About jsmars

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Ludum Dare 37
 
Ludum Dare 36
 
Ludum Dare 34
 
Ludum Dare 33
 
Ludum Dare 32
 
Ludum Dare 30
 
Ludum Dare 29
 
Ludum Dare 25
 
Ludum Dare 20

jsmars's Trophies

you have been in Helevenium #LD29
Awarded by alvivar
on May 19, 2014

jsmars's Archive

Shenzhen Manufacturing Co.

Posted by
Thursday, December 15th, 2016 11:45 am

My compo game is about being a Chinese factory worker and can be played with up to 4 friends COOP and has highscores.

Please give it a try!

edit: If you played without sound, please re-download. I accidentally uploaded a non-sound version while fixing an OSX bug!

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Day 1 Progress

Posted by
Saturday, August 27th, 2016 6:08 pm

day1progress

Now I’ve just got to make¬†some pretty graphics and work on some progression!

play please

Posted by
Monday, January 4th, 2016 8:45 am

Love-Hate Games

Posted by
Wednesday, December 16th, 2015 6:51 pm

I have a thing for difficult games. I fell in love with Spelunky and play a shitload of Dota, even tho I can hate those games so much sometimes, it’s games like that which I keep coming back to. Anyone feel the same way? I think it could be an important element to implement in games. Not everyone likes it tho.

Entry Page

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My submissions have a tendancy to get comments like “game is too difficult”… Even though I like difficult games, it’s usually very good and correct feedback, as I’ve been building the game and testing it for several days means I’ve become pretty good at it and I balance it after my own skill, which I think is a common mistake for game developers (not to mention learning to understand the game and lack of tutorials). So this is also important for us developers to remember when designing our games!

There is a balancing issue that some have complained about in the game where a bat will come when your the egg, and it’s basically impossible to get by. My wife who also wants to beat the score nags me to fix it. First off I can’t change it because of the LD submission, second it would invalidate all previous highscores, and tbh I kind of like it, usually there is a theoretical chance you can avoid it if you are good enough, and even if you can’t, it’s like that some times in life, sometimes you get a good run, sometimes a hard one, as long as it’s only near-impossible, it’s ok and part of the fun. Just like Spelunky. Besides, you were never meant to get 10.000 as an egg anyhow. A lesson to be learned as well! Hope you guys understand!

Any thoughts on this?

TLDR Lesson 1
Make challenging games,
but don’t balance them after yourself,
and make sure it’s easy to learn!

TLDR Lesson 2
As long as it’s only near-impossible,
asymmetry between different runs can be a good thing!

Our Jam game this time around is as usual a bit too hard according to some, but I do think I got a much better difficulty level than my previous submissions. If your up for the challenge, try it! I still need a contender for my highscore!

Entry Page

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Entry Page

Still no contender for my highscore

Posted by
Tuesday, December 15th, 2015 12:10 pm

It’s a bit of a hard game tho, so it’s only for some people… anyone up for the challenge? I kinda want someone to beat my highscore!

Entry Page

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Progress

Posted by
Sunday, December 13th, 2015 6:38 pm

Doing Jam with my wife this time around, here is our progress so far!

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Specimen 33

Posted by
Monday, September 14th, 2015 5:51 pm

Hey there! Here’s my try-to-be-metroidvania mini story platformer. As always there was a lot more planned for the entry, but I’m fairly happy with the end result considering how I was doing half way. Would really appreciate some comments on it! Needs to be played to the end to really experience the theme integration. /end of shameless self promotion.

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Link to game page

And here is my list of pointers for future jams! (And myself more than anything)

  • It’s great to focus on learning something new, but that focus can be learning to polish and complete, probably something a lot of us need, and then it’s good to use tools you know and not set to high goals!
  • Keep the scope small and focus on polish!
  • Try to be feature complete day 1 of the competition, so day 2 is about polishing and improving.
  • Plan as much as possible from the start and make a full todo list from start to finish – be self critical and aware of your time consumption miscalculations and keep it small.
  • Remember it’s about fun, not packing as much as you can into 48h. Make something small and you won’t have to torture yourself the last 10 hours and can afford some breaks.

