Posts Tagged ‘LD#26’

soundscape – Post-mortem of an audio game

Posted by (twitter: @Ragzouken)
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 1:41 pm

 

 

I decided to take the theme of minimalism in the direction of minimal interface: try to make a game that can be played by audio alone!

soundscape overview

What went right:

  • Framework: I used love2d again, and this time I had even more experience. I used the collision library I learnt about in LD24 and without it this game would not have been possible for me to make in the time frame.
  • Idea: I think this was a really interesting idea, and a lot of people agreed. I’ve never played such a game before, though I have heard of a few. I’m really interested in making similar games and seeing what can be done with audio games.
  • Visuals: I think I have managed to achieve a visual style is simple but elegant, and fits the theme quite nicely. It’s quite neat that the player’s route overlaid on the map looks like minimalist art itself.

What went wrong:

  • Sound: I made a similar mistake in LD24 – having really irritating sounds. Some people reported the feeler noise hurt their ears.
  • Playability: I really had no idea how to design an audio game, and it shows! I’m not entirely sure the directional sound for the goal works properly, and I think the theramin-style feeler is a very good interface for blind navigation. I don’t think I made it clear enough what the static meant, especially since the grid scrolls even when you aren’t moving! That said, I was pleasantly surprised by how many people enjoyed the game and actually made it to the end!
  • Dead ends: I spent a lot of time playing with dead end ideas – namely trying to do levels made of constructive solid geometry (way too fiddly to implement in the time frame). The sound element of the game is very stripped down from the weird stuff I was playing with, and the levels are nothing like I wanted them to be originally!

Like last time, in LD24, it was great fun to participate. I’ve made an interesting game that’s like nothing I’ve ever made before, and really has me thinking about new possibilities for other audio-games.

IceBreaker – PostMortem

Posted by (twitter: @pentaphobe)
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 1:14 pm

Intro

IceBreaker is a minimalist free-pause RTS-ish thing (probably better described as an FTL-like, though bearing little similarity) set in a Cyberspace similar to the one portrayed in William Gibson’s Neuromancer (a book which changed my adolescent life and is at least partially responsible for my getting into programming).

I didn’t get much (okay, any) journal-writing done during the weekend, though there’s a vague run-down of events in the project’s github page.

So consider this (rather large) postmortem post-hoc overcompensation. (and apologies in advance for the spam)

Blender was extremely helpful for rapidly producing the future-retro look

Blender was extremely helpful for rapidly producing the future-retro look very quickly, even the sprites were tiny renderings with wireframes

You can’t quite tell, but it’s a stripped-down RTS:

  • no resources or buildings (instead you have gestation periods for replication)
  • since you can’t build unit factories, you instead have to replicate (and be vulnerable), but if you’re standing still you will heal
  • there /are/ classes, but they are restricted to *strength* (hit amount) and *vitality* (health)
  • it’s meant to be broken down into very short levels, generally with you collecting/destroying something which is being protected.

Statistics

  • Four litres of coffee consumed
  • A whole forest of tobacco
  • 3,617 lines of code
    • That’s 60 A4 pages if printed out
    • According to Wolfram Alpha that’s:
      • about 17.8 metres ( 58 ft ) tall
      • 6.6 storeys high
      • and about half the diameter of the Hindenberg
    • Very sore wrists (hush, you!)
  • somewhere between 3 and 6 hours of sleep

