Ludum Dare 30
Ludum Dare 29
Ludum Dare 28
Ludum Dare 27
Ludum Dare 26
Ludum Dare 25
Ludum Dare 25 Warmup
Ludum Dare 23
Ludum Dare 23 Warmup
Ludum Dare 22
This was my 8th time participating in the Ludum Dare and I have to admit I love doing it! I really liked the theme this time around and locked in on an idea pretty quick. I had never made an rpg style game before but felt it was the best way for me to get my theme across. RPG’s and Strategy are my staple games I love to play so I tried to imitate the turn based battle style of the earlier final fantasy games. I got it done, for the most part but I digress, on with the Post-Mortem.
What Went Right:
1. Theme and Idea Connection. Like I said I loved the theme and had an awesome idea for it. The really cool thing about the theme was how open ended it was. There were so many ways to interpret it, which will make for some really interesting games. I went with a straight forward literal interpretation. Worlds which are connected by warp gates.
2. Pixel Art. I have to say, this is my best pixel art out of all the LD’s I’d done. I’m really astounded by how great I made everything. Now I might sound like I’m boasting but honestly I’m not, well maybe just a little ;). I’m no artist as is evident by my other games I’m just really proud of the job I did.
3. Sounds. Normally I spend a little over an hour getting just the right sounds for my game. This time though getting my sounds was quick and easy.
4. Battle Feedback HUD. Originally my battle HUD was either black or white, depending on which world you were in. I had jotted down that I wanted to put in some way for the player to know when they could attack and when they couldn’t. An hour before the deadline I decided to put in the battle feedback HUD. So now when you get into battle the players weapons with be green if you can attack and red if you cannot attack.
5. Knowing My Tools. Every LD game I’ve made has been made with Flash using the Flixel Framework. I had learned to use it back in 2011 and felt proficient enough with it by LD 22, or so I thought. But that was 3 years and 7 LD’s ago, a lot has changed as has my ability with Flixel. Earlier this year I started to learn Unity but do not feel I am ready to start creating games with it just yet. So I will stick with Flixel at least for one more LD but we will see. My art is made in Photoshop and I’ve been using it for several years now. If memory serves me correctly I started using version 5 back in the early 2000′s. I’ve used other programs but I always come back to Photoshop. I want to learn how to use Blender as it seem like a really cool program. Perhaps I will as I learn more and more about Unity.
What Went Wrong:
1. Pixel Art: Yes I know I put it down above, but let me explain why. While it was some of the best art I’ve made to date it took me entirely too long to make. Normally I spend Friday making all the art for my game. This time around not only did I spend all of Friday but most of Saturday morning too. To make matters worse, some of the art I made had to be remade on Sunday. All of this probably happened because of the…
2. Scope Of The Project. While I love the idea I came up with I do feel it was a little too big for an LD game. Days before the event I kept telling myself “the game needs to be small” and “I need to finish all the programming on Saturday”. Because of the scope of the game certain elements weren’t up to par. Which leads me to…
3. The Battle System. Oh what a clunky mess this was I really tried to mimic the Final Fantasy turn based combat. Its kinda there, which the exception that the boss attacks as your moving back. In my defense, it was the first time I tried implementing this type of system in a game. It looks so easy when I was playing Final Fantasy Now let’s talk about…
4. A Weak Story. It was really cliche and kinda hacked together. Besides not being an artist, I’m also not a story teller So it is what it is. HAHA! This would be the number one reason people lose interest in the game. Now what do all of these issues have in common, well I’ll tell you. Its me getting…
5. Flustered Before The LD Starts. It never failed. I vote for the themes I want, when the final round starts I jot down all the themes and try to come up with at least 3 different ideas for each theme, sometimes I can and sometimes I only get one or two idea. More often than not I can’t think of anything or the one idea I do get it really weak and I have a hard time understanding how I’m going to make it. To make matters worse, when the theme is announced I freeze up and my mind goes blank. I look over the ideas I came up with, if there are any and instantly hate them all I believe my problem stems from my lack of creativity and under used imagination. Another one of my problems is once I come up with an idea I get overwhelmed by the grand scope of what I need to do to complete the project, rather than taking it in small manageable chunks. I’m not much of a planner, but I’m really trying to learn to be one. as I feel it would greatly help me with my game development.
