About Sestren (twitter: @JshCrrgn)


MiniLD #59
Ludum Dare 31
Ludum Dare 30
Ludum Dare 30 Warmup
Ludum Dare 29
Ludum Dare 29 Warmup
Ludum Dare 28
Ludum Dare 28 Warmup
Ludum Dare 27
Ludum Dare 27 Warmup
Ludum Dare 26
Ludum Dare 26 Warmup
Ludum Dare 25
Ludum Dare 25 Warmup
October Challenge 2012 Unfinished
Ludum Dare 24
Ludum Dare 24 Warmup
Ludum Dare 23

Sestren's Trophies

Sestren's Archive

My favorite underrated games

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Monday, December 29th, 2014 5:52 pm

I didn’t get around to rating my 100th game until just a bit ago. With so little time before judging ends, I have to apologize for not allowing these games to get the attention they deserve. All of them have something to offer, and have fewer than 50 ratings at the moment. I feel they deserve more than that, so feel free to give them a try!

Room Nr.6 by PriorBlue, a Jam Entry in Unity
Room Nr.6

A game where you explore 6 rooms connected around a spherical floor, and you can only face one direction. A creative and clever puzzle with a very nice look.

No Space for Error by Kwask, a Compo Entry for Windows
No Space for Error

A frantic game where you have to keep a machine running by fixing everything that goes wrong. While it lacks sound, it’s still a lot of fun to play.

Quantum Architect by zdonkeyx, A Jam Entry in Unity
Quantum Architect

A challenging and brilliant concept executed surprisingly well, you have to use impossible architecture to maneuver around and collect the cubes. Makes for a very enjoyable puzzle experience.

Ordinarily, I try to fit in more games, but since I’m struggling to get this out as soon as possible, I decided to narrow it down to just three this time around. Enjoy playing these and other entries, and I hope everyone had fun this Ludum Dare!

In once again

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Sunday, November 30th, 2014 10:12 pm

I’m ready for my ninth competition in a row, and looking forward to playing everyone else’s entries.
I'm in for LD31

  • Code: Flixel (AS3)
  • IDE: Flash Builder
  • Graphics: Photoshop
  • Music: Famitracker

Ready for the eighth time running

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Thursday, August 21st, 2014 2:20 am

I'm in!

I’ve managed to make it to seven Ludum Dares in a row now, and I don’t plan on ending that streak anytime soon!

I’m in for my sixth time running

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Tuesday, December 10th, 2013 10:44 pm

I can’t believe it’s been four months already. Time for another Ludum Dare!

  • LudumDare01Code: Actionscript
  • IDE: Flash Builder
  • Graphics: Photoshop
  • Music: Sunvox (If I budget my time wisely enough.)

My Underplayed Favorites of Ludum Dare 27

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Sunday, September 15th, 2013 3:38 am

These past few weeks have been busier than normal, so I’ve only now managed to get around to rating 100 entries. I wanted to highlight a few of my favorite underplayed (under 50 ratings) entries while there’s still time left. Here they are, in no particular order (click the titles or images to go to the entry page) …

Count To Ten – anotheryeti – 48 Hour Compo Entry

Sedate as many patients as you can in this incredibly well-polished and darkly humorous entry.


It’s a brand new year of Jams for me, so count me in!

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Wednesday, August 21st, 2013 8:14 pm

LD27 I'm inThis will be my fifth Ludum Dare (the start of my Year Two, if you will), and as usual, my tools of choice will be Flixel, Photoshop, and SFXR (and maybe SunVox if I have time for music; I usually don’t).

I’ve been spending the last month or so learning how to implement a raycaster engine in Flixel to experiment with 3D, and while I have no idea if I’ll actually make a game with 3D elements, I figure it can’t hurt to share what I’ve worked on in case I wind up having to rely on some portion of it in the jam. So, while it’s incomplete, and slapped together rather shabbily, here is the source code for my Warmup Entry for LD27. I apologize for the messiness, as I have not had the time to properly comment or refactor it. On the off chance I decide to implement some 3D effects in my Jam entry this weekend, I’ll probably use some portion of this code to do it, unless I feel like starting from scratch instead. Everyone else is, of course, free to learn from this as they wish, although I must give credit where credit is due for certain portions in particular:

I owe a lot to the various tutorials and sources that have helped me to understand the basics of rendering bitmapped triangles to the screen, as well as the fundamentals of raycasting and even simple things like finding the intersection of two lines. Without these amazing resources, any progress I’ve been able to make with 3D rendering in AS3 would have been all but impossible to achieve.

