August 20th-23rd, 2010
Theme: Enemies as Weapons

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by moop - Competition Entry

My first attempt at Ludum Dare and a relatively unpolished due to a lack of time this weekend.

Still I'm reasonably happy with the core concept even if it could do with some refining. :)

For those interested, the results from sloccount, engine is the basecode (though it was edited heavily during the weekend), testgame is the game code:

SLOC Directory SLOC-by-Language (Sorted)
1362 engine cpp=1362
1098 testgame cpp=1070,sh=28
0 top_dir (none)

Totals grouped by language (dominant language first):
cpp: 2432 (98.86%)
sh: 28 (1.14%)

Total Physical Source Lines of Code (SLOC) = 2,460
Development Effort Estimate, Person-Years (Person-Months) = 0.51 (6.18)
(Basic COCOMO model, Person-Months = 2.4 * (KSLOC**1.05))
Schedule Estimate, Years (Months) = 0.42 (4.99)
(Basic COCOMO model, Months = 2.5 * (person-months**0.38))
Estimated Average Number of Developers (Effort/Schedule) = 1.24
Total Estimated Cost to Develop = $ 69,522
(average salary = $56,286/year, overhead = 2.40).

I included the person-months and cost estimates because they made me laugh.

Downloads and Links




Surrealix says ...
Aug 23, 2010 @ 2:09am

I couldn't quite figure out how to make the powerups work. I got some sort of shield by sucking up the yellow things, and my bullets turned blue/red when I sucked up groups of enemies. But they didn't seem to give my any sort of advantage. Perhaps it was a score thing?

Overall, it's a finished game, and playable, so congratulations on your first Ludum Dare.

moop says ...
Aug 23, 2010 @ 10:01am

You were correct with the groups thing. Groups of 3 gave a power up of the same elemental type as the group (fire, water, earth). I'd intended to have more combinations but time constraints and trying to avoid distracting attention from the shooter aspects prevented it.

Activating one of the special bullet types or the shield gave a score bonus, also fire bullets instantly killed water enemies and water bullets instantly killed fire enemies. Killing enemies outright in this way also gave a score bonus. Likewise using the shield to smash enemies while invulnerable gave a bonus.

I thought I'd leave the specifics of the scoring to be discovered but looking back that was a mistake. Most likely in this sort of event where there are a multitude of games to play they need to be immediately accessible or people will lose interest and move on.

Thanks for the feedback. :)

TenjouUtena says ...
Aug 23, 2010 @ 5:47pm

The graphics are nice and retro, creating a retro effect without it seeming like you're just using low-rent graphics, which is always good. The core mechanic is nice, but I never felt like I was in danger or really needed to do anything. I don't get why the game ended.

Nice and finished.

Aug 26, 2010 @ 5:43pm

I had the same problem as surrealix; I couldnt figure out why I should suck up the enemies other than to clear them from the screen or get a shield. In particular, I couldn't tell that the enemies were elemental, they just looked like different colours. I dont like this fake low resolution effect at all. Low resolution graphics were a necessity in the retro era due to hardware constraings, not a stylistic choice, and your choice of faking a 320x200 resolution played against you here because I had no idea they were fire/earth/water. Just thought they were different colours.

On the up side, once you figure out that there is a strategy to deciding which enemies to use as weapons and how to do it properly, the game gains an additional layer of depth. The game is also quite close to my idea of the theme, so 4 stars there.

moop says ...
Sep 1, 2010 @ 3:18pm

I've created an updated version with better instructions, backgrounds, an intro cutscene and online scoreboards, because at heart it is a score attack game.

It can be found at

stqn says ...
Sep 4, 2010 @ 4:07pm

More gameplay instructions would help.

pekuja says ...
Sep 5, 2010 @ 12:01am

Takes quite a while to "get". I'm not sure I got it yet.

Did you know the controls stop working if you hit CapsLock by accident?

Sep 5, 2010 @ 6:58am

Took me a couple of tries before I worked out why the game ended (you can only let 60 aliens through without shooting them) and I didn't really get why I was sucking them up, nor what the powers actually did.

It has potential, given a bit more explanation. Congrats on your first LD!

moop says ...
Sep 5, 2010 @ 12:01pm

The newer version (linked to in my comment above and in the blog, but not on the entry page because it was made about a week too late) hopefully fixes those issues.

I added a few screens of instructions that are accessible from the menu and partially fixed the caps lock key.

Unfortunately I've not 100% fixed the caps lock issue. It now works with caps lock on or off, but it will still freak out of you hit caps lock while holding a key. As far as I can tell this is a problem with the GLUT library. :( It seems that if you hit caps lock with a key held it never sends a key up message for the lower case version of the key.

moop says ...
Sep 5, 2010 @ 12:05pm

(and worse than that it keeps sending new key down messages at whatever your key repeat rate is, which really messes things up)

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