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Sprout Postmortem

Posted by (twitter: @njvas)
Sunday, May 4th, 2014 2:12 pm

This was my first Ludum Dare and the first time I had done a solo jam. It was far more tiring than I had expected, but also incredibly fun! I just wanted to quickly break down the results of last weekend in the hopes that next time I can learn from my mistakes.

What Went Right

  • While the game didn’t end up being everything I wanted, I did, at least, finish something.
  • I really wanted to make something adorable, and I think I achieved that at a base level.
  • My code ended up being way more organized than I expected which really helped at certain times.

What Went Wrong

  • The game isn’t really fun :( The balance is all wrong, there isn’t enough to do, and the player has no agency over the various seeds they get during each round. I kind of knew the 3rd one would be a problem, but I guess my tired brain gave me hope that it wouldn’t be that bad… my brain was wrong.
  • I didn’t really get started until Saturday afternoon, so I dove into the idea before actually designing it really. All I knew when I started was that I wanted an adorable thing running around singing to flowers.
  • I got very little sleep not because I was crunching, but because I was excited. This led to a pretty bad bug in the 11th hour that, under other conditions, I would have easily fixed. But instead, that bug cost me about 4 hours of precious time.
  • My code ended up being way more organized than I expected. This is also in the “What Went Right” category, but while it helped in certain situations, I think it slowed me down overall.
  • Just scope in general. Even though what I produced is very small in scope, I think it was still a little too large for the amount of time I had to work that weekend. I am used to doing jams with at least 3 other people, so I guess I forgot to take that into account when scoping.

All in all, I’m happy I got to participate. I will definitely join in on the next one and (hopefully) I’ll be able to fix some of my previous blunders. Until then, I’m going to put a little more effort into making Sprout fun and see what happens :)

Sprout iPhone wallpaper

Sprout iPhone wallpaper

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