Ludum Dare 28
Ludum Dare 27
Ludum Dare 26
Ludum Dare 25
Ludum Dare 25 Warmup
Ludum Dare 24
Ludum Dare 23
Ludum Dare 22
Ludum Dare 21
Nanda Kore Award of Comedy Excellence LD28
Awarded by Rahazan on December 18, 2013
New Best Friend Award!
Awarded by zakchaos on October 3, 2013
Achievement unlocked: 8 finished LDs in a row
I set out to make a silly/funny/chaotic game this time. Ludum Dare is a harsh judge, but the audience’s collective face upon witnessing my masterpiece was:
Yep, it seems like my game was actually well-received this time. No “this is confusing” comments apart from the ones made as a joke just to provoke me. Some highlights:
I wanted to make a game that comes close to “performance art” when played. I love games that make me shout and curse and feel like awesome when I finally succeed. In all aspects, this was designed to be a game that’s played in such a lively way, preferably with an audience. After playtesting with you guys and even IRL friends, it seems like I’ve succeeded: I’ve made people laugh out loud. With me, not at me.
Said playtests have also given me ideas for post-LD development. I knew from the start I’d have to jam because I was busy with life, and I also knew I’d take the game further after submitting, so you can treat it as a prototype of something yet more awesome. Check out my design notes for a preview.
The judges are the faces of this game, literally and figuratively. If you simply got a numeric score, it wouldn’t feel as involving. The judge system feels much more like a dialogue between the player and the game, as well as giving the game a lot of personality. Some of the responses appear in highly specific circumstances, some are just plain comments on how well/badly you did. There are a total of 33 responses in the game, including one that appears outside of the judging phase, and one that I forgot to add the sound file for (but it’s pretty esoteric to get and a normal player won’t see it anyway). Gotta catch ‘em all.
Another part of why it’s fun is that the game mechanics are pretty transparent this time, no lambda functions or anything. I made a gameplay video of how to use bullet time and nitro tactically, if you still can’t get good reviews after watching that I guess you need to
In which I give honest criticism to your shitty games. I’m trying to go on a rating binge so that might be more tolerable with an audience.
Let’s see who’s been nice and who’s been naughty, post your games (or other recommendations) in the chat. I’m not one of those guys who play a game for 20 seconds before quitting.
Extra! Extra! Get your Public Mischief Performance here!
Disclaimer: It’s a playable and fun game, just not with all the content I wanted to add. I’m definitely making an expanded post-LD version. Meanwhile, play that.
Here’s some “gameplay” footage from a boring test room. The gif is laggy in parts due to LICEcap’s weird time stretching, but I hope it illustrates the intentional slowdown at launch (as well as in specific situations) and some other cool effects I put in.
The player is the green square. As opposed to ragdoll physics games, you don’t want to hurt the player. In fact, the player will explode in splatters of blood in high-speed collisions, which will invite the jury to mock you. You actually control the probe around him, which is used to break shit and shield the player from damage. The probe also has a nitro meter that’ll let you use extra nudges after enough combos.
There’s a functional pseudo-engine in place, so I can concentrate on content now. Mainly jury behaviour, gameplay depth, easter eggs. I’m imagining a city where you explore different kinds of buildings and breakable objects. I just have to figure out a sensible way to hold all that data using Flashpunk. (Alternatively, it could be generated on the fly from hand-made bits and pieces.) Maybe there could be upgrades to the probe as well to encourage repeated playthroughs.
I’ll see how I have time, I knew from the start I’d have to jam because of exams and such pressuring me. And of course Ludum Dare had to be on this weekend in particular. No way it could’ve been in one of those weekends when I just derped around. But if I survive until Wednesday, at least I’ll live to see the Christmas holidays.
The people who will verbally and speech-synthetically assault you for your eventual mistakes:
just so you know
the third one isn’t actually part of the jury
The first one is totally not me, and the second one is totally not that funny guy from Gaki no Tsukai with a mohawk. They give you feedback after the flight is over and probably drop some hints during the gameplay too.
They don’t quite look exactly like they did in my head, so revisions might happen. Doing character design in LD is unheard of for me, but their job is to add personality and make the game more responsive (plus amusing) with their witticisms and facial expressions.
Responsiveness is indeed the key, I’m trying to step up the dynamism this time, and make playing this game feel like a form of performance art. Something that’d be fun to play on a big screen with a group of friends shouting and laughing.
you making some games eh
You’re witnessing the creation of a gotta-go-fast sort of game with lots of mayhem. You launch the player out of a cannon (you only get one) and break things for points (you get quite a lot). There’ll be a jury that comments on your mayhem with glorious speech synthesis and certified Jiggawatt humor.
The player should have some influence on their trajectory, which is the part that’ll introduce some of my usual esoteric gimmicks. It’s coming together suspiciously well for the first few hours.
