About LiamLime (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)

My personal website can be found at http://www.liamlime.com

Entries

 
Ludum Dare 37
 
Ludum Dare 36
 
Ludum Dare 35
 
Ludum Dare 34
 
Ludum Dare 33
 
Ludum Dare 32
 
Ludum Dare 31
 
Ludum Dare 28
 
Ludum Dare 26

LiamLime's Trophies

Rescue Chicken Genius
Awarded by Trasevol_Dog
on May 6, 2016
The Statistician Award
Awarded by dvdking
on April 25, 2015

LiamLime's Archive

Who will give you a hug during LD?

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 11:50 am

So we now know what engine you will use to make your game, what editor you’ll use to make your graphics, which DAW you’ll use for sound etc. etc. But what will you use to actually finish your game? What will provide you the strength to finish the game when it all goes wrong – when all the engines and editors and DAWs inevitably lead you onto a path where you want to give up and write that thing nobody likes to see: the premature post-mortem post. So I guess what I’m asking is…

Who will give you a hug during Ludum Dare?

Who will see that you actually finish the game and not cave in under the stress that this weekend will bring? This should absolutely be a required category in all these “I’m in” posts.

Ludum Dare 32: pre-nativatus

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 9:19 am

The strategy:

GO BIG OR GO HOME. Unless the voted theme prevents me from making a horribly ambitious, huge game, I will do so. Lots of mechanics, features, buttons, effects, etc. It will be horribly unpolished, terribly unbalanced, borderline unplayable, break most of game theory, will have bad graphics, bad sound, etc. In other words, it will perform horribly in every single category games are rated on here. But it will be big, and massive and I will ignore the fact half of it is held together with little more than strings and a flour-water home made glue.

That’s just the way I like to approach Ludum Dare. It’s not something I recommend anyone else does if they care about the final score, but it’s just how I like to do LD in particular.

The technology:

While I’ve been wanting to learn Unreal and desperately need an excuse to do so, I think I’ll be sticking with Unity for this LD. Learning new technologies in 48 hours tends to be a bad idea.

Engine: Unity with C#
Graphics: Inkscape
Models: UNITY CUBES! (and Blender for triangles)
Sound: LMMS

The goal:

So I really don’t care about the score at the end as LD’s scoring is biased in favour of short, single-mechanic, 2D, pretty, polished games. That’s not a complaint about LD, just an observation, and it’s just not the way I like to approach LD. Last time I placed in 599th place, even though many people described my game as “impressive for 48 hours”. So yeah. While placing somewhere in the 400 – 600 range in the overall category would be great, I won’t be disappointed if that does not happen.

My actual goal is to simply make as much functional, properly working stuff as possible in the 48 hours we have available. It’s an exercise of “how much bug free code can I write without an ability to do code revisions and rewrites in this short time span.”. Last LD it was a lot, this time it should be more! 😀

I however do reserve the right to change the goal, expectations, strategy and technology as the pool of likely themes becomes smaller and once the actual theme is announced.

Good luck to everyone!

Accesskey for Theme slaughter

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Wednesday, April 8th, 2015 1:33 pm

Edit: The solution is in the comments of this post, thanks to misson20000!

So, uh, it takes TWO SECONDS per topic to tell the website whether it is good or bad, yet only takes about 10 miliseconds to determine that in your mind. So OBVIOUSLY the remaining 1.990 seconds is wasted time and could be OPTIMIZED! 😀

I propose three simple words get added to the slaughter php file, which would make the slaughter process much, much faster.

<a style=”color:#080;” href=”?up=##” accesskey=”a”>GOOD</a>

<a style=”color:#800;” href=”?down=##” accesskey=”d”>BAD</a>

<a style=”color:#f00;” href=”?kill=##” accesskey=”s”>SLAUGHTER</a>

This way we could slaughter topics about 4x faster, as it would just involve holding down LEFT ALT* and pressing A, S or D to determine which bin the topic goes in. Pleeeaaaaasseeeeeee 😀

*Alt + shift + accesskey for Firefox; Ctrl + alt + accesskey on Mac; Alt + accesskey for others.

Oh also did I mention I’m in? Uh… I’m in! 😀

“SHADERPONG” or “It was such a great idea at the time!”