Screen shot 2013-05-01 at 5.18.22 AM

What went wrong

  1. strong underlying system
    • unlike my last two LudumDare attempts, I knew what I wanted to do very quickly, I wrote about three pages of ideas and then stopped when I realised I’d already made my mind up to do the first one.
      However I didn’t flesh out the details as much as usual and so started building the basic framework while pondering, knowing I could change the details later on.  This resulted in a lot of code ( ~60ft worth! ) that, whilst extremely useful was probably not necessary to get the basics of the game done.
      I remain convinced that it was doable within the alotted time period (the post compo version is only an extra 4 hours work, with the last 3 mostly being unnecesary tweaking)
  2. not enough testing of environment
    • I did more preparation than previously, but I wasted time on a few things which could have been sorted out before the compo:
      • setting up the live stream stole about 1-2 hours, admittedly I was feeling a bit braindead/overwhelmed/uninspired so this was a better utilisation of time than say, nothing.  But this should have “Just Worked”
      • Final builds (I’ll get to that)
  3. using an unfamiliar framework and language (again)
    • In my first LD, I used AS3/FlashPunk which I’d picked up a couple of hours before the compo.  In the second, I used Java/LibGDX and didn’t complete – whilst I had familiarity with Java I was very very new to LibGDX and as a result spent wayy too much time googling.  This time was a fair bit better (Haxe is quite similar to Java/AS3) but I still had little to now experience with either it, or HaxePunk
    • HaxePunk is quite nice, but unfortunately not quite “there” yet for me, I wrote a disproportionately large amount of patches to the library in order to get basic features to work normally.  This stole quite a bit of time, but it was far too late in the project to change ships.  I look forward to using it more though.
  4. refactoring at the halfway point
    • despite having most of the system quite well designed in my head, I had to stop and write a vast swathe of code on day 2, partially to undo the odd choices of my sleep-deprived self the night before
  5. sleep (braindead 6+6 hours)
    • I should have done it sooner, and more.  I’m quite good without sleep, but I ran rampant on the code-base when I  started getting exhausted.  Much time was spent rectifying this spaghetti.  I’m not sure how long I actually slept (somewhere between 4 and 6 hours), but I easily lost 12 hours to silly choices and then the bleary-headedness upon waking.

      an early screenshot complete with pointless UI and ugly tiles

      an early screenshot complete with pointless UI and ugly tiles

  6. didn’t demonstrate theme clearly enough (despite following it)
    • I had basic gameplay down very early in the project this time, but the sleep-spaghetti resulted in about 10-12 hours of programming which left me (effectively) where I started
  7. planning
    • I actually planned quite well in a lot of ways, but some very fundamental (and rudimentary) aspects were overlooked initially, resulting in much confusion and wasted time
  8. submission process panic!
    • I tested my environment this time to avoid this exact thing.  However I discovered (at submission time) that whilst my project ran perfectly in the Flash standalone player, it would silently fail completely in-browser.  It turns out all I had to do was add “-web” to the build command, but it took me far too long to discover this!
  9. no end-game detection or automatic level progression
    • despite “shipping” with a few levels, the submission process issues resulted in my missing the 20 minutes that I needed to finalise this important factor of a “short-level based game” and the gameplay suffers for it.

What went right

  1. strong underlying system
    1. Yes, it’s a dirty trick having this in both sections.  But I maintain that the approach was a good one, early efforts resulted in the tutorial system being a mere 45 minutes to implement, and most new features were added extremely quickly
    2. I used JSON for most of the configuration of the game, allowing rapid prototyping of enemy AI, character attributes, menus and the tutorial system)
  2. using Haxe and SublimeText 2
    1. This was a pretty awesome combination, I look forward to being able to justify the $70 license for SublimeText2 (this was my first real experience with it, and it was wonderful).  I have been using (shudder) Eclipse for a while despite my lack of appreciation for IDEs in general so it was nice to have a “real” development environment again.  However I’ve gotten rather dependent on Eclipse’s easy mass-refactoring, and you can really tell (names of things changed through the course of the project and thus there are some things named Agents which are actually Actors and so forth)
  3. the game idea
    1. I think this concept is pretty sound, and I enjoyed playtesting it.  Definitely building some more levels and a little more “Juice” and thrusting it in the face of anyone who walks by
  4. music and art
    1. There were a few times when my brain completely went on strike, so it was good to change gears and work in Blender or Renoise to build some of the feel, having these elements in game was also fantastic for morale.
    2. The music was made in about 5-15 minutes for each of the two tracks
    3. Art was quite quick too, despite a few false starts
  5. tutorial system
    1. I’m really happy with the tutorial system, which could also double as a mission introduction system.  It hooks into game events and each dialog of the tutorial can have a number of events required before it appears, or disappears making it very easy to make a clear (and importantly, responsive) tutorial.
Tutorial system

The in-game tutorial system is quite smart, if a little overenthusiastic

Last words

Thanks to everyone for an awesome experience yet again!

