Ludum Dare 25
Ludum Dare 25 Warmup
Ludum Dare 24
Ludum Dare 23
Ludum Dare 22
I’ll start with the part that’ll interest more people….now that I’ve rated 150 entries, here are my top 7! (in no particular order)
Bottlecolonies By tcstyle : A clever little strategy/puzzle game, the art direction is great, the sound both fitting and awesome, and the gameplay itself is solid and complete…a joy to play
Nanofactory By JustinMullin: A solid puzzle game about a nanobot assembling widgets, a little hard and cryptic at first but the puzzles are both simple and clever
ANT SURF HERO: THE SURFENING By Jigxor: A refreshing change from the massive number of dull uninspired platformers, aside from a few physics issues it’s really fun, and riding on top of the ant is amusing to say the least.
Housefly By dacap: You play as a fly on a mission: to get back outside! It’s a short but very immersive adventure game with solid controls, great visuals and sound…its hard to describe but the flight control feels “right” for a fly. Very fun.
Recluse By chambers: You play as a snail with a neckbeard in a “metroidvania” type game….but with a twist. Easy 5/5 for innovation personally, I don’t want to ruin it by the starting room is misleading and it quickly introduces one of the most unique gameplay mechanics i’ve ever seen. (even if it is mostly a gimmick…it fits the theme very well)
Hero of Rain By 31eee384: Extremely incomplete but what there is of it is very enjoyable, the story is both fitting and interesting, the gameplay is for the most part pretty good (though touchy at parts). All around a good feel to this game.
Fusion Time! By NeiloGD: A simple but solid arcade-type game where you fuse atoms in a sun. Theres not much too it but the explosions and strategy of timing the fusing makes it surprisingly fun to play.
Please try these out if you havent! Most still have a pretty low number of ratings and could use some more love! Also, <shameless plug> I really wouldn’t mind a few more tests on my entry as well, it’ll be linked below with the timelapse and postmortem</shameless plug>
First off, here’s the link, try it out yourself and let me know what you think!
I have to say…I had more fun with this theme than I would have thought, it was a lot easier to make a game that fit the theme but was still….you know…a GAME..than it was for “alone” (LD22)
What went right:
- My game Idea! I came up with it MUCH faster this time and IMHO it’s a much more fun game than my 22 entry
- My cross-compilers were already set up, saving me a lot of time testing the windows build
- Using my sprite editor (listed in the tools section to the right) I was able to do what little spriting I needed very quickly with decent results, it was MUCH easier than trying to do it in GIMP (great editor….not so good for animating)
- I planned fairly well what I would have time to do, I was complete (though had to cut a few units) and able to submit before the rush.
- Deciding early to render with opengl instead of plain SDL was a good call, I ended up abusing it quite a bit to scale/recolor graphics & text (SDL can do it but it’s so slow it would be near unplayable..). Having recently written a LOT of OpenGL code also it was pretty fresh in my mind and I was able to painlessly get it up and rendering.
What went…welll…not quite as right:
- Once again, LD fell on a weekend I had to be gone quite a bit, I wasn’t home on saturday till nearly 6pm, so I lost a good 18 hours of copetition time there (seriously, i had NOTHING planned that couldn’t be moved for like.. a month prior and a month after…only that one day)
- I had to take care of some stuff outside friday and was EXHAUSTED after the theme was announced, ended up losing even more time by going to bed early. (though i did finish a opengl renderer + sound system before then)
- I had a OpenGL/SDL/Angelscript based game engine I’ve been working on for quite some time that I was going to use so I could concentrate more on game code….unfortunately I had some last minute issues and there was no way I’d get a windows build of the engine working in time, so I had to change plans and just write a renderer/sound/input engine from scratch during the competition.
And of course, here is the timelapse video! (with soothing music added)
All done…whew..got the music in just in time too.
Some gameplay footage
And rating page!
Too many porting bugs to work out in my engine before LD starts so I’m revising my “I’m in”..Instead of using an engine I’ll just do straight SDL/C++ again for simplicity’s sake.
