About refreshgames (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)

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Ludum Dare 34
 
Ludum Dare 34 Warmup
 
Ludum Dare 33
 
MiniLD #59
 
Ludum Dare 32
 
Ludum Dare 31
 
Ludum Dare 27
 
Ludum Dare 26 Warmup
 
Ludum Dare 25
 
October Challenge 2012 Unfinished
 
Ludum Dare 24
 
Ludum Dare 23

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Possibly In, Possibly Not

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Friday, December 9th, 2016 6:55 pm

This weekend already has a whole bunch of commitments made. Having said that, if I do get time on Sunday¬† to piece together a Gameboy ROM again, I will do my utmost to have something for this jam again ūüėČ

With that in mind, here would be last Decembers Jam Entry by myself.

https://refreshgames.itch.io/the-catcher-van

Another Jam another gameboy ROM?

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Sunday, August 21st, 2016 1:16 pm

All things going well I should be there for one of the compo days, but may resort to the jam depending on family commitments. Either way a gameboy game shall be made! (Even if the theme is colours!)

Novascape – A Gameboy ROM in 48 hours.

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Monday, December 28th, 2015 9:38 pm

Yeah, Ludum Dare was great fun this time around, and 2 weeks later I’m still rating the odd game that pops up so why not write about my experiences writing a themed gameboy game in 2 days?

It’s 2:20am, that’s a good reason as to why I shouldn’t but heyyyy, time is time.

Somehow the game came together in a natural way this time around, I did a fair bit of play testing and the game evolved from a simple vertical thrust and one button to fire at things into more of a challenge against the odds.

Those odds being both coding for the Gameboy and making the most out of two button controls to achieve more complex gameplay than just thrust infinitely, avoiding all enemies, which at one point the game looked like it was going to end up being. Until…

That one thing that jetpacks infamously run out of…FUEL! Having enemies drop fuel cans, means the player has to hang around a bit to collect them to progress.

Which is fine, but, even with the added auto firing and gun-recoil for horizontal movement, how in the hell is the player going to get the damned things….

Have them home in onto the player of course, DUHH!

Honestly, those decisions I made on Day 2 are what really made the game work better. I could talk about how much of a thing it is to get the Gameboy to use sprite data, limitations of 40 8×8 sprites per screen and 8 per scanline and the finickiness of writing to sound registers for a long time, but, see it took just less than a paragraph. (Seriously, though, those sound registers and optimisation for a 4Mhz machine, gahh!)

Quickie Post-Mortem:

Pros: It was fun, challenging to make and a lot happened on the fly, there’s sound effects everywhere! I learnt more about GBDK, C++ and feel refreshed to tackle my other Gameboy games I have in development.

Cons: I still can’t compose music for toffee. No, really, offer me a toffee to compose music for you, I won’t take the toffee, I promise. Gameboy music. even tougher.

Go check out Novascape? Because you need to escape…the planet Novatron 7…Before you get consumed by hot, boiling lava rising up from underneath you!

Play the game, be frustrated at the old skool difficulty, enjoy it anyway hopefully?

 

Okay, two button controls, check, Gameboy ROM, check

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Saturday, December 12th, 2015 12:41 pm

sofar
It’s getting there bit by bit, game intro, movement and moving boiling lava pit approaching, eeek! Time to cook dinner and figure more bits out :)

90 minutes of coding and planning in and I’m at lift-off

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Saturday, December 12th, 2015 6:51 am

startingSo far, I’ve got pixels on the screen, written up some general functions in ROM Bank 0 for collision detection, music, sfx, etc. Got ROM Bank switching working and a plan for how I’m going to get this game idea, which I’ve settled on, onto the screen. Now I just have to errr… do it somehow!

As a side note,each Gameboy ROM bank can only contain 16kb of¬† data tops, so it’s going to be interesting cramming things in there correctly!

Warm Up Weekend – Yes, I’m Warmed Up Now!

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Sunday, December 6th, 2015 5:44 pm

space-invasion-zero-1So, I made a simple invaders clone with GBDK to warm-up my coding. It’s a little buggy, oddly buggy, but should run on Gameboy Emulators and Hardware. More Info Below.

http://ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-34-warmup/?action=preview&uid=6823

Should help me be a little more ready for next weekend, themes, etc.

Yup, I’m gonna do this jam

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 5:51 pm

48 Hours, make a game, should be fun!

I’ve participated in a fair number of Ludum Dares and always used a similar set-up with Unity, Photoshop, Milkshape 3D and Audacity / Bosca Ceoil / SFXR for example.