Oh yeah, and I’ll return to streaming in a bit when I have something more to show. I get that it’s boring just to watch me code.
just so you know
the Jiggatrain has no brakes
unless the gubmint insists
but the crowd wants physics
and physics games
with eccentric humor
and lots of yelling
So, the time has come once again to get done in 3 days what would usually take 3 weeks. For those not in the know like I am, I’m talking about something called Ludum Dare.
Despite making the most confusing games, I never seem to get top scores in Innovation, mostly because the gudgrafix foolgarbage Hacker News businessmen, with coats hanging on their shoulders by the index finger, voting for the “free 2 play” theme, wearing jeans instead of long johns, not thinking alcohol is necessary during development, while instead thinking 20 seconds is enough to judge my games, or to read the manual that I actually bothered to write for once, or to even press the shooting key once, are sniping my scores.
So I’ve decided to take a different route, to aim for #1 in Humor. My tool will be the now-usual Flashpunk with frivolous abuse of function pointers, but my mindset will be different.
Which means watching twitch.tv/121jigs will be surprising and exciting like never before (which was last time when I was just testing things out).
just so you know
the GOTY is here
When I begun my journey to the center of my mind, all I knew was that I wanted to make a more polished entry than usual, and that it should be fast-paced. Well I got more than I bargained for, it’s hectic and flashy and reveals some core concepts of the universe.
We all remember the highlights of the development with fond memories. There were ups…
-repaying old bills
-being a bread the entire time
*flashback harp jingle with sine distortion*
i take sleeping pills
…But I finished again. I’m glad I took the extra day for the jam, the compo version turned out to have some bugs after all and lacked audio and the title/help screens.
Yeah you heard right, I actually had some in-game help this time. How ’bout we give ol’ Jiggawatt here a nice big round of applause, take a day off from work, maybe drink some coffee liqueur on the porch, mixed with a nice glass of cold milk, while swinging in one of those wooden swinging chairs you see in old folks’ homes, but not too fast because we’d get all dizzy and fly off, plus the coffee liqueur might spill on top of the work and we’d have to go back there, that is my vision for the future of this country and please vote for me in the presidential elections.
The gameplay is unique and went through several revisions to get to perfection. I had some wilder ideas for functions but they’d not have made much sense. The goal of neutralizing everything came to me through playtesting and dicking around.
GUD GRAFIX what else do I have to say about them
My entries have gotten good scores in Audio, and I kept my bar up again. The sound effects are juicy, and I think I went overboard on the music. Once the game was playable, I had this concept of a track that sounds whimsical and slightly cheesy but confidently so. The chorus melody came to me pretty fast, but I had to wait for inspiration for the rest of the track until the last day, probably because you all were stealing it for your nonsense. The result is fitting for the game if just a bit rushed because I ended up working on the music until the last minutes (in linear time). So there’s some unfinished-sounding bits and the occasional stray note. No time for proper mixing or instrument tweaking either… it deserves a proper remix.
After some practice I can clear the game like 20% of the time, so now I’m thinking of ways to make it harder. My idea of a hyperspace bonus level where you have to capture neutralized bullets never fully materialized, and I don’t think anyone else would’ve even gotten that far anyway.
Simply put, this is a great game on all fronts. If I were to rate it objectively:
Overall: 5/5 it’s like I’m really in a lambda spaceship
Innovation: 5/5 will render conventional video games obsolete
Fun: 5/5 you’re not missing out on anything by ignoring the other 2212 entries
Theme: 5/5 actually used it to spice up the game instead of making a shitty 10-second game and then whining about the theme
Graphics: 5/5 blocks and epilepsy
Audio: 5/5 makes you one with the game
Humor: 5/5 laughed all the way to the bank
Mood: 5/5 quite ecstatic thanks for asking
As you can see, the worst part of the game is the players. You’re all bumbling idiots with no sense of game design and I feel violated for having to release my masterpieces to a community that treats them like monkeys seeing a mirror for the first time. I mean, some of you couldn’t even pass the title screen, and I don’t think anyone of you actually completed the game. Two people lied that they did but their games were so shitty it’s obvious they were not worthy.
Clearly the game is too hard, so I’m working on a much harder post-LD version with extra challenges because that’ll show you. Well it could have a tutorial mode too but only if you kneel and plead.
Now I still have to play and rate your painfully bad attempts at game-making just so I can promote my game. LOOK WHAT YOU’VE MADE ME DO
GET OUT OF HERE
just so you know
the flashback never ended
Yeah. I thought I’d take that extra jam day to really juice up my game before submitting. I’m really satisfied with how trippy and Jiggawatt-y it’s turned out so far, and that’s exactly why it deserves all the extra content and polish it can get. I’m certainly not going to submit it without proper audio and some tweaks I missed, not to mention in-game help. The game is playable, damn fun and just about feature-complete, the only apparent bug being the wonky player sprite that disregards the laws of trigonometry and atan2.
