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    About BlackBulletIV (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)

    Australian web developer/designer, programmer, and game developer.

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    Triad Timelapse

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Thursday, August 29th, 2013 12:22 am

    A little late to post it, but here’s the timelapse for Triad. 35 hours of work compressed into 3.5 minutes.

    Triad: My Compo Entry

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Monday, August 26th, 2013 12:16 am

    Triad

    Wow, what a Ludum Dare. I ended up working 36 hours on my entry, entitled Triad. It’s a blend of top-down shooting, puzzle, and strategy. I’ll the game’s page say more.

    Nearly the end of day 2

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Sunday, August 25th, 2013 9:08 am

    Wow, what a long, productive, day. The game is nearing completion. I wish I had to make it look better, but the gameplay is feeling pretty damn good.

    Explosions and stuff

    Explosions and stuff

    Should be starting level design soon

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Sunday, August 25th, 2013 1:29 am

    I’ve spent a long time on the gameplay, so it’s apparent this game isn’t going to be all that gorgeous. Whatever, the game feels pretty fun at least.

    A replay with smoke, shields, and explosions.

    A replay with smoke, shields, and explosions.

    Progress thus far

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Saturday, August 24th, 2013 4:07 pm

    Well, I think I’m being too ambitious with this concept, yet again. Nevertheless, it’s probably one that a number of people have thought of: use multiple instances of yourself to defeat the enemy. In this case I have three different instances, each being a different class with unique abilities and weaponry. I’ve spent a lot of time on the code and there’s still more to do, so I hope I have time to make the game a bit prettier.

    Anyway, here’s a screenshot:

    A replay with all three classes.

    A replay with all three classes.

    Let’s do this

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Tuesday, August 20th, 2013 1:36 am

    Unless something drastic happens at the last minute I should be participating. If I remember correctly, it’ll be my seventh time starting a Ludum Dare; hopefully I’ll finish.

    I’ll be using either FlashPunk or LÖVE in conjunction with my Ammo framework, depending on what kind of game I want to make.

    Have fun, and good luck!

    Amongst Shadows Post-Mortem

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Tuesday, December 18th, 2012 7:23 pm

    Well, here’s my post-mortem for Amongst Shadows. This is copied from the original post on my website.


    Theme

    The theme was “You are the Villain”; I had hoped it would be “End of the World”, given the date and that I had a good idea for it, but that was not to be. Now this was a somewhat difficult theme for me, because I hate playing characters of the evil archetype; I wasn’t going to create some mindless mass-murder simulator. I decided to make the morality of your actions somewhat ambiguous. You’re on an infiltration job for some mysterious organisation, you’re probably a mercenary, making you morally grey. Furthermore, it isn’t clear whether this organisation is good or bad, though it’s hinted that they’re bad.

    This brings me to a more philosophical question, who is the villain? To the guards, you’re clearly the villain. To the organisation, you’re a good guy. The villain is a matter of perspective, and who you asked.

    What Went Right

    The AI I created for the guards is probably the highlight of the whole thing for me. I’ve never really delved into AI before, so it was a new experience for me. Considering that, I’m quite happy with what I came up with. The guards have a field of view, and they can’t see past solid objects, nor can they see you when you’re hiding in the shadows. The have a level of awareness, they fire at you, and search around your last known position when they’ve lost sight of you. Ludum Dare certainly fosters rapid innovation.

    In terms of visuals, I was quite pleased with the animation work I was able to do, especially the guard’s death animation. The lighting worked quite well, although the light shapes were a bit rough.

    Other than that, I was able to work around 27 hours in total, a new record for me.

    What Went Wrong

    I was planning on using LÖVE this time, but I hadn’t thought about level loading and editing, and tiled collision (things that FlashPunk makes easy). Ogmo Editor has worked quite well for me in the past, but it exports to XML. I tried various Lua XML solutions, but none seemed to work properly. Besides that, I’d tried tiled collision in LÖVE, but I just couldn’t get it working properly in time for the competition. It’s a real shame, because LÖVE has so much more capability than Flash/FlashPunk, especially in graphics and physics.