GB25THThis time around I’m determined to make something a little bit different, so, no Unity 3D. No 3D and I’ll be outside my UnityScript comfort zone, playing around with GBDK¬† and C instead.

I’ve been meaning to finish off a Gameboy game I’ve begun coding and hopefully this event will give me that kick up the behind to get back on with it! Also, El Gameboy Classic is 25 years old over here and it’d be cool to try this out!

I’m armed with a flash cart for when I need that extra bit of motivation a err, well, let’s just say music will be particularly challenging to get working well! That and Sprites, memory limits, etc, etc. (I’ll have to get creative I guess!)

My current Gameboy Game - In ProgressI’ve not attempted to make a game in C with a tight deadline before, so this, should be fun to try!

Theme allowing of course, if the theme is either “Colourful” or “3D” I guess I’ll be Unity-ing, we’ll see, bring on the warm-up weekend!

Best of luck to all who enter the event, I’ll be looking forward to playing a whole bunch of them over Christmas, tis the season to be playing game jam games after all?! Yeah, it sure is ūüėõ

The Catcher Van – Post Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Thursday, September 3rd, 2015 4:08 pm

So, this Ludum Dare was an interesting one, at first I was at odds with theme, “We’ve had this one before I thought, with You are the Villain, this one’s just the same”

But then, after the first few hours of my first coding livestream, consisting of me re-acclimatising with Unity, writing up a generic bunch of menu screens for transitions, re-definable controls, etc, etc. I noticed something.

The theme… it IS different!

Villains are, well, they’re just Villains, usually with some wacky plot and likable fallability about them. Monsters, are an entirely different breed, hideous and with their minds set on horrible, horrible things.

My next thought was along the lines of “Ohh Rampage, there’s a game I could try and emulate but no, everyone will probably do that and it’s too obvious an interpretation of the theme. What I need is something REALLY monsterous. But What?”

Okay, let’s make the player take part in something disgusting, I mean murdering characters is one thing, but that’s in almost all the video games, we need something worse, kidnapping the innocent, now there’s something monsterous.

To say making this game was unsettling to make would be pretty accurate, whilst it was fun making the voices of the various characters during the live stream it made me feel pretty odd about coding the thing up. Clearly Unity was also feeling odd and deleted my prefabs directory 2wice during the event, I could almost swear someone was remoting into my PC to prevent me from submitting with an hour to go all 30 prefabs went bye bye and any final polish turned into a race to get everything set back up and working again before time was up.

You play the role of a monsterous character driving around in your Van with the aim of capturing as many innocent kids within the time limit and can drop off lollipops to tempt the kids further, but, watch out for those pesky parents out to stop your plans, speaking of which. What are your plans? You’ll only find that out by watching the terrible ending unfortunately.

There were plans to make it so different areas would spawn more or fewer kids at different periods of the day, with the school buildings being particularly useful / troublesome depending on when you visited but the bug in unity prevented that from happening sadly. I might update this game later on, although I have many other games to finish off currently!

So yes, please play The Catcher Van, feel disgusted with yourself and enjoy the ending, you monsters!

PLAY ME DO. Playyy me dooooooooooo, cough cough cough cough.

During Ludum Dare weekend over £150 for the gamers charity Special Effect during my game jam and 10k run challenge which is awesome, thanks again to everyone who donated and shared, you rock!

Bass AAckwards? !sey

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 10:07 am

As with most of my previous Ludum Dare compos I’ve trodden off from the expected way of doing things.

But in an entirely different way this time.

The placeholder menus are done, the game endings are done, the “good” ending is rather fun, it even made my 6 year old giggle, which is great!

The vehicle physics are fine and entities are all loaded in, all the voice overs are done and the donators names are certainly in the game now!… dya know what’s missing?

GAME PLAY!

That and I’m heading off for my 10k run in an hour, so there’s roughly 6hours left for me in total, it’s going to be tight!

Day 1 Complete, roll on Day number 2

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 6:17 pm

Day 1 is complete, but what do I have done?

Well, there’s a lot of assets readied and customised, the map generator is working wanders, almost all the non VO audio has been done, including soundtracks! (they sound really creepy btw) The main menu system is almost all in place and you can take damage, depending on the severity of your crash, groovy!

day1complete

What’s left though?

A lot. All the Voice Overs need to be recorded and trimmed up, 3 endings need to be written up, one you died and 2 others depending on your playthrough.