Oh and you can disregard the scoring. As well as the rules. I ain’t gotta explain shit (yet). It’s actually beatable though! You simply have to turn everything into silhouettes.
Yup, I think that just about explains the game.
The holy scripture that is my todo list still consists of a few things that should be quick but are sure to take more than I thought, even if I take into account Hofstadter’s law.
For example, right now you get too many collected enemies. But there’s a pretty no-brainer solution of spawning more enemies. ERM I MEANT LESS ENEMIES OF COURSE. It’s hectic to begin with, but the way I implemented 10-second powerups makes it almost impossible.
The game mechanics clearly foreshadow a higher goal than just surviving. Since you can selectively restrict bullets and enemies based on your collectibles (note the blacked out enemies), I discovered that with certain optimal builds you can become an immortal lambda monster roaming the
space forever. I think that might be a fitting way to
complete the game END THE TUTORIAL AND START A MUCH HARDER WAVE.
Work has also begun on music and sound effects. The main track sounds like Mario Kart or something, but it’s too catchy for me to trash it. Well I’ll probably score pretty high in Audio as usual even if I just bang my keyboard, since most of you fools don’t seem to understand the power of music.
I’d like to take you in my lap and gently whisper to your ear “don’t worry, those aren’t the final graphics”, but you know how it always turns out.
“What’s that? Jiggawatt’s not making a game that’s just a static tile grid?”
I have a good feeling about this one. It’s fast and arcade-y but still has those peculiar touches I love. You can think of the captured enemies at the bottom as lambda functions – once a new one is added, it uses the selected one as a parameter and weird things happen.
Erm, that’s probably not obvious since there’s no visual indication for the effects yet, but you can become immune to certain shot types, or make enemies immune to them, and what have you. Still needs more effects though. It’s going to be a beautiful chaos.
And don’t worry, this time I’ll actually add some helpful visuals instead of making you read my mind. My goal is to only get less than 5 “this is confusing” comments this time.
I totally plan to keep up that version numbering.
It’s a hectic shooting game of some kind where the enemies you shoot become converted into status effects that reference each other, and they help you extend the time limit once you gain enough effects. I figure the status effects will eventually grow into a Turing-complete language.
I can’t be arsed to explain it. Just stare at the cute rotating background. Or alternatively at my stream.
For 6 consecutive LDs, the whole world has been holding its collective breath over “how does Jiggawatt make them LD games”. It was the top Google search of 2012, and the enigma sparked the Great South-Asian Wars between two Vietnamese villages that fought over whether I achieved them using my exceptional natural creativity or divine inspiration.
(Spoiler for those who don’t read the news)
Well, things happened, UN meetings were summoned, and turns out this time I’m legally bound to stream the whole damn thing at twitch.tv/121jigs. Expect my usual surreal interjections, behind-the-scenes explanations of plans and practices, and non-stop good music.
A dozen hours to go, my body is ready.
And I have something to show for it.
☑ Leaves room for the player to experiment
☑ Funky colors
☑ Crying bushes
☑ Minecraft clone, LSD Dream Emulator clone, aaht gaym
☑ “Trial version?” Really now?
☑ Bound to get comments like “this is too confusing!!”
☑ Shipping with bugs and don’tgiveafuck
I ended up jamming, and don’t regret the decision. Best to get something done after all, and it might even be kind of an interesting experiment. You have to connect a bunch of floating platforms by tending to supernatural plants. Keep them watered and collect more water from their droppings.
It’s quite zen but still puzzly. Not in the sort of obviously designed way as my puzzle games usually are, but in the way that you’ll naturally come across problems with your resources, and have to plan ahead. You’re just given the game board and some simple rules, which you’ll have to get the most out of.
A water pulse going through a plant. Not pictured: me haunted by ugly race condition bugs again.
(I’ll change that plant texture, don’t you worry.)
The Ludum Dare middle age crisis has arrived again, and as I see it, I’m at a crossroads:
1) I could try finishing the game in Unity despite not knowing what the hell I’m doing most of the time.
2) There’s still time to recreate what I have in Flashpunk, with hand-crafted 2D environments and puzzles, hopefully with at least the same degree of ambience as with crude lo-fi 3D terrain.
3) If I go for option 1 and don’t make it, I think I’ll have to do the unthinkable and take the extra 24 hours to jam.
4) Failing all that, I think I’ll just write these blog posts for the rest of the LD, making snarky but borderline abusive and intrusively personal comments about you people.
5) I can use the packet sauce.
I can use the packet sauce.
I can use the packet sauce.