About jonbro (twitter: @jonbro)
Ludum Dare 26 Warmup
Ludum Dare 21
Ludum Dare 20
Ludum Dare 19
October Challenge 2010
Just posted a new version of the game on kongregate with a few fixes.
My desire to make a dotalike for this competition rose out of the fact that I really enjoy dota but am unable to get my coworkers to play it with me. I wanted to make something that is similar to dota that matches the sort of games that we play and enjoy at the office, in the hope that would get them interested in the real thing. I was also interested in exploring what makes dota fun for me, and if I can find that fun thing in a week.
I have written previously about what I liked about dota, and strangely enough, I don’t think I included much of those things in the game that I made this week. What I did manage to include was a somewhat grindy game that tips over into an endstate with a surprising speed, and has some of the micro work that goes into a dota match. There isn’t as much teamwork in this game, because it turns out that organizing alliances is something that doesn’t just happen in a quick match. I suspect that alliances are a thing that can happen when you actually have time to think out the whole issue.
This is also the second multiplayer game that I have made in a row, and I think I am starting to close in on what would make a successful one. The first game we just finished is local only, but only requires two players to play. I solved the local only with this one, but added a new wrinkle, which is that you need exactly 3 players. It is a bit frustrating that social pressures force you towards certain types of games, but I suppose I could work on making this something that would support 2-x number of players. Potentially by adding teams, or by having more players at once.
The other direction that I could build this game in is to add more abilities for each player. Making the dash a triggerable state with a cooldown made it feel a ton more like dota, and I think that adding a set of ultimates for each player would add a really nice last ditch phase to the game where everyone is triggering ultimates, or saving them to exactly the right time. I am not sure if adding the tech tree / store system to this game would be a good idea or not, but having different builds for the players is something that would be interesting. Basically adding complexity to create depth.
I hope you manage to find two other players and get a game of it in.
Going to write a longer thing later, but for now, I am going to call the jam version of this game complete… There are some issues with it (MAJORLY), but I think it is playable? I hope it is at least.
I have been working on my 7drts for the past 5 (+2) days, and I guess it is time to make a quick blog post about it, so that I have a recent record beyond the git logs.
My intent was to make a micro-dota or dota like type thing. I have also been recently applying a very strict visual limitation to my jam games, in an attempt to stretch a specific type of muscle, and to lower art costs. I spent the last weekend trying to get netplay up and running, and after two days, I packed it in. I have permission from the job to work on this during the day though, so I was able to switch gears on monday and hammer away on the core game. I had something playable by midday tuesday, and had tweaked a bunch of the parameters and behaivors for the rest of that day and wednesday.
You can see two versions of the project below:
One of the big issues was that I was intending to make a 3 player game, and the fact that I only had one other person in the office this week made it such that I couldn’t properly test it. So it was a choice at the end of wednesday of either adding netplay, or hanging up the whole project until I could get a third person around to test it. I decided (probably wisely), to re attempt to get netplay working. By thursday evening (late, late evening) I had it such that you could see the players moving around, and by mid day friday I had something that was playable. Unfortunately it was full of bugs, but I managed to clear all those by end of (work)day friday. After that I got some 3 player matches in, and got really valuable feedback on mechanic changes that could be made to make it more interesting and deep.
I think I will probably take tomorrow to polish the game, make netplay a more enjoyable experience (put in a chat room in front, make the game actually go back to the lobby chat at the end, have player names), add audio, and more pleasant graphics. There is some lore that I want to cram in somewhere, but I am not sure where it wil go. Possibly just on the pre and post game screens.
On sunday, if I am not totally burned out, I will give the mechanic changes a shot and see if anyone from twitter or where ever will be able to test them with me.
unity webplayer… you will need two friends, it doesn’t work with less players anymore. Find friends to play with on irc or im I guess.
controls are arrows to move and z, which brings up a selection menu that you can choose the state your hero is in.
Well, I got something ok out of this one, and it is a good idea, but I don’t really want to push myself to hard, I have enough videogames to make next week. Until next time.