Enemies need to be added in the form of parents and police, parents will chase you down but still damage your car if you hit them, as will police, but they can, and will shoot at you.

More shopping district areas need to be made again and some improvements to the generator, possibly some sort of traffic system if I get time?

There’s the small matter of running 10 kilometers as part of my challenge for special effect also, ahh, it’ll be fine!

More details on my challenge at http://www.justgiving.co.uk/refresh-games/

You ARE a monster

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Saturday, August 22nd, 2015 12:06 pm

sofar

I’ll just leave this here then, possibly the creepiest game I’ll ever code.

This Ludum Dare is going to be so tough but so worth it!

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Monday, August 10th, 2015 5:48 pm

It’s just under 2 weeks away, but I’ve been training for this one in more ways than one, as it’s a special one this time around, I’m undertaking the challenge of both creating a game in 48 hours, as well as running a 10k race in the middle of it, because I’m crazy and also this is for the lovely gamers charity Special Effect, more information about them here:

logo-specialeffect
They help people with disabilities to be able to communicate with others through technology and also to allow them to enjoy the games we play and take for granted, which is pretty awesome of them, from the making of specially adapted joypads, through to eye-control, they’re helping out gamers with disabilities to enjoy a better quality of life than they would without these gaming aids.

I’ll be streaming my game development over at http://www.twitch.tv/rychanwr3 during the Jam and any donations made before the game jam starts will have their names added in one-way or another into the game itself.

If you can donate even just $1 it will help, my just giving page is located below if you can donate then that’s awesome! Even if you can’t if you can help to spread the word about that would be cool!

https://www.justgiving.com/Refresh-Games/

Getting into the Mini Jam

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Monday, May 18th, 2015 6:17 pm

Getting there bit by bit with this one, made my sprite sheet first then decided, okay, I’ll try and make something playable with it. I’ve ended up going down the route of a pseudo-randomnly generated dungeon game, where the player wanders around in search of hats, or anything really, whilst dealing with enemies spawning in from set locations. Of course, charge shots are a must for me with this game, I love them so much ūüėõ

ldjam

Also, using some odd methods to get Unity to play nicely in 2d without using unity sprites, which were just getting on my nerves, so I wrote my own stuff instead, works okay so far!

Zoo Racing – Ratings Breakdown:

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Tuesday, May 12th, 2015 10:50 am

Meepy Moopy Penguins. aand hedgehogs… they’re not exactly zoo animals come to think of it….
6823-shot0-1429494026.jpg-eq-900-500

So, time to go through my averages again. But, before that:

Play Me Do? Why Certainly Squire –> CLICK TO PLAY <–

Now, down to it.

#190    Graphics    3.74

Top 15%-ish again. I’m okay with that, one day I’ll break the top 100 on this category.

There was a lot of 3d modelling and asset generation there and whilst it could have had more done to it, there would be little to no game left if I spent any more time on it.

#243    Humor    3.33

Not something I focused on so, I’m surprised to appear this high on this category, guess my cutesy voice overs worked nicely enough then :)

#327    Fun    3.33

Glad people had some fun playing it, there was definitely more to be done on this side, what with the game being fairly bare bones at the end of the day.

I’m guessing the environment and sfx saved it a bit from dropping lower.

#357    Overall    3.38

Yup, It’s a barely finished game and it shows.

#419    Audio    2.95

Yup, I still can’t compose the musics for toffee, biscuits or many other snack foods. But at least there were enough varied sfx in there to get into the top 3rd.

#484    Mood    3.00

3.00, Bang on the average. Yeah, feels about right.

#938    Theme    2.74

The theme wasn’t integral to the game but was evident through it. Maybe I should have gone for another game idea on Saturday morning but this one looked like the most fun and challenge to develop in 2 days.

#942    Innovation    2.48

Almost always my weakest area, a 3d cart racer isn’t innovative, nope it isn’t, didn’t expect to rank well in this category.

Post LD?

All in all, will I continue developing it? Possibly. I need to work on a lot of things in order to get one level working and playing as it should, after that it’ll be focusing on designing nice to play levels.

I still feel I’ve got a good basic game here that can be expended on, graphics, animations, player handling, all needs to be worked on though.

Ludum Dare 32 -Zoo Racer Post-Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Monday, April 20th, 2015 10:18 am
Play the game by clicking here!

Play the game by clicking here!

Well, that weekend was a blast and a half!

