Posts Tagged ‘fail’
After a streak of 7 finished ludum dare in a row, I must admit that LD28 defeated me.
What went wrong?
- Well, I had a bit of a cold all weekend, so I wasn’t very productive and since I was very tired, I decided to let myself sleep as much as I could so I just didn’t work as much as usual.
- It took me a while to motivate myself to make a game for this theme.
- The theme restriction prevented me from moving my game into a different direction, that might have been more fun and easier to finish because I had to stick to my initial excuse for “you only get one”
- I lacked a clear and strong concept for my game, so I ended up toying with it rather than moving toward a finished game in a straight line.
- Increasing expectations, especially after LD26 which went very well, I have had increasing expectations about what the quality of my game should be.
But anyway I had fun, I didn’t finish but I did spend most of 3 days playing with Unity, ZBrush, Substance Designer, etc and I got some embryo of a game out of it. Anyway, here’s a screenshot:
(Sorry for the extremely long post here, it just ended up that way. I’m not sure the timeline was necessary, but I don’t see why not. :D)
Hello everybody! Well. Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to make my game for the competition, and what with school and all, there is absolutely no way I can complete the game for the jam either. My progress just wasn’t good enough to manage that.. I started the dare with a color palette, specifically DawnBringers 32 Color Palette (http://www.pixeljoint.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=16247). Here are some screenshots of the game with slightly different things changed in the code, so you get different pictures (except that last one, which is a “victory screen”):
Now, I will write out what went well and what went badly, and then tell you, the reader, everything that I remember that happened during that weekend of madness.
- My sprites looks bloody incredible, if I may say so myself. I am shockingly proud of how well they all, mostly, came out. Particularly that door and sword. I suppose the palette kinda helped, but they DO look good. There’s even a cheap animation going where the sprites sorta bounce up and down.
- A turn based RPG was a good idea, I still think, even if it was basically impossible to do in two days.
- I think the basic underlying structure of the program was rather nice. It was ordered into the following classes: Map (stores all the rooms), Room (which has a set of up to 4 monsters in it, which you fight), a specialized Art class (inspired directly by Notch’s code and stores all BufferedImages) and a specialized InputHandler class (also inspired directly by Notch’s code from a while back, and stores all key detection, and mouse detection).
- For all the craziness, and terrible programming that it led to, I did have fun. It was a stressful, confusing fun, but it was some good fun.
- Priorities! Number ONE. My priority at the start was make something that worked. And for a while, I stuck to that. But once I had my brainwave to make a turn based RPG, I scrapped all that and for some reason, I prioritized a ton of set up of something that was far too big to actually be made. In hindsight, of course, that was a terrible, terrible, idea.
- I didn’t actually have an idea until about 9 o’clock on Saturday. Which is really bad. And once I had an idea, I had to scrap what little I did have, which could have led to a game which I might have actually been able to make.
- My entire concept from the ground up was flawed, in that it is essentially impossible for someone of my skill level to actually make to a decent standard in two days.
- I have never in my life made a turn based RPG, and the entire process required to make one was (and still is) entirely lost to me.
- I began to panic. The panic made my code erratic and illogically laid out, to the point where I can no longer understand most of the content code, and actually can’t finish the game. To make it, I’d need to restart.
- I wasted far, far too much time making graphics. This is a constant issue I have with game development. Every personal game project I have is affected by this wierd obsession with making a good looking game, especially if it has pixels. Most didn’t even make it into the “game”.
The Ugly – Day One
10:30 – 13:00 GMT
I woke up and learnt of the theme, “You Only Get One” at about 10:30 on Saturday, and immediately set to work thinking about something to actually make around this idea. For the most part, at the start all I could think of was a crappy rouge-lite where you played some guy who had to do something (I’m not sure what anymore), but only had one safe opportunity to do so, at which stage you would inevitably die. In hindsight, it was probably more doable than what I ended up trying to make, though.
13:00 – 18:00 GMT
I started to program at this stage, and very quickly set up a system where a Map class was able to read a graphic, and create a map. The map was made up of instances of a Tile class, and worked. You could then move around a square, and the camera would follow the coordinate of the player, so the player was always centered, except near the edges of the map. Also worked very nicely. Then I had a system set up where I could select a graphic in program and this would be rendered at the player. At some stage, I then had this be able to rotate to face the mouse, which was pretty nice. Hadn’t had something like that work before. I also had some rudimentary set up all done for general entities, and capabilities in the program for it to make the map up of a variety of tiles. Had dinner after that.
