About wzl (twitter: @wzl_)

Gamedev, Software engineer, wannabe artist and musician.



Ludum Dare 37
MiniLD 48
Ludum Dare 26
Ludum Dare 25
MiniLD #35
Ludum Dare 23
Ludum Dare 22
Ludum Dare 21

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wzl's Archive


Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Sunday, January 12th, 2014 6:44 pm



I didn’t have a lot of time this weekend but after seeing people progress on irc saturday night (especially rxi and bitslap *drool*) i wanted to give it a shot anyways. Since i only got around 24 hours left i settled on a dialog text adventure. Also i wanted to make a narrative based game for quite a while.

As usual i made my entry using C#. Overriding paint events of pictureboxes to render text in a custom fashion, being annoyed by unprecise measuretext methods leaving behind ugly spaces were all part of this. But generally it worked fine. I spend a few hours working on the parser/backend. It is a simple token driven script or markup language.

And it is modable! 😀

Texty text

Texty text


#narration This text will be describtive about the character you're talking to. Also the Narrator has to exist. it is the fallback 'person' when you end a dialog. the #narration keyword is mandatory, but will be ignored for the Narrator.
#intro The "hello" text of the character. #intro is a [keyword]
#keyword is a reply to a keyword determined in [brackets]
#brackets Keywords in brackets will automatically be added as soon as you read them. You can also learn of [persons] that way.
#persons will be identified by (Paran Thesis). To talk to another person, you have to [end] the conversation.
#end will end the conversation

:Paran Thesis
#narration She has an round body and is generally nice and [helpful].
#intro Hello there, what can i do for you?
#helpful Do you want some [food] or [drinks]?
#food Here, have some pie!
#drinks Have a beer!
#end Goodbye.

Open the “Dialog” file residing next to the .exe in a texteditor and paste the markup text above (play the game before that if you don’t want to get spoiled) and create your own dialog adventure! 😀

3 things though:
1. remember that #narration, #intro and #end are mandatory keywords.
2. remember that every keyword needs text
3. the win/end condition is currently hardcoded, so sorry about that, but feel free to look at the source :)

Furthermore, if you are interested in more features like conditional replies (yes/no), location based persons/traveling, character-bound keywords and possibly more puzzle features, leave a comment or come discuss in irc or twitter.

Lastly, there is no error handling as of yet, so if your script doesn’t work, the .exe will just crash.

Have fun adventuring! And paste your own adventures aswell 😀



TunnelVision – Post Mortem…wait, who died?!

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Friday, May 3rd, 2013 5:24 pm

 The Summary

I totally had fun this LD! Even the painful aftermath helped a lot with figuring stuff out. I was at long last able to upgrade to glsl 1.5, fix my shader setup, get more familiar with matrices again (even if i’ll forget it all by next week) and was able to deliver a solid entry, that’s actually gamy, unless most of my previous entries.



The Theme

Like every other LD i need a good half day to get over the theme. I keep complaining on IRC, to my housemates, to basically everyone that dares trying to talk to me within the first couple hours of saturday. I don’t try to intenionally violate it, but i usually end up doing something that only remotely could be considered themed. This time around it was technically quite challenging to set up, but the gameplay atleast mechanics are simple:

Get Gems, don’t run into things, get to goal.



Day 1: The Work

After a bunch of coffee and ranting i fired up the IDE and started working on TunnelVision, not actually being determined on pulling it through. I made the ring model, imported it and have it arranged along a spline. I realized that this solution is not at all sufficient because rotating the rings along the spline direction is a task i didn’t want to bother with. I remembered that you can construct a rotation matrix out of forward, right and up vectors, so i use an array of those to make up a track, where each node has a definite position and orientation i can further work with.

Applying a constant rotation along the forward axis, and a translation along its up and right vectors allowed for some interesting level design components to create segments that don’t look dynamic and not too uniform, like a rotation of 12 degrees every ring in distance 2; although it is nice to have that kind of control.  Basic ship and camera mechanics were added aswell, but in even cruder forms than it is in the entry. Also i started implementing phong shading only realizing later that there will a be whole lot more problems arising.


