Ludum Dare 33
Coming August 21st-24th!

About PoV (twitter: @mikekasprzak)

Mike Kasprzak, AKA "PoV" is your fearless leader. He plays this role so the others don't have to. He didn't start Ludum Dare, but has been around since the beginning. Even though it's wrong, he speaks the word "Dare" as it would be spoken in English. He does that with "Euler" too, which should make that guy pretty mad.

Mike is a game industry veteran with more than a decade of experience, and multiple console and mobile games to his name. Currently he owns and operates Sykhronics Entertainment, an Independent Game Developer based out of London, Ontario, Canada. Sykhronics is best known for the iPhone game Smiles, which was a finalist in the 2009 Independent Games Festival Mobile, was the winner of the Intel Atom Developer Challenge's "Most Elegant Design" award in 2010, and won the 2011 Developers Choice Award in Transgaming's Developer Competition. Also PuffBOMB, a classic Ludum Dare entry of his that went on to be a finalist in the Slamdance Guerrilla Game Making Competition and be named a "Top Dog" on legendary gaming archive Home of the Underdogs.

Mike is currently working on STACHE.

Mike was a contributing author on an iPhone book nobody remembers and used to write for independent games website GameTunnel.

Mike's funny story is that he "won a car" in a compo. He's been a full time independent game developer for too long.

Company: Sykhronics Entertainment
Twitter: mikekasprzak
Blog: TooNormal

Mike's Notable Compo Entries
LD12 - towlr []
72H2 - Zooble [Link]
LD03 - PuffBOMB []
LD02 - Sheep Strike
LD01 - Trout!
LD00 - Fun Game (not actually fun)


PoV's Trophies

Help Running and paying for the LD Site Award
Awarded by Donni11
on June 17, 2015
Still Being PoV
Awarded by dylanigan
on August 22, 2014
The "If you got another result than PoV, you are probably wrong" Award
Awarded by klianc09
on August 22, 2013
The Stroustrup Award for Writing a Web-Based Game in C++
Awarded by Jacob
on April 24, 2012
The IRC Math Teacher of the Year Award
Awarded by Henry McLaughlin
on October 29, 2011
Being POV ld20 edition
Awarded by sol_hsa
on May 5, 2011

PoV's Archive

October Challenge 2014

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Monday, September 29th, 2014 3:51 am

As September comes to a close, it’s time to kick off the October Challenge 2014!

The October Challenge is a special event Ludum Dare started four years ago. The purpose: Just as Ludum Dare encourages you to make game, the October Challenge encourages you to sell a game. Or put another way:

Finish a game — Take it to market — Earn $1

That is your goal. That is the October Challenge.

[ Submit/Edit | View All ]

Disregard all the usual Ludum Dare rules (no restrictions). Finish any game you previously made during a game jam, something else you’ve been working on, or heck, something entirely new. Your goal, if you choose to accept it, is to not only make something, but to finish it and do everything necessary to start earning money from it. That’s all. No specific rules or platforms. Make good on that goal or promise to start selling games.

Finish your game before November 1st, and submit it to your respected market. That is the challenge. And once you earn your $1, you’ve won! Easy as that. You’re now a pro.

I’d like to invite everyone to share resources and discuss markets, business models, advertising, and anything related to making that $1. I’ve collected a list of marketplaces, vendor services, and even some opportunities you can take advantage of over here:

October 2014 Resources and Opportunities

If you need a place to start, you can check out this guide I wrote for our first event. Selling games isn’t just finishing it, but there is often paperwork and fees to take care of, and those take time. Do them early to make the most of your time.

Also, do share your progress on your upcoming game with us here on the site.

I’ve posted a few FAQ answers in the comments, so look below. Good luck everyone!

October 2014 Resources and Opportunities

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Monday, September 29th, 2014 3:40 am

If you’d like to share a resource or opportunity, post a comment or send a tweet to @mikekasprzak (or if you prefer e-mail go here).

