About ericdpitts (twitter: @ericdpitts)
I wasted so much time this LD learning things, giving up on things, changing tools, changing ideas, it was rough. I probably had only maybe about 12-15 hours of actual time spent working on this (and most of that was today). But, I wasn’t in a hurry and I didn’t deprive myself of sleep (got 6-7 hours a night). So with all that in mind, I think it turned out well enough.
I spent the first half of Saturday fumbling around Unity, trying out about 3 ideas until I decided to switch back to a 2D platform. So then the second half of the day I spent learning Flixel. Then at about 9pm last night, I started working on this. I went to sleep around 2am, woke up at 9 and got back to work.
The original idea for the game was that you wanted to get seconds after dinner. There were only 10 helpings left (10 Seconds) and they all had already been claimed. So, you would have to fight everyone and steal their seconds. Originally, I wanted it to be a fighting game, but then figured that was a bit too ambitious, given my extra time constraints. (Also, I know next to nothing about fighting games) So then, I just figured it would be a boss rush action platformer. Which, incidentally, turned out to be too ambitious as well since I only ended up making 2 enemies (and the second enemy is not interesting at all.) I never got to replace the placeholder art, and I only got to spend ~20 minutes at the end of the compo on music, unfortunately. I don’t really know where this weekend went!
The great thing is, I learned so much over this weekend, I had a great time, and I feel inspired to continue working on games in my free time. I’ll be way more prepared for the next LD too! Between now and then, maybe I’ll work more on Unity and get more comfortable with 3D development.
At any rate, I’m looking forward to playing all of these LD games!
So far, I’ve started about 3 ideas and decided against them. I’ve also since decided I’m more comfortable working on something 2D for the idea I’ve (possibly) settled on, so I’ll be switching over to making something in Flash with AS3 using Flixel, rather than Unity as I had originally planned. Either way, I’ve already learned a lot. Maybe I’ll bone up on Unity over the months between the next Ludum Dare and try a Unity game then.
So then, with 32 hours to go, I’ll finally get started!
… I’m planning on joining in on LD again! My last LD was LD23 “Tiny World”, back in April 2012. This will be my third foray into Ludum Dare, and indeed, Game Jams in general. My weekend is completely free and, barring any unfortunate, unforeseen events, I should be able to complete a game this weekend for the compo!
- Development: Unity 3D
- Modelling: Blender (or just Unity, depending on time constraints)
- Graphics: GIMP
- Music: Audacity + Keyboard/Guitar
- SFX: SFXR
I’m super excited! My favorite part of LDs in the past was getting to play and provide feedback on all of the wonderful games that come out of the competition. I can’t wait to see what great things you all come up with!
The title says it all! Here are some more of the many amazing games I’ve had the privilege of playing thanks to Ludum Dare. Go and show them some love, we’ve only got until tomorrow night at 9!
Necro Gaia - lazybraingames
A really fun take on tower defense with a great visual style and sound design. This game only has 7 ratings at the time of writing, it needs some love! You won’t regret it.
Space Cabin - trylle
The first thing that struck me about this game is its great visual style. It’s such a pretty game. As for the game play, it is a visual adventure game that relies heavily on classic text-based adventure game mechanics. I love this combination, it makes for a very fun and fresh feeling game.
Shrunkit - MagnesiumNinja
A really fun puzzle-platformer with an interesting mechanic. The puzzles are well thought out and the shrinking/growing mechanic is fun to play with. With some more polish, work, and lengthening, this would be a game I’d want to buy. You should definitely go give it a play.
ascii world - dwrensha
ascii world is definitely an interesting game. I don’t want to spoil the discovery element of this game; I think that’s what makes it so interesting. Give it a go, it’s pretty short and you can play it in your browser.
Curse of Grimwood - digital_sorceress
A neat little action-rpg that feels extremely polished for the given timeframe. Definitely worth a go.
Quantum Entanglement – icefallgames
Quantum Entanglement is a really well designed puzzle game. The puzzles feel well thought out and the mechanics at play are interesting and fun to mess around with.
That’s all for now! Please continue to spread the love around the community and rate more games everyone! And as others have said, it’s always nice to leave a comment saying what you liked/didn’t like about the game and offer some constructive criticism when you rate a game. It’s how we all can help each other to grow as game developers, and I think it’s what makes the Ludum Dare community so special.
Now that I’ve reached the 75 ratings milestone, I thought I’d bring to light just a few of the great entries I’ve come across in my journey for the gold! These will likely be lesser known entries with fewer ratings, so go give them some love!
Get The FROG Off My World!! - by CitrusPunchSamurai
This game made me smile. It’s a really simple game, but it’s presented very well. Also, the catchy tune will get stuck in your head for quite some time after playing it!
Bottlecolonies - by tcstyle
A little strategy/puzzle game with a really great, distinct visual style. Awesome presentation.
Tiny Planet - by CherryNukaCola
The music in this game combined with the euphoric explosions as you send stars off into the galaxy was very relaxing. Really nice, simple art style to this one as well.
Darkness Creeping - by AD-Edge
The intro to this game pulled me in, and the creepy atmosphere and interesting little creature-controlling mechanic kept me playing. It’s a 3D first person puzzler of sorts. Very impressive for 48 hours.
Interstellar Moai Ranger - by Shifty
This is a super-fun on-rails shooter in the same vein as games such as Space Harrier. Very nice art style, music, and sound effects.
These are just a few of the great games I’ve gotten to play as a result of this amazing community. Great job everyone!
There’s not much new to see in this screenshot as I haven’t done anything with the art since the previous update, but I’ve made a lot of great progress overall. The main game mechanic (chargeable grenade launcher that allows you to jump higher by shooting the ground) is in place and working well, I’ve still got a few weird movement bugs to work out that I run into occasionally. But for the most part, the gameplay is done. I just need to make many, many more levels.
So, I think that’s what I’ll be focusing on. Making more levels, basically “finishing” the game. Then I’ll get sounds and music in there, do something (read: the most that I can) with the art, and be done! I think I’m at least halfway done now, so I’m making good time to finish by tomorrow night!
It’s been a lot of fun thus far and I’ve learned a lot. I’m really glad I finally decided to take part in one of these.
As I am a first timer to LD, as well as any sort of time restricted game jam, I’m interested in discovering best practices from those more experienced in this type of competition. Any tips or pointers would be greatly appreciated. Reading through a lot of the introductory posts here, I’ve noticed an overwhelming amount of first timers like myself, so I think this information will be valuable to a large number of participants.
Some things I’m specifically seeking advice on:
- Time management – Specifically, I’m wondering if you’ve found that spending some time thinking through the design of your game before starting work (perhaps even writing down a few things about the gameplay, story, characters, etc.) was most helpful, or if diving right in and prototyping your idea(s) worked better
- Art assets – Personally, art is my biggest weakness. I honestly can’t draw at all. I’m planning on either doing A) pixel art or B) a very sparse/minimalist art style, akin to Asteroids. So I’m wondering how those less gifted with all things art related have dealt with this weakness and how it has worked out for you in the past. Judging by past successful LD projects, having good art and presentation is immensely important.
- Scope creep (or, overambitiousness) - Obviously, trying to do “too much” in a game in 48 hours would be a killer, but it’s kind of hard to judge or quantify what “too much” would be. Any past experiences would be greatly appreciated here.
Thanks so much for any responses! Certainly feel free to pass down any other advice you may have that I have not specifically asked about.
This will be my first LD, I’m excited for it. I can’t decide what I want to make my game in though. I’m skilled with Java, C/C++, and Python, and I’ve been looking at Unity recently. I’m thinking about perhaps using Game Maker for this competition though.