About GBGames (twitter: @GBGames)

- http://www.gbgames.com/blog is GBGames' Blog: An Indie Game Developer's Somewhat Interesting Thoughts


GBGames's Trophies

The Heartless Cookie Terrorist Award
Awarded by Croupe Aardvark
on August 25, 2010
Charlie Sheen Getting Hammered on Screwdrivers Award
Awarded by Martoon
on August 18, 2010
The "I Can't Get You Because You're In The Bike Lane" Excuse
Awarded by demonpants
on December 17, 2008
The Photo Finish
Awarded by Doches
on December 8, 2008
The Palm Of RSI Prevention
Awarded by Hamumu
on August 23, 2008
Worlds Finest Juice Award
Awarded by PoV
on August 9, 2008



Uhfgood says ...

Awesome! Totally fits the theme. Now that you have a windows version of that, where's my windows port of Killer Kittens?!

erik says ...

Pretty crazy. I thought that there was a time limit, until I read the other comments.

DrPetter says ...

Level 140. Did I play for too long? At some point my eyes started to blead, but then I recovered. It was interesting to try and blink in sync with the flashing, you can make the squares appear the same constant color if you time it right. Nice pling sound. I wish the buzzabuzza would keep speeding up even after a handful of levels.

Jach says ...

Funner than the screenshot looks! And it exercised my mouse-fu.

thedaian says ...

As mentioned, a time limit would make the game more challenging, and thus create a bigger feeling of accomplishment when you hit level 100 or something, but it's still fun, epileptic seizures and all.

sol_hsa says ...

After realizing that, regardless of the anxiety-inducing blinking, there's no hurry, the game became very easy.

I took my headphoness off at around level 50, because the sound had become way too annoying. At level 85 I promised myself that I'll play to at least level 100 to see if it changes. Quit at level 101; hurt eyes too much.

mikeware says ...

I kept getting the sense of impending doom. Thought I'd have to make it to the goal before something bad happened. Amazing, how something so simple can be powerful, fits the theme perfectly. Of course, I found a way to cheat... just move your mouse outside the game window... But then it's not as much fun. Strangely addictive...

SethR says ...

Very playable, good job on not letting grandma slow ya down. Great food pics btw

Surrealix says ...

That was pretty cool. The sounds made the game, along with the flashing. As sol_HSA said, as soon as I realized the flashing didn't mean anything, it became easy.

keeyai says ...

That's a 4 in humor just for the lose noise. Oh yeah. Awesome game -- simple, minimalist, and addicting gameplay. Also, PERFECT instructions - it's all in the subtleties - that bumped your polish up to 5.

pekuja says ...

Quite seizure-inducing. The music made me really anxious, which at first felt like a nice touch, but seriously, you need to release the tension at some point. :-O I too stopped at level 101. A fun basic maze game, but the visuals and sounds are horrifying after a few levels!
Props for journaling and food photos though! :-)

eugman says ...

Would be better with some more features. Has a nice style to it however. Sharp sounds :p .

Hamumu says ...

Wow, seizure-inducing indeed. It definitely needed a time limit, although the desire to escape the noise and lights was something of a time pressure itself. But it was interesting how that noise and sound made you feel really anxious.

Alternatively, it should've been way harder, given the lack of time limit. There was always a pretty wide path to the goal for me.

Kimau says ...

Very fun, minimal and addictive. The sound is a bit ear piercing but the gameplay is ace.

fydo says ...

My ears and eyes are bleeding! I made it up to level 105. Nice, simple game that fits the theme well.

drZool says ...

Ooo an mouse arm accelerator!

mjau says ...

Had to disable the included libraries to get it to run, as your bundled SDL doesn't have pulseaudio support.

Anyway, not a very challenging game at all (unless you're an epileptic I guess), but I did get some more fun out of it by trying to go as fast as possible through the levels. (I was a complete failure at that, but yes, more fun.)

pymike says ...

Cool game! The flashing blocks hurt my eyes after a while though... the sounds annoyed me too. But it's still a good job.