Opportunities and Contests

  • PC, Mobile, Web – Independent Games Festival – Highly regarded Independent Games event with cash prizes, due October 22nd! ($100 Fee)
  • PC, Mobile, Web – Games 4 Doge – A Game Dev contest looking to raise awareness of Doge Coin. Due October 31st.

Marketplaces (Mobile)

  • Mobile (Apple) – iOS App Store – iPhone, iPod touch, iPad ($99 year)
  • Mobile (Android) – Android Marketplace – Android phones and tablets ($25 Fee)
  • Mobile (Android) – Amazon App Store – Amazon Kindle Fire Tablets (Free?)
  • Mobile (PS Vita, Other) – PlayStation Mobile – Target the PS Vita (and more) with C#
  • Mobile (BlackBerry) – Appworld – PlayBook Tablet and BlackBerry 10 phones (SDK)
  • Mobile (WP8) – Windows Phone 8 – Windows Phone 8 devices ($19 Fee)

Marketplaces (PC)

  • PC (Windows, Mac, Linux) – Steam Greenlight – Community Voted PC Distro ($100 Fee)
  • PC (Windows & Linux) – Desura – PC Game and Mod storefront with a Steam-like client
  • PC (Windows & Mac) – – Classic PC Gaming portal and storefront
  • PC (Windows, Mac, Linux) – – PC Game Distribution (Free)

Marketplaces (Web)

Portals w/ Ad share



Hardware Surveys


The Future of Ludum Dare (Part 3) – The Beginning

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Friday, September 26th, 2014 2:32 pm

The long awaited conclusion, or rather, the beginning. (Part 1, Part 2)

The video sums up the plan. If you want to contribute, hit one of the links below.



If you want to help by doing work, join the mailing list. I’ll let you know when we’re ready.

Honestly, I have no idea how realistic this is, but here we are anyway. You don’t see Patreons as high as $3000 (you rarely see $200), but you guys asked for it, so here we are giving it a try!

* * *

Lets talk specifics.


Ludum Dare Steam Curator

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014 12:56 pm

Hey, do you Steam? You should follow us on Steam. We now maintain a curated list of games that started in Ludum Dare that made their way to Steam. Follow us! Help us share Ludum Dare games with the world. :)

The Future of Ludum Dare (Part 2) – Concerns

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 8:30 pm

OMG! Thank you everyone! In this video I address concerns (Watch Part 1 here).

The whole idea of working-your-butt-off for no prize is bizarre, yet here we are, thousands of developers strong.

I have to tell myself that what I’m doing is OK. The money I’m asking for is about giving me the time to give Ludum Dare the attention it needs right now. Long term though, I don’t want us in an endless loop, like those PBS telethons I’d watch every year when I was a kid.

To everyone asking me to shut up and take their money, that’s coming. If you can’t wait, the donations page works (if you’re logged in), but much of what’s written on that page is out of date. I haven’t had the chance to update it yet.

In probably my next video, I’ll have more to say on this. After that, I want to talk about my thoughts on the short and long term goals. Obviously, I want to fix some things for December’s LD, but some of the things will require a much bigger effort.

Thanks again everyone for your support. Leave a comment, send me a tweet, or fire an e-mail.

* * *

Also, share your thoughts on LD, the event, and the community in the Mega Thread.

The Future of Ludum Dare (Part 1) – Permission

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Monday, September 15th, 2014 7:57 pm

Well, when you’re as big as Ludum Dare, eventually you have to act like it. Lets chat.

I hope what I’m saying in the video makes sense. We’re NEVER going to charge for Ludum Dare, but we have real manpower costs: mine. I’ve been here, running the show for 6 years now, supporting it for all 12, and I still want to do it!

As it grows, it gets more and more demanding. Honestly, I can’t ignore it anymore (I’ve tried). Everyone on IRC knows how I never visit anymore. I’ve had to balance my time doing my work and running Ludum Dare. I love doing it, but we’re at this point now. We either do something bad, or we do something awesome. I prefer awesome.

