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on May 2, 2013

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Icarus HTML5 version

Posted by (twitter: @karlinross)
Sunday, August 4th, 2013 1:04 pm

Ludum Dare pageHTML5 Version (chrome recommended) | Post-7drts Version

Icarus screenshot

Icarus HTML5

I’ve been playing around with an html5 version of my 7drts game, icarus. I’m not sure how good the performance will be and I haven’t had time to do a complete playthrough so I’m unsure if there are any bugs. You can play it here (a webgl-enabled browser is needed. Press F10 to switch to fullscreen. Music doesn’t play in firefox atm, I’m looking into a fix. I’m hoping to get a linux version up by the weekend.

I’ve also been working on a post-7drts version with various bugfixes, tweaks and gameplay changes, I’m not sure how well it’s balanced but it can be played at http://karlin.itch.io/icarus.

7DRTS Some Favourites

Posted by (twitter: @karlinross)
Thursday, August 1st, 2013 9:05 am

I’ve only played a small fraction of all the 7DRTS Games but here’s a few of my favourites

Pillagers! by superjoe

Pillagers screenshot


A very fun game where you must steer your flagship to then end of each level defeating various enemies along the way. I really loved the unique way the ships controlled and the art is rather nice.

Spawner Pawners by rubna

Spawner Pawners screenshot

Spawner Pawners

A bomberman-esque strategy game where you must collect bombs from your home base in order to defeat the other play. Offers a unique twist on bomberman and has a simple yet appealing art style.

Power Grab by MiniBobbo

Power Grab screenshot

Power Grab

An interesting take on the strategy genre which offers a more hands off approach. The player places power plants which are used to power units which then attack the enemy. The game probably needs a little work to give it more of a strategic element but the presentation is very nice and I wish more strategy games would follow the lead of this game in replacing micromanagement with macromanagement.

Interstellar by avh4

Interstellar screenshot


Another one which takes a much more hands off approach. All the interaction the player has is adjusting the levels of research into a particular field each research leading to another. As you progress your civilisation begins to travel to other stars which in turn must research new technologies. The game excels in creating a relaxing mood and despite having little, if any, difficulty I found myself playing for quite some time. The author intends to continue working on it and I can’t wait to see what it becomes.

World’s Aftermath by James Daniello & Nicolas Ickovic

World's Aftermath screenshot

World’s Aftermath

Last and certainly not least is World’s Aftermath. The game is probably one of the most conventional games on this list but the high level of polish, very nice graphics and solid gameplay makes it a very enjoyable experience. Well worth a play.

Icarus – 7DRTS

Posted by (twitter: @karlinross)
Monday, July 29th, 2013 3:06 pm

Somehow, despite losing a big chunk of code hours before the end of 7DRTS, I’ve managed to release my first mini LD game. I’m fairly happy with it, although I would have loved an extra day or two to balance the difficulty a bit and fix some of the “quirks” in the game engine.

Icarus Screenshot


The game takes place in a star system with 11 planets, all colonised by the player. The star in the centre has exhausted all of it’s hydrogen causing runaway fusion to occur. This means that the player must work their way to the outer planets less affected by the solar expansion. The ultimate aim being to build an interstellar colony ship to escape from the dying sun.

I had initially planned to have some of the planets populated with an AI which would mean you must fight for control of some of the outer planets. As the game progressed their would be fewer and fewer planets and therefore resources forcing the player and the AI to fight over what little is left. By day 3 I realised this probably wouldn’t be possible within the 7 days so I had to cut it.

I’m hoping to work a little more on this, so please post any suggestions in the comments. I’ll post a full post-mortem in a few days when I’m a little less tired.

You can view the ludum dare page here.

LD26 Some Favourites

Posted by (twitter: @karlinross)
Friday, May 3rd, 2013 12:28 pm

Something about the theme of minimalism has really brought out the creativity in people. The quality this Ludum Dare is through the roof. Here’s a few of my favourites so far.

Persist by AdventureIslands

Persist Screenshot


A very fun nes-style platform game where the main character loses abilities as the game progresses. Excellent use of the theme, a fantastic art style and wonderful music.  There was a bug in the original game but it’s since been fixed in the post-compo version.

by Dir3kt

... screenshot

Very nicely polished game with lots of attention to detail. There are some great little nods later in the game to classic arcade games.

Join by Perry

Join screenshot


Join takes a very simple idea (snake) and builds nicely upon it to create a unique action-puzzle game. Quite difficult but still lots of fun.

# by Kitch

# screenshot


Another game with a very simple concept but really nice execution. Very pretty visuals and nice sound design.

Guru by BrothersT

Guru screenshot


I have no idea how such beautiful animations were created in such short time but somehow Joe and Rob did it. Well worth a look.

(Follow the) LineChman

Follow the Line screenshot

Follow the Line

This ones been talked about a lot and for good reason. Very fun and very challenging.

Unsave The Princess Postmortem & post-compo status

Posted by (twitter: @karlinross)
Thursday, December 20th, 2012 7:17 pm

You can download the 48-hour edition here or the post compo version here [exe] [zip] [rar].



What went well?

This was my first Ludum Dare and my first finished game. I’m pretty happy with the game and very pleased with how things went.


I Finished!


The deadline kept me right on track and by hour 48  my game was finished, I didn’t manage to get everything in I wanted and the code was a little sloppy but there’s plenty of room for me to build on if I wanted to work on the game in the future.

The Art


I’m not a very good artist so I decided to go for as simple a style as possible. I ended up trying to go for a style similar to the game Realm of the Mad God. which worked out pretty well. I focused on trying to create  a lot of variation in the backgrounds to try to break the grid which meant I spent a lot more time on art than I’d have liked.

Keep it Simple

The game needed to be simple to pick up for players so they wouldn’t lose interest and simple for me to design so I’d be able to finish it before the deadline. Thankfully sticking to this idea meant that the majority of people managed to finish the game but it also lead to the game being a little too easy.


What went wrong?

I’m generally very happy with how everything turned out but there were a few major problems largely caused by lack of planning. I’ve got a lot of them fixed now, but there’s still one or two I’m working on.


Lots of Bugs


Annoyingly there were some major gameplay and graphics bugs still present when I released the game. Some of them I’d spotted but simply didn’t have time to fix, others such as the tile scaling bug I didn’t spot til after I’d uploaded.

I’ve fixed the majority of them in the post-compo version.



It may be partly because I’ve listened to the tracks in the game for hours during testing but I felt the music was probably it’s weakest point. Before the compo I didn’t plan on how I was going to create my music which led to a frantic search at hour 46 for a way to quickly generate it. I eventually settled on Otomata thanks to the post by caranha on music generators. The music it generates is pretty good, I then ran it through GXSCC to give it a nice 8-bit feel.

For the post-compo release I’m planning on redoing most, if not all of the music using Famitracker.

Over-scoped, under-delivered

When I originally sat down to start sketching out game ideas the first thing I thought was “Think Small” and despite this I still managed to over-scope.  I’d planned to have around 6 puzzles but ultimately ended up with 3 at most. This was mainly due to lack of time and poor planning. Thankfully the brevity of the game seems to be something a lot people liked so I plan to keep the game short but add a lot more depth.

Post-compo Version


I’ve fixed up all the bugs and improved the graphics a litle for the post-compo version, you can download it here [exe] [zip] [rar]. If you find any bugs please post them below and I’ll try to get them fixed asap.

Thanks for reading

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