Some Underplayed Favorites of Mine

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Monday, May 13th, 2013 6:11 pm

I’ve finally rated 100 of the entries, so I wanted to take a moment to highlight a few of the games I feel are underplayed (have under 50 ratings). Here they are, in no particular order (click the titles or images to go to the entry page) …

Slime Factory – Evil Cult – Jam Entry

Guide the slimes past turrets, spike traps, and lasers with a limited array of tools.

Unfurl – TeamEagle – Jam Entry

A brilliant concept for a puzzle game with a complete and awe-inspiring aesthetic.

Hubu Handler – derdragon – 48 Hour Compo Entry

Take care of an adorable critter with a mind of its own.

I’m in for LD26

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Sunday, April 7th, 2013 7:36 pm

I can’t very well pass up an opportunity to participate in another Ludum Dare; I look forward to these immensely!

  • LD26 I'm inCode: Actionscript
  • IDE: Flash Builder
  • Graphics: Photoshop
  • Music: Sunvox (if I can learn the basics in time)


Once Again, my Top Eight Under 50

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Thursday, December 27th, 2012 10:14 pm

I’ve finally rated 100 of the entries. I was quite impressed with many of them, and as with LD24, I wanted to take a moment to draw your attention to some of my favorites that I feel are underplayed (have under 50 ratings). Here they are, in no particular order (click the titles or images to go to the entry page) …

Trolling – permanente1600 – 48 Hour Compo Entry

A nasty troll does its best to stomp over the flowers planted by a unicorn.

the BRINK – radmars – Jam Entry

Top-notch visual style and audio; feels like a complete game.

Another Castle – RosyPenguin – Jam Entry

Break into each castle and run away with the princess!

LD25, here I come!

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Thursday, December 13th, 2012 4:13 pm

My tools:

Language: ActionScript

Framework: Flixel

IDE: FlashBuilder

Graphics: Paint.NET

Sound: bfxr/sfxr, Audacity

November wasn’t quite the “prepare for Ludum Dare 25” month I planned it to be, but I’m looking forward to the challenge. This time, I actually have a whole weekend free for once.

Chip Away is now on Newgrounds

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Sunday, October 28th, 2012 8:50 pm

I’ve been silent this entire month during the October Challenge because I wasn’t sure what to say. Now, at the very least, I can claim I’ve officially participated. My LD24 Warmup game, Chip Away, has been upgraded and submitted to Newgrounds (http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/605147). Learning their API and incorporating things like Scoreboards and Medals into my game has been a lot of fun and a great learning experience.

While I’d be ecstatic if I made my first $1 as a gamedev, I feel I’ve made the October Challenge already in a way, because this was the month I landed my first full-time job as a programmer. I feel I owe a great debt of gratitude to Ludum Dare and everyone that’s a part of this community for giving me the motivation to jump back into programming and really challenge myself. Without it, I’d still be delivering pizzas, no doubt. Thank you to everyone and I’m looking forward to LD25 in December!

My Top Eight Under 50 Ratings

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Sunday, September 9th, 2012 9:26 pm

Now that I’ve rated over 100 entries, I wanted to compile a list of some of my favorite underplayed (under 50 ratings) games from that list. Here they are, in no particular order (click the titles or images to go to the entry page) …

Influenza – Miltage – Jam Entry

A flu virus tries to take over an office building, and must contend with managers, doctors .. and the dreaded janitor.

Eggplant farm – mokujin – 48 Hour Compo Entry

Brother amoebas fight for control of their inheritance, an eggplant farm.

Quantum Seed – motionbit – Jam Entry

A thoroughly appealing game both visually and aurally.

FronSkratx – muh_h – 48 Hour Compo Entry

A game I wish I was much better at so I could experience the later parts. See if you can get farther than me (you probably can).

@#$% Life! I’m the god damn SUN. – Phobos001 – 48 Hour Compo Entry

It may have little to do with the theme, but it’s fun to play and has a great title.

FLOWERBOT – Zccc – 48 Hour Compo Entry

A robot befriends a flower and has to protect it from danger.

Psychiatric Evaluation – ConflictiveLabs – Jam Entry

A mental patient has to keep his sanity up in order to escape.

The Evolution of Flight – AaronYip – 48 Hour Compo Entry

The Wright Brothers take on aliens as they perfect their aerial technology.

That’s all for now; I hope you enjoy playing these games as much as I did!

I’m in, sorta

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Thursday, August 9th, 2012 5:59 am

I had a great time participating in the last LD, and I’ve been looking forward to the next one ever since. Work and family life on that particular weekend may leave me with little in the way of programming hours (it’s up in the air at the moment, still), but I fully intend to participate and complete whatever I can with the time that I have. Good luck to everyone else, and I can’t wait to see the amazing games that you make.