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If you’ve read this far without TL;DR’ing and realized like me that voting ends soon and therefore are sacrificing your sleep even tho work starts in 6 hours after a 18h work day, post your game as a comment and I’ll be sure to give you some votes too! :)

Anyway, everyone who submitted anything is awesome, and those who tried but failed are too! Let’s look forward to LD34! ūüėÄ

LudumDare Winners Archive Torrent!

Posted by
Wednesday, April 29th, 2015 1:19 am

So I was playing and rating games, found some I was really impressed with, and wanted to check out what those developers had done before, only to find that the links on those entries were dead.

So many great games are made through LudumDare!

This made me realize, every LudumDare thousands of games are made, atleast several hundreds of these are really great games! Where do they go? Do people ever play them again?

I’d really like to see an archive, saving at least the top 50 or even 100 entries of each category, many are in multiple categories, so it would probably be around 300 games per event, and less for the earlier Ludum Dares. Also I’d think most people would agree that post-compo versions should be included, or even only these versions, as the archiving would be mainly to be able to go back and play good games.

Lets make a Ludum Dare best games archive torrent!

I guess the best way to do this would have¬†a few (completely legal) torrent packs containing a few LD’s each, or just one big huge one that is updated after each event.

It would be a pretty big job downloading several hundred games for each LD, not to mention all the cases where the links are dead. Maybe a google doc joint effort anyone? Each person could probably manage one LD event with a few hours work.

What do you think? Maybe someone thought of this already? Do we want to do this?? 

Very old LDs?

Also, how far does LD go back and where are those games & results? I tried googling results for the first few events, but I can’t find much beyond¬†http://ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-15/ in the current link structure.

 

Edit:
Created a google doc to flesh out this plan if it’s at all going to be done.
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WVzcX_mFTV9LaRQ_O_blzasC7IqA6JgrVHsEs-1xqq4/edit?usp=sharing

Gravity Post-Mortem, Post-Compo Version & Timelapse

Posted by
Sunday, May 18th, 2014 7:00 am

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Intro Tips

This being my third Ludum Dare I had a decent idea of what I was getting myself into. These game jams are really a great way of practicing on actually making something from start to finish. I think that is what many of us really need to get better at, I know I for one have put tons of time into other bigger projects which never see the light of day, maybe because they are simply too big of projects. Here are some quick tips which I’ve learned from previous mistakes and could be good for newcomers entering into a ludum dare, for starting any new game project I guess.

  • Start with making something really simple and make sure the ‚Äúfun factor‚ÄĚ is there early on, the rest is polish!
  • Don‚Äôt explore some new technology while trying to complete a game.
  • Give each aspect (design, planning, code, graphics, audio, testing, etc) enough time each. Don‚Äôt spend the first day and a half coding and get the rest done in a few hours.
  • Make sure the game is done well before the deadline so you have time for playtesting, bugfixing and polish.
  • The most important thing is to complete a game from start to finish, not that it’s the most feature packed perfect game.
Download Post-Compo Version!
Download Post-Compo Version! Fixes all known issues!
Contains 3 new secret artifacts and fixes all known issues

 

The Game

So I’ve been playing unhealthy amounts of Spelunky lately and I wanted to make a platformer with a bit of the same vibe, and I’m a huge space¬†fan so I went for that. When the theme got decided I thought I‚Äôd make a underground platformer. Since I love the jetpack in spelunky and don‚Äôt get it often enough, I thought I‚Äôd make a game with a similar feel as the jetpack in Spelunky. I also wanted to make a simple and addicting game with online highscore, so I played around with the idea until I ended up with what the game is now. It could still get a lot better, but I‚Äôm quite happy with the end result in just two days work.

 

I wanted to make a platformer with jetpacks with Spelunky feel!

I wanted to make a platformer with jetpacks with Spelunky feel!