    One major post-release problem seems to be input lag. I don’t know why, but as soon as you run the game in the browser, there’s some minor input lag that makes it difficult to backstab guards, and makes it slightly harder to move. Another reason why I wish I could’ve used LÖVE.

    The game was shorter that I’d have liked, but I just didn’t have the patience, nor time, to create many more levels.

    Besides all that, there were points where I was very worn out, and starting to get emotionally down. The work catches up to you, and anxiety creeps in; it goes away after time, but it’s not pleasant to go through.

    Conclusion

    While I had fun here and there, and ended up with some great innovation in AI, I don’t think I’ll participate in the main competition for some time. There are good periods, but even more “I want to end it” periods. Perhaps I’ll participate in the jam next time if there’s others to work with; that might be a more laid back experience.

    Anyway, thanks for reading.

    Amongst Shadows: Timelapse

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Monday, December 17th, 2012 5:19 pm

    Here’s my timelapse for Amongst Shadows: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNZa1fHItpA.

    Enjoy!

    Amongst Shadows

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Sunday, December 16th, 2012 6:45 pm

    Around 40 minutes ago I uploaded my completed stealth game, entitled Amongst Shadows. It’s Ludum Dare page is here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-25/?action=preview&uid=3915.

    I’ll get onto writing a post-mortem and making a timelapse sometime today or tomorrow. Also, here’s a screenshot:

    Main Screenshot

    Main Screenshot

    Start of Day 3

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Sunday, December 16th, 2012 2:03 pm
    Level 3

    Level 3

    There’s a screenshot of level three. You can’t really see the player, since he’s hiding in the shadows.

    As far as progress goes, I’m nearly done. I need to create a few more levels at least, and then apply a bit more polish to the game.

    Three Levels and Sound

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Sunday, December 16th, 2012 5:27 am
    Level one

    Level one

    I’ve made some good progress. I’ve added some background ambience, and bunch of sound effects, which made a big difference. I’ve made three levels so far, which is a start. I plan to make as many levels as possible; hopefully time will permit me to make the game of a semi-decent length. For the plot, I think I’ll go with some simple espionage.

    Another Screenshot

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Saturday, December 15th, 2012 9:12 pm

    Not all that much has changed visually since the last screenshot, but this does showcase the new tiles and me playing around with the lighting a bit.

    Screenshot 2

    Progress in Day 2

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Saturday, December 15th, 2012 5:36 pm

    I’ve made some good progress so far today. Nothing’s changed that I can really show in a screenshot, so I’ll just describe a few things. I’ve improved the guard’s AI somewhat, and they can now shoot at you. I’ve added the ability to backstab guards when you’re behind them. I’ve added animations to both the guards and the player. That’s about all I can remember.

    There’s still quite a bit to do; I’ve barely started in the art, plot, or sound departments. One of the next tasks will be to add some searching AI to guards.

    Day 1 Report

    Posted by (twitter: @BlackBulletIV)
    Saturday, December 15th, 2012 7:40 am

    After some thought, I decided to create a stealth game. The theme of it is unclear at present, but I’m thinking somewhere along the lines of espionage, a heist, or maybe military base infiltration for the purpose of launching warheads… something like that.

    Anyway, I’ve spent of most today creating a number of various system, such as the tilemap loading, multiplicative lighting, and especially the guard AI. One thing I’m quite happy with is that light is taken into consideration when determining whether a guard can see you. So, for example, they can’t see you in *very* dark, or pitch black areas.

    Here’s a screenshot of what I’ve got so far:

    Lighting plus a single guard

    Lighting plus a single guard

    I’m hoping I have enough time left for all the art, levels, sound, story, and all that stuff. It’ll be a tight squeeze.


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