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I kept working on it and turned it into a full game, and just launched it on Steam! Figured it could be good inspiration for people participating in LDJAMs to keep working on their entry if they come up with a cool mechanic/idea…who knows, you might be able to to turn it into a full game!
Hope this inspires some people to take their games beyond their Game Jam entries if they think they’ve stumbled across something fun! With a few more months of work you might be able to turn it into an awesome game you might be able to pay your rent with! 😉
Follow me on Twitter at @BPOutlaws, I use it as a devBlog lol
Hello LD! It’s been quite a while since I’ve posted here, and sorry to barge in on the Mini LD 😛 You might remember me from 2013. And from previous entries!
The past few years I’ve been working on huge games and then scrapping them due to immense scale/poor time budgeting. I think that’s something many of you can relate to. It seemed like every project I started, I reduced the scale by half and it was still out of my scope But I finally sat down and really thought about the whole process. After a bunch of failures and coding practice, I came up with a solution.
Making games is an iterative process. Instead of holding on to everything until release, I’ve decided to show more of my works in progress. And instead of fine tuning the gameplay for ages, I’ve decided to just literally make the game–no matter how bad it turns out. Iterative means once I have the whole thing done, I make improvements to everything until I’m satisfied. It took me way too long to figure that out, and it’s an ideology that really helped me in my projects.
Without further ado, here’s a work in progress showcase of a game I’m working on called Skyway!
I do have tons of other half-finished projects that I plan on showing, but for now I’m totally focused on this title. And, of course, I’ll share more about Skyway in the upcoming weeks
Be sure to follow me on Twitter for bi-weekly updates on my games!
Also please leave a comment if you have some suggestion because I plan to finish this game and release it for iPads because recently i found out that love2d already supports iOS development.
I think everything worked as I expected. I had this game idea for a week or so before the competition already in mind. I wanted to implement controlling player by modifying the enviroment instead of using the direct controls.
First idea was to move a ball from left to right side of the screen by creating hills and valleys using physics. I didn’t manage to draw the controls for this game on the paper so I went for a simpler solution using the grid. Somewhere in this point a simpler idea of using gravity and collecting something instead of moving from left to right emerged. This led to the robot collecting batteries with a puzzle-like levels using gravity controls and walls to navigate robot through the level. Only problem with puzzle-like game is that creating puzzles takes much time. I wasn’t sure if I would be able to prepare good set of levels but I wanted to try the idea.
Because i was not able to do actual programming until the second half of the second day of the jam due to logistics, I had a plenty of time to come up with a concrete idea and solve almost all the problems. So when I started to program I had a pretty good idea of the game mechanic and what I had to do.
Programming phase was pretty straightforward. I wanted to use Love2D because it is supereasy for prototyping even if I hadn’t much experience with it. I had some experience with lua programming from Codea app from iPad and my previous ludum dare entry. I also did a simple pong game one week before ludum dare as a training
After half day of programming I had the game ready and basic graphics in place. After few hours of sleep I had to go to work on monday and I could show my game to my coleagues(sorry boss :-)). They liked the idea but didn’t like the graphic and there were no levels. Actual player didn’t even look like a robot but more like a ghost back then
After work I rushed home to finish some graphics – draw the robot and create tutorial levels. Luckily I remembered the wonderful Tiled map editor which helped a lot with level creation and it exports directly to a Lua so I saved some time by not implementing any tools.
Anyway I knew I couldn’t make good enough levels because I was still exploring what robot can do. I spent a lot of time putting obstacles in front of the robot and watching its behavior because sometimes I was suprised what can be done using such simple game mechanic (it still surprises me because today i found a simpler solution to one of new levels presented in the gameplay video).
When the time was dangerously passing by, I finished fooling around with the robot and went back to doing actual work. I polished graphic – as I am not any sort of good painter I did my best using piskel app as pixel graphic editor for robot and tiles. Also at this point I found out that I can do a tutorial by drawing directly in the level and showing the gameplay features one by one. I don’t know if this is good or understandable, please let me know in the comments if you find tutorial good!
I showed the game to my brother and he created three of the campaign levels. I had to polish them a little bit afterwards because one of the was not passable and other were easy to get stuck. I wanted that robot won’t get stuck without the possibility to unstuck (Robot cannot react to the modifications to the field has is alread standing at – for example if in the hole where he cannot go left nor right he won’t shapeshift to go up if shapeshift controller placed over the robot).
I though that player should not die/stuck during the game to not feel bad about his skill and won’t get frustrated from starting over so every situation must be resolvable.
Afterwards the time was almost up so I packaged the game and submitted.
Next day I fixed some bug that prevent last level from being finished – spawn point. This was clearly caused because I haven’t had enough time to replay every level after every change.
For the future I plan to create a proper set of levels to illustrate all things that can be done programming the robot using just gravity and walls. All levels I am creating now are resolvable by putting the controls in place before the level starts so instead of rushing during level player can solve the puzzle by thinking before the level starts and preparing the setup for the robot beforehand.
This ludum was enjoyable as always but after this one I feel a little bit special because I really like the resulting game (even bad graphics and no sound and almost no levels 😀 ) mainly because of possibilities it presents.
Regards everybody and see you in the next ludum dare,
Hello! This time I was a bit late for judging, as right after the Ludum Dare 35 had been completed I was the organizer of NASA Space Apps Challenge hackathon. Besides, I released my Global Game Jam entry, Cloudy Shaman mobile game.
