About laaph (twitter: @laaph023)


Ludum Dare 37
Ludum Dare 34
Ludum Dare 31
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Preparations for Ludum Dare at the MADE

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Friday, April 26th, 2013 2:56 pm

I’m organizing the local meetup in Oakland, CA, at the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment.  Organizing anything can be strange and difficult at times.  I came down to the museum early and took some photos of our soon-to-be work space.

In these preparations, some of the things that were planned for this weekend, most of which may or may not be happening:

And that’s just what I remember.  I had nothing to do with most of it, I just asked for a quiet place where I and some internet strangers could work on some software.

There might be a webcam, but only if I set it up, but the one I was going to use went missing.  If I find it I’ll put it in the twitch.tv stream.

Oh and I forgot power strips!  :(  I’ll swing by my house and grab one, and maybe the MADE has some power outlets somewhere….


Not the sexiest of seating, but lots of video games should we get bored.


Just in case more than three people show up, we have additional tables.


Geeks need exercise too!  Although I am wondering how you plug dance mats in to an Atari.


In case we get hungry, or need inspiration, which ever comes first.

Ludum Dare 26 “yes I’m going to partake” post

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Monday, April 22nd, 2013 3:51 pm

I think this is supposed to be how it’s done…

Expected tools used:

Programming language: Scratch.  Time to learn something new!

Audio: Audacity and any noises I can record.  Expecting to be done in the presence of a movie, so maybe some samples.

Graphics: GIMP, ImageMagick, http://superpixeltime.com/, maybe a few others I’m not remembering to mention.

Other: git, eh, the usual tools I use.

But I’ve been known to change them all at the last second anyway, so I am not certain why I should list these.

I’ll be be hosting at the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment, as I had for the previous Ludum Dare.  We are hoping to stream video from the museum, although I don’t know how exciting that might be, but it might be made more exciting by the other museum things going on.  That part isn’t quite worked out yet.

Also, there are a couple of people looking for teams (for the jam) at the museum – if you are interested, email me (jbell9 at) gmail the old dot com.  Or comment on the “Real World Meetup” post.

Maybe I’ll make a game about the museum….

I managed to rate 20 games

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Tuesday, January 1st, 2013 4:07 pm

Why did I find that the hardest part of Ludum Dare?  Sorry guys.  Some of them were even good!  I’ll give an honorable mention to Under The Bed, that game was awesome.  But it was still hard work playing 20 games.

Misunderstood Monkey postmortem and thoughts

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Thursday, December 27th, 2012 8:18 pm

This is the first time I really completed a game for Ludum Dare!  I’m quite impressed with myself now.  :)


Misunderstood Monkey, as the title turned in to, is a game where you play a monkey trying to defend his princess from the forces trying to take her away from you.  I basically took the idea of Donkey Kong, and had little Marios coming up to snatch her away from your gentle touch.

The game idea didn’t come up immediately – my first reaction was to make a game in which you play an evil villain out to kill innocent kittens.  I spent most of Friday night starting out on this game.  I wound up with a kitten image and a kitten-spawner and a blob that couldn’t yet shoot things and thought “this game is gonna suck.”  And then I started bemoaning about how I don’t know any good 2D engines.


What went right:

Objective-C and Cocoa: I had planned on using Unity3d; my last entry used that, but as I was experimenting with my ideas I realized that I did not want to do a 3D view and it would be cumbersome to implement in Unity3d.  So, I switched to Objective-C/Cocoa. I did not want to; I wanted to use something a little more crossplatform so that more people could use my code, but I couldn’t think of a nice framework for 2D graphics that I know and can do stuff quickly in; except maybe C/SDL which I hate and wouldn’t be able to get it done in 48 hours.  I hope making the wrong prediction doesn’t disqualify me from any awesome prizes I might win.  :)  However, ObjC/Cocoa was super easy to use and I got stuff done very quickly.

Super Pixel Time:  I don’t know what his user name on Ludum Dare is, but super extra happy extra special thanks to the guy who made Super Pixel Time.   Let me show you how that website transformed impressively bad programmer art in to fancy pixelated art!

hero_v0 became hero_v2

thanks to Super Pixel Time.  For another image, here is the original monkey:


I may need to put together another build with the original art.