Doing my favorite style of LD, in which I don’t work the whole time, and don’t get something super polished, but it still fulfills my original plan, and is somewhat good to play. I managed to get all of the interesting bits in on the first day, even though I don’t have a full game loop done. Normally I have the game loop in by this point, but none of the interesting bits. Think I am going the right way today. Also I have the audio in, so that is nice. Today am going to get all of the spawning and wave stuff working, then maybe stick the game frame in real quick. Should go alright I think
What you aren’t hearing here is that all the bullet shooting from the boss is audio sync’d and creating the soundtrack.
Found an empty booklet, so I have something to use for notes. HUZZAH! Came up with a few good ideas, and I think that the first one is actually quite solid, so I might just go with that one. That was easy :d.
Thinking about doing an audio sync’d version of warning forever, with the intent that the enemies that you face will sound somewhat like minimal techno. Going to try to focus the sound set on that group of sounds. The potentially unfortunate bit is that I am going to need to write a collision detection routine, and potentially some 2d physics junk, because the unity stuff isn’t really meant for what I want to do. Maybe unity isn’t really the right language for this anyways, and I should just do it in something else.
Probably just going to bang out the basic stuff real quick now, and try to get it as playable as possible as quickly as possible, then fall down the depression hole of proper physics later. HERE WE GO!
I left my notebook at the office, so I am just going to dump my ideas for this jam here. I think I have been failing at jams recently because I haven’t worked out a good idea before kicking the jam off, and instead just going with the first thing that pops into my head. Apparently this doesn’t work very well.
1. A game based on minimal nation by robert hood. Was thinking that this could take the form of a shmup, but I am not sure how I would work the sound into it more specifically. It would be nice to make just black and white shmup that had a strong audio sync. Maybe each level has enemies inspired by a different song. Or perhaps the whole game is based around the track “one touch” where you can only have one simple input. Would need to write covers of the tracks or something though.
2. Work on a game that I need to work on anyways, based around a different classic piece of minimal aleatoric music. Don’t really want to talk about this, and couldn’t release it on the website. Also it is 3 player. So wouldn’t really be working on LD at all.
3. A rogue like that only uses a single mechanic from the list of rogue mechanics. I have a design that I started working on that was just focused around throwing and area effect spells, perhaps I could do a rogue that only does one of those things. Maybe throwing only, you can pick up darts and they only destroy at a certain distance, and below that they just do a bounce back.
4. A platformer where you can’t move backwards, only forwards. and jump. I am thinking this could be a bit like aaron steed’s bump, except realtime. Don’t know if it is possible, or worth it. Maybe. I suspect he has already attempted this, and it didn’t work for some reason.
Arrgh, writing game ideas like this feels so pointless, really need a proper notebook to record all of them. I think the issue is that text doesn’t really allow me to visualize the ideas as well, I can only write them, and I struggle with creating images this way.
Maybe I will just switch over to physical prototyping and try to come up with a game that way. Or just skip it.
Added the full game loop + highscores + some sound. Hopefully enjoy?
Added the gameplay on train in to work this morning. Going to make it so the gameplay actually loops, try to take out some of the cheap bombings (the bombs can spawn on top of you), and add just a high score list. Seems like a worthwhile thing to spend an hour of work time on.
Really really wishing I had flixels collisions in unity though, I am having a bunch of tunneling problems with the way I am doing collision detection now.
Kinda want to do a quick warmup today, and have an idea for the flammable one. Don’t know if I am going to do the full thing or not.
One of the things that I have struggled with in the past with unity is getting 2d physics and collision to work. Going to give it another quick try today, making this arena box pushing defense game. In 3 hours. Wish me luck. Here is where I am now, spend the first 30 minutes doing concepts, the next 45 doing all the alt, and now have a bit of time left to do the code. Maybe I will make it!
Oh, I am using unity with 2d toolkit (is 2d toolkit allowed? It isn’t open source), and sprite something for art. Maybe I will figure out how to make some sounds as well, using figure or something like that.
