled graphics, because I felt that big pixels and a small colour palette would complement the drawing of this Shape city. After googling for some gameboy images, I found screenshots of Link’s Awakening, and this became a mild inspiration for me, graphics-wise.

Other tasks for day one included: 1) Making a simple map editor, so that I could test the environment, collision detection, etc. 2) I decided that humour would form a big part of the text. So creating a list of shape related humour was something which happened throughout the weekend.

Day Two: Day two would normally be my last day, but with this being the Jam I had an extra day. I decided that today I would focus not on the story, but on designing the game world, and the regions within it. Also build the remaining parts of the game engine – 1) the AI for the cpu controlled characters, 2) the quest system, with (optional) arrows to guide the player to unlocked quests. 3) the examine button. 4) the chat button and how that would trigger responses with chat bubbles, and advance the story if chatting with a quest bearer. 5) the vignette and fade-in when the game starts, and the title screen.

Day Three: More-or-less I had finished the game code on day two, and the vast majority of day Three was spent writing all the quests and text for the game. This was done with text files now – no code! I didn’t really know how the story would unfold when I began writing it. I kind of made it up as I went along, which you can maybe tell as it does feel a little rushed towards the end, as the deadline loomed.

I did make sure that none of the quests were hard to discover. Either:
1) There would be arrows guiding you.
2) You’d be given information earlier that you needed later (eg, “Return here when you’ve done X.”, or “Return to X later.”, or “X is found at Y”)
3) You’d stumble upon a new quest as you’re following another, because it’s along the path.

Lessons Learned: Doing the Jam instead of the Compo was a difficult decision for me. I don’t really want to compete with teams who have dedicated artists and musicians. Nor do I want to compete with people who use premade art or music. But at the same time, the Jam grants me freedoms that I do want. For instance, two days used to be enough, but as my skills and ambitions have grown, I feel I need extra time to make the kinds of games I want to make for LD. So I may choose the Jam in future LDs, even though it pains me to do so.

Another thing I did different this time around was deciding that I would go to sleep at a sensible hour on saturday+sunday night. There is a temptation to stay up late, getting an extra 2-3 hours of work done. But being tired *that* night, and being tired the next day from staying up late, we probably lose at least 2-3 hours in productivity, as we’re not working at peak performance when we are tired. I don’t feel I lost any productivity, and I had the added benefit of not *feeling* tired, so all in all it was a more positive experience. I will remember to do this again in future jams.

I have made a variety of tools over the years to assist me with game jams, which do come in useful. But one thing I keep intending to do but not getting around to doing, is creating a proper framework/engine to serve as a base for my jam games. There are some common coding tasks which crop up in nearly all games I make, and this jam was no exception. It’s only when you have made loads of games that you start to get a feel for what parts really are common, and could be abstracted out somehow. It would be nice to not have to waste time on those things every game jam. But at the same time, there are limits on what can go into an engine without turning it into bloatware. There are certainly lots of things which could go into an engine. So a modular approach might be best. It’s something I’ll think about for next time.

Play Here

sorceress is in again … free tips inside!

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Friday, August 21st, 2015 5:32 pm

This will be my 12th ludum dare! Here are some gifs of my recent LD entries:

LD27 LD27
LD27 LD27

Countdown Clock

For windows users, I made a little countdown clock that you can stick in the corner of your screen. It floats above other windows and shows the time you have remaining. The deadline is set in the filename, so you should change that to reflect the compo/jam deadline in your own timezone.

download CountDown Clock here


If you live in Europe, then the compo is split over 2 days. This is generally how I split my work between Saturday and Sunday:

  • Day 1 – engine, controls, graphics, music.
  • Day 2 – gameplay features, level design, sound effects, menu, particles and other visual effects.

I recommend this schedule to others. My reasoning? Day 2 can be stressful – or rather – you will feel the pressure of time. When you’re under pressure you will rush things, and the engine/controls/graphics/music can’t afford to be rushed!

If you do rush these things, you don’t do them as well or as carefully. So they will be more prone to errors, and you won’t really have time to properly test/debug/fix them.

Engine – Say you rush your engine (that is the game loop and the core physics of your game). If it doesn’t work properly, then you could have a broken game. Nothing else will matter.

Controls – Imagine if the keys/mouse input doesn’t work properly. Imagine if a character can’t make jumps it is supposed to be able to make. Or if the speed/feel of character movement is just wrong/bad. Imagine if an inventory or in-game menu won’t open. Your game could be unplayable.

Graphics – Rush your graphics and spoil them and your game will look bad. Graphics create first impressions. Your screenshot is all that will entice players to click your game, and your game could well be judged after a mere 60 seconds of play. First impressions are everything!

Music – Leave it until day 2 and it’s the sort of thing you’ll keep putting off until it’s too late! And if you rush your music then your game could sound bad. Painful sounds will put player’s in a bad mood, which could be the difference between “I like your game” and “I don’t like your game”. Don’t make them want to turn down the volume.

Day 2 – If you’re finding things too stressful, then try not to worry. Don’t worry about making a big game with many levels and a zillion different items. Short games are often preferred anyway! Everybody cuts corners on day 2, so let it happen. And always have fun, and let that fun show in your work.

Good Luck. See you on the other side 😛

wallpapers, please

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Sunday, August 2nd, 2015 3:15 pm

Ludum Dare 32 Theme Voting Begins!

Posted by (twitter: @_sorceress)
Saturday, April 11th, 2015 12:21 pm

Theme Voting has begun! Tune in every day this week for a new round of themes. *

[ ROUND 1 | ROUND 2 | ROUND 3 ]


* Links above in Bold are still open. If you haven’t cast a vote yet, click the link to do it. End times for each round vary, and many cross over.

* If you get an error message about needing to log in to vote, and you are already logged in, then try refreshing your browser (CTRL+F5 in Firefox/IE), or in Chrome F12 then Right Click on Refresh and select “Empty Cache and Hard Reload”).

Special thanks to PoV and Ratking for helping me with the theme list.

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