Again, all I’m asking today is for permission. Permission to evolve it in to something that lets me get paid, which keeps me away from contract work, which lets me do things to improve Ludum Dare in the time I couldn’t before. How we make money is a discussion for another day. Crowdfunding, Kickstarters, Patreons, Sponsors, heck even the wild idea of making it a proper charitable organization. We’ll look into opening this worm can, but not today.

Today is about admitting we have a problem. And that it’s probably time to take the next step.

Share your thoughts in the comments. Feel free to tweet or e-mail me too.

* * *

Also! Share your thoughts on Ludum Dare, the website, the community in THE MEGA THREAD. All your thoughts, criticisms, and especially the things you love. It’s been an incredible resource for me. Everything, the good, the bad, is so encouraging. Thanks again!

What you Like, What you Don’t. Fast Feedback!

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Saturday, August 23rd, 2014 8:50 am

Hey folks! I’ve started taking notes and collecting thoughts on a Ludum Dare website rewrite. What would help is knowing what people are thinking as they use this current website. While you’re participating this weekend, I ask that you come here and leave a comment sharing what you’re thinking. Things you don’t like about the website/event, things that seem wrong, and things you do like about it. No matter how small, the irks and pains, unnecessary things, and even those little moments that make you smile. I have my assumptions, but you telling will be best. :) Thanks!

EDIT: Don’t be overwhelmed by the number of comments! Don’t even worry about reading them. Repeating what’s been said just reinforces the importance of something.

Welcome to Ludum Dare 30!

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Wednesday, August 20th, 2014 4:11 pm

As the summer winds down, it’s time for more Ludum Dare!

Final Round Theme Voting has begun! The highest rated themes from Rounds 1-4 have been collected here for the Final Grand Theme Battl-stravaganza! What theme will be victorious? You decide!


This is the one that counts!



Warmup Weekend for Ludum Dare 30

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Monday, August 11th, 2014 10:23 am

Are you itching for some Dare? Yeah! Are you ready though? Nope!?! Then between now and the start, you’re encouraged to test your tools. We call it Warmup Weekend (but we don’t mind when you submit, be it today or next week). Make some art, import it, and draw it on screen. Make some sounds, import them, and play them on cue. If you’re using a new development tool, figure out the development cycle. Learn how to make a release too!

Bullet point summary:

  • No rules or limits. This is practice.
  • Learn your development tools! Write some code, run it.
  • Make some art, get it on screen, make it move.
  • Print some text to the screen. Print some text to a log (if applicable).
  • Make some sound, get it in game, make it play.
  • If you’re motivated enough, make your experiments in to a game!
  • Make something that should take “hours”, not 2 days.
  • Then package it up, put it online.
  • No time or day limit. But if you have no other plans this weekend, why not?

If you like what you’ve done, feel free to share it.

[ Submit Here | View all Warmup Games ]

Free Assets for Ludum Dare 30 (Jam Only!)

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Saturday, August 9th, 2014 4:27 pm

Lets try something new!

Share any freely available assets you make available in the comments. Art, Sound, Music, etc. Remember that the Compo is a solo competition, so assets found here are ONLY FOR THE JAM!

Ludum Dare 30 Theme Slaughter!!

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Saturday, August 9th, 2014 10:28 am

With over 1900 themes suggested by the community, how do we make that more manageable? With this!


Ludum Deals for LD30 [11]

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Thursday, July 31st, 2014 10:31 am

Deals! Here is this LD’s list of offers, bargains and other things.


Content Creation

  • Pixexix ProProjection Painting Tool – Get Pixexix Pro for 50% off ($15).
  • Pickle EditorSprite and Animation Editor – 25% off (Reg $24.99) with coupon code LD30. Click here to add to cart.
  • Pixel Maker PROPixel Art Painting Tool for Android – Get Pixel Maker PRO for 50% off ($1.99).