But now I’m in and here’s my first review video (6 games):
This time, like in LD33, I’m going to review 50 games or so, will start from those’s who’ll leave a review to my “Flexible Story Teller” game
Hey fellow developers and players,
I just uploaded a time lapse from my game making process of my card game “Bloodshifter“. I built the whole game from scratch in Java, so if you are interested in seeing that then here it is:
You can try out the game for yourself here. Thanks a lot.
Enjoy! Will do a post-mortem down the road when I’ve caught up on sleep lol I’ll be turning this one into a full game when I finish my current project, follow me on Twitter at @BPOutlaws for updates! -Jeff
Mech mode = shoot faster, ship mode = cover distance faster…gotta pass distance goals to extend the time, but need to use Mech mode to clear a path, lots of juggling of the modes for the hardcore shmup fans to gain seconds normal players probably won’t get!
zzzzzzzmust…stay…awake! Gamepad controls are up next
I’m going to tell you how to get Let’s Players interested in your game. This is my personal experience as a Youtuber, therefore you can’t rely on just me, so check the comments section for input from other people. I will keep updating this post as I think of more things that could appeal to the general Youtube gamer community.
First off, you have a game. A great game, the greatest game. You made it yourself or with a team. It is important that this game either has SEVERE replayabilityor has at least 10 minutes worth of gameplay, this is usually the bare minimum. Many Youtubers create videos that are 10 to 20 minutes long, sometimes even more than that. If you make a game shorter than that you have a chance it’ll get stuffed in a compilation video with other small games, which is..not phenomenal.
Make it unique. You have the power to change the gaming industry with just one simple idea. Of course this means you have to get this idea and be lucky enough to get noticed. So don’t sweat it too much.
Be self-centered. No, really. Make a game about something you’re an expert at or have experienced first-hand. Be informative, or convey your feelings like a pro, this is art — the power to make a personal thing into something that everyone can relate to.
Make it have an easily searchable name. No one can find a game called ‘Cat’ on Youtube when there’s ‘Cat Videos’, ‘Cat Games’, ‘Cat Pictures’ and so on that people are looking for every day. SEO is important for Youtubers. The best thing to do is to make a word that doesn’t exist yet and something that Google doesn’t think is a typo of another word.
Include humor. This is not always a good selling point so learn from the pros and don’t just resort to toilet humor. Good examples of this are “There’s Poop In My Soup” or “Where’s My Mommy?”, some Youtubers avoid these games like the plague, others welcome them with open arms. Something something target audience. (.. On another note, sassy achievements and pop culture references are always nice if done well.)
Be controversial. Get into the topics that ruin friendships. Or don’t. Not recommended, but it’ll definitely have a chance of going viral. So be sure you’re anonymous if you’re gonna try this because you might ruin your life. Wait, DON’T DO THIS ONE. NO. BAD.
As a dev, be helpful and approachable. Great devs have great connections, make friends and build up a community, don’t shy away from your ‘competitors’.
BE THANKFUL. Even a little of this goes a long way, especially for the smaller Youtubers; you could mention their name somewhere or retweet & like their stuff on Twitter, or list them in your credits forever (Yes. Please.) Some Youtubers spend a lot of time with the devs to help them out, give suggestions and even provide free advertizing. They will remember your kindness. So get on their good side, they might make it to 10 million subscribers.
Give EXCLUSIVE keys or access. This might not be possible for a LD game jam, it’s attractive though.
Your graphics, story and or gameplay are MAGNIFICENT. Aw yiss graphics.
Add kittens. I mean, appeal to a niche. This might be RPG, visual novels, spin-offs, dank memes, sandbox games in space, anything you can think of, there’s a Youtube channel for it. Hopefully they will find you and play your game, or find them and invite them. Their viewers are your audience too.
Some technical stuff: (POLISH IT, haha)
Make sure your game has no bugs and doesn’t randomly close or freeze at any point.
USE EVERY OUTLET EVER ON THE INTERNET FOR GAMES EVER. A lot of people like web-based apps, others like to download files. There’s your game’s Ludum Dare page, there’s Gamejolt, there’s Itch.io, and Miotigames is an upcoming similar website. There’s a bunch. Also, remember to make a nice set of accurate & captivating in-game previews.
If you made a heavy game, make it known. Some computers can’t handle it without freezing up.
MAKE AN ATTRACTIVE THUMBNAIL. The name and the image is the first thing people see. Make it appealing.
Make sure there’s checkpoints and that they’re in a good place (if any). Unless you intend on making a rage game. Grr.
If you have any experience with recording a game, it’ll be easier for you to put yourself in a Youtuber’s shoes. People with a dual monitor setup love it when they can play on one screen, record on the other. It might be difficult to achieve this, but make it possible if you know how to, or else don’t worry about it. If you have a single monitor, sometimes if you try to exit the game, it crashes and that’s really not cool. Prevent this if you can.
Approach big indie media influences (Kotaku, IndieGameReviewer, etc) while you’re working on it and when you’re done. They might be interested, write an article and boom. Success.
Be a good person. Spread motivation and positivity. Good energy is contagious.
I hope this helps someone stand out from the crowd and encourage you to come look up some smaller Youtubers to have play your amazing game.
SO, first day is over and we’re kinda satisfied,
We’re making a game where you build and shapeshift your raft to pass obstacles.
Here’s what we have so far:
Map Creation System – Rom:
Made from scratch, using GM physics, surfaces, and shaders *gif is a lil broken*
was really fun, still not perfect but gotta do other stuffs too.
We might let the player blow this sand up
Raft Building and shapeshifting system – Tom
the player will be able to shapeshift his raft through the level with items he collects.
We’ll be posting an article shortly on how you can get Youtubers to play your game. This is very important to get the word out, to stand out from the dozens of other submissions and to get a head-start in winning the 35th Ludum Dare.