19:00 – 20:00 GMT
During dinner, I had an epiphany. I had a “great” idea that I could “totally do” in a day. I could make a turn-based RPG, with 4 characters against a randomized assortment of monsters! But each character and each monster can only have 1 item equipped! Yes! This is a great idea! And I immediately got to… Making graphics for this hypothetical game idea. I got quite a good deal of things made in this time, in fact, here’s a picture of what I had done at this end of this time period:
That is essentially, a set of weapons, some armor, a character base, some armor to go on top, a few animations and some random monsters. On the side, in orange, are a number of things I made relatively quickly, and ended up scrapping altogether, as I decided that it was too much hassle to make a number of graphics for an overworld of sorts, and ended up focusing specifically on this combat system of 1 item only.
20:00 – 23:30 GMT
For 3 hours, I went through the code I had and scrapped everything and anything that was useless. Including that map, those tiles, the player sprite system and all semblance of a game. Again, a terrible idea in hindsight. This took about an hour, as everything was reasonably well integrated. Then I started to program the underlying structure of the combat system, creating the basic structure of statistics, mocking comments that enemies and characters would make, and creating item files. This wasn’t done in a particular rush, but by the end of this time period, I had a reasonably good structure on which I could build a combat system onto, once I had items and statistics complete. No stress at this point. Then, I went to bed, as you do.
The Uglier – Day Two
10:30 – 12:00 GMT
I woke up, and started work almost immediately. Over night, I realized that I needed more graphics to make the game playable at all, so I made some more items, and created some 8-bit font, which probably wouldn’t fit in too well, but was pretty good for what I needed. Readable, and understandable. No real problems there, and I got that done in reasonably short time. I then started working on the combat system. This ended up being incredibly confusingly programmed and, now, I have no idea how I even got by with that mess of code, so I can’t really talk about it. It was a mess though, but it was usable, and actually worked. By the time I finished, I was able to create some rectangles that I would eventually call a floor and wall. Then, I ate lunch and cleaned my room, as one does.
14:15 – 17:00 GMT
For a few hours, I sort of flailed about, trying to set up a set of underlying programs. Particularly getting the underlying, statistics and text, working. Then I put some work into making the game into a game. By 3 o’clock, I had some sort of thing running, with the players set to appear on the screen, but without the menu you see in the screenshots, and some monsters on the other side. By 4 o’clock, I had their respective items also rendering, so you could actually see their item. To end, I made a door and a chest, and the chest was set to always render (it would’ve explained where all the items came from) and the door could be clicked and any player could get a stat upgrade. At this stage, I started to panic. There was only about 4 hours left, and I had absolutely nothing worthwhile. I then ate dinner. Here’s the tilesheet at this point, and where it ended up at the end of the day:
18:00 – 23:20 GMT
Now my code really got bad. So absolutely terrible. I rushed in two hours to get a game, of sorts, with a terrible sort of button detection and some ability to click on party members, and use them to “attack” enemies. You had an attack button, and three magic buttons, which I would later cut down to one single magic button to cut time. I also created more statistics for use in the game, and some sort of crappy algorithm to calculate damage. In my rush,damage ended up being calculated where the attackers weapons attack stat would be added to a randomized value between 0 and whatever the characters attack value, with the the defense and item defense of the victim being taken away. Again, hindsight tells me that this wasn’t the BEST set up in the world, what with the whole illogical poor structure, but it kind of crappily worked, I suppose. I did everything in my power to bring this to the point where it was even slightly a game. I barely managed to get the combat system done, when I realized, I hadn’t made something that even slightly answered the theme, because I had forgotten the most essential part of my concept. The entire inventory and weapons system.
23:20 – 23:35 GMT
Now, I was in a very clear and very disappointing situation. There was no way I could complete the game, and there was absolutely nothing I could do. So, I made a post just after that moment, and went to bed.
I thank you, fellow stranger, for reading this long-winded, non-spellchecked, convoluted and slightly repetitive essay going into every single thing that I can remember. I intend to improve a ton of that for next time (which I will be attending). A TL;DR is probably expected here, but, uh, I’m not sure how to sum this up. Oh, I know.
TL;DR – I hope everybody had fun during LD28 and I wish the best of luck to everybody!