Day 2: The Joy

After implementing most of the basic mechanics in day 1 i could focus on building actual tracks and a add little more variety to them, get some polish done and get a smooth release. Glad that i decided as i did because i was just on time, so i thought. I realized a bug in the intersection code just after the submission hour started, i tried my best to get rid of it, but i wasn’t able to figure out exactly what the problem was and i wanted to wrap it up, so i left it in.

Another thing that is still bugging me are the ship controls and camera logic. I wasn’t able to get the physics done in a way they behave like i intended them to, so i didn’t bother with it for the time being. The camera logic is another beast. Just attaching the camera do the back of the ship looks very boring and undynamic, i wanted to have it follow the ship with a slight delay but that turned out more diffucult than i imaged. So for now it keeps following the path left behind by the ship in a certain distance. The result is not quite like what i had in mind, but it’s close.

Otherwise it was a smooth process; I planned to have enough time for everything so i didn’t need to resolve to botching. Only thing i regret is that i weren’t able to squeez in a second tune.




Day 3-6: The Pain

Only the day after submitting is when the actual work started. “Error”, “Not working” and “Crash on startup” are only a few of the messages you can read in my comment thread. Again. AGAIN. ATI oh why you just do not care when compiling shaders. At first shaders weren’t able to compile on nvidia systems at all because i called functions that aren’t available in the shader-version i specified (Thanks for realizing ATI). Then, after upgrading to #version 150 nvidia complained about attribute/varying keywords being obsolete (Thanks for mentioning ATI).

After fixing that the game started to run, but the normals were totally wrecked. At this point i already got a lot of help by you guys, providing me with info in your reports and helping me to fix this, so let me say thank you: THANKS YOU! A  remote debug session with NeiloGD in a Hangout enabled us to figure out the culprit. I am at fault myself for not realizing this one: I assigned the correct shader only after buffering the modeldata and assigning the attributes. Since the wrong shader was loaded at that point, the Normal-attribute was not active due to optimizations by the compiler. I can see how that is my fault, but damn, ATI, why you allow for such lax programming!



The Conclusion

All in all i’m very happy with TunnelVision. It turned out mostly like i planned, and you guys seem to like it too 😀

But yeah, i’m sorry i forgot to add the option for inverting vertical controls. It will come soon =]

Speaking of which: A post compo version is planned, and partly in production. If you want to be kept up-to-date on that you can follow me or visit my burrow [RSS].

And if you haven’t played it yet DO SO NOW!


FIXED: All the things!

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Thursday, May 2nd, 2013 6:08 am

TunnelVision achieved visual parity on nvidia and ati chipsets now!

It was quite the piece of work, but thanks to you guys and your detailed reports and help i managed to fix all the problems to run this game! (if not let me know!)

Now you can have this on NVIDIA cards! :D

Now you can have this on NVIDIA cards! :D


Special thanks fly out to these guys for providing detailed info on the problems. Make sure you play their game aswell!

Perry: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=15778

Hyaku: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=7393

wonderwhy-er: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=232

Pighead10: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=8539


Special thanks fly out to MetalCanine who didn’t make an entry this time and to NeiloGD (http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=1154) who helped me a lot figuring out whats wrong, aswell as providing a solution!

The fixed version replaced the old broken one, so you can play it at the usual place: ://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=5751


Thanks to all you guys, and enjoy the game! 😀




Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 5:15 am

Wow, this was fun.


Once again i hated the theme. And once again i had a blast either way 😀

I didn’t face a lot of technical difficulties, thankfully. Except a collision problem which i only realized after the submission opened. Doh!

It’s not all too critical, but i’d rather had it not there, for obvious reasons.

Otherwise i’m pretty happy with how TunnelVision turned out, although if i were doing a post-compo version i’d change so many mechanics. But i guess that is just natural.


So how about some eyegasm inducing bug-screenshots? 😀




I’ll just leave this here. Don’t let the collision bugs bite!


wzl out

Minimalism? I didn’t ask for this!

