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Bacterial World – Postmortem

Posted by (twitter: @markusneubrand)
Sunday, April 22nd, 2012 4:42 pm

My first #LD48 is over and I submitted my game (give it a shot here). It was quite the ride but I am happy that I participated.

What went right:

Submitted a complete game: The game is more or less feature complete. There is music, animations, sound effects, explanation, etc. All the bits and pieces are in place. Finishing a complete game was one of my top priorities for my first LD and I am glad I made that happen.

Learned to use a lot of new tools: This was the first time I really did an entire game myself. Usually I resort to the likes of opengameart.org, soundbible.com, jamendo.com etc. to supply graphics/sound/music for a game. LD forced me out of my comfort zone and I had to learn how to create some of those myself. I discovered some awesome tools for sound creation like sfxr, cgmusic orĀ otomata I will definitely use again.

Learned some new coding techniques/tricks: I usually do very different development work than game programming in my job (working on low-level stuff in a UNIX daemon right now). For some aspects of the game (pixel perfect collision, etc.) I had to venture into things I’ve never done before and picked up some useful new tricks for future projects (or at least learned how not to do it :D)

What went wrong/not so good:

Not prepared enough for graphics/sound/music: As I mentioned above I do programming for a living but I have little to no drawing/graphics/music skills. I didn’t really have the time to prepare for this LD at all. So next time around I am going to try to at least search for some useful tools or read some tutorials on those topics. Ideally I am gonna even participate in the warm-up weekend.

Couldn’t come up with an idea I liked: I ended up developing this simple sidescroller/endless runner game because I couldn’t really come up with another doable idea. I am not really sure how to improve this until the next competition either. Just hoping that inspiration strikes me at the next LD.

Not detailed enough plan at start of development: I am definitely not the guy who wants to work off a 100 page design document but I will try to have a better idea of how the final game should look like before starting to code next time. My “design document” was the inkscape drawing I posted Friday evening.

Not enough time: My #LD48 was more like a #LD24. I had a lot of other stuff going on this weekend so I couldn’t focus as much on the game as I wanted too. I am going to try to really get the whole weekend for the next LD so I can tackle a more ambitious idea.

All in all I am very happy that I finished. There were quite some obstacles to overcome but I fought through them and created a complete game. It isn’t a masterpiece but I got it done. I’ll be in for the next LD for sure and go for a more complex game next time.

Bacterial World – First playable prototype

Posted by (twitter: @markusneubrand)
Saturday, April 21st, 2012 9:24 pm

Made some good progress today. A first playable prototype of Bacterial World is now working in Google Chrome (still pretty buggy on FF). Basic game mechanics are now more or less done.

 

Things to do for tomorrow:

  • Finish sound effects
  • Add background music
  • Add tutorial or intro
  • Fix game in Firefox
  • Make the evil guy more active (right now he is just running in front of you)
  • Add functionality to restart the game
  • Add some more animations (e.g. loosing animation)
  • Fine tuning

Happy with the progress so far for my first #LD48.

Bacterial World – First pre-alpha prototype

Posted by (twitter: @markusneubrand)
Saturday, April 21st, 2012 12:02 pm

After doing some preliminary artwork yesterday it’s time to start coding today. I revised the game idea a little bit and am going to switch from “classic platformer” more towards “endless runner”.

Implemented the main character and its moves (jump, slide). Here is a preliminary demo. Press space to start w/up arrow to jump and s/down arrow to slide.

Off to run some errands now. Enemy/hurdle spawning and collision detection coming up next.

First progress

Posted by (twitter: @markusneubrand)
Saturday, April 21st, 2012 12:54 am

After not being able to settle on an idea I finally picked one and started development. Not sure yet if it was a good choice but getting something done for my first #LD48 is the priority now.

Game is going to be a simple platformer in the tiny world of bacteria. First artwork below (created in Inkscape).

Psyched for first #LD48

Posted by (twitter: @markusneubrand)
Monday, April 16th, 2012 9:21 pm

After following the last Ludum Dare and seeing all the amazing stuff people built, I am gonna try to come up with an entry myself this time. I am gonna use the following tools:

Language: HTML5/CSS/JavaScript (will use html5boilerplate.com and possibly a JS Game library likeĀ  EaselJS or melonJS)

Graphics: Gimp, Inkscape (I suck at Graphics so Photoshop would do me no good anyways…)

IDE: Aptana Studio (I do a lot of Java development for a living so I am used to Eclipse)

Soud/Music: Sfxr (don’t really have a clue how to create sounds/music so this is going to be interesting)

Goals for me are learn something new, have fun creating the game and enter something fairly complete (menu, instructions, sound, …). If someone else happens to like whatever I can come up with even better :)

Can’t wait for the theme announcement!

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