HybridMind says ...

Had a lot of fun playing this one. Only made it to level 65 though. Seems like a lot of people myself included fell for thinking there was a time limit until a little testing let me see there wasn't. The music definitely made it seem ominious about waiting around to touch the blue square and I think the audio/visual pulsing definitely made me mess up as it induced some type of trance! ;) Nice minimal game!

EDIT: I just got to level 150 ! Don't ask me why, but I was sitting around and I had to try one more time :)

PS - Thx for the trophy! I guess our games moods are on quite opposite sides of the emotional spectrum. :)

mariusz says ...

Level 179. Fits the theme very well. Perhaps a steeper difficulty curve would have been better.

LunarCrisis says ...

A lot more fun than I anticipated! Some things could have been tweaked for more polish though. For example, it would have been nice for you to prevent obstacles spawning within a certain distance of the player. Also, the lack of a time limit makes it feel like what it's really trying is your patience, since you can get as far as you want if you go slow enough. Having a time limit which extends by a fixed amount would have made competing to higher levels more rewarding.

Congrats on completing Ludum Dare!

phren says ...

The audio and graphics do a good job of creating a sense of urgency, but is there a time limit for completing a level? If not the game requires patience instead of dexterity, and I think this game definitely goes into the genre of dexterity games, so it's kinda weird. Quite fun to play though. :)

pansapiens says ...

Fun to play, great sound (while eventually annoying, it really builds the tension), fits theme. Nicely packaged.

negativegeforce says ...

damit, the game speed goes as fast as the player. it makes me wanna go faster and faster. its like hitting the gas to run into a brick wall thinking you can dodge it.

amazingly simple game, but fun. luv it :>

Archive for the ‘LD #11 – Minimalist – 2008’ Category

Minimalist Post-mortem

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Tuesday, April 29th, 2008 2:00 am

In one 48 hour period, I made a simple game based on the theme “minimalist”. I didn’t try to stay awake throughout the entire Ludum Dare competition, so the game was made in less than 48 hours.

What Went Right:

  • Used my build script to create a distributable game from the beginning.

    I have a build script from a previous project that allows me to use a single command to take my project source, build it, and create a .tar.gz file to distribute for GNU/Linux users. Towards the end of the competition, I wasn’t spending too much time trying to figure out how to get my project into a judge’s hands since.

  • Mouse control was easy to do and easy to use.

    Since I was learning SDL, I tried to make my game as simple to use as possible. I knew that using a mouse was a lot easier than expecting someone to use the keyboard, but I had never implemented mouse control in a game before. Luckily, it turned out to be very easy. As a result, the interface was very simple since you’re just moving the mouse around, and the game that this interface produced was better for it.

  • I got really involved in it.

    I had food photos and a time lapse video, and I even received two trophies, one for my eclectic food choices. Hanging out with all of the other Ludum Dare participants, even if just virtually through IRC, was a lot of fun.

  • I finished!

    Of course, finishing was also a lot of fun. While I could have used some more playtesting and would have loved some feedback before it was submitted, I think I put together a decent game in a short amount of time. It feels good to finish things.

What Went Wrong:

  • My work environment was horrible.

    A couch is comfortable…but not for marathon game development sessions! My back still hurts. I need to clean my office. Right now, I am using it as a giant inbox:

    Why I Use My Couch Instead of My Office

    I prefer development with my laptop because the CRT of my desktop is harsh on my eyes. Still, it would be nice to sit in a real chair while working. Alternatively, I can finally buy an LCD for my desktop.

  • My cats love to hang out with me.

    Even if I was sitting in my office, I know from experience that my cats would still jump up into my lap and try to rest their heads on my arm. When you’re using a laptop, there isn’t room for it AND a cat or two. Having an office door to close would help, of course, but the cats were quite a distraction for LD#11.

    Gizmo prevents me from game programming

  • I didn’t practice using SDL before the competition.

