Hello, In addition to creating games interactive experiences , I also record YouTube Videos. This is the final set of videos that I made for Ludum Dare 31, see you in three months or so for Ludum Dare 32.
27 videos were released over the past 9 days, so incoming video overload. The total count of Let’s Play videos that I made for Ludum Dare 31 is 39 games.
For this Ludum Dare going into it I had two main goals. First I wanted to make something that had voice overs, I’ve been doing YouTube Let’s Plays for two years now and this seemed like a good chance to practice in audio techniques. Second goal was to concentrate more on making art, my degree is in studio art so I should have something more interesting than boxes. I already wrote extensively on the art, so take a look at my LD profile if you are interested in that.
Before I get into what went well, bad, and what is next I want to write a little about what cultural events/happenings/media influenced the game. If you haven’t played the game yet you may want to play it before you read this next part.
-Book: Go The F**k to Sleep by Adam Mansbach
Level 1: Jack & Jill
-Nursery Rhyme: Jack and Jill
Level 2: Frosty The Snowman
-Song: Frosty the Snowman
-Film: Little Orphan Annie
Level 3: Have Space Suit Will Travel
-Book: Have Space Suit Will Travel by Robert Heinlein
-Event: US Flag planet on Moon
-Event: Michael Jackson dangles baby out balcony
Level 4: A Scanner Darkly
-Book: A Scanner Darkly by Phillip K Dicks
-Film: The Matrix
Level 5: Sonic
-Game: Sonic the Hedgehog
-TV Show: The Simpsons
Level 6: Cookie Clicker
-Game: Cookie Clicker
-Film: Wreck it Ralph
Ending Screen: Waking Up
-Song: The YouTube Lament by Tim Minchin
-Film: The Dead Pool
What Went Wrong:
– Was planning on making more of a narrative but there is a total lack of narrative in my interactive experience.
– Does it even need to be a game? Near the end I started to add more “game”features such as keeping track of the time to finish.
– Early levels lack the cultural references that show up later. That make references outside of the level theme.
– Some levels could have benefited from additional voice lines.
What Went Right:
– The humor of this interactive experience is evident to a widespread amount of people. Early in the creation on twitter I mentioned that I couldn’t stop laughing.
– Variety of themes for the levels is about right.
– I like the length of the game being about 2 minutes to listen to everything, and 30 someodd seconds to speedrun it.
– I like the art style of the game, it accomplished what I set out to do and works well with the theme of the game.
What is Next:
– I am working on an additional set of levels for the game I hope to release by mid January.
– Small changes to the base game to add a transition effect from level to level, as well as changing the walking animation a small amount.
Hello, In addition to creating games interactive experiences , I also record YouTube Videos. The first two weeks of judging I’ve had a video of one game each day, starting next week there will be three videos of Ludum Dare 31 games each day. Thanks for your support, and taking a look.
Hello, In addition to creating games interactive experiences , I also record YouTube Videos. Each day of the week I will release one complete Let’s Play style video of a Ludum Dare 31 Game. You can signup to have me play your game, or tweet @ythmevge a link to your game.
Without spoiling to much of the experience, here are three of the screens/levels/environments.
Post Creation thoughts:
I will be writing a full Post-Morteum later on, I usually wait until after comments have come in. There are several things that I want to get out now so here goes.