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, March 23rd, 2015 4:56 pm

For whatever reason I thought it would be a great idea to make plain ol’ simple PONG…. in GLSL… I know it can be done, I’ve seen one before, however let’s just say it’s not the simplest thing in the world to wrap your head around! 😀

Ah well, that’s enough for tonight, will continue tomorrow.

For anyone who has never programmed shaders, let me start by saying this is absolutely not what they are intended for! 😀 But the simplest way to explain them is that they are programs that run on the graphics card instead of the CPU. When it comes to the programs themselves tho, the main difference is that you aren’t moving “objects” or “images” or “models” like in unity or xna or pretty much any language. You are quite literally programming pixels on the screen. And even then you can’t say “area from x = 10 to x = 20 should be red”, no. The program runs for every single pixel on the screen and what you do is check “is this pixel between x = 10 and x = 20, if so make it red, otherwise check if it is in one of the other billion regions you want coloured”. And then math gets involved and it gets complicated, so 😀

Let me preface this next bit by saying the game is not “playable” yet. But if the above caught anyone’s attention, you can take a look at what the code looks like here: http://glslsandbox.com/e#23878 You can also click the “fork” button in the top left and play around with it.

(Also yes, this is a fragment shader, there are other types of shaders too, most notably vertex shaders. For those you program individual vertices instead of pixels.)

Quick and simple website feature requests

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, March 16th, 2015 3:20 pm

I know there is a whole new website in the works, however while that’s being made, could we get two features for this site:

– A list of links to games for all past Ludum Dares and Mini Ludum Dares
– An easy link to the user overview page for the logged in user.

So for the links to games, just a page like the wallpapers page, which has the 31 LD and 57 Mini LDs, specifically to the page which allows you to search through entries for that LD. So stuff like

http://ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-31/?action=preview
http://ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-30/?action=preview
http://ludumdare.com/compo/minild-57/?action=preview
etc.

Don’t get me wrong, remembering and manually editing the URLs is fairly natural for CLI developers and users, but for the rest of the ‘normal’ folk out there, a simple to use list would be great. And yes, the list can be compiled manually, it doesn’t have to have some fancy system behind it.

The second request is to link to, for me, this page: http://ludumdare.com/compo/author/errorage/
Basically the author page for whoever is logged in.

THANKS! 😀

Ludum Dare, Ludum Dare, Ludum Dare, Ludum Dare,…

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Tuesday, December 30th, 2014 11:01 pm

Yes, I’m sure people have made this very video lots of times before, I just find it hilarious that people care about this 😀

I-is it over, c-c-can I look?

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, December 29th, 2014 10:54 pm

The results are live! Many are ecstatic, many disappointed, etc. etc.

Me personally? Let’s say I expected to be somewhere in the 400 – 600 region in the overall category, and placed in 599th place. 😀

I’m stubborn about my approach to Ludum Dare. I don’t really care about what score I get at the end, I merely use it as an excuse to use what I know to make a game – a “summary” of my knowledge, if you will. I learn new things in between LDs, and then use Ludum Dare as an excuse to apply all this knowledge on a project. Looking back at my previous LD games: The first time it took me 48 hours to make a cylinder move and disks spin. The second time I did some extremely basic pathfinding, a game controller and keyboard input sequences. This time, however, I did way, way more. From a technical point of view, I think I did very well. The scope of my planned project was however way, way too big, as it always was, and as it will be next time too. 😀

Now, this should not be anything new for seasoned jammers, however here is some advice for everyone who has not participated in a game jam yet, and people who are disappointed with their numerical results. However, please understand that these are just my personal observations. Other jammers are welcome to add their own advice, or comment on / contest any of these. Anyway, here goes!
Make a game in 2D. (3D takes way too long, and people tend to judge 3D much more harshly than 2D. Bad 2D graphics seem to be much better than bad 3D graphics, and in 48 hours, you can’t really do good 3D graphics.)
– Focus your game around a single, simple mechanic, and polish that to perfection. (Do not make complicated systems / mechanics)
Any art is better than placeholder art. (Do not leave coloured squares or circles in place of sprites. Spend at least 5 minutes per sprite, but no more than 15, unless it’s an important sprite)
– Spend at least a few hours on the user experience. The people who will play your game will likely only play it for a few minutes, so ensure the main menu, tutorial and instructions are done properly. Do not expect people to read your LD submission page.
Know your tools ahead of time. If you know Unity, develop in Unity. If you know XNA, develop in XNA, if you know GameMaker, use GameMaker. If you don’t know how to develop in any game engine, but know a programming language, which is not traditionally associated with game development (Java, C#, Python, PHP, …), develop in that. You can make a game using WinForms in C#, Swing in Java, or even in the console. Nobody ever said your game needs to have graphics. Remember, there is an innovation category too! In any case, do not make the mistake of assuming you will learn a game engine in the two days you have available. Use what you know.
Do not neglect audio. If you have a semi-decent microphone, just record a few claps, slaps, hits and various sounds you can make with your mouth and body, as well as the objects around you and put them in your game. Ensure ahead of time that you know the process of recording, processing (IE splitting a recording into short clips), and then using it in your game development software.
Rate games in the days after the competition. Aim to receive at least 30 votes. Not everyone casts a vote in every category, so try to get more than the absolute minimum number of votes to ensure you get an actual ranking.

