About Diptoman (twitter: @dmsdomain)

Hello! My name is Diptoman Mukherjee.

I'm a professional game developer from Kolkata, India - currently residing in Vancouver, Canada and working in the VR space.

I love games of all shapes and sizes. I love playing them. I love making them. You can check out my personal work (including over 15 jam games) at http://www.diptoman.com

Follow me on Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/dmsdomain

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you know about SILX #LD27
Awarded by alvivar
on August 31, 2013

Diptoman's Archive

Forty Two Post Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Tuesday, August 30th, 2016 1:37 pm

[Game Link]

I’ll be honest, I didn’t initially like the theme. But me and the team hadn’t done LD in a while, and for once everyone was free (well, kind of) – so here we are! Brainstorming for us is generally hard because everyone is in a different time zone (even with 12+ hrs apart), so we quickly decided to add the theme in ridiculously – by using the Level Select menu to tell a story. Despite prior experience in jams telling us that puzzle games aren’t exactly a good genre for game jams (specifically for feedback when people are speed-running through games), we rolled with it anyway. Still, puzzle games are fun to make, so there’s that.

So, Forty Two’s basic idea is to get particles to generators of the same color, leaving no stray particle behind. Two particles of the same color bounce off against each other, and two particles of different color neutralize and form a block for other particles to bounce off against. This is the core mechanic of the game, and our starting point.

Let’s get to what went wrong and what went right from there on:

What Went Right

The use of theme – I feel this was a unique way of implementing the theme. Vague relation with the actual gameplay, but strong relation with the level select screen. Of course, it had its downsides (discussed later).

S0

The core gameplay – The idea on which the puzzles are based is flexible, and easily expanded upon. This worked in our favor, and we had multiple mechanics up and running quickly (although half of the final day for me was fixing bugs in those very same mechanics). We could have a wide variety of levels just based off a few simple things.

The polish: Could have been better, but for the time frame – we fixed every bug we came across, gave as many affordances as possible, and even explained things visually without a tutorial. We wanted a minimalistic design, since Pranjal (the artist) is moving 2 days later and was kind of busy – and we got the design halfway right I’d say. We had more plans for some blending and particle effects, but ignored that in favor of more levels – so we’re almost there.

Scoping: Well, not entirely, but we set out to do 16 levels. We did 16 levels, so tehre’s that. We did have to compromise on the visuals and effects a bit for that unfortunately.

 

What Went Wrong

The use of theme – The downsides to having the theme so vaguely implemented and not in the gameplay is that people are going to miss it, since the story mostly unfolds at the end of the game (which I’m assuming most people won’t see). The idea was to combine each level screen into a pyramid and show the “story”. (SPOILERS BELOW).

Planning – Not a new thing. Having participated in 15+ game jams, this is the one thing that consistently goes wrong every time. I got the mechanics running up very early, but the same fast way of doing it made it harder to fix bugs later. There were things that would have made designing levels easier later by automating things – which I didn’t plan for earlier, so had to manually do later – which increased time taken and hence, scope.

Level Design and Progression – Now of course, this didn’t go terribly and I’m pretty proud of the levels we made, but when you’re designing puzzle levels this fast – that inevitably leads to less playtesting. As a result of which, there are multiple solutions to a few puzzles (not necessarily a bad thing). The main problem however, was in pacing and difficulty. I have seen while developing puzzle games for jams earlier, that our minds tend to make really hard puzzles and we find it a lot harder to make easier puzzles. Pretty much the same thing happened here, and while we felt the difficulty spike was too high, we couldn’t really do much about it in the time frame.

S2

The HTML5 build – GM:S handles some functions in the HTML5 version and executable function differently, which led to the HTML5 version frequently crashing. It took a long while to pinpoint and fix after players pointed it out (yeah, post-Jam fix) – and may have stopped a few players from trying. I was testing on the executable, so this completely skipped by me (again, lack of playtesting!).

Well, that’s about it for my 17th jam! Back to playing more of these amazing games – incredible work everyone!

….And done!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Monday, August 29th, 2016 6:27 pm

We made it in time! Now you can uncover the secrets of the universe while we ta…. *drops asleep*
Game Page Link

S0

S2

S1

S3

The secret behind all this ancient tech.

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Monday, August 29th, 2016 9:16 am

Welp, time for teh final push!

Some amount of polishing later…

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Sunday, August 28th, 2016 9:52 pm

Time to put on the level design hat and make me some levels!

Now you can uncover the secrets of ancient alien technologies too!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Sunday, August 28th, 2016 1:38 am

Done with pretty much all the basic stuff and mechanics. Players can place/remove things. Game can be played with all its mechanics in place. Time for some actual level design and polish! (And adding the theme the way we wanted to!)

Pretty much all the ancient alien mechanics.

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Saturday, August 27th, 2016 6:24 am

And that’s all the mechanics I think I’ll have time to make levels for! Now to make the actual editor so players can tile (and implement the theme as planned *_* )

Edit: Wow, this stretching is horrible. :V

Ancient alien technologies with their overcomplicated puzzles!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Saturday, August 27th, 2016 1:25 am

Ok seriously though, we intend to do something pretty weird with the theme (totally not shown here). But yeah, basic puzzle gameplay programmed in!

A trailer thingy!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Tuesday, April 29th, 2014 11:11 am

So I made a trailer for our entry:

It’s a game about growing up and holding on to your memories.

Give the game a shot now maybe?

*/eofshamelessplug. Gets back to playing all the other awesome games*

Finished!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Monday, April 28th, 2014 6:25 am

So I was down with fever most of the day, couldn’t much, and hence decided to finish up whatever we had.

