Ludum Dare 30 — August 22nd-25th, 2014 — Theme: Connected Worlds

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Salted Earth

by wolfmother - 48 Hour Compo Entry

Completed in about 32 hours. Ran out of ideas/things to implement and felt it was in a relatively complete state as is.

Started out answering the question, "what would Scorched Earth be like with orbital mechanics?"
Rapidly degenerated into a realtime shooter because bending attacks around planets is way more fun in realtime.

Enemies and attacks curve around planets' gravity fields realistically, and you can teleport between them yourself (hence "connected").

- Written from scratch using no existing engine and (apart from .NET) only enough libraries to directly access the hardware
- Intro screen with sound
- Custom audio mixer with limiter (written during comp)
- Quick-and-dirty audio filter effect for when you die or alt-tab
- World's simplest orbital mechanics engine (written during comp) using nothing other than OpenTK's vector library
- Custom OpenGL renderer with particles (written during comp) - entirely fixed functionality v1.1 immediate mode. So sue me!
- Sounds for every game event, plus music
- Enemies coming in waves, with gaps between each wave
- If you can destroy every enemy up to wave 4, you win

- .NET 2.0, everything else is included

- Windows Vista or later
- Make sure your graphics drivers are installed! It'll run slowly if they're not.

- OpenTK's OpenGL bindings and vector library
- NAudio's WASAPI bindings

- Created with FL Studio, Goldwave and The GIMP (original project files included)
- I'm trained as a programmer and a soundie, but not as a graphical artist -- so you can't hold the crappy quality of the sprites against me!

Downloads and Links




Jaloko says ...
Aug 24, 2014 @ 7:40pm

Nice game.

varun says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 4:13am

The bullet gravity is actually pretty cool - I found the game hard to visually parse, however.

Aug 25, 2014 @ 4:40am

Love the idea, hard to keep track of everything, love the chaos!

dvdking says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 5:05am

that's awesome that you wrotethe whole engine during compo. I struggled to finish my game even with game maker.

The game itself is quite confusing, espicially at first. And even later there is so much stuff going on, you don't know what to do.

The graphiics style and sound are great.

tiff says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 5:08am

Awesome, great job!

vinhuman says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 5:55am

Really impressive and well put together. It would be nice if the switching was a bit, I don't know, easier? I mean it's easy too switch but it's difficult to do it effectively. Maybe if there weren't so many places to switch and the appropriate switching was a bit more obvious. Really a fun game though, one of the most fun I've played so far.

ArthurMaker says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 6:01am

Nice Game

wolfmother says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 7:30am

vinhuman, Thank you! Perhaps I'll set it to have less planets in future.

dvdking, yeah, I tried to incorporate a bit of explanation in the game to make it a bit less confusing, but it seems that hasn't worked for everyone. I'm thinking in future I'll step up the pace more gradually, as well as waiting for the player to try features out before moving on.

varun, I did kind of want to go for a distorted garbled visual aesthetic, but it's possible I went too far. Maybe darkening the background further and lightening the play elements would increase the contrast and make the action easier to follow.

Thanks for the praise and comments everyone! Hope you guys go well with your own productions :3

Aug 25, 2014 @ 7:52am

Cool innovative theme, I spent a long time teleporting and not taking out any enemies, the confederation would be upset with me.

Yozz says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 8:16am

Like the physics and graphics style. Keep gamedeving ;)

ThijsTak says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 9:23am

Very impressive, though it was really hard to keeping track of what was going on. Very nice work.

donan says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 11:08am

Excellent idea. More original than 90% of the competition :)
Keep working on it after the compo ^^

simonnaus says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 11:29am

Great visual style! A bit hard to read at times, but I like the effort with the motion blur-like effect.

Aug 25, 2014 @ 1:55pm

I did enjoy it and it seems really cool :D

Eli says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 7:14pm

Interesting game

Bernte says ...
Aug 25, 2014 @ 8:37pm

Love the physic. Maybe add a small tutorial to get used to the visual informations?

Aug 26, 2014 @ 8:01am

In terms of programming, I'm VERY impressed! As for the actual game, the concept is super nice, but it's not so clear what's going on.
For some reason, the sound is not playing on my computer.

Aug 26, 2014 @ 3:41pm

Great job! Game felt awesome playing after I figured out what I was doing lol.

Moosefly says ...
Aug 26, 2014 @ 6:31pm

While it is novel, as a game it just doesn't do it for me. The most effective strategy for me was to bait the enemies into attacking and teleport to the other side of the galaxy, but I couldn't make it past wave 3 even after quite a lot of tries. My main gripe with this is the fact that it is really hard to control consistently and remain on top of the situation. If it were a tad slower or had a bullet time thingy then maybe I would've gotten more into it. It would also help if the teleport translated the ship smoothly (but still swiftly) between planets instead of, well, teleporting it and throwing the player off balance.

I played with the window scretched to fit my display, and the text was super tiny, something like font size 8 or so.


Menesetsu says ...
Aug 30, 2014 @ 2:02pm

My companion thinks that speed of gameplay should be slower... Anyway I like the idea of jumping between nodes of the defended system.

goffmog says ...
Sep 1, 2014 @ 11:37am

Nicely done! I found it a bit confusing at times though, the graphics are cool and the physics really work.

Kudos for writing it from scratch, that's what I did for my first LD, except that I used SlimDX rather than OpenTK. The reason I use Unity now is so that I can easily port to web, but there's a lot to be said for having complete control over the graphics pipeline and game object framework.

bluesky says ...
Sep 14, 2014 @ 3:18pm

Nice entry.

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