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Saturday, April 27th, 2013 7:17 pm

I’ll just twist the theme until it makes sense. Well, gameplay wise it is pretty minimal, music will be minimal too, graphically, well, sophisticated minimalism maybe 😀

Here’s the devlog:


v   Final part 4   v


Tomorrow it is time to fix the camera pathing, some more ring-meshes and track-generation, aswell as music,  sounds, ui, polish, controlschemes, gamepad support, enemies, collectibles, special effectsOMG IT IS 4AM!?

LevelUp v0.9.1 hotfix!

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Saturday, April 27th, 2013 4:44 am

Thanks to SmallDeadGuy i was able to annihilate some critical bugs and crashes. If you find some, dont hesitate to point them out and i will fix them ASAP. (twitter, irc, anything is fine =] )

Here’s the changes:

  • Creating a new map also creates a new Layer
  • Fixed an error with the minimap that results in a crash
  • Fixed crashing when removing the only layer
  • Added arrow-key controls to maneuver the map

Download v0.9.1

LevelUp v0.9

Visit the homepage for more info


Back to gamedev 😀

LevelUp v0.9 is HERE!

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Friday, April 26th, 2013 3:17 pm

The next version of the most favorite Tilemap editor of anybody and everybody is FINALLY THERE.

Here’s a quick view of changes since 0.8:

  • Ui overhaul, got rid of most of the clutter
  • Added the AutoTiler tool
  • Added the minimap (experimental)
  • Added a photoshop-like action history (in the Overseer tab)
  • Added a bunch of Tip-of-the-Day messages so you don’t get lost (in the Project tab)

Plus a couple more little adjustments and finetunings. I highly suggest you use it, because otherwise your games will suck!



And here is once again the preview of the AutoTiler!


So if you’re making a 2d RPG or Platformer or anything inbetween i hope you don’t shy away and use this marvelous piece of software (and maybe it won’t even break! If it should you can drop me a message anytime though, and i’ll fix it ASAP, especially during the compo!)

Download v0.9

So, get tilin’ folks!


wzl out

LevelUp has a somewhat decent home now!

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Friday, April 26th, 2013 9:08 am


Today i went in there and shamelessly ripped of my own website design and used it as a template for the LevelUp homepage. This is obviously makeshift, but better than that wiki i had used before. Other than that, the release of v0.9 will be coming later today as i’ll need to fixa few buggies still.

So yeah, here’s a screenshot for your entertainment! 😀

It's a preview!

It’s a preview!


So why don’t you head over there now and download the 0.9preview until the final is released? http://lup.wzl.vg

You better do, or do you want to be stuck using tiled and ogmo for the rest of your lives? x)

LevelUp v0.9 Autotiler Preview Video

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Thursday, April 25th, 2013 2:20 pm

Here’s a preview of the AutoTiler as followup of my previous post.


Enjoy 😀



LevelUp v0.9 Preview

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Thursday, April 25th, 2013 9:48 am


I’ve been busy working on LevelUp, refining the interface once again, adding the autotiler and config, some usability fixes and an experimental minimap!


(this release *might* run through mono and wine on linux, but the font loading is broken since it uses gdi32, any reports or hints on that are appreciated!)

I still need some reports about the usability and potential bugs/crashes, so noone gets surprised by mad shizz in the compo.





Any feature suggestions or bug reports can be send in the comments, in the #ludumdare irc channel (i’m wzl there) or through twitter (@wzl_).


I’ll be working on this tomorrow, so there’s still a bit of time to add some shenannigans 😀


Potato on!

wzl out

Levelup v0.9 release preparation for LD26! (Also, i’m in :D)

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Wednesday, April 24th, 2013 5:25 am

LevelUp v0.9 is in the making.



LevelUp v0.9 Preview


There’s not a lot of improvements towards 0.8, but it *will* feature an autotiler!

Quick Preview:


If you have any feature requests, now is the time. I’ll try to wrap 0.9 up by friday, so you can get accustomed to it before the  compo starts!