Project source (github) | Project page | Live stream (twitch)

I strongly encourage you to try out the Jam/Post-compo version after you’ve rated, as it’ll be a lot more clear what I was trying to achieve

How I made a game in 48 hours

Posted by (twitter: @jayrob_in)
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 8:05 am

Below is a fairly accurate account of how my weekend went while making F*** This Job

Day One

0830 Got up, had porridge and a cuppa, got dressed
0900 “Minimalism? Bugger.”
0930 Lots of Googling, etc. “Minimalism…Do more with less”
1000 “I’ll make a one-button roguelike!”
1030 “Screw that.” Decided on a one-button platformer instead
1100 Drew complicated sketch of how the game will play

1130 Guy is now running and jumping back-and forth
1230 Basic level loading and tiling done
1300 Wife asks what happens if you hold down the jump key. Turns out the guy starts flying. I assure her it’s a feature…Not a bug
1400 Added spikes and player deaths
1500 Went to ‘Burger Off’ to refuel

1730 Back to work, added the stegosaurus thingy which would later become the mutant rat enemy
1830 Added exits – levels now have a start and an end!
1900 More enemies that look nothing like they’re supposed to (except the gun turret…That sort of looks like a gun turret)
2100 “It would be awesome if I could add Super Meat Boy-style replays…”

0000 Somehow added Super Meat Boy-style replays

0200 More enemies, tile types and general bug fixing. Added just about all the mechanics and elements so I can focus on polish and level design tomorrow

Day Two

0830 …SNOOZE…
1030 “Oh **** it’s still Ludum Dare!”
1100 Fixing up the main menu and level select screen
1200 Found my dusty Wacom tablet…Time to make an intro
1400 Finished the intro and outro. His fingers look weird but whatever
1500 Designed a few tutorial levels
1530 Ran out of bacon, went to the shops
1630 More levels, bug fixing the replays
1930 Redid a lot of the art for the enemies, spent ages trying to make a decent run animation in 3×3 pixels (didn’t work – he looks like he’s moonwalking)
2200 Added sounds – thank you AS3FXR!
2230 Added a poster to the intro and main menu (bonus points if you recognise it)
2300 Home stretch! More levels
0100 So many ideas for levels but they take *ages* to tweak and get right! Oh well, 24 will do for now
0130 Compiled and submitted
0200 Final tweaks and fixes… Need to get up for work in 5.5 hours, better go to bed

Simplification Quest – Timelapse and Post Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @Adbook_)
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 7:26 am

It’s been two days since I posted the game, so I thought it might be time to write a post-mortem about it.

You can find the game here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=15476

And here is the timelapse:

 

This was my second Ludum Dare , and my first compo entry (I participated to the 24th, but posted for the Jam).

I was expecting this LD to be awesome, and I was not disappointed. Making a game in 48 hours is definitely awesome.

 

So, here’s What went right:

  • The graphics: I’m usually more of a programmer than an artist, but this time, it’s like the opposite happened: while I was having a lot of programming issues, I managed to finish all the sprites I was planning to do, animate the 3 versions of the player, even make a little introduction, and all of this in -relatively- no time (1 hour for the player, 2 hours for the whole tileset, 1 hour for the intro).
  • The level design: In my last LD, I ran out of time and could only make four levels for my game. This time I made 9, which was what was planned. I also wrote a pretty useful level management system which allowed me to directly import Tiled level files (.tmx format). This saved me a lot of time, because Tiled is very efficient and fast, comparated to manually entering CSV values in a file…
  • The early programming:  I am starting to get pretty familiar with the tools I used for the development (C++ with Allegro 5). Indeed,  I  wrote the level management system, the basic gameplay mechanics and the renderer by midday.