Of course, here I am, 599th out of 1300, preeching about how to get a good ranking. 😀 I never said I follow my own advice. 😀

I am not writing this post in a hope of sounding wise, pretentious or important. I am merely sharing my observations in hope that it will contribute to a bigger discussion, which might help some jammers. I also acknowledge that every list item has exceptions. If I was to write a proper disclaimer for this list, the disclaimer would probably end up being much longer than the list itself 😀

In conclusion: How much does this matter? Well, that’s a question for you. If you care about your score, you may want to consider this advice and get more from other participants. For me, none of this post matters, because my approach to LD does not include expectations of a high ranking 😀

If you have any comments, please either post below, or write your own post!

I’M EXCITED I’M EXCITED I’M EXCITED I’M EXCITED…

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, December 29th, 2014 4:09 pm

Three hours left until the results are out! I can’t wait to play the top rated games! I really want to see how many of the games I rated highly are liked by everyone else!

However, since there is little point in claiming you rated games highly after the results are public, I would like to provide you with a list of my favourite games, decided after playing 161 of them.

So, without further to do, here is my long shortlist of favourite games I have played and rated. I’m not claiming that these are superb, great or good, just that I found them interesting. (Extra credits reference, anyone?) – That said, I do think these games are good. Each for different reasons tho. 😀

I hope you found some of these enjoyable or interesting 😀

See ya in April! 😀

A penny* for your thoughts?

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Sunday, December 28th, 2014 10:16 am

I really appreciate written comments, especially from those of you, who have stuck through the voting period for this long, and still play and rate games.

While I appreciate every star-vote I receive, I would much rather hear what you have to say, so please take a look at my Doll house game and tell me what you think. Of course I appreciate positive reviews, but would really like to hear what problems you see, and suggestions on how to fix them.

Doll hosue: q-Be or not q-Be

Thank you for your comments, you are awesome! 😀

Play here

* – a penny will not be given, sorry.

It’s a doll house!

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Friday, December 19th, 2014 10:47 am

Hello people!

I made a game for LD31. It is a good game! 😀

I would really like it if you played it. Please play it. 😀

Play Doll house: q-Be or not q-Be

Doll house: q-Be or not q-Be, a game by LIME :D

Doll house: q-Be or not q-Be, a game by LIME :D

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you would like to see a list of the other games I recommend, see one of my earlier posts. Thanks! 😀

Some of my favourite games so far

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Wednesday, December 10th, 2014 7:38 am

I enjoy looking at other peoples’ lists of top games, so I thought I would write one of my own. According to the handy counter, I’ve played 113 games so far, and I’m sure there are many more great ones around, so post your favourites too!

Finish your project by AgentParsec

Finish your project

Sheeball by dieblume86

Sheeball

Man on the Field by Double Zero One Zero

Man on the Field

The Fast and the Flatulent by Drtizzle

The Fast and the Flatulent – No I’m not joking, this is one of the best games this competition!

Hunt the Yeti  by Elisée

Hunt the Yeti

Letter run by Grehg

Letter Run

Screen head by NickZangus

Screen head

Cube clicker by Polyganz

Cube clicker

SIRTET by stray

SIRTET

These are in no particular order. I’ve also omitted games which were recently mentioned in other people’s top lists in this news feed, so there are several more games I like.

At the end here, in small text with no big image, I would also like to mention that I made a game too. If you would like to play it, you can find it here: Doll house: q-be or not q-Be.