Also: I’m in! 😀

This time i’ll be using my Flow framework again (which i’ll link to in some later post) using C# and OpenGL.

For graphics I’ll be using Aseprite, and for audio Renoise. (Maybe even Blender?! We’ll see…)


Let the Potato begin!

Ludum Dare Mini Reviews

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Tuesday, December 18th, 2012 9:58 am



Hey everyone.

I started writing some reviews on some of your entries!

At first i will review every game by users that rated my entry. After i catch up i will start rating and reviewing other entries  i’d like to share.

So if you want your game reviewed and added to the list you can head over here and gimme your juice 😀





The complete list of reviewed games is here

Ludum Dare Mini Reviews


To link a specific review just add # + username to the url (http://ldmr.wzl.vg/#pinion)


Keep in mind that writing those takes some time, and it might take a while until i catch up.

Hope you enjoy it 😀


love and kittens,
wzl \o


Eaten – Timelapsy

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Monday, December 17th, 2012 5:16 am

Wooh timelapses are always fun. So here is 18 hours compressed into 3 and a bit minutes.




You play a psychopathic cannibal on a killing spree, just because you’re hungry. Eat as many people as you possibly can, and don’t let them see the corpses, as they will be alerted and you wont be able to kill them or in their direct proximity.


Linky: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-25/?action=rate&uid=5751

Enjoy your meal 😀

I’m in despite everything :D

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Saturday, December 15th, 2012 11:24 pm

I didn’t want to enter at first. I didn’t feel very motivated to begin with and with my back injured i cannot work effectively and without pain anyways. That said I rather like the theme for once and eventually i got an idea and realized how i could implement it.. Heck, 20hours are good enough anyways 😀


So here’s a little heads-up:




You’re a hungry cannibal running wild, eating people. NOMNOMNOM


I’ll be doing things with Flashpunk, Aseprite, LevelUp and Renoise.


LevelUp v0.6 release

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Monday, December 3rd, 2012 8:52 pm

Hello chaps,

I will apologize in advance for the frequent articles on version updates, but that’s good right? New versions mean new features. New features  result in more power. More power let’s you win LudumDare.

Yes, I want you to use LevelUp in the next compo! And to make sure this tool gives you the most freedom possible and runs as stable as you’d expect, i need your feedback.

Let me know of any weird stuff, crashes, bugs, annoyances, missing features and everything that catches your attention!

Here’s today’s changelog:

  • Interface overhaul
  • Restructuring
  • Skins
  • Collapsable project and tool panels
  • Variable tile size (at last)
  • Autoreload tileset when it’s been modified

And this is what it looks like after the interface overhaul:


You can check the homepage for more details or download it directly.

Next version will provide a couple more tools, so look forward to that 😀


Enjoy the tinkering


Levelup Tilemap editor

Posted by (twitter: @wzl_)
Friday, November 30th, 2012 9:01 pm

Hey everyone!

I’ve started some as3 dev some time ago and it usually came down to something that required a tiled map. I’ve tried a couple of mapeditors, like Tiled and Ogmo, but i felt not comfortable using them and they were lacking a few features i expect from a leveleditor.

In previous situations when i needed tiled maps i just made adhoc editors myself, but they were built only for a specific task with a specific framework in mind. Now i attempt to use all the experience i gained from those prototypes to implement a full-fledged standalone mapeditor capable of basic editing features aswell as nice to have stuff like trigger areas, custom locations, and linestrips for pathing or collision.

I’ve started work only earlier this week and by now completed the most basic feature set including tile brushes, layer management and multiple tileset support. It currently exports to XML only, but other formats like JSON will be supported later on.
I will provide an import template for FlashPunk in the next couple of days, so you would be able to immediately use it and try it out.

This is still in heavy development, but the basic implementation is functional. However i’m still looking for general feedback and feature suggestions as i want to make this tool like a decent alternative to existing editors. I’d appreciate your input on it!


Download: http://wzl.vg/src/LevelUpv0.5.zip

For more specific info visit http://wzl.vg/wiki/index.php?title=LevelUp


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