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    Lessons learned

    Posted by (twitter: @fenmarDE)
    April 23rd, 2012 11:24 am

    So this was LD 23. You can play my entry here: The Island of Dare

    It’s the fourth time I participated so I can compare my performance to my previous ones. Overall I’m happy with my progress. Here are my experiences:

    What went well:

    • motivation: I really wanted to get something done this weekend to push my motivation for other projects. So I was really excited when the competition started.
    • technology check: My game has only characters on colored background for visuals. At first I wanted to do this via DOM (so every character is one DOM node), but I did a performance check on this appoach and got only 3 FPS. So I decided to do it with canvas instead.
    • time for bug fixing: Like last time, I sat down and took time to play my game over and over again. So I could find most of the bugs and fix them.
    • story: I wrote a story this time :D It’s not overly complex or innovative but hey – STORY!
    • sound: It’s my first game which has some kind of a soundtrack.
    • learning new things: I never did procedural content generation before so it was a completly new field for me. I was a bit scared and my motivation dropped when I didn’t understand everything completely, but it was worth going through. PCG is awesome!
    • timelapse: After two failed tries to produce a timelapse, it worked. It feels so productive when you see the work of 48 hours in four minutes. Find my timelapse here: Timelapse
    • version control: 93 commits in my GIT repository. It’s good to know you can always go back when trying wierd things (like SVG rendering).
    • follow the flow: Playing the game is the key. If I missed something, I added it. Planning everything is not a good idea to my mind.
    • twitter: I always want to tweet more, but this time I really did it. Yay :D

    What I should do better:

    • user testing: I did a user testing, but it was like four hours before the deadline. I felt tired and decided not to do add features which were clearly missing. I should do usertesting earlier.
    • theme: I still have a hard time coming up with a good idea for a given theme. I don’t know why…
    • underestimation: I think I could have managed a more complex game… But well, I guess I was too cowardly.



    So – and now I’m going to play your games.

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