Firstly I had a lot of fun making this, Going into this Ludum Dare I knew that I wanted to make something that used an art approach. I recently graduated with a bachelor degree in Studio Art my emphasis was in Printmaking and Photography (I’ve done photography games in the past). This time I wanted to bring my printmaking background into it. All of the drawing were made in photoshop on a graphics tablet. So lets examine the art style a little shall we, at first glance a bunch of readers probably moved on already, the drawing style has the reputation of being able to be drawn by a child. The inspiration is drawn from about three sources, the first source is Ancient cultural artwork (Native Americans, Mayans, Egyptians, and so on), Second part is what is known as Outside Art [to most of the world, Art Brut to some] This is such a widely varying style that it is hard to give examples, basically Outsider Art is made for a small group of people to understand and not mass appeal to a large institution, The third and final bit of inspiration comes from so called Folk Art (Folk art and Outsider Art are often times the same) the emphasis with Folk Art is in story telling, and conveying the information, they would do this by emphasizing some elements and getting rid of others. With these three art styles I think brought my printmaking into it, I could screen print even single background that I drew extremely easily. In Screenprinting and most printmaking processes you work with blocks of colors, and don’t have the ability to create shading. So that is the reason and inspiration behind the art, the next bit that I knew I wanted to pull in was using my voice and experience from doing Let’s Plays in a way to narrate the story. The bottom line I had a lot of fun creating this, and I am happy with how it has turned out. This brings us to the next part.
The second thing is I already plan to release a post-compo version. There are several features that I cut out due to time, and this sort of game could always be expanded. I think my single biggest regret is my lack of ability at making music (background music is just from Abundant-music) I think that music for each stage could really push the game to the next level. So now the question is, would anyone be interested in creating music for the post-compo version of the game? It would be something like 6-8 20-30 second long songs. If you are interested comment/tweet.
This has already grown longer than I intended, so in closing I think what made this so much fun to make was the usage of cultural references (Books, songs, and games) and other cultural happenings that I’m not going to spoil. I will be making a post in a week or so that lists out where the experience draws inspiration from. But now it is time to get started on playing and rating some games.
My bed is calling me, so I’m going to keep this short.
Today I finished all of the planned art for my interactive experience, finished most of the “gameplay” elements, and added Trophies.
Todo list for tomorrow, finish the last gameplay thing, audio, audio, and more audio. I still have all of the voice overs to record for the game, and I still need to write most of them. Then there is music, and sound effects. I feel like it is doable.
This was not the theme I was hoping for, or expecting. but I just stopped over-thinking the theme and enforcing additional parameters and now I’m on my way.
My “Game” is going to make use of cultural events, happenings, and stories to tell a new story and hopefully get some laughs. The art style that I went with is something of a outsider artist style or folk art. When drawing I place the focus on recognition of the object without over-detailing it.
I am going to be use narration with Voice in the game to drive the story, this come from doing Let’s Plays for the past two years and wanting to do something with that in terms of making a game. Hopefully it all works out and gets done.
As of tonight I have 2 of the 6 screens finished, so I have another 4 that I would like to do tomorrow, I also need to record the lines.
This will be my 11th time participating in Ludum Dare in a row. My Weekend is mostly clear and I should have plenty of time to make a game this weekend.
I’ll be using:
Gamejolt API (Achievements and Highscore table)
Let’s Play Video information:
I will also be creating YouTube Videos of the Completed games, and they will be on my Youtube Channel If you would like a video of someone else playing your game with commentary then sign up here. The videos will usually include the entire game, depending on the style of game.
Last time I made 25 videos for Ludum Dare 30, you can find them on my youtube, or here on the Ludum Dare blog.
-Vastly improved platform generation (Now the jumps are possible most of the time)
-Implemented difficulties at various levels. difficulties decide how fast the platforms start at, increase speed at, and the generation speed of new platforms.
-Use of the Gamejolt API for Highscore tables, and achievements.
A large part of doing a post compo version of this game was to test out Gamejolt, and decide if it was something I wanted to use for Ludum Dare. It is, it will make the Highscore table much simpler, because as so many people pointed out on my compo version, the Highscore table on my website is not secured against out of range scores. Achievements are also something I would like to have in my Ludum Dare games, and Gamejolt makes achievements easy to implement.
Hello, In addition to creating Games, I also record YouTube Videos. For the voting period following Ludum Dare 30, in addition to rating games, I also recorded videos of 20 games. I released five videos each Monday, below you can find Week 4 videos embedded, and links to the videos for weeks 1-3. The finale video is a 10 second compilation of all 20 games.
My Entry into Ludum Dare 30 is a little game called Connected We Run. It is an endless platformer game, that you control both characters using the same controls.