    It was a problem especially since I had decided not to depend on the Kyra Sprite Engine for future projects, but I really only used libSDL for input and creating a window prior to this project. When the first 24 hours are finished and all you have is a window rendered and the knowledge that the mouse handling is working (even if it isn’t visible), you might be afraid that you won’t have anything to show at the end of 48 hours. I did manage to pull it off, but by the next competition, I want to be able to work with less of a focus on technical details and more of a focus on game development.

  • I spent too long in the beginning trying to mock something up in the GIMP.

    Similar to the previous point, I was spending more time on technical issues than on creation. I thought I was more familiar with the GIMP than I was, and I spent a lot of my early hours fighting with it instead of just using pencil and paper. The worst part about it was that the initial idea was one I ended up discarding, and if I wasn’t wasting time with figuring out how to do some simple things in it, I might have been able to figure it out sooner.

What I Learned:

  • My kitchen goes to entropy during LD.

    When you’re focused on game development for most of your waking hours for two days, other things have to take a lower priority. One of those things was cleaning. I had a bit of a mess to deal with after the competition was over.

  • Even something incredibly simple can be a good game mechanic.

    I knew I wasn’t going to be drinking multiple cans of Mountain Dew or Red Bull, and I don’t drink coffee, so staying up for 48 hours wasn’t going to happen. I needed to work on a game I could finish, so I picked the simplest thing I could. Surprisingly, it was fun, and some of the judges have said so as well. At the end of the competition I already had a list of ideas that could improve it, and I hope to release an updated version with those improvements.

  • It’s possible to do a lot in a single day.

    Even though I spent some time learning how to use SDL, I still managed to make a game. The best part is that I can incorporate what I have learned into my personal library of code for my future projects. Also, there were over 70 games submitted, and it is amazing what some people were able to do in 48 hours. Some of them were learning how to program!

I set aside most of a 48 hour period, and I have a game, some new code, and more experience. If I could work on a project with a similar scope each month, I think it would go a long way towards improving my ability to create video games. Also, it’s a lot of fun, and I will definitely be participating in future Ludum Dare competitions.

GBGames Time Lapse

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 8:10 pm

You can find my time lapse video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fpXRHYU-hU.

GBGames presents Minimalist – the final version

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 5:45 pm

Minimalist by GBGames is finished!



UPDATE: Grab the Windows build here! (0.9 MB)

http://gbgames.com/downloads/ld11/LD11-Minimalism-GBGames.zip is a 12.4MB download.

EDIT: If you’re interested in just the Linux build to play, download http://gbgames.com/downloads/ld11/ld11-minimalist-gbgames-linux-x86-r12.tar.gz, a much smaller 1.3MB download.

The big .zip file includes the entirety of my project’s source in a zip file (LD11-Minimalism-GBGames-source.zip) and a GNU/Linux-ready tar.gz file (ld11-minimalist-gbgames-linux-x86-r12.tar.gz).

The source is ready to be used to build a linux-x86 distributable tar.gz. I created it using my Ubuntu system.

Tools I used:

  • vim, g++, make
  • libSDL, SDL_image, and SDL_mixer
  • sfxr
  • GIMP
  • the build scripts I used for a different game I am working on

My Grandma’s Birthday Won’t Slow Me Down

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 3:09 pm

But I will eat some food while I am there.

LD11 Birthday dinner

Dessert was a bit better, especially those Nutella-filled spiral thingies:

LD11 Birthday dessert

I’m back, and I have a few hours to add sound and upload a completed entry.

Happy birthday, Nana!

GBGames presents Minimalist

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 11:06 am

I have a main menu:

LD11 Minimalist by GBGames

And gameplay:

LD11 Minimalist by GBGames

I need sound effects, but I have made a game for Ludum Dare!

New screenshot

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 9:40 am

I have gameplay now:

LD11 Minimalist screenshot

Er, you can’t tell from the screenshot, but the small square is your mouse cursor. The large square that is the same color is the goal. There are as many obstacles as the level number, so level #5 will have five obstacles.