Here’s a screenshot from the final thing:
screen (3)

Play it here!

Memories, memories…

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 8:54 am

screen

…And time to start with the sad ones!

Sea Of Memories

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 3:24 am

Haven’t posted much this LD since we’re making the game for 2 jams, thus having to incorporate 2 themes (Memories+this).
So anyway, here’s a current screenshot from our game with (attempted) feels!

We’re doing an abstract-ish game thingy.

screen

Top games I’ve played so far!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Wednesday, December 18th, 2013 12:04 pm

So I’ve played over 50 games so far, time to make a post about the most awesome ones I played! Found loads of great entries this time around, so choosing isn’t easy, but here goes!

1. ORBITALIS

Gravity defying game, quite literally! Wonderful visuals with an equally impressive gravity based mechanic, this is an ideal Compo entry!

2. Ballkeeper

Easy to pick up and play, graphically minimalistic and employing a simple mechanic, this game is loads of fun! The only downside will be the use of theme is rather weak.

3. blomster

Beautiful and atmospheric, this game will leave you awestruck at how this was achieved in 48 hours. This is as good as a puzzle platformer can get in 48 hours!

4. YOGO PATH

Randomly generated paths, clever platformer mechanics – having to coordinate movement, pleasing visuals. What more do you need?

5. COR

I’m a sucker for atmospheric platformers, so here’s one that fits with the theme perfectly. It’s about life in general, and I’d rather not spoil anything else – just give it a try!

6. One Touch Of Music


A wonderful mechanic based on tunes, accompanied by soothing visuals – this is a must try!

I will continue posting about more great stuff I’ve found, but that’s it for now! Great to see so many good games, keep up the good work everyone!
Oh, and a shameless plug: do try out our game – Uno Terra!

Post Mortem – Uno Terra

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Tuesday, December 17th, 2013 10:43 am

So, it’s time for a post mortem again. Not that anyone cares, but helps me reflect on what we’ve done, and we could’ve/should’ve done.

To start off, too many things went wrong this time around. Starting with the theme. We did not expect that, and we did not have the slightest clue what to make with that. Coming up with an idea which may stand out took us over 4 hours – that’s a lot of time wasted. We finally decided to do something between one planet – saving the earth, one life – doing some game with feels about suicide and one slash – a samurai cutting enemies with one slash.  Saving the earth seemed like a good idea at that moment, but the planet defense game idea regarding it soon got too complex – which is obvious enough from our final entry.

At the end of day 1, we got shit done – just had the moon revolving round the earth, and you could place 5 buildings on both of them. Most of the other mechanics (pollution, population, wars) were added later on the fly, making me edit previous codes a lot of times. This is how it looked like at the end of day 1, the background really didn’t fit at that point either. We needed to redo it.

Day 1

At the end of day 2, we had all the buildings done, but no level/wave design (which means no balance in the game, which was pretty much the most important aspect of the game) and no UI. There was a lot to do the next day. Our composer also had his college finals, so were left scouting for music online as well. Fortunately, Kevin Macleod’s site always has answers during times like these! Oh, and we had aliens and asteroids and stuff as well (and yeah, new bg):

Day 2

We started work from 6 am in the morning, till 5.30 am the next day (the jam ends at 6 am in our time zone) – so yeah, you might as well say we weren’t even sure we would finish. I did the wave generation script in around 3/4 hours, without playtesting. Thankfully, our artist friend playtested the game continuous from 9 pm onwards, paving the way for a boatload of bug fixes and balancing. Yeah, I didn’t actually PLAY the game when we submitted. I just got lucky that somehow I guessed the resource/wave balancing good in the first try. one problem remained though (even with the current build): explaining the game. I did add a “Familiarize” mode (same game without enemies) because I didn’t have time to do a proper tutorial (and who plays tutorials anyway), and hoped people would try out that mode first before playing, to get to know the playfield first.

What did go right was the level design, and the game idea. I was surprised myself at how many strategies the game could be played with. Pranjal (our artist) made sure we had playtested a good amount of those – nuclear power generation strategies, playing by spamming with solar power plants (less need for plantation) etc.

Overall though, I’m really proud that we managed to pull all this off in 72 hours, and how this turned out:

Day 3

So that’s about it for the post mortem. I started playing all the other awesome games today (it’s really amazing what people can do in 48 hours), looking forward to play yours!

It’s done!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Monday, December 16th, 2013 4:18 pm

After some gruelling hours, our entry’s finally done! And I can honestly say I’m really proud of the end result!
Well anyways, off to sleep! Best of luck guys, will start playing all the awesome games tomorrow!

Check out the game here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-28/?action=preview&uid=25325
Oh, and here’s a screenshot from the final version!

Uno Terra

Progress – end of day 2.

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Sunday, December 15th, 2013 1:21 pm

Lots of balancing to do tomorrow. And UI. @_@

YOGOP

Wrapping up day 1!

Posted by (twitter: @dmsdomain)
Saturday, December 14th, 2013 11:25 am

So after a few hours of brainstorming ideas (ok, that took way more time than I wanted) – we decided to settle on “You only have one planet”, so don’t let it go to waste!
The game is about saving earth from pollution, overpopulation, and… aliens. Also, asteroids.
In case the genre isn’t obvious from that – the game is a tower defense-ish thing, where you have to build stuff (from giant mutated redwood for controlling pollution to hugeass nuclear reactor for gathering energy to laser cannons for killing aliens), while keeping in mind your population and pollution problem (which are related themselves). Too much of any, and your only planet goes to waste!
Here’s a screenie (Yeah, I know, not much work done today):
Earthderp

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