A little about the game:
I wanted to take some time here to kind of explain why I created the game in the style I did. I’m an old school gamer and I have a fondness for retro style games. My game Arcaena reflects some of the old school styles used in other games. The battle system, as I’ve said before, tries to imitate the turned based battle system of Final Fantasy. The movement on the maps is in the style of the original Wasteland game from 1988. Having read some of the comments I’ve gotten for this game and some of my previous entries I’m beginning to believe a lot of these concepts have no place in games today. Perhaps I need to rethink my approach to game development. Seems I have some thinking to do before the next LD.
Every morning when I get to work I check my email on my phone while I walk to get ice. Every morning there is an email from Thoughtful Mind with an inspiring quote, today’s quote really connected with me as the Ludum Dare is tonight! I’d like to share the quote with you all here.
It is about Confidence and its from Joe Namath (for those who do not know he was a great quarterback in the hey-day of American Football)
“When you have confidence, you can have a lot of fun. And when you have fun, you can do amazing things.”
- Joe Namath
So to everybody participating in the Dare tonight, have confidence in what your about to do and let’s all see those amazing things your about to make!
I’m in…and not in! HA!
Either way I’m using Flash w/ Flixel Framework, Photoshop, Bfxr and random generated music.
Another Ludum Dare in the bag! My entry – The Moon Has Monsters! has been submitted.
I’m in, using Flixel, Photoshop, Bfxr and random generated music.
I present to you my Ludum Dare #28 Submission…
You can play it here
I wasn’t able to get any animated .gifs though…
We that’s all for now. I hope you enjoy the game, I really had fun making it!
I am now 80% done. All major coding is complete, just need to add sound, some music, and polish but I will save this for the morning. I have some real nice reflections to share when I do my post mordem. All in all coding has been going smoothly. So I guess I’ll keep this short and sweet. No pic again this time but I promise to post many pics once I’ve finished the game. I may even post a gif of some action :). Now its bed time.
I’m about 60% of the way done. I have the main mechanics coded, as well as the intro and several cutscenes. I will finish the remaining cutscenes before moving onto the last few stages and the ending. I hoping to finish the bulk of the coding tonight so I can focus on sound, music and polish tomorrow. We’ll see how it goes, I’ll update once more before I call it a night.
Its almost been 12 hours since my last update. I have finally settled on a name for my game. YAY! I’m calling it Science Ship Cleomedes. The basic premise is you are the captain of the Science Ship Cleomedes and while on a science expedition you encountered an alien virus when completely disabled all the systems on your ship! With some luck and ingenuity your engineer gets life support and propulsion working. She then explains the virus has crippled the shields and weapons to the point she can only get one to work. She goes on to further explain that neither will work at full capacity. If she gets the shields working they will work for a 5 second burst, will only be able to take one hit and will need to recharge for 20 seconds. If she gets the weapons working they will only fire one shot at a time before needing to recharge for 20 seconds. You’re 50000 miles from Earth, and you can only have shields or weapons. So what will you choose?
Here is a Screenshot of my progress.
after taking this screenshot I realized my spaceship looks like a car…
When I have more I will post another update.
I’m really excited a theme I voted for actually won! This is the first LD that has happened
So I already had an idea for this theme, I’m doing a story driven shmup. I always start with the graphics and this time was no different. Having finished the graphics I’m headed to bed to get a good nights sleep. In the morning I will begin programming my game. I just wish I had a title for it, hopefully I will think of one while I sleep and wake up with it No screenshot this update but I promise to have one for the next update. Oh and I’ll explain my game idea further too. Night all, see you in the morning!
I’m keeping it short and sweet this time.
What I’ll be using:
>>Code: Flash (AS3)
>>Framework: Flixel with possible Fixel Power Tools
>>Graphics: Photoshop CS6
>>Sound/Music: Sfxr, Bfxr, Audacity, Drumcircle and maybe FL Studio
>>IDE: Flash Builder
Good Luck to all you enter.
Click image to play and rate my game!