Warmup & Making Music

I‚Äôm especially happy with having produced music for in the game, and am even quite happy with the end result. Truth is I‚Äôve wanted to learn how to make music for a while now, and started various tutorials but never got very far. The day before Ludum dare I made a warmup game called Space Survivor. It took me about 2 hours to make, and looking at the highscore stats I can say that it’s probably the game I’ve made with best time coded vs time played ratio ever.. which is a bit depressing. Anyway, the cool thing is I also decided I was going to make music for the game. I opened a¬†a music program called SunVox, which is the first music program where I actually like the UI, and decided I’m going to make a song from start to end, it doesn’t matter how crappy it is, but it’s going to be finished. My first song. Instead of trying to learn each aspect of music and mastering it before I even make a song, this technique really taught me how to make music and I put it in the game! And I’m so happy for it! The day after Ludum dare started and I made another track and put it in my Ludum Dare entry, and it turned out quite nice for my second track ever!

 

I just the "ludum dare" technique to learn how to make music by making a warmup game!

I used¬†the “ludum dare” technique to learn how to make music by making a warmup game! Download here!

The Good

For the first time I felt that I was done enough for the deadline. Overall I’m very happy with the end result, here are some points which I’m happy with

  • I had a nice balance of time spent coding, making art, making sound, making music, testing, bugfixing and polishing which made all areas good enough!
  • I actually made music for my game and learned how to make it in the process!
  • I had online highscores – this is something that really makes some games so much more fun!
  • The game feels like a complete game and is polished
  • I invited two friends over¬†for a little Jam-Lan-Party, this made the whole thing event¬†more fun and I think we made better games because of it!
Even for a 48h game, the graphics went through several iterations

Even for a 48h game, the graphics went through several iterations

The Bad

Although I’m very happy with the end result, there were a few hickups.

  • About half way in on day two I began writing ugly code to make things¬†rapidly. This made the final code quite cluddered and just makes it harder to update and improve the game further. I will have to spend a day just to cleanup the code later!
    • Lesson: Things don’t have to be perfectly coded, but alteast keep it clean and organized at all times!
  • Some MySQL issues have made the online highscores slow/unresponsive sometimes, which results in a lot of statistics/scores have gotten lost. This is really a shame because I wanted to present cool playstats here for you!
    • Lesson: Brush up MySQL skills for next time for better highscores/stats!
  • I’ve got about 60 ratings to my game and I’ve done 120 on others, so I can’t complain. Still somehow I feel it’s very hard to get people to try my game. I believe this is in large part because I don’t have a web version. I know the feeling when testing games, if you gotta download it, let alone run a seperate redist install, it’s hard to want to try it! I really do think this is a shame, I think games feel better when not played in a browser. And c#/xna is awesome!
    • Lesson: Consider using a web-platform next time or accept low play stats. (HTML5, Unity, etc)
  • The title. To be honest I suck at titles. It was never really my intention that the game would be named Gravity. I sort of just wrote something while designing the graphics/menu to get the style right. In the end time was running out and I hadn’t thought of a better title and then I forgot. I thought of the George Clooney film and just added a random subtitle since I thought that looked cool too.
    • Lesson: Titles can be important, decide on a good one early on and roll with it. It’s hard to think up a good name at the last minute!
The working title ended up being the final one, I just removed George Clooney so that I wouldn't need to share the royalties!

The ¬†temporary working title ended up being final, I just removed George Clooney so that I wouldn’t need to share the royalties!

Some play stats!

With each play being registered in an online highscore, I can also calculate some play stats from them. Sadly my MySQL skills weren’t good enough in time, so a lot of the stats got lost because of a query taking very long time to load sometimes.. But here are some fun play stats at the time of writing!

Disclamer: Sadly up to approx 50% of plays may be missing, so stats below could probably be doubled, but this is what I’ve got! (Any new stats should be recorded correctly I believe)

  • Total number of unique players: 82
  • Total number of plays: 6617
  • Avarage plays per player: 80
  • Total play time all players: 35 hours 1 min 55 seconds
  • Avarage time played per player: 25 minutes
  • Player with most¬†plays
    • Diamonde: 718
    • Rebecca: 595
    • Tobias-PC: 587
    • Maxime: 549
    • Anebo: 517
Top 10 scores at the time of writing.