Also, sorry to any Mac users who may have wanted to use my sprite editor (i did get a few questions on it)….I don’t have a MAC but i did try….but OSX keeps crashing on me in virtualbox and I dunno why :/
There wasn’t a whole lot of information about it around but I managed to piece together a quick script to do live streaming from a linux desktop. It’s simple and for speed reasons I’m not broadcasting sound myself. (I get unrealiable levels of upload lag so if i add sound it’s kinda distorted…I really wish their streams allowed speex codec :/)
KEY=”your key here”
ffmpeg -f x11grab -s $SIZE -r $FRAMERATE -i :0.0 -vb $BITRATE -vcodec libx264 -threads 0 -f flv “rtmp://live.justin.tv/app/$KEY”
if you do want sound, you can change it to this for alsa
or for OSS
I’m in, this will be the 2nd LD i’ll actually be able to take part in at all, and the first one where I’ll actually be able to be here coding for more than half the compo! (last one was more of a LD16 for me…)
- Programming Language(s): C++ / Angelscript
- Development Platform: Gentoo Linux Kernel 3.2.11 AMD64 build
- Target Platform(s): Linux x86, Linux x86_64, Win32, also OSX if i can figure out how to cross compile to it in time.
- Engine/Basecode: Aether Engine (still finalizing, documentation and download will be up within a few days, just trying to get physics fully implemented…..I procrastinated too much ) Which is built on SDL, SDL_image, SDL_mixer, OpenGL, tinyxml, zlib, angelscript, and Box2D
- Code Tools: Code::blocks, gedit, gnu make, gcc, gdb
- Sound/Music:SFXR, LMMS
- Graphics: GIMP for high res graphics/backdrops, My aptly named “Sprite Editor” for pixel art
- Food: More than likely stuffed shells w/ arabiatta sauce and a side of asparagus
- Drink: Water, rockstar recovery, newcastle, or I’ll mix a martini…all depends on the situation
First, a rundown on what got me thinking of this idea….
I have no real complaints about how I scored in LD22, it was overall around where I expected, but one thing kinda stuck with me. My actual scores were VERY inconsistant with all the feedback I received. For instance I was pretty universally praised by all that commented (a fairly good number of people) on my community effort in doing a build for multiple platforms, a timelapse video, and even commenting my source, In the end I got a 3.2 score in that category which does not seem to reflect that (especially compared to the fact that many games that had no such things, and single platform were averaging a score of 3.5) Quite a few people both in the comments and on IRC said the game was really fun!… I actually got no negative feedback at all on that….I scored a 2.66. As you can see here I found it bizarre that the actual ratings were pretty much completely opposite of comments I had received.
My main point to this being, It would have been nice to know why those rating at a 1 out of 5 hated it so much, nobody seemed to want to leave any negative feedback (And I’m not just speaking for myself, a lot of other people had expressed the same confusion as to why their scores were opposite of what they would have expected from their comments), so perhaps it would be nice for 23 when we rate something it could have an anonymous comments box attached to each rating category where you have to quickly fill in the main “problem” or main “draw” as to why you’re rating a 1 or a 5? In doing this it could actually help improve future games instead of pretty much just leaving everyone confused as to how the scoring worked after the compo is over.
Another thing I would like to see is more detailed instructions on each rating category, and a N/A rating for games that don’t use it at all (for stuff like humor…many people were rating games down overall due to humor scoring a 1 on games that were not supposed to be funny)
Also, add a “Does not run” button that removes a entry from your list of ones to rate but doesnt set a rating on it, I fear too many people were scoring games low that they simply couldn’t run and it was throwing off the statistics
It’s the perfect theme!
- A physical object that must be present
- Being magical, it can be sentient or not, your choice!
- It’s round so it works in many more physics-type games
- It’s a delicious grapefruit!
- It’s non-specific enough that it allows for ANY gametype (not just platformers + “art” games) to be designed around it
Hey guys, just thought i’d toss this out here for anyone interested. Finished a first “stable” release of my new sprite editor, It’s QT4 and written to be cross-platform but at the moment only downloads for linux are up, as I’ve yet to figure out how to use the mingw cross compiler with QT. Tailored for my engine’s format but the toolset can also easily export to png spritesheets.
- Onion skinning to help with animating
- customizable palletes w/ full save/load/rip from image support
- more color picking tools than you’ll ever know what to do with
- fully integrated with system clipboard so you can freely select, copy,cut, paste, etc..with other image editors
- large undo/redo bufers, specific to each frame
- live animation preview
- fast control scheme (mouse + command keys, or hotkeys control every action, all hotkeys are listed in the edit menu)
- customizable UI, all toolbars can be reshaped, floated, pushed behind tabs, hidden….etc
Still got a lot of bugs to work out, and missing features, but it’s at least stable and capable of image editing at this point. You can download it and try it here http://www.midnightfragfest.com/sprite-editor/
Edit: Windows download is now available, but somewhat untested, I would appreciate any feedback on how it runs.