What went wrong:

Idea:  My originally idea was that you were going to be a guy who runs around murdering cute innocent kittens.  I spent Friday night sketching out the ideas and plans, and late Friday night (past my bedtime) I decided it wasn’t going anywhere before switching to my new plans.  While I like my new idea much better than the old one, I really didn’t start coding until Saturday morning.

Fast and sloppy coding:  As an example, the level is a hard coded array.  Changing level design is not easy, especially the first iteration involved some of the ladders in places that made the game much too hard.  I have moved them, and now the game is too easy. I decided not to move them back because it was too much work, however, I really would have liked easier-to-edit levels.

Sound: I had planned on using cfxr.  It’s actually not all that great.  I found Audacity with its noise generators and editors much easier to use.  There are random tutorials on using it for more than the things it comes with out of the box.  I recommend it.

Difficulty:  In my editing layout/speed/speed of barrel reloading/other tweaks, it seemed I had no choice between making it too hard or too easy.  I settled for “faster but easy”, but I would like some appropriate challenge.

Rating other games:  I had a final exam after Ludum Dare, and then the time after the exam I thought I’d be playing games, I got super sick instead.  I tried to rate games – I just got queasy!  I’m starting to feel better but I haven’t started on rating any games today (I’ll get at it soon, though, I promise!).


Future plans:

I have an artist working on this with me, and the vague plan is to replace the programmer art with his fancy artwork.  This is in progress, as it will require me writing up some code to alternate directions of heroes and add animations (the images will actually animate as they move!).  A screenshot in progress:


A further update, possibly as the October challenge, will be to port it to the iPad.  Also, I’d like more levels.

All in all, I’m quite thrilled with what I made, even though some of the other people out there made far more impressive games than I did.


Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Sunday, December 16th, 2012 5:55 pm

Since I have been working with Objective-C/Cocoa, there is no windows build.  :(  Sorry folks.

Other important point:  I forgot to include the source with my submission!  It is here:


Special thanks to http://superpixeltime.com for helping me out with my excellent programmer art!

My other question is, I have included a goat in my game!  How do I get a cute goat icon?


Not staying awake any longer tonight

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Sunday, December 16th, 2012 12:47 am

Current status of game:


Download (Mac 10.6 or greater only, sorry PC and linux folk):


Ludum Dare 25 announcement post

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Friday, December 14th, 2012 6:46 pm


I suppose I should read the rules because I almost didn’t post.

I’m in!  I’m supposed to declare my tools?

Unity3d – Blender3d – Gimp – Audacity – my phone for taking pictures and audio – that maze generator someone made recently, and Super Pixel Art web page someone linked recently.

While I strive to make the game in 48 hours, I am expecting an artist to help me out on the art, so I may be in the Jam and not in the contest.  We will see.

And, because I like working with people instead of all by my lonesome, I want to make a plug for any SF bay area Ludum Dare’rs to come to the MADE and jam with us!  It says RSVP required, but we’ve already made accommodations for the expected number of people with some extra, so come down and and jam with us!  See http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/2012/11/13/real-world-ludum-dare-25-gatherings/comment-page-1/#comment-83915 and for details and http://themade.org for directions.

Best of luck to you all!




Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Sunday, August 26th, 2012 6:23 pm

Not exactly done, but I’m sure many of you have said the same thing.

Here it is:


Many of the game elements are in fact lying.  In particular, so far, nothing is being cloned and mutated, which is kind of the point of the game, and not only that, with that removed, its ties to evolution aren’t there.

Also, I haven’t tested this on the PC, and my friend who did says it’s missing a DLL.  I’m working on it.  Edit: Think I may have fixed that.  Still waiting on report whether it is working or not.

But it’s submitted!  I’ll resubmit it for the jam with a little more engine work added.

Screen shot

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Sunday, August 26th, 2012 1:32 pm


This screenshot was of last night.  I am still in the process of turning it from two tanks shooting at each other into a game.  May need enough time to go in to the Ludum Dare Jam rather than just the Compo, but hey if I get it done in 4.5 hours it may yet still get done.



Intent to make an awesome game

Posted by (twitter: @laaph023)
Tuesday, August 21st, 2012 5:29 pm


Most likely Unity3d, as I will be working with a crowd of Unity programmers.

If not, I’ve been recently messing about with roguelikes, which if I do that, it would be using C and ncurses.

If not that, it’ll probably be some iphone game.

Graphics will likely be done in Gimp.  I have cfxr still working on my computer, so probably that.  Also, I want to play with this


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