Top 10 scores at the time of writing.

Timelapse!

Check out the timelapse of making Gravity! May contain spoilers!

Lastly, I would really appreciate if you

play and rate my game!

Good luck in the final results all! :)

Space Survivor!

Posted by
Friday, April 25th, 2014 3:22 am

Hey! I’m in for the third time and very excited!¬†Will be using XNA, sfxr, photoshop, sunvox, audacity, and a little online highscore api I wrote a while back.

While waiting frustrated I made a warmup entry in the past hour and a half. Try it out and try to beat the highscore! Mechanics are a bit unpolished so you might get frustrated, but thats no excuse to not beat the highscore!

Download it here

spacesurvivor

Download it here

I’m in!

Posted by
Friday, December 14th, 2012 3:37 am

Finally I don’t miss the date! I’ll be making a game, I really like the theme slaughter and think it’ll make the final theme much better than it has been before.

This will be my third ludum dare, or second since I noticed the last one 6 hours before close last time and was too tired to complete my game.

I’ll be using XNA with the Xen library most likely.

Any tips on software to use to make simple NES/chiptune style music? I’d really like to get some in for my compo entry this time!

hollow timelapse & music

Posted by
Thursday, May 5th, 2011 6:20 pm

Hey there! Now that LD20 is submitted and done, and I’m busy trying out all your awesome games, here are some updates.

Short development cycles
First of all I’m already looking forward to the next LD, or mini LD. I really liked this style of making something small in a small amount of time. Most of my other projects have been much larger scale and much longer development time, which often can result in lack of motivation to complete the project. I’m also very impressed to see what everyone has come up with in such a short amount of time. I’ve tried some really great games so far and looking forward to trying more!

Music
Before the deadline for the jam I managed to put some music in my game too by¬†landon podbielski, you should check it out! You can toggle the music on the ‘m’ key, incase you are playing for longer periods of time.

Beyond my Expectations
One thing I was very impressed with, is that some people played my game way beyond my own expectations, so much so that I had to add even more extra content to it. I’m also keeping a local highscore list in on the projects page just for fun, be sure to tell me if you want a place there.

Timelapse
Finally, I got to putting together the timelapse I made of the development of my entry ‘hollow’. Used that killed app that Keeyai made. (Thanks man!)

Check out the timelapse here!

Finally
I’d really appreciate if you would try out my game and tell me what you think with comments and ratings, I’ll be sure to try out yours as well!
Your feedback is really worth a lot!
http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-20/?action=rate&uid=3933

hollow complete (jam version)

Posted by
Monday, May 2nd, 2011 8:35 am

Since I only had time for about 5 hours of coding for my compo entry, I didn’t get my game as complete as I wanted. I spent some more hours on it today and I’m much happier with the result for the jam entry, making the game feel much more complete.

This is my first entry to LD, and I’m really happy with what I could achieve for such a tight deadline. Would be awesome if you could check it out and rate it!

I did record a timelapse, so I might throw it together into a video later, it’s a heck of a lot of images though. Had it set to 1 per second.

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-20/?action=rate&uid=3933


Last minute coding

Posted by
Sunday, May 1st, 2011 8:13 pm

A ¬†few hours ago I didn’t have much of a game at all. I’ve been learning to sleep 2 hours per day for the last ten days and I’ve had lots to do. I had decided that I wasn’t going to enter in this LD. Then I decided, to hell with that, let’s see how much of a game I can crack out in the last three or so hours of the deadline. So here it is, I’m quite happy with the result tbh. Even though there are a few things that are missing for this to be a complete tiny game, I’m still happy with what I could produce this fast. It was really fun to make too, I will probably work more on it within the coming days to get everything working correctly.

Anyway, this was a great first LD entry for me, I hope you enjoy it! I look forward to testing out everyone elses games!

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-20/?action=rate&uid=3933

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