About Grieve (twitter: @thegrieve)
I’ll be doing a number of things this weekend. One of which will likely be making a game.
I don’t know what I’ll be using. That’s always a surprise.
There is no doubt I will be extremely hungover for the start of the competition, and probably quite drunk for a least a portion of the remainder. This has become almost a ritual now, so I wouldn’t want to spoil it.
Check (and rate) the game here:
Making a game in 48 hours is never easy, but thankfully it was less hard this time. Mainly because I decided to use tools I was more familiar with, instead of using the weekend to learn a new tool or framework.
I started the weekend with the idea of making a super-hero canabalt. Something that lends a bit of variety to the one-button run genre. A constant threat from the rear, a path that makes it difficult to stay out in front and some kind of upgrade system.
I structured my development a lot more than usual, with index cards and a vague agile methodology (and the entire living floor). I tried to sleep well during the weekend, getting 6 hours on Friday night, and 9(!) on Saturday. I also ate well, cooking rather than the usual takeaways, and only drinking one energy drink the whole weekend. (I did manage to polish off 5 pots of coffee though, which was around 25+ cups.)
What Went Right™
Organisation – I didn’t feel stressed much at all during the weekend. I managed time for music and even some graphics polishing at the end (not much mind, I’m not an artist and it’s hard to make faeces shine). All in all, I always felt like I knew what I was doing, what I had done, and what I would have to do.
Tools – I normally take a sackcloth-and-ashes approach to development: “If it can’t be done on the command line, then… you’re lying, because everything can be done on the command line. Fiend!” – But this weekend, I used FlashDevelop and worked on windows most of the time. FlashDevelop really is unparalleled when it comes to Actionscript coding.
K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid) – I nailed down the initial mechanics early. Platformer with tilemaps, jumping, double jumping. I did it all with multi-coloured squares too, sprites were an afterthought. I didn’t try to invent a new genre, and I didn’t try to rewrite the entirety of FlashPunk’s BitmapData handling (see: LD #19). I took a simple idea, and made it.
Asset Pipeline – I learned the workings of D.A.M.E. very early on in the weekend. Got familiar with its output format, its awkward, awkward tools, and it’s habit of refusing to write to CSV on occasion because it believes MXMLC is still holding on to the files (although this is more likely Adobe’s fault). I got much better at using Graphics Gale for initial pixel pushing and animating, and then using Photoshop to touch up and bake in some vague lighting.
Emitters! – Who doesn’t love little objects that fire random things in random directions? More Emitters, I say. More. I wish I could have Emitters every day of the week. My next game might be made entirely out of Emitters.
Guinness – Thanks to my first point, Organisation, I afforded myself an hour on Sunday for a few relaxing pints of Black. Boom.
Full blog post. Post mortem and cookies…. after I sleep. Until then….
(That’s not it’s actual name, but it’ll do for now.)
Simple screenshot. Not much happening. Basically you run from the left to the right, while the Evil Government™ tries to carpet bomb your experimental self. You upgrade existing, and gain new, movement abilities as your progress.
Boom. Time for a break.
Moved into a new house so I have not got much furniture yet. So I was using my electronic drumkit as a temporary desk-type thing.
Carpal tunnel quickly set in… so I cannibalised the kitchen table and set up in the living room. Much better.
I awoke at 3am, checked the theme and went back to sleep. I dreamt of a fantastic super-hero themed first person Canabalt, but since I’m suck at 3D, I’ll try and distil the awesomeness of that dream into 2D without accidentally making Canabalt… Keep It Simple, Stupid.
Wish me luck.
Lunch time. Out at a coffee shop for a change of scenery. On a related note im going to change the visuals of my game quite a bit when I return. I’ve noticed that myself and Knighty have been developing along the same lines, and having no doubt that his will be superior, I’ll need something to make me stand out 😉
So hangovers are evil, but at this point seem to be the normal progression for the first day of LD for me. I am attempting to regain the ballmer peak with some chemical flavoured pear cider.
