Archive for the ‘LD – Misc’ Category
In Ludum Dare 28 I had a go at something new and made a game solely for Android: Extreme Curling (which you can find here: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-28/?action=preview&uid=11083 as a note the play store no longer works, I’ve taken it down for a while while I’m working on it) . The game was okish but I felt it had potential as mobile game, it generated a reasonable number of installs, installs per day actually started increasing post Ludum Dare judging period.
So I’ve decided to just go for it and rather than find another job after my current contract ends, I’m going to take a shot at starting a game development company. It’s always been a dream of mine of a game development company that is established to support charities. So that’s what I’m doing, creating a company called withFire which donates a portion of profits to community chosen charities. And the first game? You guessed it Extreme Curling (well a far more polished version with a lot more features).
I’ve just started an Indiegogo Campaign to raise funds for this, so If you like to find out more about withFire you can read here: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/withfire-games-for-charity
If you’re interested in this and want to help out then sharing it around wouldn’t hurt.
Finally I just want to say thanks to Ludum Dare and the community for getting me more involved in game making and all the feed-back
For the past couple of months, I’ve been working during my spare time on a project for the Stemfuse Got Game Competition. This competition is specifically for middle and high school Game Maker games. The RTS genre has always intrigued me, and I was very motivated after seeing the 7dayRTS challenge, so I figured a low stakes competition was a good opportunity to try to make my own. With some help from my friends for graphics and music, I finally finished the game, 1800. 1800 is a historically based minimalist RTS that takes place during the Napoleonic Wars and War of 1812.
Anyway, now for some thoughts on the project. First of all, RTSs are hard. Very hard. I was constantly attempting to optimize the game, while throwing on new features to add to the “strategy” aspect. I had a fairly decent vision of the project from the start, but it definitely evolved as I worked on it. The main pitfalls I fell into were not knowing what I was doing, resulting in some highly questionable design choices at the beginning, creating an AI that wasn’t terrible, and reducing lag. Unfortunately I waited until the end to add the AI, and that caused some problems. First of all, it was much harder than I had expected. I really had no clue how to do it and began piecing it together as I went along. Additionally, the AI made the game start to lag immensely as large amounts of units were on the map at a time. This is an issue I never really fixed, but instead tried to minimize in the level design. The original plan was to have 5 countries actively moving units as well as multiple others that were neutral. I maintained this original vision for the most part in the free play mode, along with the warning that it will lag on most computers. For the campaign mode, the American campaign being the only one I actually made, I removed all of the unnecessary countries. This reduced the lag significantly at the beginning of the game, but after playing for a couple of minutes the lag still gets pretty overwhelming.
Overall, I think the game ended up being fairly mediocre in terms of actual gameplay. However, I think that this was a great experience for me. I have learned a lot about what to do and what not to do when making an RTS, and would be able to approach things completely differently in the future. That being said, I’m really sick of RTSs right now and can’t imagine making another in the near future . I think had I chosen to to a turn based game instead, it would have saved me a lot of trouble with worrying about the lag, so I’ll keep that in mind for the future.
Now for the part where you can help me. Here‘s a link to my entry in the competition. If you could spare me about 2 clicks to upvote the entry, that would be greatly appreciated. Even if you don’t think the game is very good, I hope you could just take a moment to appreciate the effort that went into making this and support me. Currently the entry leading in the popular vote has over 500 votes, and is a simple and nearly broken maze game with one level. The effort that went into making that is so minimal that its number of votes is mind boggling. My goal is to get at least 100 votes in the competition, and with your help I can do it.
Thanks so much everyone!
I know that everytime someone came to question this, but somethings have been bothering me for a long time:
The first thing is, there is no rule about the content in Jam event, so, I could use every asset I can find as long I have the rights to use it?
So I could mod a game (I mean, use it’s assets to make another one), use personal libraries, use art that I made for other games and etc?
Just to be sure, it is really allowed?
I’m not criticizing, just asking if it really is like this.
About the Comp part, “4. All publicly available libraries and middleware are allowed”, so if I say before the start of the jam “hey guys, I’m gonna to use this package that has all the code that I need, you can download here if you want” it is allowed?
Again, I’m not criticizing, just asking.
PS.: I read the “For Jam games, you are free to use whatever artwork or content you like (preferably something you have the legal rights to), but you must accept all responsibility for its use”, just want to be sure.
“… And why should I care?”
Good question. Let me tell you a short story to give it to you.
Spark: De Sacrificio is a little project that stemmed from an old ludum dare entry I created for LD27. I was very excited with it back then, and had it all planned in my mind: a puzzle/platformer with exploration components. It felt like a cool thing to play, so I did a smallish implementation for the compo. I wanted to develop a complete game from the small prototype I created back then, but because of a few personal problems and my inability to focus on one thing for more than 48 hours, I dropped it.
It would have been the end of it if I didn’t get a hold of a copy of GameMaker back in November. I was curious to test this platform, and decided to brush some dust off Spark to recreate it in this bright new engine. I was really excited, and got a lot of work done in a short time. It started to look really amazing for what I was expecting. The game felt just as I wanted and it was interesting to play and explore.
But for some reason I felt reluctant to wrap the game up and send it on its journey through the Internet.
It took me a couple of weeks to pin down what was this dark feeling I was having towards releasing this small game. In the meanwhile, development got very slow. Staring at the game, replaying the same parts over and over started to feel painful. I caressed the possibility of leaving it in a drawer and forgetting about it more than once. The reason wasn’t that I didn’t like the project, but that I loved it way too much.
I was scared of what people would say about it. I’m not new about getting feedback on stuff, and I have a thick skin for hrash comments. But the reality is that I had put a lot more of myself in this game than I would have ever expected. It’s no use to have a thick skin if you have your most vulnerable parts of yourself out in the open. Spark isn’t just a game for me but more of a piece of myself I digitalized and put in a form that others can experience and live. As someone who is extremely reserved, this is terrifying: it’s like living an open door on my soul.
I knew that I had to push though it. On December the 30th, Spark: De Sacrificio was finished. I knew it wasn’t perfect, but it didn’t matter: I knew I had to close this loop and go on. So, here it is. Spark.
So, going back to the original question: why should you care about Spark: De Sacrificio?
Because it’s sincere.
I put all my passion and knowledge in this game. It’s not a great game, I know it. But I know it is unique, in its own weird way. As I said, even if you won’t notice, there is a lot of me in it.
Oh, and it’s free. But that was a given. See it as a present to other developers who really love this medium as much as I do.
Thanks for reading these ramblings.
Without lots of talking, In this series of small videos I will be showing how I do my mini games, quickly and almost perfectly.
And here my entry if you like to play, Apart from the UI missing to show the collected shapes, and the player slow speed, the game is amazing. I will change this problems when the vote get finished.
For more Tutorials, games and animations. I will appreciate if you subscribe to the channel, and follow the updates here :
So I kinda failed this LD, as in: I gave up. But let’s not be sad about that, it’s Christmas! So instead, I think im gonna play all of your games and record it! Leave a comment to this post with the name of your game and a link to it, and I will make sure to play it and upload a video of it to my channel: http://www.youtube.com/mrdutyfull
Merry Christmas (or happy holidays, depending on your belief) and I will see you in my next video!
This being my second Ludum Dare and my first Jam and I had such a wonderful time last time, I was thinking of documenting this with an autobiogradocumentasupervlog™®©. Basically I want to take little tiny vlogs here and there throughout the jam documenting the trials and tribulations of the jam. Now for the question(s)….
How many of you think this would be a good idea? Would you watch it? do you think other people would watch it?
I’m going to do it regardless and see how it turns out but I think it would be nice to get some feedback from you guys here.
This document can help you get an overview of how much time you have at your disposal. I colored and labled the hour/time boxes according to Swedish time. If there are more people in your team you can add more rows of boxes, indicating when they will sleep and such.
So while messing around with the new tools and digging around in the forums at the Unity website I found something I know I’ll be able to use in this coming Dare and if not perhaps in another project. It’s a 2D character controller akin to the 3D one found in the standard assets. I’m sure if any of you have spent the time to scrape the surface of the Unity forums on the 2D topic have found this already, but I figure it can’t hurt to post it here!
And if you guys are curious I found it in this thread:
So a big thanks to Prime31 studios for sharing this great tool with the unity community. I figure it would only be a disservice to not share it here.
Here’s their website:
I want to make it really clear that Prime31 studios get’s all the credit they deserve for this great tool under the Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.
If you’re curious here’s the simple explanation page for it and the more thorough license page. (both of these can be found at the bottom of the the Github page btw)
simple explanation: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/deed.en_US
actual license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/legalcode
So good luck to everyone this weekend, and once again a thanks to Prime31 Studios.
So, I’ll be joining in this year, I considered last year but IRL invaded my coding times.
I’ll use Java with it’s own libraries, Paint.NET for the art, Reaper for the music (well, we’ll see if I get anything done since I’ve been playing the piano only for a few months now) and bfxr for the sound effects.
I put a little script together you can use for faster / more convenient slauthering.
It’s rather simple: Voting by arrowkeys: up = google it, left = good, right = bad, down = slaughter!
To use it, install greasemonke in your browser and install the script:
Enjoy & Happy Voting
I was thinking that Charity Game Jam is a great opportunity to practice for LD 28 and also get some hand on experience with Unity 4.3′s 2D toolsets so I didn’t wasted much time yesterday morning and started to create my art assets. Things didn’t went smoothly though as our ISP went Boom early in the morning and the lack of Internet was painful.
Fortunately this morning the service risen from it’s ashes and I can give you this small update on what the hell I’ve been doing so take this piece of art [notes: don't get your hopes up people, I'm not an artist, but I can tell I'm not alone by browsing some past Posts :3 ]:
For a long time I’ve had plans to create a game engine entirely based on cellular automata which is universally applicable to different game genres. Somehow I never got round to it, until now.
Cellular automata (aka cellular spaces or CA) are found in various games. For example, games like the powder game and sand physics games can be built using CA. It can also be used for simple fire and water physics, as is for example found in Minecraft.
There have been several attempts at CA game engines that I know of. There is Rocks ‘n Diamonds, which is a sort of ultimate Boulderdash clone where you can define your own rules, Hacktile, which is probably the closest to what I want, but is very old and seems to have been abandoned, and the recent Puzzlescript, which looks like a promising project, but not targeted toward action games.
I created my own CA engine called CellSpace, which is just now in a state that you can actually define a complete game with it. It still has many limitations, but in the spirit of “release early, release often” I released a first version with a tutorial and two example games.
As an example of how it works, here’s how you specify falling and rolling boulders, Boulderdash-style:
The 3×3 grids represent 3×3 tile areas on the screen. Left is the pattern that it tries to find on the screen, and right is the pattern it rewrites to when it matches the pattern on the left. Black squares indicate “don’t care” values, grey ones indicate an “empty space” tile, and the boulders represent “boulder” tiles.
At this stage, you can define a game using a textual language called CellScript. I’m still experimenting with the engine’s expressive power vs ease of use, but I already found the current version enables easy creation of various interesting game mechanics. Ideal for whipping up a prototype of an original puzzle/action game.
OK… now I have this little idea involving fish and CA style water physics, so let’s see if I still have time to create a shark game for MiniLD #46 with this engine!
Available for free on the GDC Vault. This is an incredible (and sadly missed) magazine. I recommend any aspiring, hobbyist, or independent game developer peruse through this archive. Many insightful articles for all fields related to game development.
I previously wrote about how you should subscribe to this magazine. Alas, the magazine is now gone, but you can read everything in PDF form.
After the great inspiration I got from Hackfield, I started to plan a bigger sequel. There are only some simple feature ideas, but I hope you like even this one (even though these are just plans)!
2041. Years before, the biggest panicwave in humanity’s history have spread all over the world. After this event – that is known as the Anubis Incident – the United Nations have remade the architecture of the Internet by completely changing the security system of the New Age Protocol.
Needless to say, that it makes recovering way longer – but finally, they could implement their final plan: reorganizing the whole internet. Now it’s called „The NetField”, where computers are available only through governmental nodes.
Surveillance of people have reached a level we’ve never seen before. The NetField is fully censored and controlled; everyone who uses it is not able to get informations that is not allowed by the governments of the world. They try to cover it with the depiction of a perfect world (Utopia, as they call), but the truth is that the gap between working people and leaders is increasing.
Resistance expected that the Anubis Incident may help to take over the world and starting everything over – but the Center was quicker. With an unkown power that makes governments stronger, security forces could save and conquer almost the whole computer network of NAP.
The resistance couldn’t escape this time. A lot of them are already dead. However, Hackfield have survived the chaos, and stayed up-to-date until the born of the NetField. It dissapeared then…
- hub of computers
Hackfield acts like a special browser that allows you to manage inside the main architecture of the server you are connecting with. By this, closed connections are available, and even though it’s a bit harder, you can contact with computers that are not connected to the NetField – indirectly, every computers are available through the NetField, since the incredible amount of WiFi systems.
- specialized targets
The computer name generator of the original Hackfield is on a great way of being fixed and improved. To make it sense, all kinds of computers are gonna be custom. Every computers are going to have different memory map size, difficulty, variety of used tools and custom access-ports, files, softwares etc. on them.
- manipulation of the world
Change variables in access-ports to make people pay attention in real life for your actions! Close doors, turn connecting systems on and off, change text of monitors, send messages throughout real life, and so on – but be careful, before you are becoming disconnected!
Low-level systems? Low-level operations! Use the WiFi system that covers the whole world to your own advantage! Hack WiFi stations, check the list of available devices, and manipulate smartphones and cars!
- thousands of records and e-news
Don’t forget: this is a living world! While the hours and days you’re spending on the NetField, event happening around the world. Follow them through various news portal, or read the historical event that happened since and before the Anubis Incident!
This is only my second Ludum Dare, and it’s been awesome. The LD website itself is very nicely done, too, however I think three features would be absolutely great:
I would love to be notified when someone replies to me in a post comment, but perhaps more importantly, it would be nice to receive some kind of notification if something happens in a game’s comments where I just posted/rated. The criterion for notification in these cases could be as simple as looking for the presence of an @username substring or something.
Notifications wouldn’t necessarily have to be by email – just a page listing them would be enough for me.
Flagging / Reporting
There are “entries” that should be removed by moderators, such as this: http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-27/?action=preview&uid=27569
It would be nice to have a flag button.
Sorting Order of Reviewed Games
This is a minor one, but it would actually be quite useful. Right now, the list of games you reviewed is in no particular order. This makes it very hard to find them again. It would be cool if they could be sorted by timestamp of review, or if that’s too complicated, maybe alphabetically.
These two times I’ve participated in Ludum Dare have been awesome. During the compos, I’ve learned a lot about making games, as well as handling the limited resources involved. After the compos, I’ve had the chance to play awesome games made in such sort periods of time. But the most heart-warming thing is that I’ve got such great feedback, especially about the music I’ve made. That’s really something I appreciate, and I want you to know. Thank you!
Truth be told, I’ve never played my music for anyone and I have made it mainly for my own entertainment. As I’ve got so good response from you guys, I decided to throw the LD tunes – and some others as well – to SoundCloud for everyone to listen to. I hope you enjoy those tracks as much as I’ve enjoyed creating them, and please, feel free to share! I’ll keep uploading new tracks as I do them.
The final thing I wanted to say is that if you have a game project, a media production or anything that is in need of a soundtrack, let me know. I have some spare time left and I would be more than happy to make music for you guys, be it free or commercial project. You can send me e-mail to themanabreak (at) gmail dot com, or send a SoundCloud private message (or at TIGSource, I’m ‘manabreak’ there).
Again, thank you for your feedback and support. You’re awesome!
(Psst, my LD27 entry is Beyond Hope :))
This weekend was pretty fun. It was my first time doing something like this. I had a lot of crazy ideas at the start, but I knew I had to play it a bit safe if I wanted to get it finished. So while, innovation was important, it took a bit of a back seat to the rest of my goals.
In the end, besides the primary goal of completing the game, I also wanted to make it fun, challenging, and rewarding – hopefully most of that shines through this relatively unpolished piece. The main personal goal for entering this competition was to force myself to learn some new things and try out some techniques to add to my arsenal of game development. I capitalized on that aspect as well. I am happy with the result for these reasons.
HTML5 is great for these kind of competitions because I had people playing and testing while I was developing all simultaneously. I think that sped up my development process a lot. I was originally going to try out Phaser, a recent HTML5 game engine, but was having a lot of issues with physics and collision. In the end, I decided to do it from scratch and the result was a lot smoother, but I definitely wasted a bit of time testing Phaser and then coding my own systems. Time which could have been spent doing some of the stuff below.
If I had more time, I would of fixed up some of these things:
Better Internet Explorer 9 & 10 Support
Foolishly, I assumed IE9/10 had nearest neighbor scaling for canvas. I was wrong!
I know I wanted to use some pretty advanced jumping physics. I got most of it in, like arcing, imprecise corner jumping, corner boosting, friction, dynamic jump heights (based on input); however, on smaller jumps the arcing isn’t noticeable or effective. I would also perhaps like to implement jumping momentum like in Super Mario Bros 1/2/3 where your jump forces you into a direction a bit more so you can’t just stop dead in air.
So quiet… we need some trashy chiptune stuff going on! Sadly, my skills are quite lacking in this department.
While there is a decent amount of content for a 48 hour game, I would maybe like to push that more. More power-ups, more block types and mechanics, better randomization/templating. Who knows, maybe even some real enemies?
It’s an HTML5 game, right?! So, ideally, with some more time I could of added some touch controls for this to work on mobile and touch devices.
All in all though, I’m very pleased and look forward to the next Ludum Dare! Who knows, maybe I will expand on this one after all.
I had a great time with LD#27. This was my first, but not certainly my last.
Unfortunately, I ran out of time and forfeited about 3 hours before the compo was over. :-/
Here’s some helpful tips that I learned – some of them are real no-brainers:
Know your language. (DUH!)
I chose my language based on the project idea. Unfortunately, I chose a language that I wasn’t familiar enough with to be proficient in the given amount of time.
Have a couple of languages and frameworks under your belt. (DUH!)
See previous tip.
Practice before the compo. (DUH!)
Take the week (or two weeks) before the compo to practice coding in your best languages. I got marred up in things like XML parsing in the language I was using.
Know your tools. (DUH!)
See previous tip. If you haven’t used (insert tool here) in a while, spend some time to re-familiarize yourself with it.
Be prepared. (DUH!)
Don’t spend the first few hours having to install software or setup repositories. Set that up before hand. This is something else that was a big time suck.
Do all your errands before the compo starts.
Again, this goes back to being prepared. Run your errands, stock your pantry, do your laundry, etc. I had to run buy groceries and household supplies during the compo. It ended up being more of a time suck than I thought.
Don’t plan anything else during the compo. (DUH!)
I ended up having something pre-planned before entering the compo. Again, it was a big time suck. Also, I was unmotivated to code afterward. So much time lost with this one.
Go outside for a bit to clear your head – or at the very least, step away for a while.
For those that have a day job, take time off.
If you can, take off the day before the compo starts and the day after the compo ends. Take the day before to prepare, run errands, etc. The compo also got my body out of sync with my normal schedule – late nights and 4 hour sleep schedules. Getting up this morning was a real bitch. Take the day after to get back into sync with your normal schedule.
Hope everyone had a great time! See you on #28!
I’ve come this far:
The engine is about completely done, now all I need to do is add content and tweak some stuff around and it’ll be a game!
Feeling good about it, my goal was to have it finished for the compo of course, but things considered ‘bad’ happened, and now ideal shift.
I send a “Well done!” to all of you that have finished for the compo!