What Went Wrong
Lack of theme inspiration, some themes you can get really excited about, and others just fall short. This was definitely one of the themes that lacked excitement for me.
Clouded direction, the resulting game suffers from a lack of solid direction. Initially the game was going to be a platformer that you would control the two characters to reach their goal platform/door (similar to Beyond The Horizon by Lazdo) I ended up scrapping that idea really early because it resembled two of my past entries to much (Through The Blue Sea LD23 and its “sequel” I Threw The Red for mLD34) At that point I thought about Endless runners, and decided to go in that direction.
Platform generation, The first day of the game I spent a good chunk of time getting the platforms to behave the way I wanted them. I wanted the dark and light characters to only collide with their respective colored platforms. A platform not of the matching color you would simply pass under. In the end it never felt right, the light character could jump up into the dark platforms, but it served limited purpose to do so. Then on Sunday morning I decided that the player should just be blocked into their respective sections. And that led to the breaking of my platform generation. (Up to that point you could jump ontop of any platform)
Platform generated except the first five, nobody has mentioned it in a comment but it is one of the things that has bothered me, the first five platforms were positioned by me to fill the time before the generated platforms reach the player. I did it this way to simplify the player spawning (There is none, and that is why the Restart button didn’t work)
Speed of the platforms, The speed was intended to start slow and slowly build up speed. It does build up speed, but at such a slow rate it is hard to notice.
Title screen, While the title screen show a lot of good information, it could also be improved visually. I really like on the end screen where the text is mirrored. I am glad that I found time before the end to add in a title screen, because what it was in the initial submission was barren and white.
Restart Button on the end screen, initially there was one but when I updated it before the compo ended (adding music, sound, and a title screen) I had to remove the restart button because it was not functioning at all. So I inserted a message in its place to refresh your browser to replay, I didn’t think it was a big deal in a 48 hour Ludum dare game, but several comments have mentioned it.
The initial title screen when first submitted
What Went Right
Global Leaderboard was a great idea for this style of game, I have used them in the past, and always declare the base code for one, but it has been a while sense using it. The Leaderboard as several people have pointed out has no semblance of security, its just a page that gets queried with your name, score, and the game ID. I have never had the response to any of my past entries that I have had to this one, so I have never bothered with any attempts to secure my Ludum Dare leaderboard. That may change soon.
The score, although there have been some criticism of it seeming to be random, I enjoy the range of numbers that it produces. The score is calculated based on the times of the character. The first of the two characters that go out becomes the multiplier. Then when the second character goes out the score is calculated. (Lowest Time * (character 1 time + character 2 time)) So while you can continue to play after one of the characters is out, your score will ultimately be lower than someone who took both characters farther.
Music and sound was a last minute addition, in fact I submitted before there was any music or sound, and ended up finding some time after to add them in. I think they both add a lot of the game, and it wouldn’t feel quite the same.
Gameplay begining screenshot
One of the other criticism has been that when one of the characters fall out the game should end. I made the decision to keep the game going and to use it as a scoring system because of how I defined connected worlds. There was a blog post that I saw early on (I didn’t save the link) that showed several different images of connected worlds. The post looked at the definition of Connected worlds, and how it differs from a mirrored world. I then came up with my definition of how the connected world works, and build from that. The platform generation is independent and different in each world, so I felt that the characters should be able to function independently of one another.
I think I almost always say I am going to continue the game in my postmortem, and then I rarely do. But I’m going to say it again, I will be making a postcompo version of the game, with fixes and improvements largely to the title screen, platform generation, leaderboard, and overall increasing the speed of the game. What is going to be different this time is that I will be making a Youtube video series of the improvements to the game. The series will start on Monday September 22nd, after I finish up the Ludum Dare 30 Games series.
Hello, In addition to creating Games, I also record YouTube Videos. I started a new series this week for Ludum Dare 30 Games, it will run until September 15th. Each week I will have videos for at least five games. The release Schedule is Mondays at 3pm PST.