What went right
Once I come up with an idea for the theme I like to spend the first few hours creating the graphics I will need for the game. This normally is not all of the art though as when I’m programming I’ll think of something really cool to add. Normally these are little effects to give the game more of a polished look. I was really happy with the way the art looked. Though looking back now I do see there were a couple of things I could have done differently. I don’t normally make a post compo version of my game but I may do one for this game and one of the changes I will make will be the level tiles. I should have made them match the area the player was in.
Having participated in #1GAM and in 4 Ludum Dare’s I like to feel I’m getting better with using the Flixel framework. This LD I was able to do a lot more than I have in previous LDs. Several weeks back I had brought my NES and Genesis over to my brothers and we did a little retro gaming for a few hours. One of the last games we played was Sonic the Hedgehog, I drew on that as inspiration for this game and I was really happy with how many new effects I was able to get in. Making a platformer with scrolling backgrounds was new to me. Hopefully I can expand on this in future LDs.
>OVERALL LOOK AND FEEL
Once I knew I was going to make a platformer everything just fell into place. I was really happy with the background art, with the way my player looked and animated and with the way the tiles came out. To be honest though, the jump mechanic was not intentional, I had forgotten to check if the player was touching a level tile before allowing the player to jump but it turned out to be a really cool feature so I left it in there and I really believe it gives the game the difficulty I was looking for. Not too much changed from my original vision of the game. Yes there were tweaks to aspects of the game, like the backgrounds were the same length as the level, but when I had them scroll and made them just a little slower than the level itself, I noticed you never got to see all of them when you reached the end of the level. So I did some math and reduced the size of them. I played around with the emitters for when the player dies and when the player gets a star to get them where I wanted them, and I’m really happy with how they turned out. All in all I’m overjoyed with how this game turned out, some of my best work to date.
What went wrong
For the past 2 LDs I’ve written down all of the themes which made it to the finals, then I try to come up with at least 3 ideas for each theme. This LD was no different and I actually had 4 ideas for 10 seconds. Then the theme was announced and I went to my list, read it over and decided I hated every idea I had… *SIGH* so I spent the next 3 hours trying to come up with an idea I liked. The funny thing is, the original idea I had for the game came from twitter which I’ll get into in the next section. So I lost 3 hours right at the beginning of the LD to coming up with an idea, which is normally used for making art and graphics for the game.
The original idea for my game was to have the level tiles disintegrate 10 seconds after the player touches them. But when it came time to implement this I ran into several problems. The first problem I ran into was Frames Per Second. When I changed all the level tiles into sprites my frames went from 30 to 3! Totally unacceptable :). So I redesigned the first level and the FPS jumped back up. Next problem I had was collision. With Flixel, collision with a tilemap and collision with a sprite are handled differently and I had forgotten this. So when the player collided with a level tile it pushed the tile which ended up going off screen. I wasn’t able to find a solution to this problem, perhaps I don’t know the framework as well as I thought I did :/. In the end I decided I needed to switch how the theme worked in my game or risk losing all the time I had already invested in it. Which is where the weird story in the beginning of my game came from as I decided on using the theme to instill a need to rush.
While I am no musician I can sometimes make music that is somewhat pleasant to listen to. Yes it will be repetitive, but it will for the most part fit the game I am making. This was not the case this LD. I really didn’t like the the music I came up with and I feel my game suffers because of it. All the music was made with drum circle, which I can normally produce interesting music with. I’m not really sure why this time was different. I have 4 months until the next LD so I may look into other musical programs and see if I can find another one I like.
Every LD I like to push myself to do things I’ve not done before and this LD was no different. I had several problems in the beginning but I overcame them. I am really proud of the game I created for this Ludum Dare. I had a great time making and playtesting my game and I look forward to seeing what you all thought about it.
If you would like to play and rate my game you can click here!
Note: I have since the compo figured out how I could have implemented the level tiles disintegrating. Perhaps I’ll make that game for #1GAM instead.
KunoNoOni’s Magical Star Saga has been submitted!
Check it out here
AH! It feels good to have completed yet another LD game! I’m going to playtest it some more before I upload it. What to make sure everything is working the way it should. May tweak a few things here and there. I’ll make another post when I’ve uploaded my game.
See you then.