Just hit the 100 game mark (still, far short of the 25% goal i set for myself) so i’ll post my statistics so far. (note: I give up on trying to properly align columns of data in wordpress, so this post will look a bit messy)
Overall Run Stats: The percentage of entries i was able to sucessfully get running and score
Entries with only a windows or OSX binary (requiring me to use WINE to run): 41
Entries that sucessfully ran under WINE fully enough to test: 10 (the vast majority of unity, gamemaker, and XNA games do not run, almost 100% of the windows games that did run were developed from scratch)
% of windows only games that sucessfully ran under WINE: 24%
Entry Platforms: This number indicates the percentage of entries that had a client specific for that platform.
windows - 53%
java - 19%
flash - 16%
OSX - 15%
linux x86 - 13%
HTML5 - 10%
linux x86_64 - 8%
android - 2%
python - 2%
love - 1%
Sega Master System - 1%
Games I was able to run by platform (excluding OSX, and windows is included in WINE stats above)
Sega Master System - 100% **
android - 100% **
flash - 100% *
HTML5 - 80%
linux x86_64 - 75%
java - 68%
linux x86 - 62%
python - 50% **
love - 0% **
* while everything technically ran, flash gave me more bugs and performance problems then all other platforms combined, but not unusual as I run the 64 bit build
** sample size far too small to be meaningful
Edit: oops, almost forgot, these so far are my favorites of LD22, in no particular order
Start from the TOP of this list!
Just sayin….the vast majority of games have 10-15 reviews tops, while a small block of popular ones are up in the 80′s-100′s
Some of these have a pretty low number of ratings and i’d hate to see them completely ignored. I’ve basicly been randomly picking games with a low number of reviews that I can actually play and rating them, so far these are the best games of LD22 (in my opinion, of course, but I suggest others try them out as well)
I won’t bother posting already well known ones, just ones here that are still relatively unplayed.
48 Hour Compo Games
“Cave Wanderer” by Greasemonkey
“Soloing” by Goldendice
“Sinkhole” by Shaun Inman
“The lonely island” by Bezza
“Ancient Rover” by tnelsond
First Ludum Dare for me, i’ve been meaning to join in but always ended up busy during the weekend it came up…though even this weekend was no exception. (was out of town most of saturday) Interesting experience though, I don’t think I’ve ever rushed quite this much to write anything….normally at work we’d have at least 72 hours to finish a major project
Overall I was pretty happy with the results, I’ll be honest in saying that the theme was total bunk, it’s too vague of an idea and 99% of the games in the list (mine included) are stretching it about as far as possible to make really anything work on the theme. Would be nice in the future if themes were limited to physical objects or gameplay mechanics. /minor complaint
What Went Right?
- Time : I picked an idea that I had more than enough time to work on with my additional constraints, it was a little close at the end due to all the things I did wrong… but I didn’t really have to rush to get done (though i did have to cut back on how much artwork i did)
-Choice of api’s: I’m glad I picked SDL to use, as I’m very familiar with it, and sticking with plain old c++/SDL let me take quite a few “shortcuts” I wouldn’t have known in other languages. (bad if this were a real project, but good for saving time)
What Went Wrong?
- sound & art : I’m not COMPLETELY unskilled with sound or art, but it does take me forever. In retrospect I should have just shot for super low res and claimed it “retro” styled instead of using the higher res that I did, which, in not having time, led to a very messy, poorly drawn look
- porting: I didn’t realize that ports were allowed to happen after the deadline, so I wasted a good 4 hours of my 20 actual hours I had to work on my entry trying to get the windows port to compile properly (turned out I needed to upgrade mingw’s toolchain, mine was too out of date for the SDL build i was using)
- tools: I should have choosen tools ahead of time, i didnt even think of sound or music till I was nearly done, and at that point i spent a good hour or two of my precious dev time installing lmms, sfxr, and learning how to use them.
Also, here’s a nice set of videos of gameplay and my dev timelapse.