Unity Asset Store

Game Maker Asset Store

If you’d like to submit your own deal, you can post details and a link in the comments below, or send me an e-mail. Keep in mind I don’t have a lot of time, but if you need a confirmation or just to ping me once it’s posted, go ahead and mail me. When I have a chance I’ll add it to the list.

Also it MUST be relevant to what we do here (i.e. make games).

Real World Ludum Dare 30 Gatherings [37]

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Monday, July 21st, 2014 11:47 am

While Ludum Dare is typically an online event (make a game from the comfort of your home), many real world events happen around Ludum Dare. Here’s the list:

If you want your event on the list, post a comment letting me know where your event is. Be sure to include a link to further details (either here on the blog, or elsewhere).

Discussion: Removing the Source Code requirement

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Saturday, June 7th, 2014 11:13 am

Well, it looks like it’s time to talk about removing the Source Code requirement from Ludum Dare. For 12 years, one of the key differentiating factors between the Compo and Jam has been the requirement for source code. You were never required to GPL the code, just share it. It still belonged to you. Alas, this generosity is getting abused more and more these days.

Please help me out by posting other reports of abuse in the comments. I seem to get these every so often, but I’ve neglected to keep a record of them. I will add them to the list above.

Proposal: Source Code is Optional

There are definite benefits to everyone sharing source code, so we don’t want to discourage it. But at the same time, the internet sometimes abuses good thing, and the source code has been abused for a few years now. Not to mention, some companies make it difficult to report fraudulent apps, so I would rather err on the side of the community and make it entirely optional. That’s my thinking anyway.

This ultimately means that the difference between the Compo and the Jam are the following:

  • Compo is Solo, Jam is Solo or Teams
  • Compo is 48 hours, Jam is 72 hours
  • Compo assets must be created in 48 hours, yourself. Jam assets can come from anywhere (pre-existing, Google Image Search, etc). In a way, using 3rd party assets is *like* working in a team, even if you’re solo.

Share your thoughts in the comments.

For reference, an older discussion on this topic.

MiniLD 51: Revenge of the Tool Jam

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Thursday, May 22nd, 2014 7:33 am

A long long time ago I ran a MiniLD event we’ve nicknamed the Tool Jam. My lovely minions did some digging, and weren’t able to get ahold of the original MiniLD 51 organizer, and asked that I bring back the Tool Jam. So, lets do another Tool Jam!

Tool Jam

The goal of the Tool Jam is NOT to make a game, but to make something that will make it easier for you or others to make games.

What do you make? Think about the last Ludum Dare(s) you participated in, whether you finished a game or not. What’s one thing that got in your way, and stopped you from finishing faster (or at all)? Build that.

Small libraries, standalone tools, conversion utilities, Unity assets, algorithms, whitepapers, etc. Think about your process, and what can be improved about it. This MiniLD is all about process.

A long time ago (in a galaxy far far away), DrPetter created a wonderful tool for randomly generating sound effects call sfxr. Today, it and its derivatives have become the staple of sound effect creation for Game Jams (and many Indie Games too). The original Tool Jam was inspired by this wonderful contribution DrPetter made to the community.

The Tool Jam will take place this weekend (May 24th-25th), but for the sake of poor timing we’ll run it again next weekend (May 31st-June 1st), and leave submissions open until the end of the week. Typically, MiniLD events should take place entirely in their own months, but we’re announcing this one waaay too last minute.


August Date Check

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
Saturday, May 3rd, 2014 11:49 am

Lets see what weekends there are Game Industry/Demo Scene/Indie related things going on in August.

  • August 2-3 – Assembly 2014 (Finland)
  • August 9-10 – Full Indie Summit (Vancouver), SIGGRAPH (Vancouver), GDC Europe (11th)
  • August 16-17 – Gamescom (Germany)
  • August 23-24 – ?? ** This SMELLS Like a good weekend for LD30 **
  • August 30-31 – PAX Prime (Seattle), PAX Dev (27-28)

Evo is in July (11th-13th), so no conflict.

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