And here’s What went wrong:

  • The time management: I posted my game 5 minutes before the deadline (which was 4 a.m for me @_@). While things were right on the saturday, sunday was a totall mess.
  • The music: I’m terribly bad when it comes to music composing, and this time there was no exceptions: I did not even manage to create a correct music for the game (But I did not have a lot of time for this, also).
  • The late programming: My code on sunday was the most buggy and unstable thing I had ever made in my entire life. I wasted at least 2 hours trying to fix Segmentation Faults, Level loading problems, collisions problems, etc…
  • Dealing with the theme: Minimalism did not really inspire me as a theme. I was tempted to make a game with minimalist graphics, and minimalist sounds, and say “Hey, look ! This game is all about minimalism!”, but after a LOT of brainstorming, I finally came out with this Reducing player’s capabilities every 5 levels thing, and this background story.

 

Once again, I really enjoyed making this game, and I’m looking forward to participate to the next edition !

dotLife Postmortem

Posted by (twitter: @sinfritz)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 7:40 pm

shot_1

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=17724

 

I had a pretty relaxed time making this game for the most part!  This entry turned out alright and I feel happy about it.

Theme

Thanks to the theme I learned a lot about minimalism!  There really isn’t so much a category for minimalism in art, music, etc.  In art, it seems to take from other forms, mostly from abstraction. It really is just a lifestyle.  At least that’s the conclusion I made.  It seems similar to buddhism, but not exactly.

Development Summary

Post-screen FXs

I wanted to do something neat for the visuals to add that extra immersion in the game since I’m gunning for an adventure sort thing.  First I wanted to try to refrain from using what Unity 3D provides and roll out my own.  I’ve coded shaders before, but that was such a long time ago that I’ve nearly forgotten the bizarre conventions it has.  So I tried to convert my old bloom effect to cg and things blew up left and right.  Compile errors for shaders are never helpful.

What I got working though are two things: color quantization and de-resolutionizer.  The color quantization basically just lowers the resolution of each color channel with a given value.  For this game, I basically set it to 8 colors.  De-resolutionizer just gets the center pixel of each row and column based on a given x and y dimension.  This is an effect you see a lot back in the Super Nintendo days.

The rest of the effects are pulled from Unity: Bloom and noise effect.

Mixing both bloom and color quantization gave that nice effect.  I had fun just moving around the level seeing the colors mix in an interesting way.

Flocking/Boids

I’ve coded this a while ago and I decided I want to try it out and see if it turns into some sort of interesting game mechanic.  Turned out to be a big pain.  Flocking is actually not that bad to implement.  The difficulty is making it behave right and, like anything physics related, tweaking it.  Between post-screen effect and this was pretty much my entire Friday night and early Saturday.

The game took a different direction when I didn’t have time to further work on the flocking.  I actually wanted it so that you sort of herd triangles around and avoid other flocks, in this case, the squares.  I played around with it and never got anything solid.  The squares still use them though.

Level Creation

Levels are mostly comprised of: 2 types of square, a triangle, 3 spikey things, and a roundish-polygon.  It got a little tedious tweaking the levels since I manually placed those things and wasn’t really grouping and organizing them.  That’s my bad.  As a result, I manage to only make a hub level and 3 other ones.

The flower is made the same way.  I basically just drew different pieces and just placed them together.  I wanted to make each one unique, but I never got enough time, so it was mostly copy/pasted.

Music

My favorite composer, the cgMusic comes back for this one.  This time though, with the added bonus of: http://solmire.com/ Having the right sound-font to converting a midi makes a huge difference!

Everything Else

Some of the code I used in the game were pulled from my collection of Unity core scripts.  Some of those are such a time-saver.  Things like: dealing with input, changing scenes, saving game states.

Fun Facts

Compared to my old postmortem entry, only a few energy drinks were consumed for the entire time.  And I got to sleep!

 

Ludum Dare 48 #26: End of My First Ludum Dare

Posted by (twitter: @PhaZ90771)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 7:15 pm

Ludum Dare END

SUBMISSION: Cave Runner

Screenshot

And so ends my first Ludum Dare. It was a challenging experience, especially since I didn’t have as much time to work on it than I had originally hoped. My plans changed a lot throughout the competition. I’d like to highlight the biggest changes.