Update: Now that I have my work schedule, I’m fairly certain I will have, at most, about 12 hours to devote to Ludum Dare that weekend. The challenge now will be for me to try to come up with something playable in that short amount of time. Here goes nothing!

Better Late Than Never

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Sunday, May 20th, 2012 8:37 pm


As promised, I’ve finally finished the Post Competition version of my LD23 entry, Spitoon. It seems I can no longer edit my entry page to include a direct link to the this version, so consider this the official link, I suppose.

To cut to the chase, it’s been an amazing past month since the end of the competition. I don’t typically like to wax personal in a public forum, but I feel compelled to mention that my first son was born nearly two weeks ago, a bit past the due date. He’s amazing, and everything I have done in my life for the past several years has been for my lovely wife and our beautiful family. I have never made much money by American standards, but thanks to them, I have always felt both rich and blessed.

I promise not to drag this out, so suffice it to say that my supportive family has helped rekindle my passion for programming as well as life in general, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of this year has in store.

P.S. If anyone knows of a way in which I can add the link to the post-compo version to my main entry page, please let me know.

My First Post-Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Thursday, April 26th, 2012 7:28 pm


Spitoon was my first ever Ludum Dare submission. As I mentioned in my previous post, I had watched Notch’s live feed of his entry for LD 22 and was inspired to participate in the next one. Here is how I think it went.

What went right

  • I managed to make a mostly-playable game with (AFAIK) a somewhat unique mechanic.
  • My graphics, though simple, got the job done. I was pleased with how they turned out, mostly.
  • I learned that I can perform under a very tight deadline and for very long periods of time.
  • I made my first Timelapse as well as my first ever upload to YouTube!
  • I had a lot of fun!

What went wrong

This is always the more interesting part, I imagine:

  • Many bugs made it into the posted version. Among them are the spitballs appearing at full size for a split-second before being resized (this one bothers me a lot, as it messes with the visual style and happens repeatedly), and spitballs sometimes stopping dead in their tracks when they aren’t supposed to.
  • The game uses up way more memory than it should, particularly by the later levels. This was a problem I had spent a good portion of time trying to fix, but, alas, I just don’t know enough yet about proper and efficient garbage collection. This is where my relative lack of experience with ActionScript, Flixel, and programming in general really shows through. It is something I’m slowly working on, however.
  • No sound! I had even practiced a bit with generating sounds with SFXR before the competition, but in the end, I spent too much time fixing bugs and designing levels (both of which took up more time than I had originally planned on) to get to this stage of development at all. A game like this really deserves some nice spitting sound effects to round it out, but I had to prioritize, and sound I deemed was less important than the other stuff.
  • Too short! I realize that the bar isn’t necessarily very high as far as length of gameplay with this sort of competition, but I really wanted to shoot for a minimum of 10 well-thought-out levels at minimum (20 if I could help it). That said, I had to settle for 7 levels, with 2 of them being pretty bare in terms of “puzzleyness.” I also wanted to have an actual menu and a way to restart the current level, but I just didn’t get to implementing it.
  • I misspelled the name of my game! :O I don’t know whether to chalk this up to being tired or what, but yes, it’s spelled ‘Spittoon,’ not ‘Spitoon.’ I didn’t name my game til right toward the end, and although I’m usually a pretty decent speller most of the time, this time I got it wrong. A 5-second Google check could have shown me I had it wrong, but it just didn’t occur to me until the next day to do so. At this point, I can either fix the spelling for the post-compo version, or leave it as is and just call it my own. Does anyone have any preference on this? Should I leave it “Spitoon” or should I fix it and call it “Spittoon” from now on?

For the Future

Shortfalls aside, I really did have a blast participating, and I absolutely plan on being in future competitions for Ludum Dare. Feedback has been wonderful and it’s so encouraging to hear people’s thoughts about the game. I’m also planning on releasing a “post-competition” version of the game with all the bug fixes, sound effects, and additional levels I wanted to include in the original version. Hopefully, work schedule and family life permitting, I’ll be able to put that out sometime in the next 2 or 3 weeks. Thank you for reading and thanks to everyone for making this a great experience! I’ve already played quite a few of the other entries, and I’m terribly impressed; I can’t wait to play even more!

EDIT: The post-compo version was released about a week ago, and here’s the download link:


A quick-and-dirty screen grab calculator

Posted by (twitter: @JshCrrgn)
Monday, April 16th, 2012 7:54 pm


I’m a big fan of Instacalc, and for my first LD entry I’m planning on using Chronolapse to record a timelapse of my efforts. So naturally, I threw together this handy calculator for determining what time (in seconds) to set my screen capture rate at and a rough estimate of what the resulting folder size will be (in GB) in the end. If you happen to find this calculator handy, feel free to adjust the parameters to suit your needs.

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