About zenmumbler (twitter: @zenmumbler)

Programmer, Native and Web. I like a challenge.
Live in Amsterdam, NL


Ludum Dare 37
Ludum Dare 36
Ludum Dare 35
Ludum Dare 34
Ludum Dare 33
Ludum Dare 25
Ludum Dare 25 Warmup

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zenmumbler's Archive

Final Plug of 2016

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Thursday, December 29th, 2016 11:29 am

Hope everyone is enjoying the final days of the year. If you have a spare moment, try your hand at my short puzzle entry, Callisto.

I’m now committed to expanding this to create a larger, but still relatively small game inspired by The Witness, The Room and Riven. Even at the small scale it’s quite an undertaking but I look forward to it. In the mean time, have a happy 2017 everyone and keep making great games!

Play Callisto (WebGL)

Callisto - Puzzles in Space

Updated Game Data 1 Week In

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Tuesday, December 20th, 2016 3:24 pm

Hi all, just a quick note about my fast and furious LD game browsing web app: DTBB.

The LD37 data was respidered as of yesterday, 1 week in. This updates several entries with new descriptions, platforms, etc. and adds 2 latecomers to the party.

As usual, you can search for any (part of a) term, combined with platform filtering and get instantly updated results for LDs 15 through 37. Many people found it handy to do a quick free form search for games to rate, esp. if you can only play web-based games for example.

I’m up to 50 rated games now and always go for 100+ by the end. We’ve got 2 more weeks, so:

Give it a try and rate more games!


End of week game rush

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Sunday, December 18th, 2016 4:26 pm

As the end of the weekend approaches, rate as many games as possible using my instant games search / browse tool!

  • Instant full-text search
  • Filter by platforms (web, win, mac, lin, java, etc.)
  • LDs 15 through 37 indexed
  • Data available in offline mode (not thumbnails)

Doo Eet! Browse and Rate Games like a Machine!


They say that in space, no one can hear you scream…

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Sunday, December 18th, 2016 4:20 pm

Not that you would want to scream of course, not in the blissful puzzle experience of…


Callisto - Puzzles in Space

Callisto, The Room in Space

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Friday, December 16th, 2016 6:28 pm

You liked The Room? Puzzley-thinky things in atmospheric surroundings? Got your headphones on? Good.

Play Callisto!

Callisto - Puzzles in Space

Instant Games Browser Updated for LD37

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Thursday, December 15th, 2016 8:29 am

DTBB, my searchable games browser has been updated with the state of LD37 up to last evening (UTC). Give it a spin as a quick alternative to the old site. Good thing the new site doesn’t work yet as I would’ve had to update my scraper. Respite for 1 more event!

For those who don’t know:

  • full text instantly filtered games browser for LDs 15 through 37
  • indexes and catalogs are stored locally so you can browse offline (except for thumbnails)
  • each entry links directly back to the main LD game page

Use it to search for keywords like “puzzle”, “crawler”, team names, etc. Filter by platform, all with instant feedback!

Browse Games Like a Pro!dtbb201612

Callisto: fixed issues

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Thursday, December 15th, 2016 8:14 am

Argh, always fun to see comments on your work that it just does not work. My entry was just flaking out massively on several configs; the joys of 3D driver software variations on how they handle edge cases.

Anyway, I believe I’ve fixed the issues. Apologies to those who tried earlier, and welcome to anyone who has yet to try Callisto! It’s a puzzle room with a nod to games like Riven. — It needs a GPU with a bit of power, I’ve seen it running on a Intel HD3000 and it works but the frame rate is… not great.

Please enjoy Callisto!

Callisto - Puzzles in Space

Callisto: a puzzle from Riven in Space!

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Wednesday, December 14th, 2016 5:46 am

My homage to old-school puzzle room games is done! In true LD style, I had to code most of the actual game part in the last 12 hours, having spent eons finding the right textures and sounds online. But I like the final result! The game is finished with mostly any real UI or title screens missing due to lack of time. I like how this ended up though so I’m going to make a post-compo version.

