About simplesmiler (twitter: @simplesmiler)

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Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Sunday, December 7th, 2014 10:54 am

Do you know that feeling, when promising mechanic ended up being very hard to balance, and not very engaging if not balanced?

Bad experience is the best experience. Shifting towards jam instead of compo >.<


Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Friday, December 5th, 2014 8:45 pm


Definitely in.

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Friday, November 28th, 2014 3:31 pm


  • Language: Lua
  • Framework: Love2D
  • Text editor: Sublime Text 3
  • Graphics: Krita
  • Sound: Supercollider

As usual, I will be streaming at http://www.twitch.tv/simlpesmiler. Tune in!


The Verse: Aftereffects day 1

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Monday, August 25th, 2014 1:33 pm

I feel like it’s time for… shameless self promotion (and post-compo version)!


You can play and rate the compo version here. Link to the post-compo version is in the end of this post.
If you want to tell or ask me something, or just to exchange words, you can reach me at twitter as @simplesmiler

What went good

  1. Gameplay. There are minor inconveniences here and there, and AI may be a little… intriguing sometimes, but at major scale everything works as intended. Game is playable and enjoyable. Few features were thrown away in development process for the sake of simplicity.
  2. Map generation. Didn’t expect to get such a good result with very simple methods. I’m very happy with the result.
  3. Sound. Last compo my game didn’t have sounds because of poor time management. Never again! This time I used Supercollider to write sound, and must I admit: Supercollider is an awesome tool. It allows you to essentially write sound as a program by composing simple generators into instruments and writing patterns to play these instruments.
  4. Time management. Making breaks helps. Splitting work into tasks, allowing yourself to switch to entirely different kind of task. All of this definitely helps to avoid being stuck and making no progress.

What went mediocre

  1. Visuals. Event though I like the clean visual style of the final result, there are certain problems, especially with data visualization. Walls of text are no good.
  2. Interface. It may feel clunky, and sometimes not very responsive, but it does it’s job. Figuring out better interface would take time and reduce overall quality of the game.

What went bad

  1. Game pace and difficulty. The “Easy” level is not so easy, as it turned out to be. Even though AI sometimes behaves strange, it’s still takes a lot of effort and concentration to beat. Maybe lowering the pace would help, but it would break barely existing balance, so I decided to leave it as it is.
    This issue is tackled in the current post-compo version.
  2. Visual and sound effects. It’s entirely possible to improve the game drastically by adding visual and sound effects to indicate what is going on, to make the game feel alive. Something like halo around worlds under attack, or ping-sound upon losing or gaining control over the world.
    This issue may be tackled in the future post-compo versions.

Post-compo version!

Link, backup link. Please play the compo version before playing post-compo!

Currently includes:

  • Custom level of difficulty, with the ability to enable AI assist for player’s fleet without taking away control from him. The idea is to delegate boring aspects of resource management to AI without taking away control from player. This should reduce overall difficulty of the game without breaking balance or lowering pace.
  • In the compo version the Verse was slowly but steadily spinning. This looked like a good idea at first, but now it doesn’t. You can turn off the spinning now.

Plans for future versions:

  • Rebalance to tackle certain issues with game pacing.
  • Rewrite AI to be make it act more consciously.
  • Add visual and sound effects to bring life to the game!

5 hours on visuals and music

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Sunday, August 24th, 2014 12:59 pm


10 hours for AI, visuals and sound

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Sunday, August 24th, 2014 7:38 am


Day 1: Worlds are yet to be connected

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Saturday, August 23rd, 2014 11:10 am


Mandatory post of participation

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Tuesday, August 19th, 2014 11:02 pm


I’m in for the second time. With almost the same toolset as before:

  • Language: Lua
  • Framework: Love2D
  • Text editor: Sublime Text 3
  • Graphics: I’ll try Krita this time
  • Sound: probably Sunvox

Will probably be streaming at http://www.twitch.tv/simlpesmiler. Tune in!


Made it in time… Sort of.

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Sunday, April 27th, 2014 6:07 pm

First things first, the entry link: Beneath the clouds


Some people might call it “interactive experience” and not a game. I wouldn’t blame them for that. A lot of gameplay pieces weren’t implemented because of lack of time, so I chose to make something rather than nothing.

And boy that wasn’t a piece of cake for me.

A lot of stuff was planned, quarter of it was implemented and only half of that has made into final version. It always happens. An example would be this sad bird that didn’t make it into the release.


I have never painted art before. Though I believe things went nicely.

I’m not musician either, and never even used audio tools (except for a bit of sfxr). I understand that music and sound would make the game ten times better, but eh… Bad planning, bad time management.

So, did this LD teach me anything? Absolutely!

  1. Don’t be afraid to take breaks, they help you to look at things from different point of view.
  2. Don’t be afraid of smelly code. You won’t make it in time if you’ll be polishing a single piece of code.
  3. Plan ahead. Make a list of necessary stuff, and run though it when you feel stuck. Switch context often enough.
  4. Make more games! Practicing means a lot.

See you in August! Cheers!

One day has passed.

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Saturday, April 26th, 2014 12:08 pm



Participating. So excited!

Posted by (twitter: @simplesmiler)
Sunday, April 20th, 2014 3:38 am

Hi, I’m Denis!

With good coding and almost no skill in art and music I’ll do my best to make something interesting.


  • Language: Lua
  • Framework: Love2D
  • Text editor: Sublime Text 3
  • Graphics editor: mostly Photoshop CS2

Will be streaming at http://www.twitch.tv/simlpesmiler


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