Added some flammable crates:
Ah well, a bit of a failure
so it goes.
The failure was for the usual reason, I didn’t get to the fun bit quick enough, instead I spent my time messing around with map generation and 3d modeling and that kind of thing. I still have yet to put the core game loop in, and the deadline is bearing down on me too quick This isn’t really that different than the normal LD, but I kinda want to get a full night of sleep tonight, rather than burning myself out.
I did learn a bunch on this one though:
- how to do custom editors in unity, with realtime feedback.
- how to do animation on prefabs.
- relearned how to rig characters in blender
I might keep jamming for a second, and see if I can get anything else in or not…
I still don’t have the core loop in, but I added a little ball that follows you around. Hopefully this will become the enemy tomorrow.
I gotta go do other things. Good luck to everyone!
More inside. (more…)
Well that is progress.
Step 1: Put in a goat.
Alright, I think I got something: You play a goat that needs to eat some bushes without being discovered. Basically a top down stealth game where the environment can be consumed. I guess I just want to make a cover of this game, but retheme it in a garden and you are a goat. So yeah, a cover game. I suspect something will go horribly awry, and I will need to change everything. But that is the fun of it, making things up as you go along.
Oh also, I don’t really have 48 hours, because I have some other plans. SPECTACULAR FAILURE HERE I COME!
(Also, how sweet does that game look?!? Holy crap!)
Oh also, since I didn’t do the “I’m in” post:
- every asset and script I can grab from the asset store and tutorials
- probably maschine for some tunes
Way back when before LD#19 I decided to build a game engine for doing LDs quicker and better. I had not actually done an LD to that point, but I knew that my speed in C++ coding wasn’t going to get me working quick enough. I started building an engine in Lua so that I could code super quick. The reason that I didn’t just use Love2d is because I wanted to be able to easily port my games to iOS, and at that point love2d didn’t support iOS. I called it blud as a tribute to love. Seemed opposite and the same in some ways.
So the first game was soundman stepper, and it was super fun to build! Lua is awesome to work in, super fast, the entire reference for it fits on three pages.
After that compo, I realized that you really need to enter flash games to have a small chance of your games being played, so I switched over to AS3, and learned enough of flixel to get by. In the meantime I kept developing blud, and started borrowing more and more features from flixel into the framework. For mini28 I did a game for iphone called pyoing, and released it on the app store the next day.
I kept developing blud, and for LD21 I did a game called martin vs monty. That one is yet to be released on the app store, but hopefully I will get back to it and polish it up and such.
In between these things, I actually started getting paid for being a game developer. The first fruit of these labors has finally popped out. I am still using the code that I developed during and for LD to some extent, and the lessons that I learned during LD to a large extent.
Pugs luv beats is a music composition game, and it is available for the iphone and the ipad. If you want to read some superlatives, you are going to have to go elsewhere, because I am not too good at writing them myself. Luckily create digital music did a nice writeup of the audio side of things.
Not much update graphic wise, so no new stuff there. Audio wise, I got the steps / phrases / and chains clicking forward, so you can kinda sequence. There is only one instrument currently, and you have to load the sample from the debug console, but here is a quick demo of what you can make so far.
Sorry gents, I got this other project that is calling my name. I think I am going to be posting updates on ludum dare anyways, and try to get something nice together for sunday night.
I am doing a kinda sorta clone of LSDJ / LGPT for iOS. Due to the limitations of multitouch, I am going to have to make some changes. Like chording isn’t possible in the same way, and things need to have more on screen stuff. I have a few ideas of how to deal with that though.
I currently have a synth that can trigger samples at different pitches, and the phrase / chain / song structure together. I need to get the looping working, but the structure is there. By the end of the weekend, I would like to have the PTCH, VOL, and FILT commands in. I suspect that I will be hard coding the samples in for the time being, just because I don’t think I can implement physicsFS this weekend. I might give it a try though.
Here is where the graphics are currently:
Look forward to demo audio links.