My game is going to me side scrolling platformer, with puzzle elements. (I never do platformers, so this is virgin territory for me oddly). The THIS will be a robot companion, who fills many roles based on the level and elements of the puzzles. Hope to get the majority of the game knocked out in the next few hours and then watch the UFC, before returning tomorrow to make the puzzles.
I just came home from the bar to find that THIS won. Awesome. Now to sleep and ponder the possibilities.
EDIT: I’m probably going to use flashpunk when I awake, but in case i don’t my c++ basecode is here :https://github.com/grieve/stile
And its done. Had to remove a few things near the end that were just not good enough and ruining the game as it is. That included my fancy overlay and effects.
“The power has died and you’ve been sent out into the desolate snow fields. Dig through the snow to uncover the abandoned power plants. Bring them online for long enough to win.
Be careful, You’re not alone in the snow fields.”
– Mouse controls. Click anywhere on the title to start.
– Power plants have a multiplier effect, try to keep them all on at the same time.
– Space bar can help clear snow, but only 3 times.
Been about 7 hours since I started. Got a basic mechanic and now going to start polishing it up and add a game to the game 😀
Heres a shot of my little snow plough working away to try and discover what lies beneath all that snow.
EDIT: See there’s a lot of new comers in the declarations of intent. Here’s hoping we have a record number of entries! G’luck and please, treat the Jam as a safety net, aim for the compo!
This would be a clever pun if I was going to use Flixel, but I’m not.
After much humming and ha ha ha’ing. I’ve ditched my traditional C++ route for this LD48 and I’m going with Flex and FlashPunk.
Graphics will be IGNORED as far as I possibly can, because I always get caught up early drawing terrible sprites that I end up not using anyway. Once I have a functional fun game that is submittable… graphics will commence.
So here’s the obligatory list….
OS: Ubuntu 10.10
IDE: VIM (Vi IMproved)
Language: Actionscript 3.0
Tools/Libraries: Adobe Flex OSS SDK 4.1 & FlashPunk
Graphics Package : GIMP (& VIM for the extra masochism cherry)
Sounds Effects: Dunno, maybe /dev/urandom and VIM for even more self-flagellation
Coffee, Diet Coke, Pizza and other junk likely included.
No doubt a healthy dose of Guinea Pig intervention will also be involved.
Lets get it on.
Today, after much faffing around I officially kick off my October Challenge game. After a long and heated debate between myself and an empty page in a notebook, I’ve decided to lower my sights considerably. I had intended to make a non-traditional tower defense game, I had two interesting aesthetics for this. One had the working title “In the Loop” and was centred around espionage networks intercepting information to stay relevant. The second was a hacker-orientated TD, where the towers are the various applications deployed in an effort to usurp control of the system.
Upon thinking about it, I realised that even though I have one of these ideas quite well fleshed out in design, to make it fun and interesting will take a hell of a lot of playtesting and iteration. So for this month I’m going to stick to tried and tested mechanics and make a traditional TD. The working title for this is “21 Days” since that is exactly how long I have to finish it and set it free.
My goals today are to get stand in creeps running around a tile-based map with quick and hacky A* directing them. Then get some grid-control and be able to plant towers (that do nothing yet). If I get this game polished up enough in the 21 days I might add a bit of meta-research, between levels you task scientists with researching technology dropped by creeps during the last mission, in order to develop more effective towers to help as the levels and creeps escalate. However, I’m going to focus on having a playable TD first.
Feature creep begone.
I’m developing in Flex/AS3 with Flashpunk. This is counter to my plans, as I had spent the better part of last week messing around in flixel. Flashpunk just seems that much more sensible, I can work far more quickly in it as I find its structure and usage much more intuitive, seems to me it was written more for programmers than flixel is.
Now, if I can resist the urge to play more Civilization I might actually achieve today’s targets….
So what happened was this….
I tried to make and RTS right….Yeah. Anyways, due to alcohol, illness and guinea pig births. I was unable to finish in time for the compo, but i figured hey, I’ll get it in time for the Jam. Then I discovered my game sucked, the logic was borked and AI + Turning Circles = HELL.
So I started again… like 5 hours ago…. and here is the result. Credits to go mkevin747 for CC image of the Demon. Really made my day 😀