  1. My original plan was to submit my game into the 48 hour competition, but I ended up needing more time, so I submitted it to the 72 Jam instead. I hope to make an entry to the 48 hour competition next time.
  2. I did not add sound. This had to be cut in order to meet the 72 hour deadline.
  3. I code generated shapes rather then art. I made this decision after the theme was announced, since to me it showed minimalism.
  4. I chose to make an infinite runner game instead of a roguelike. I ended up making this change almost as soon as the theme was announced, since I felt I could achieve this, and my top objective was to get something I could submit.
  5. I ended up using OpenGL as well as SDL, since I knew it would fit well with my level generation. I did not know how to do this in SDL, and with a little research I realized it would require one of the extra SDL libraries. This could have been a bad decision, since I didn’t have any experience making a game with OpenGL, but I believe I learned a lot because of this decision.

This wraps up my thoughts so far. I might make another post after I get the results back. I’m hoping to get at least 2’s or 3’s, and maybe get some insight from comments.

Potato The Destroyer, Commentated Timelapse

Posted by (twitter: @CoryAlexMartin)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 6:49 pm

I just uploaded the commentated timelapse for my game, Potato The Destroyer! Featuring really cool music and co-commentary by my pals Dana Gallant (creator of Terrible Magical Artist) and Justin Espedal.

Watch the Timelapse on Youtube

MUSIC USED

Traffic Jam Release Candidate!

Monday, April 29th, 2013 4:24 pm
Traffic Jam Release Candidate!

Traffic Jam Release Candidate!

Final release is almost here ! Try it out for yourself! Let me know what you think!!!

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/35270092/Traffic%20Jam%20RC.zip

 

 

 

 

Timelapse of Buggers!

Posted by (twitter: @recursor)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 1:45 pm

Here is a behind the scenes video of the making of my LD26 game: Buggers!

You can play/rate the game HERE

Buggers!

Nothing Is Impossible – Afterthoughts

Posted by (twitter: @zekyonD)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 1:43 pm

ScreenShot2

Play Here

Well, we are going to start from the beginning. I had high hopes about the theme would be Parallel Worlds so I started to do an idea about a game with this theme in my head.

The day 26 came and the final theme was Minimalism. The first thing I did was curse to the people who had voted that theme. The second thing was start to think how can I innovate and at the same time create a minimalism game, but the ideas weren’t coming to my, and magically I remembered my first idea for the Parallel Worlds theme. This idea consisted in a split-screen with two characters who would interact between they. You would have to get the objects in the ground and go changing of screen for kill enemies who only could be killed by one of the character (ok, this sounded better in my head).

So I made this concept more minimalist. The game would have split-screen and two character running forward, each screen would represent the black or the white and this would create a contrast between the characters and the background.

Then, when I had this in my project of Unity, I added blocks who kill you when you touch him. Although this look like a simple thing but this was one of my hardest challenges in the develop of this game, all because Unity not detected any collider. After two hours and almost come to despair I decided restart my computer, and YEAH! THIS SOLVED THE PROBLEM, FUCK U UNITY!, were my words.

Well, the colliders works good, the characters run forward and when they touch a block they die. And has not spent even one day, this is amazing!.

Is time to level design!

The level design was very frustrating, to each block that I put I needed complete the level until that point, and this isn’t easy, seriously, I wanted to hit something!. It took me a lot of hours.

Ok, the day had not finished and I still had time to do the menus. I made it and finally came the time to sleep after 22 hours of work without rest.

The game was complete and I still had one day more to polish it.

The second day was a relaxing day. I did the music and fix a lot of bugs. I still had more of half day more so I started thinking in what could I add to make the game experience more satisfactory, the first thing I saw was that the graphics were very very simples, I knowed that the theme was minimalism but… I love the pixels and my game had to have pixels!, so I set to worked. I did a wall of bricks and some windows and the game now looked like an ancient castle. The problem of it was that the game was now more hard. But fuck, I really loved how the game looked!, so I add a “button” for choose if you want play with textures or without them.

Finally I publish the game when still missing about five hour to finish the compo.

