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Splatter: A Post-Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Tuesday, December 18th, 2012 9:13 am

Splatter was an attempted to kinda of fuse Frogger and Plants vs Zombies Defense. You play as the cars, the villains of Frogger.

You can try out the result here http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-25/?action=preview&uid=7406

This was my first game jam and it was a ton of fun. I picked the worst possible weekend to do it as I was graduating from college on Saturday  and I was not going to give up drinking with my friends and family and celebrating this weekend. As a result I was only able to work on this for about 9 hours. So I am quite happy with what happened with such little time.

What went right:

  • The Idea, I believe, was good. I immediately wanted to do a classic game where you play as the villain  I toyed around with many different games as I had plenty of time to think about it before I could actually work on it. I eventually settled on this idea which I think has potential if fleshed out.
  • The Distribution, I had alot of concern about whether I could compile for windows as I was programming in Ubuntu and using a library with separate natives. But it seems to work at least on Linux and Windows. One person has said it crashed after awhile of play but that may just be because I didn’t put in a kill screen it just closes. Thanks so much to JarSplice, you saved my ass.
  • Finished, with my lack of time I was afraid that I wouldn’t have a finished product but I managed it, although it is not as fleshed out as I would have hoped.
  • Persistence, (kinda goes with finished but whatever) There was a point where I thought it was over. I could not get slick to let me write text to the screen and I couldn’t find an alternative approach that didn’t use slick. I needed to display the score and points and costs and I didn’t see any options. Then I said to myself “NO! I’m going to finish this! I’m gonna make something. It doesn’t have to be the best. It just has to work and be mildly fun at least. After I encouraged myself I got the idea to draw the gold coins to represent cost and not worry about a score.

What went wrong:

  • SLICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Slick, the library, hated me. I could not get it to do anything right for me and the tutorials I found were all for depreciated methods and they wouldn’t work either. It cost me an hour or so looking at all the different tutorials and playing with it trying to get it to work.
  • TIME, I graduated and partied most of the weekend and probably only spent a total of 9 hours on the project. That was not enough time, but I only graduate from college once and I wanted to spend it with all my friends and family. But It was also important to me to do this Jam, to prove to myself I can finish and make something in limited time.
  • MAVEN, There really needs to be a good archetype for maven that uses lwjgl. The tutorial for using maven on their website was lacking and it did not automatically compile to a jar that would actually run. I lost lots of time learning how to do this manually.

Future:

  • I really really really enjoyed doing a game jam and I think I am going to do as many of these as I can from now on. It will also help keep my programming skills up as I look for a programming job.
  • I want to flesh out the game with graphics, sound and ACTUAL TEXT ON THE SCREEN DAMMIT. I joined the One Game A Month challenge so I think I will flesh this out and release a newer version for January’s game.
  • I would like to learn how to make an Maven Archetype and design one for making LWJGL projects to help anyone that has had the same problems I have. Plus it would be yet another thing that would be good to learn.

In closing, Its been a really fun ride and I can not wait to do it again and really be able to put in all the time I could to make something exceptional next time.

Problems here at the end

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Monday, December 17th, 2012 4:27 pm

I was making good headway and now I cant seem to get slick to print text and I cant figure it out. This truly sucks.

 

Screenshot from 2012-12-17 18:27:14

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Monday, December 17th, 2012 2:00 pm

Screenshot from 2012-12-17 15:58:02

 

Starting to come together mechanics wise. Dont think ill have time for the water section. Next Is having the ability to drag and drop cars then I will piece together the actual game part which is very exciting then hopefully Ill have time for graphics and sound.

Work work work work

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Monday, December 17th, 2012 9:43 am

Man graduating killed alot more of my time than I had wanted. I may not make it to the dead line but I will definitively finish it after if I dont make it. Hopefully I will at least have a crappy graphics version without the water part of frogger. Here is a screen shot of some green squares hopping to some ugly green-gold goals.

Screenshot from 2012-12-17 11:38:59

Idea fleshed out

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Sunday, December 16th, 2012 10:29 am

Ok so I think I have the idea down. So like before its frogger but your trying to kill the frogs. It will play kinda like plants vs zombies where you purchase the cars or alligators or whatever and drop them into the lane to try to kill the frog as it progresses up. You gain points for frog kills that lets you buy more stuff but if you suck you run out of points and the frogs will most likely all make it up to their goals. Sounds good? I think so. Ok time to hit the coding I got 32 hours.

Game Idea/What Happenedtoday

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Sunday, December 16th, 2012 12:26 am

So I graduated today. Im really excited I ve been celebrating with drinking all day so I wont actually start till Tomorrow.  But I think I have centered in on what the game will be. It will be frogger but you control the cars instead of the frog. BOOM your the villain. Simple and elegant. Ok I’m drunk time for krispy cream donuts and bed.

Graduating and Hacking, aka I’m in for the first time.

Posted by (twitter: @https://twitter.com/Tsuk13)
Monday, December 10th, 2012 12:13 am

I have always wanted to take part but haven’t done it, that is until now. I am graduating with a BS in Computer Science and a BA in pure mathematics on Saturday and I plan to celebrate it with taking part in my first jam. I plan to do the jam to adjust for the time Ill lose on the game but other than that it should be good. I am excited to graduate and participate and do what I love: Programming and video games!!!

Havn’t decided on tools yet, I’m a C++ and Java programmer primarily so I figure Ill prolly do a java applet but we will see. Javascript might be fun

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