Game’s up and playable here:
You play the incredible ever-shrinking slime-thing.
The idea for this was to have a protagonist that started out huge and replayed the same level over and over getting smaller each time, with more and more hazards appearing as it happened.
I also wanted to prove to myself that superior organization beat out superior elbow grease, so I spent several hours doing planning, UML layouts, and tasks for myself. Code-wise it worked great, I got all the engine coding beginning to finish done within about 8-10 hours. Unfortunately you can’t do a major amount of planning art and design-wise, and the final level design took the brunt of the lack of time. It was initially going to be 9 levels (ended up 5) with a much more gradual curve. The game is also quite difficult which I wound have evened out a bit more if there had been more time. And hey, brutal platformers are all the rage these days.
All in all though I’m happy with the results, the controls are nice and fluid, the engine does what it’s supposed to (although there are some bugs and jankiness) and I survived my first Ludum Dare.
My rough schedule went about as follows:
Friday @ 6p: Ludum starts, have zero ideas. Go to dinner and discuss possible game ideas with my wife. Ideas that don’t quite make the cut include a civ-style game where the population expands automatically and you have to build up the world and its resources to keep up with demand, and a dating-sim parody where you’re on vacation, doing various activities, when you suddenly run into someone from work vacationing in the same place. The goal of the game is to choose dialogue options to gracefully exit from the conversation without offending them and making things really awkward at work. The shrinking platformer was eventually chosen for its technical challenge, and because the dating-sim idea was too beautiful for Ludum Dare.
Friday @ 9p: The design document is written
Saturday @ 9a: Everything is planned out in excruciating detail. All the code is planned, assets, etc.
Saturday @ 1p: Coding begins!
Saturday @ 9p: Coding completes! Fastest engine ever.
For the rest of Saturday the levels are planned out, and some tweaks are made
Sunday @ 9a: Level design begins!
Sunday @ 1p: Burnout hits hard. I don’t want to do this anymore! However I struggle through it, getting art, sound, and various bugfixes complete right before the deadline.
Now I’m going to eat until I can’t eat anymore.