Callisto: puzzles in space

I hope the actual room puzzle is not too obscure. I feel all the clues are there and the solution is rooted in patterns and association. Unlike modern games this title does no hand-holding at all. Just letting you do whatever until you get it right and then you get feedback. This was mostly due to lack of time but I like the Myst/Riven puzzles where you can click on stuff as much as you want with the game not really acknowledging that you’re trying something. “Eh, click on that some more, why don’t ya? I don’t care.” the game seems to say, if it could talk.

This game needs a fairly beefy graphics card. At least an Intel HD4xxx/5xxx with discrete cards much preferred. I’m using my own 3D framework and I haven’t yet built lightmaps ‘n all that so all lighting is dynamic and it still needs some good old optimisation. In the post-compo version I’ll do that and add a quality setting, ran out of time.

Sound is an integral part of the game, it really adds a lot to the atmosphere, please play with sound, it really enhances the experience. Thanks.
With all that said, have fun playing and rating games and:

Play Callisto

Browse the Ghosts of LD Past

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Saturday, November 26th, 2016 6:45 pm

Howdy folks,

as you’re all typing up your “I’m in” posts and preparing mentally for #37, why not check out previous entries in my easy to use LD Games Browser!


I’ve written about it before but since last time I added the games of all LDs going back to #15. Pick an event and search for some stuff. Type away to search and be inspired!


  • Instant full text search for quick filtering and browsing!
  • LDs 15 through 36 included! (pre #15 were dark, dark days)
  • A UI and colour scheme that will make any designer cower in fear!
  • Completely static site so it costs me basically nothing! Yay!
  • It’s open source! Zoink (uses TypeScript)
  • *cough*platform classification is based on some reasonable heuristics, it’s good overall but mistakes happen, sorry!*cough*

Browse Games Now!


AltBrowser updated for LD36

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Monday, September 12th, 2016 9:47 am

Better late than never, but I updated my DTBB alternate games browser using the LD36 entries.

If your game was misclassified then I am sorry. Like last time, it’s a bit hit and miss based on keyword detection etc., but in general most entries are properly indexed and categorised.

In short for those who don’t know:

Instant full-text search through all LD36 entries, filter by platform, click to go to the game’s LD page.

Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 16.42.33

Explore LD36 Games

Updated Games Browser

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Wednesday, April 27th, 2016 5:31 am

I’ve put up an updated version of the games browser with various improvements:

AltBrowser v2

Give it a Try!

  • Simpler and better classification of games. I’ve removed the flash, html5 and unity types as they were not very reliable. They have been replaced with a more general “Web” type.
    • The “Web” and “Desktop” categories are still a bit flaky. Often, the text and links by themselves just do not give a proper idea of what platform it is for.
    • Added VR category
  • New controls UI that is simpler and less cluttered in a new visual theme (still a WIP)
  • Diacritical marks are fixed and collated in search (e.g. if you search for love you’ll also find löve, etc.)
  • Data updated per 2016-04-26

I’m planning some more improvements to search and some other things. Let me know in the comments how it works out for you!

LD Games Browser

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Saturday, April 23rd, 2016 7:19 pm

Ultra-fast Ludum Dare Games Browser

Try it here: http://zenmumbler.net/dtbb


Tested in Chrome, Firefox and Safari (should work in Edge 13+)

I made a website concept that allows you to quickly and efficiently find games to play entered into the Ludum Dare competition (the current one only for now) in ways that are impossible by browsing on the main LD site.

  • Search for any number of terms on a full-text index over all text in a submission.
  • Filter by download types such as Mac, Win, Linux, HTML5, Unity, etc.
  • Filter by category (all, compo, jam)
  • Directly link (in a new tab) to any game that you want to play (links to the LD entry page)

And all the filtering is instant so you can just try out some search terms and see what happens.

Is it perfect? No. There will be false positives etc, but it is a lot better than leafing through the main LD pages.

Sample queries:

  • “sleep tired” for those devs who were really tired
  • “dungeon” because I like things with dungeons
  • “platformer 2d”, “vive vr”, “explode”, etc.


The data in this site was scraped from the main Ludum Dare website Friday, April 22nd 2016. Any changes made by contestants after this date will not show up unless I re-scrape.

The categorising of entries is based on their download links and titles. I tried to be reasonably smart but there may be false positives.

The site links directly to the thumbnail images on the ludumdare.com website, if this turns out to be a problem, I can capture them and store them on S3 or something.