And this is basically how I did feel while I was develop this game for my first ludum dare.

PD: Sorry for my bad english, I’m not a native

Lets play LD Games!

Posted by (twitter: @JellyCakesDev)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 11:06 am

So the 48-hour compo is over and I had a lot of fun making my game. So now I’m going to be playing a load of your games on Livestream.

Come and hop in if you want to watch, maybe suggest your game, whatever!

www.twitch.tv/jellycakes1

Timelapse for Linewalker

Posted by
Monday, April 29th, 2013 10:26 am

The timelapse for Linewalker has been uploaded. Enjoy.

Astral Offset – Mini Post Mortem

Posted by (twitter: @bytegrove)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 9:51 am

What the world looks like after too much Vectrex gaming.

Minimalism. Quite a tough theme in my opinion. I tried to come up with an idea that utilised it in gameplay as much as possible, instead of just applying a minimalistic graphical style.  After several scrapped ideas I decided to create a game in which two worlds are visualized at the same time,one being in 3d and one being simple and minimalistic 2d, and in which objects in both worlds could travel between these worlds. I thought about making some kind of puzzle game in which the player could “construct” the 3d world from the 2d representation. But as puzzles are not my strong suit, and feeling the amount of work grow too fast, I decided to condense it down to having an enemy which could travel between the worlds and which had to be destroyed using an object which could be “sent” to the 2d world.

The way I solved it was to have the world in which the player exists to behave a little like the later Animal Crossing games, ie. the world curves abruptly near the screen and in the horizon. While the 2d world(the astral plane) behaves a little like Tetris, and when a 2d representation hits the 3d world it materializes. The player can not move to the 2d world but instead has its position in it represented by a sun-like circle. The player can then use the circle as a marker to interact with the 2d world.

I’m still fond of these ideas and concepts, but I’m not sure how wise they were for me to try to realize in 48 hours. Lots of experimenting were done and a lot of stuff were scrapped, my priorities on what to spend more time on might have been a little skewed as well. And I feel that there are still a lot of stuff missing from the final product, especially in terms of tutorials and visual feedback from actions in order to ease the player into the gameplay. I do feel however that it’s a lot more interesting than my previous entries.

If the game and the concepts seems interesting, give the game a go and tell me what you think! :)

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=11939

(Timelapse and more ports coming soon)

Also, there are evil potatoes in the game.

Pete Hated Circles

Posted by (twitter: @_bgr_)
Monday, April 29th, 2013 4:59 am

Hey! This is my first LD entry: Pete Hated Circles

screenshot of Pete Hated Circles

As you can see, it was inspired by art of Piet Mondrian.
Made in 12 hours in ActionScript 3 (you’ll need Flash to play). Has some bugs, but hey..

And now a relevant picture for your pleasure:
mondriyum

MNMLSM Submitted!

Posted by
Monday, April 29th, 2013 4:03 am

Hi everyone!

Here’s my third LD  Jam submission, MNMLSM!

 

Screen1

 

 

Went solo this time, and I was actually able to finish it! I was even able to find the time to add a tutorial and lay down a quick guitar-track! Not the best, but its something!

— The game —

Your objective is simple – dump all the things into the water hole before the time runs out. I strongly recommend trying the tutorial first, just to get the basic technique.

The game is a little hard, but 100% beatable, and I hid a few secrets in there too!

Had a blast, and I’m pretty happy with the result. By some magical strike of fortune, I had the core mechanics more or less in place already the first night, so I got to do quite a bit of polishing. I have a few more levels lying around if anyone is able to beat the three that are included in the game.

Anyway, here it is!

— POTATO —

 

 

a.void

Posted by (twitter: @IMakeIndieGames)
Sunday, April 28th, 2013 10:19 pm

Introducing “a.void”, a Jam game created by five Microsoft software developers.

Title Image

 

It is a musical spatial memory game. Collect colored orbs to collect points while avoiding the obstacles that align with the music.

Title Image

 

Choose your movements carefully, as the obstacles appear at your previous positions.

Play it here (Unity Web Player)

Ludum Dare page

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