The rectangles are obstacles you need to avoid to get to the goal. If you touch an obstacle, you go back to the beginning. They vary in size, so sometimes a single pixel can trip you up. Be careful!

Minimal Sunday Breakfast

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 6:20 am

Today’s breakfast was minimal:

LD11 Sunday Breakfast

That’s orange juice with extra pulp right there. Mmm, hmm!

Bed time!

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Sunday, April 20th, 2008 12:03 am

It’s 3AM, and I’m going to sleep.

I have a mouse cursor image, and I have a second image, and I can determine when the two are colliding. I’m getting close to a game.

This is why I am using my couch instead of my office

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 11:14 pm

Since drZool asked about why I was using my couch, I bring you evidence of why:

Why I Use My Couch Instead of My Office

Hmm, I suppose it doesn’t look too messy, but I would need to go through each item on that desk and find a place for it. Some of it needs to be filed. Some of it needs to be thrown out. Some of it needs to be paid, as I am sure there is a bill or two in there.

I suppose I could use the kitchen table, but the table and the chairs wobble a bit. The couch is a bit better, although I do have a problem with my back hurting after marathon coding sessions. Like this competition.

Let there be art

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 10:06 pm

I finally have graphics. These are SDL RectFills that are using random red, green, and blue attributes, and the offset matches the mouse cursor’s position:

LD11 Minimalist with graphics

I plan on providing a sprite and making sure that there are other sprites in the playing area. I want to detect when your mouse-following sprite hits other sprites, and you will win or lose depending on which you touched.

The part that took me so long to get here was figuring out that I was using the variables incorrectly. Maybe I need more sleep. Or caffeine.

My Workspace time lapse

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 7:27 pm

At Hour 0:

Work Environment

At Hour 24:

Work Environment

I’m rusty with libSDL and haven’t made too many games in general, so I am breaking out reference books left and right.

Saturday Dinner

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 7:19 pm

I decided to eat a quick dinner.

LD11 Saturday Dinner

That’s a vegan pizza. Now, this isn’t a fake cheese pizza, so don’t get disgusted yet. This pizza is just made with different ingredients. It’s actually quite delicious, and it only takes 10 minutes to cook.

Unfortunately, I also found out that my fridge is leaking. I’m not sure why, but it has to have been a recent development.

Mouse control

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 9:36 am

I’m definitely at a disadvantage compared to some of the more seasoned pros here, but I just got my application to understand where the mouse is. I never implemented mouse control in a game before, so I decided to do so in a time-based competition. Nice.

Soon I hope to have a few elements on the screen that can know if the mouse is near them and will react. Wish me luck!

My Minimalist Game

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 7:10 am


Yeah, so far I just got a window to appear. And I apparently forgot to add some way for the game to know that you are closing it, so I had to kill -9 the program. Yeesh.

Breakfast of Champions

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 5:50 am

After a quick shower, breakfast!

A banana, some cereal with almond milk, and a peanut butter and raisin and pickle sandwich. I washed all that down with a glass of orange juice (not pictured):

LD11 Saturday Breakfast

Good morning!

Posted by (twitter: @GBGames)
Saturday, April 19th, 2008 4:51 am

After spending the evening trying to figure out what to do, I went to sleep.

Some of my ideas:

  • Ikebana (thanks, Mandy!)
  • Avoid the Ball
  • Avoid the Walls
  • One Shot Space Invaders

The first one involves the Japanese art of flower arrangement, and it would seem on paper to make a good game, but I am not sure how I would go about making it in 48 hours. The last one is the idea that instead of having unlimited shots to kill Space Invaders, you get only one. You have to depend on a chain reaction explosion to kill them all, so it would be more like a puzzle game. The middle two seem the easiest to make, so I might stick with them since I need to spend a bit more time just getting my code base working than most of the other contestants.

It seems that minimalist games can sometimes be very complex things to create.

I’ll take a quick shower and have some breakfast, and then it is back into the thick of things.

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