Neither this project nor I are not affiliated with or endorsed by Ludum Dare staff. I do not own or claim to own the data extracted from the LD site. In fact, if you want to make something cool yourself, use the ld35-entries.json file in the data dir and have a go.
This project was mainly started to address my own frustration with using the aging LD interface.

Now go and play + rate some games.

Final 2 Days to gain titles!

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Saturday, January 2nd, 2016 4:45 pm

Screen Shot 2016-01-02 at 22.09.37

Can you find the True Snowman title?

Here it is, the final shoutout to play SBExtreme. To also pass along the love here are 3 games from the 177 (~6.2%) games I rated that I found interesting or fun.

Octov by Taldius

Interesting take on command sequences and you are a Shyguy!


Darkness by Sineglitch

A sound-centric experience with visuals to aid it instead of the other way around.


Conservation of Ninjutsu by kuhnerdm

Ridiculous, fast-paced, simple and funny. A great compo entry.


I wish you all a happy and creative 2016!

Make Daniel Day Lewis Proud

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015 6:13 am

Snowman Builder Extreme After Hours

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Friday, December 18th, 2015 7:46 am

Snowman Builder Extreme’s idea came about quite quickly and was shared by other participants: roll a snowball down a hill to make it grow while stuff happens. The twist in SME is that you pick up typical snowman stuff: carrots, pebbles and hats and they accumulate and roll down with you, similar to the Katamari games.

Create an Extreme Snowman right now!

The growing theme was thus growing the snowball itself but also extending the ball with a bunch of carrots and hats.

The two-control part was easy, the snowball moves forward by itself and you can only apply force to the left or right, which also helped in making you feel less in control of this thing thundering down the track.

Snowman Builder Extreme Action Shot

Overall I’m very happy with how it turned out. My artistic skills are minimal so I used external assets from places like opengameart and freesound and a theme by Kevin MacLeod from incompetech, which I’ve always wanted to do, but I took the time to add a simple menu and other game-y elements, statistics and achievement titles.

Tip: Always take time to add menus and hud overlays where appropriate, I didn’t last time and it made the game worse for it.

The movie above is me showing you can get the highest title “Expert” in the game. Reaching the absolute end of the track is not easy. Try it yourself!

The Good

  • Making use of assets allowed me to focus purely on the game and engine code (and I needed the time)
  • I made a track generator that works with simple rotation and length instructions to create the track and wall mesh blocks and collision + direction information
  • Creating the game showed me where some of the holes were in my custom WebGL engine and it got better just by being used for something new
  • At the end of day 2 I was a bit demotivated, it still looked rather barren and most of the game wasn’t there yet, so on day 3 I started with pure gameplay and once I saw the carrots and hats rolling along with the ball my spirits lifted quite a bit. I could get this working and it was fun too!
  • Adding the titles. When the game reacts to what you’re trying to do, it feels very satisfying. Always put in effort-reward points and/or cycles. BTW: there are 16 titles total, get ’em all!

The Bad

  • My engine does not yet have built in collision detection and we all know how much fun that can be, especially in 3D. As a result, it is possible to fly through walls at certain angles and speeds but it happens rarely enough that it would just have to do. LD is not a time to spend 2 days fixing it, but the track gen + collision info gen took me a full day
  • Like most LD entries, there’s a lot of low hanging fruit. Small improvements that would add good value. But Monday I had a 20-hour day and that was just enough to get to where I got now
  • Good+Bad: It looks like a game from 1996 because of the simple 3D objects but I decided to own it and promote it as if it was a low-budget game from the early PSX days.

I had a good time, learned new stuff and improved my framework. It was great and I hope you enjoyed it as well. Now play the game and please rate!


Snowman Builder Extreme – GOTY 1996

Posted by (twitter: @zenmumbler)
Monday, December 14th, 2015 10:05 pm

With the last real commit done at 2:59 local time (1 min before closing time) I’m happy with how my 90s low-budget 3D gaming love letter has ended up!

Play it Now!


Consider what would have happened if a 90s era team somehow knew about Katamari Damacy and had 3 days to build a snowboarding game without an artist or much of anything really. Snowman Builder EXTREME!

Okay, it’s 4am, should probably leave the office now. Best of luck to all in the voting period!

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