The moment you know you succeeded.

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Tuesday, December 9th, 2014 9:38 am

In the hours approaching the deadline, the pace just doesn’t let up. It basically boils down to codecodecode, artartart, panicpanicpanic – rinse and repeat. But then, at one point, you click that compile button, and it is all over. It is done. Now you can go to bed.

I looked through the folder, which my auto-screenshot program filled with screen caps, and found this one, which I thought I should share.

Final compile, final minute of the competition.

Final compile, final minute of the competition.

This screenshot is merely the last one tho. There were 17926 more which went into making the game. You can see it, along with the rest, in the making-of video, available here:

I would really appreciate if you tried the game too, and I encourage you to leave a written comment.

Play the game here

Thanks 😀

Judgement

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, December 8th, 2014 11:20 pm
You are being judged in 7 categories

Stop judging me D:

High school really does never end! D:

Perhaps changing it to something like “Your game is being judged” or “Your entry” or “Your submission” would be preferrable. 😀

(Writing this post just because I found the wording funny)

Building a house! A timelapse!

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, December 8th, 2014 4:59 am

It took me a few hours due to various ageing pieces of software no longer working (JPEG to AVI converters to be precise). And it takes a while to convert 10GB of JPEGs into 30GB of AVI video and then into 30MB of MPEG video (no, not joking, 30GB -> 30MB…) Anyway, then Lightworks decided to die on me, so I had to revert to Windows Movie Maker, which does its own conversion upon import, then rendering, which took about 30 minutes in itself, then uploading to Youtube, and the processing that Youtube does, and lastly re-processing it with audio, pulled from the Youtube library. All in all, not the most pleasant of experiences. Still, it’s up now. I hope you enjoy. (I cut out sleep, and there isn’t a whole lot of time when I’m distracted.)

The game can be played here:
Doll house: q-Be or not q-Be

This year I didn’t prepare, didn’t have a game idea going into it. All of these things set me on a collision course with disaster, since I haven’t really used Unity in 6 months. Yet I pulled it off.

As a computer scientist – a programmer – I like making systems. I like making tools, structures and algorithms, which will then be used by others to do their work in a more efficient and stress-free way. I like the process of generalizing, finding common behaviours and patterns in things, which seem completely unrelated. In the eyes of the public this makes me weird, in the eyes of my CS peers, this makes me perfectly normal. Unfortunately this process of making systems doesn’t suffice to make a game. On top of the systems, a game also requires various cases for these systems to be used – use cases.

Making a system is fun, but thinking up and adding a dozen or more use cases to this system? No, that isn’t fun at all.

Anyway, what I did differently this year was the following: My game contains a house, made up of several rooms, which are full of objects. Instead of making a general “room class” with pathfinding and lighting and who knows what, I… basically built a house and decided I will figure out everything else later. I decided which rooms will be where and built it to plan. Once the house was built, I created a Room class and started work on the pathfinding and lighting and whatnot. Once the house was built, I knew exactly what my Room class had to be able to do. If I took the traditional top-down approach and made the class before making the house, I’d inevitably get bogged down by some problem in a class feature I wasn’t even going to use. Sure, the “room system” will have been better, but I’ll have wasted a lot of time on unnecessary system features.

I did the same with furniture. I spent a few hours to model all the furniture, positioned it around the house, and only then made it work with pathfinding and interaction code stubs and such. The point is that by then you know what it will be used for, and know exactly which general “systemic level” features you ACTUALLY need.

Now don’t get me wrong, I know that taking this post out of the context of a 48 hour hack-a-ton or competition, will earn me a lot of hate from programmers with an unhealthily strong belief in the superiority of whatever programming style or convention they happen to support. And of course I believe in the superiority of tidy, clean, generalized, systemic code… However in the limited time that we have, and the fact that there is usually a small, finite list of use cases, I think the approach of creating the use cases first and then a system from these use cases, may be a worthwhile method for development.

This has been my experience. I’ve managed to do way more by working in this way. You are forgiven if you do not wish to read this post, I didn’t intend for it to be this long. 😀

Shameless plug: Go play my LD game 😀

My good deed for the day.

Posted by (twitter: @LiamLimeGames)
Monday, December 8th, 2014 1:50 am

Spare a thought – Placeholder cubes are people too!

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