I thoroughly enjoyed the weekends Ludum Dare, it was great to be doing a game jam in a room with all the other Jammers in Plymouth Uni ( LUDUM DARE HYPE!)  sat next to my bro, chatting game dev stuff whilst coding, etc.

Whilst I’m still recovering from it at home today, taking a day-off from anything code-related.
Now’s probably a good time to write up a post-mortem of my Compo Entry:

 


WHAT WENT WELL.

Assets, Assets Everywhere!

Assets, Assets Everywhere!

Modelling a LOT of Assets, still inside Milkshape 3D.

That really old 3d modelling program that I still love using, particularly for Game Jams. Just checked my models folder now, almost 30 different Models. Even a couple of textures!

The theme was really open so it allowed for things to be a bit more out there.

I started off with a list of things that wouldn’t be weapons. You know, the usual stuff, road signs, furniture, fruit ‘n’ veg and somehow my barely awake brain took a jump towards making a cart fighter game. Probably because I really wanted to make one of those!

Your Aarray of Weaponry

Your Array of Weaponry

After determining the viability of weapons at the start of day 2 I settled on the following:

  1. A lego brick, painful b*****ds to step on.
  2. A lemon. Because, y’know, who throws a lemon?
  3. A stop sign.
    and
  4. A fire-cracker.

There were lots of other ones I’d hoped to use, mostly from movie cliches such as melon carts, people walking side to side with a glass pane, etc, etc. But I was short on time so 4 was enough.

Laying out the assets to form a nicely laid out race track.

I’m really happy with the visuals for the game. I did get carried away with fleshing out the race track with objects. Just so as the player, there’s something else to look at besides the track. Also, you can’t just hold accelerate for the whole of the lap which is good.

Audio (as in, there is some audio)

I’m still no musical mastermind, probably never will be. The SFX turned out quite well and I’m happy to quickly click through SFXR and ensure weapons have distinct noises, do announcer and character bits ‘n’ bobs but background music I always find tough to make something sound nice.

Having said that, there’s a loop of around 30 seconds in there which, whilst I’m not too happy with it, I made it a lot quieter than the sfx, so. If it’s annoying, at least it’s quiet. :)

Rolling out some Racing A.I.

It took a fair amount of time to set-up and get working, but once it was I was much happier with the game itself, as it was starting to turn into one. The enemy A.I. will race (really well), collect and use power ups and generally screw the other A.I. over during the course of the race.

I was really close to adding rubber banding to them but with only 4 minutes to go before the end of the compo, some things had to be left out.


 

Code to do? Okay, time to make an app icon first though?

Code to do? Okay, time to make an app icon first though?

WHAT WENT NOT SO WELL

Over-estimating myself

I foolishly, as I normally do in game jams, over-estimate the amount of things that I can fit into the time available so things, as usual, end up being cut-out. I did all that I could this time around and had more time available to myself than in previous jams, which shows in the game, as in:

The game is unfinished and has bugs, but the basic game itself is in there, speaking of which:

Known Bug list:

  1. Oliver the Hedgehog, not a playable character.
    Just ran out of time with coding the A.I. during sunday evening, gutted!
  2. Not much of an ending -The announcer will say “Winner” if you won and “Finish” if you placed 2nd or lower and then you go back to the menu screen. Not enough of a reward.
    I’d hoped to add a victory sequence, 2nd-4th sequence and 5th or lower one, the sound files are there and ready to be used but, that’s going to be used in the future.
  3. Cheating A.I.
    Yes, there go a lot faster than you a the start of the race. I could have added more paths for them also, but by that point fatigue had set-in.
  4. Mini-Map – Why are there 2 mini-maps?
    Because, time, sleep ūüėõ

Essentially I’m going to give it a week before I come back to the game and sort out how I’m going to progess with it post-jam but I’m looking at developing the game further and adding crazier weaponry for sure.

TAKEAWAY:

I’m still shattered but I’m generally really happy with how the game has turned out so far. I’m gutted It’s missing some features but proud that I’ve made I functional, fairly playable cart racer game base to expand upon.

So, yeah, click the image below to try it out for yourselves!

play-zoo-racing

Zoo Racing – Day 1 to Day 2 in pictures.

Posted by (twitter: @refreshgamesuk)
Sunday, April 19th, 2015 4:45 am

Loads of assets and the basic gameplay done so far. Still so much to do and less than a day to go! Here’s hoping!…Wweapons, etc, music, sfx, oh my!

icon
screenmedo
MENUSCREEN

Still so much to do…

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