First, I’ve now posted OSX and linux/source code versions on my entry’s page. I noticed some serious slowdown when testing on my macmini – this is because it uses very large textures (1024 x 768), and there isn’t really anything I could have done (not within the 48hr time limit anyway, it would have been too fiddly and time-consuming). Fairly recent (/non bargain-basement) graphics cards shouldn’t have a problem, but I apologise if you find the game getting slower and slower the more moves you make.
Second, here’s my timelapses:
There’s two because I did the audio on a different computer, and I’m too lazy to edit them together properly. Read on for my post mortem.
This actually went surprisingly well, especially considering I spent the best part of 7 hours on Saturday afternoon at work. It was definitely the most enjoyable Ludum Dare I’ve done so far.
- Setting my alarm for 2:15 am to see what the theme was. It may have been a fluke, or it may have been that my head was in a different place having just woken up from deep sleep, but literally within 5 minutes of seeing the theme I knew what I was going to do, and within 5 minutes of that I had the entire game fleshed out in my head (I don’t think I changed anything between then and the finish – I’m pretty sure I even came up with ‘Maggott’s Restorative Ship’s Biscuits at this point). Another 5 minutes and I was back to sleep. The whole thing was pretty much perfect.
- The map and background paper. I did the map in black acrylic ink on cartridge paper, and I think it turned out really well. The compass is a bit wonky, and I maybe should have drawn those lines you see on old maps to go with it, but that’s just nitpicking. I was a bit worried about the background paper being too light and not stained enough, but a little fiddling with Paint Shop Pro fixed that. I’m really pleased with how the whole thing turned out, especially when the coloured segments get drawn on the map as the game progresses.
- Research. Getting to research old maps and food adverts on google was fun. I think I did a fairly good job of getting that old-fashioned (Victorian?) look for the game.
What didn’t work:
- The AI. The CPU players are useless and offer no challenge. I should really have spent more time on them to make their actions less random, and I should have used A* to get them to move towards unexplored spaces.
- That’s it, as far as I know. Maybe some comments will point other problems out, but I haven’t seen anything obvious yet.
What may or may not have worked:
- Not having the chance to play the game with other human beings yet, I’ve no idea whether it’s actually a good game. I think it has the potential to lead to arguments and people storming away in a huff (the mark of all good multiplayer games), but really I don’t know. The rule set is very simple, so maybe that’ll make it less fun to play, but until I can try it out properly I’ve no idea whether it works or not.
As a bonus for reading this far, here’s a picture of the stuff I scanned/wrote down during the competition: