I was born in '86 and have been a professional engineer in the game industry for a few years now. I've worked on an unpublished XBLA/WiiWare title and 3 published iPhone games (GodFinger, Valet Hustle, dizm SKATE). I currently work at ngmoco and am working on an upcoming game.
Ludum Dare 24
Ludum Dare 23
Ludum Dare 22
Ludum Dare 21
October Challenge 2010
Ludum Dare 17
Awarded by Zac on December 8, 2008
Most Ridiculous Stereotype
Awarded by Ondure on December 7, 2008
Orangy Tang says ...
Nice - love the particle effects. :)
sol_hsa says ...
Required reading of the instructions to know how to play, but other than that, pretty nice!
erik says ...
Neat particles, bad stereotypes.
nilsf says ...
Funny, but the score keeps increasing even after you lose and there doesn't seem to be a way to restart after you lose.
Gilvado says ...
I liked it, overall. Pretty particle effects. Also couldn't find a way to restart after you lose (which I did a lot >__>).
dertom says ...
Haha,..that was a real "rice" one! Actually I didnt "REROAD" fast enough letting the badbad Zombies steal my RICE! NICE! :D Good work...like it!
DrPetter says ...
Great one. I doubt anyone hit the theme in as many ways as you did ;)
The particle effects are indeed effective, and the monsters sound very zomboid. The graphics come across more cartoony than poor, which is nice. Reminds me of the Bart games on NES.
My main complaints are with the interface - I initially launched the game with my keyboard out of reach, so had to get up and fetch it to select a difficulty level only to realize that the game is actually played exclusively with the mouse after all... Also, more importantly perhaps, the default cursor is really lost in the mayhem of gameplay, so you should have put in a huge flashing reticle or something to show where you're aiming. Oh, and there were some interesting timing hickups - the game would sometimes freeze for a second or two, and other times it'd race ahead at breakneck speed for an instant. It didn't seem to disrupt gameplay all that much though (but I guess I could have lost a few boxes of rice without noticing).
Overall it's fun and frantic. I scored 180-something after maybe a 5-minute run on normal difficulty.
caturday says ...
Ditch the stupid racial humor (by a white guy?!) and you've got something.
Hamumu says ...
Well, I was all set to write my "this game is way too easy" comment, when it suddenly froze for a second and instantly all my rice was gone! It was my email checking that did it, but ouch. Oh, I just remembered I was playing on easy, so it should be too easy, so good job.
I'm still not so sure about the two rockets though. It seems like the right way to play is simply to go left-right at a couple guys, then reload. There doesn't seem much point in the two missiles (other than cool effects), because you have very little chance to suck multiple guys into one wormhole, and you can't risk a guy getting by, so you always need to fire one for one. At least that's my theory. I would try a higher difficulty to check, but the load time was a couple of minutes the first time, I don't want to do that again!
I won't touch the ... more sensitive issues...
rtsl says ...
Liked: Fun, Insane Humor, Theme Interpretation, Sound, Particle Effects, Nothing to install
Could Improve on: Resolution/Graphics (or decide to keep graphics deliberately retro-trashy then maybe make it even more trashy).
HybridMind says ...
Even though I didn't fare to well on this game it was quite amusing to play with all the crazy visuals, particles and over the top sound effects. "Right" or "Wrong", I appreciate the word play time you put into making use of the 'road' theme in the words throughout your game design.
dave1 says ...
The effects from killing the monsters was a nice touch and liked the overall design. The hardest part for me was the controls. It seemed like moving around didn't really offer much... main thing was to fire and fire often and not miss. Still had fun even though I died a lot.
increpare says ...
heh. cute idea (issues of offense aside).
If you could hide the mouse, that might increase the fun. Adding obstacles, or something that'd make one use one's control of one's vehicle, would also be good.
Particle effects were cool, as other people have already said.
ondrew says ...
Enjoyed this one, especially Reroad :).
More screen space between the truck and zombies would be nice. The game seemed quite crowded all the time.
I have to give technical 1 for the Java App Deployment stuff.
Morre says ...
I'm not really sure what to make of this game. On one hand, it's got incredible graphics, entertaining sounds, an odd story, and a good dose of humor. On the other hand, the gameplay is not much fun for me.
I'm guessing one of the reasons I don't think it's a lot of fun is that the scoring system is unfinished. With such simple scoring, and the ability to keep increasing the score after game over, there's no motivation.
Stunning work, great resources, but lacks something when it comes to gameplay. :)
See you around JGO!
Jonathan Whiting says ...
There's some decent stuff here, but to me it feels kind of like the game has suffered at expense of the humour, and having said that I don't actually find it especially funny either.
The particle effects are nice though, it has a distinctive style, and it's relatively polished too, so good marks for all of those :)
Archive for the ‘LD #13 – Roads – 2008’ Category
Wow, I’ve got the best food, and the second best journal.
I can’t say I expected that, but I did expect EIR! to land just about where it did in the other categories. 14th overall, with my other places in that ballpark. That’s top 24% which really isn’t bad, and I said to myself after playing everyone else’s games, “it’s one of the better games but not one of the best games.” And I was right.
One thing that I learned from this whole experience which I hadn’t gotten from my previous game ventures was a chance to see what’s successful. After creating them I think I have a good feel for which of my games have something really good going for them and which don’t, but that’s different than being able to specifically point out what gets acknowledged by the community as “good.”
So, what is good? What does that really mean? In Ludum Dare 13, it means something that looks complete, and not something that looks like it was made within a time limit. The vast majority of the entries to LD13 were more like demos and attempts than completed games (mine amongst them), because people would finish an engine and time would be up. The top 5 places in overall could all be described as games that set out to achieve something and did it. Complete products, no holes anywhere. That, I believe, is the most important piece of doing well in a 48 hour competition.
There’s more to it than that, obviously. The game needs to have something unique in it to set it apart. Some of the games submitted were complete but didn’t do amazingly well, mostly because they didn’t stand out enough. Increpare, the big winner of LD13, made something that any one of us could have done. His gameplay is crazily simple, the execution of it not at all complicated. But his idea is so standout and brilliant that he went away with 5 medals, all of which were gold. Then there is PsySal, who weaved an engrossing story, and bluescrn who who executed incredible gameplay. All of these approaches are different, but the key point is that they all stand out.
Similarly, you also need to have a sort of minimum level of execution in every other category. If there is one part of your game that is memorable because it’s bad, then you’re pretty much out of the running. When I saw the initial screenshots of these games I thought Fiona’s entry was a surefire winner, because the presentation is so slick and the idea so cool. But when I played it the controls were so difficult that this potential was immediately eliminated. Meanwhile although increpare’s gameplay was ridiculously simple, there was something about creating that movie length time limit and the maddening screw-you-over mechanics that made the gameplay good, and some people spent a lot of time trying to get to an “end.” His gameplay certainly wasn’t the best, but because it wasn’t at all bad, his game was able to seem like (and become) a winner.
So, in the end, what you need is:
1) A complete-feeling and polished game.
2) Something that makes your game stand out.
3) No major or easily noticed problems with your game.
Easier said than done, of course. But the most noticeable thing to me is that bells and whistles and complexity of gameplay are completely unimportant. It’s much better to take a simple idea and make that work perfectly.
Thanks for all the comments so far! I’ve enjoyed seeing how everyone has liked the game.
Here are a few responses to some of your comments:
- Anyone who said there needs to be a restart button:
I fully agree, so I added one after the contest was over. There are also multiple difficulty levels in it.
- Anyone who said that it takes too long to load at first:
It’s because the sound files are wav, I’ll put them in ogg at some point. This loading time will only happen once, however, as it caches this data on your hard disk. So once you’ve loaded it once (basically equivalent to downloading it) then you won’t have to again for longer than half a second.
- Anyone who said it would freeze and suddenly rush forward:
I don’t know why I did this, but I definitely spent more time to get a dynamic frame rate going, instead of a fixed one. This was I guess to allow slow motion / ultra speed (you can see that easy mode is slower overall than hard), but I also wanted it to be able to adapt to any computer speed so it would be able to play effectively the same speed no matter what it was on, it would just skip frames. Unfortunately, when a ton of particles fly down this actually causes it to skip a bunch of frames. So I’ll either make it take a frame rate average for a longer period of time or I’ll remove this.
- In response to ondrew saying “I have to give technical 1 for the Java App Deployment stuff.”
I have no idea what you’re talking about and I don’t feel this is justified. Did you give me a technical of 1 because you just don’t like Java, or what? Java is a full fledged programming language and does no more for you than C++. I made it in Java because I prefer Java and because I’m on Mac, therefore it’s more accessible to me. Not because it’s easier or something. All of the technical impressiveness of this game (read: particle effects) would have been exactly as difficult on C++. It’s all using direct OpenGL access which is equivalent in Java and C++. Please edit your review to explain exactly what you mean by “Java App Deployment Stuff.” Thanks.
- In response to Morre:
I totally agree with you, actually. It’s got sort of the basic gameplay in it but not enough variety to be one of my favorite pastimes. If you’re interested, you can try the post-LD version which improves the scoring a lot, adds in a harder (and an easier) difficulty, and also fixes that score increase bug.
Thanks again, everybody! Hopefully my comments have been helpful as well.
I have finally rated everything that I can possibly run (on Mac OS X or with Boot Camp in Windows), and phew that was a challenge. Now I see why we have 2 weeks to vote.
I’m glad I finally got to do a LD48. I’ve been making games for something like 12 years now so I’m happy I can still find the time to do it even though I’ve got a full time post-college job now. As a personal note, I think I chose a gameplay idea that was the perfect level of simplicity for a 48 hour contest, and I think I executed it as well as I could have hoped. This is my second timed competition, and although both times it has come down to the last few minutes for me, I’m surprised at how well I’ve been able to execute a simple idea without adding too many bells and whistles. As someone who has a few games I’ve spent years on and almost none I did in a few days, this is pretty big for me.
I’m sort of ashamed at my game’s racism at this point, though. Although I’m a person who strongly believes in the value of nearly crossing the line for comedy, I actually managed to annoy some people on this, which wasn’t my intention. I figure because it’s so pixelated and poorly drawn nobody would mind so much. In order to get that risky comedy I think I alienated a few people from my possible audience, but that’s life I suppose.
I think maybe I’ll update it so you’re a redneck with a shotgun shouting, “Yeehaw, pa, relawd!”
Would that make it more appropriate?
Badness aside, having gone once into the foray of stupid bad racist humor, I think I’ll stay out of it in the future.
And while I’m here, a plug for my website which has some other (most incomplete) games.
Check out the timelapse. Enjoy the music. I thought it appropriate to put equally offensive and weird music in my timelapse to match my game’s own theme.
I added a new version of the game.
New (non-contest) Version Here HAS A RESTART BUTTON:
(The new version has menus, multiple difficulty levels, and a lot of tweaks)
Just though I’d note that I added in a splash screen and local caching of images and sounds, which you can consider not part of my original entry if you want. I just wanted to save your time and my bandwidth.
Here it is, last second. Lots more I wanted to do, but it’s fun.
New (non-contest) Version Here HAS A RESTART BUTTON:
(The new version has menus, multiple difficulty levels, and a lot of tweaks)
Contest Version Here:
Basically, you want to avoid the zombies. Shoot them with left click in order to kill them temporarily (exproad them) and shoot them with right click in order to kill them permanently (improad). Move the mouse to the left edge of the screen to replenish lost ammo (reroad).
Oh yeah, you can also use WASD you move your car. And due to some weird bug in Java’s resource loading, I had to take the images/sounds out of the JAR and host them on my site, and then load them dynamically. Basically as a result you’ll get a very quick (only 97k) source download but you’ll stare at a black screen for like 5 seconds every time when you start up. I’ll try to get to the bottom of this in the future. It’s weird because I used the exact same resource loader code I’ve used a million times before. Not sure what the problem is.
Oh yeah and press F to toggle full screen, and ESC to quit.
A longer more detailed entry:
This is my game for LD13. Basically, I was totally peeved with the road theme so I decided to go with something totally different (and a little racist). I tried to find things that I could pretend fit the theme but were actually totally different, and eventually found rhymes for road, which were explode, implode, and reload. That got my mind working and it became a game where you play as an asian with a bad English accent. And turns out it actually does take place on a road and in a car. Oops.
Please vote for me, good or bad!
WASD or Arrows – Move truck around
Mouse – Aim your gun
Mouse button 1 – Shoot and exproad
Mouse button 2 – Shoot an improad
Move mouse to left side of screen – Reroad
F – Toggle fullscreen
Esc – Quit the game
You are a humble Chinese rice farmer who is just turning in for the day when you hear groans from behind you. Oh noes, the terrible rice-eating zombies are back (in China, zombies eat rice, not brains, similar to how in France they eat frogs and in Egypt they eat pyramids), and they’re after your rice! Your faithful brother and you load up your pickup truck with all the rice you can carry, and he takes the driver’s seat while you man your giant RICE ROCKET. The zombies can smell that rice, though, and they’re putting up a chase! Everyone knows that even if you blow up a zombie (exproad it) it will pull itself back together, so you’ve got to exproad them and then improad their fleshy bits while they fly in the air. Good luck!
Basically, you want to defend your rice from the rice-eating zombie plague. You start with 8 bags, and when you get down to 0 to lose. If a zombie touches you, he takes either 1 or 2 bags. In order to kill a zombie, you’ve got to first blow it apart (with left click) and then implode its pieces (with right click). You’ve only got a limited number of shots, however, so move the mouse to the left side of the screen in order to reload. The game gets progressively more difficult the longer you survive. You can’t win.
I will probably add some new stuff, like I already have score half-working, but the game was spazzing out when I was drawing dynamic OpenGL text. Must have messed something up. Basically you’ll be able to beat levels, upgrade your weapon, etc. etc. The usual.
I had some lunch today, believe it or not. It’s my famously delicious macaroni and cheese recipe, known throughout the world for its incredible ingenuity. Because I like you guys so much, I’ll fill you in on the secret ingredients, but if you tell anyone I’ll know it was you and I’ll be very angry.
Eli’s Top Secret Super Famous Macaroni and Cheese Recipe:
- Milk product
- Milk product
So now you know. Here are the treacherously difficult steps to create this fine cuisine:
First, cut up some of the secret ingredient.
Next, boil that other secret ingredient.
After the secret ingredient is all squishified (test with your fingers!), strain it and then put it back in the pot (not pictured). Then add the other secret ingredients.
Stir it until it’s all melty and then pour it onto a plate and eat! Best served with something else orange (like orange juice) so you can be color-coded. Make sure to be really happy and look like an idiot (pictured).
Now you’ve got yourself some delicious Eli’s Super Secret Famously Created Macaroni and Cheese (it’s so famous nobody even can keep the name straight!).
Exproad, Improad, Reroad! is coming along well. There is actually a game at this point. The zombies run towards you, steal your rice, then run away with it. If you run out of rice you lose. You can shoot them to kill them (with an exproad), but then they explode into particles which float around. If you don’t get rid of the particles (with an improad) then they’re regenerate and come back to life. Things become even more frantic when you run out of bullets and have to recharge them (with a reroad)! Anyway reroading and improading aren’t put in yet, but exproading is all set. I’ve made sprites for different bullet types, but I dunno if I’ll have time to put in an upgrade system.
Here’s what I had for breakfast. The D would have looked more awesome but the cretins at Trader Joe’s but the bananas at the bottom of the bag and I had to cut some of it off. The noive! Also, I forgot to buy some more Joe’s O’s, which are like my life’s blood, so I had to settle with Raisin Crap instead.
Exproad, Improad and Reroad! is coming along well, I should definitely have a fun little game for tomorrow (today) night. It’s 4 AM where I am and I’m going to turn in for the night. Before I did/do, however, I had some yummy sweetened and dried mango strips from Trader Joe’s.
The packaging, however, leaves something to be desired. I mangled my thumbs trying to get the bastard of a thing open. It’s as if I’ve got an actual mango and I’ve got to get into it. Wait, no, it’s more like having a mango with a coconut surrounding it, and then maybe like a lockbox or something on the outside of that. But I would never cut it open, no. Got to preserve freshness!
Success! We have mangos!
On a more related note… good stuff from my game, like I said before. I’m going for a nifty 8-bit look, because I figured that would make it easier to make decent artwork. Turns out that ugly goes to super ugly, but whatever. I’m just drawing malformed pickup trucks, Asians, and zombies.
Anyway. I also went with 8-bit because I recently made my own engine for doing modern-NES games (I’m calling it JPixel, I might release it open source soon), so I decided it would be fun to use that. I also had simple physics and particle effects coded in JPixel, so that helps save some time too.
Time for some sleep!
I forgot to take pictures. But, I found some nice Google image search results that look kinda like my food.
Let’s start with a nice garden salad, hold the dressing! Mine consisted of romaine lettuce, tomatoes, onion, radish, carrot, and maybe something else I don’t remember. Yummy!
Two yummy hot dogs! Can’t have a meal without something that looks overtly phallic, can I? Mmm, so yummy to slide into my gaping mouth piece. Ketckup only, please. Mustard is for British people.
Ravioli stuffed with dead cow. Now that’s good eating. I had some Ragu on there to give it a little extra kick (I got it from Aisle 2).
Calories: 800 (2.5 servings = 1 package)
No I’m not fat yet, but it’ll probably happen. In other news, I made a sprite sheet for my game. It’s going to run at 8-bit NES size (stretched to 1024×768) with only the NES colors. Sweet! And don’t worry about the irregular positioning of every sprite, I’ve already got a utility I made that automatically scans any sprite sheet of any kind and saves them all as properly sequenced OpenGL textures.
Oh yes, did I mention that my game is called, “Exproad, Improad, Reroad!” Yes, indeedy. PS it is a little bit politically incorrect, and has very poorly drawn Asians and zombies.
The start of Ludum Dare totally blew my mind. Looks like I’ve got only a day to complete this. Hmm…
Roads?!? You guys seriously chose roads? Man, sad news. Well okay, I’ll do it, but next time you people should do something that is way less genre defining.
So, I’ve got 27 hours to make a game. Well, I think making the best overall game is out, so I’ll go for the comedy options. The ideas are churning.
Just getting an initial test for this journal. Seeing as I’m at a mad dash to try to get my Retro Remakes competition entry done, I don’t know if I’ll be able to put up such a good Ludum Dare entry, but I figure I’ll give it a go.
You can check out my website at http://www.otcsw.com/ if you’re curious about my background.