I don’t have an animation where he holds a gun. Je just stands there and the bullets just come directly from his crotch and spread in every direction like he is ejaculating. Turning them yellow would not make it better.
I don’t know how to film it and make a .gif from it so you have to wait until the end of LD to see this animated. I probably won’t fix it because the fix would cost to much time.
Well here we go: the game is unfinished, I’m tired and need to get up early tomorrow.
About three hours ago pretty much everything I tried constantly failed to work the way I wanted so I broke down and borrowed some code from one of my other games. Since 10 minutes ago everything is working pretty well, but I’m still missing one core feature as well as some music and lots of optimization (i.e. bug-fixing).
Meaning: compo’s done (failed). Good luck to all remaining contestants!
But the jam is on! I will finish the game tomorrow as a jam entry.
Another night to dream for all villains out there. Here’s a last screenshot for today:
Time to admit defeat, I’m not going to make it.
The major reason was I gave myself too much tech to write. In fact, if I’m going to be honest, I prefer tech writing to game writing (I’m not a fan of things like Unity, I think they hide too much away, so you end up learning the tool, not the method). The minor reason is that I wasn’t mad keen on the theme. I had two themes from the final round on my “Please don’t let these win” list, and one of them did. Ah well, better luck next time.
If you’re interested, the concept for “Hell is Other People’s Bullets” was that you would control the enemies in a vertical shmup in a similar manner to an RTS game. Things would be pretty frantic as, of course, the AI-controlled player could one-hit-kill most of your units. The beauty of the idea was that level design was more-or-less not required (however, I can see that seriously affecting the longevity of the game). And naturally the end-of-level boss would be the Enormous Mutant Star Goat from H2G2.
I’m reasonably happy, and now I’m going to do some gardening.
This time we were not able to finish the game, but we do learn some important lessons :
1. make agreements with the team, believe on me : personal events during the ludum dare can ruin your tighty schedule, so before start make sure everybody involved is in the same pace, and with the calendar free.
2. practice the basics of the technology some days before, even knowing Unity3D, as it’s not my daily basis tool some basic activities took more than expected.
3. react fast, as we had some changes in the people involved in the project, instead of creating useless code while waiting for the artist, I should change the game plan and go with something that could be done with my own artistic resources.
4. share results on facebook is not that hard check on this https://developers.facebook.com/docs/guides/games/getting-started/
5. define as a team what will be the folder names for the game assets in unity, so when the export package all over the place madness start, you don’t loose precious time reorganizing files, materials all over the project.
6. don’t make reusable code for ludumdare make straight forward code, and then after the ludum dare, find some time to refactor and reuse wherever you like.
This is only my second Ludum Dare, and I’m dropping out.
When I found out the theme was evolution I was really enthusiastic as I had a number of ideas for it. So I started and got a good way into the base coding, before I finalised my idea.
It wasn’t until,a couple of hours ago that I realised I had to rework some things….this is where I started downhill. As I’ve been working, different ideas and code snippets have been building in my head. So right now, it feels like a burden just to start writing code again.
As much as I would like to continue with this project, I’m going to have to pull out here. I’ll keep it as something to do sometime, but not for the contest.
Before I attempt another Ludum Dare I’m going to have to practice a bit more with the structure of a game, and also with the OpenGL side of things (planning to learn during LD is NOT a wise option)
I do feel disappointed with myself, but I know I’ll just get frustrated if I continue
See you next time
So, I did not complete anything for this Ludum Dare. Maybe next time.
What Went Wrong
- Could not come up with a good idea for the theme
- Sick with a persistent headache all weekend
- Debugging quirks in Unity took longer than expected
What Went Right
- I liked what I made
- The character controls feel good
- The animation is kind of nice
- I think it could have been kind of fun if I had a few more days
I knew in the back of my mind that I was not 100% committed to Ludum Dare this time. I knew I was unprepared, as I said in my “I’m in” post. I decided to join in far to late, without any warm-up, and in a language have not used in any real projects before. All I can say is… What was I thinking!
LD48 is not forgiving in nature. If you aren’t committed and ready, then your butt will be kicked! I am not saying that it is a total loss. Quite the opposite!
The main reason I gave it a go was because I hadn’t before. Every time, I would say “Oh, I am not really prepared, I will just do the next one, and be ready!” The problem with that is that I had no idea what “prepared” was. So this time I made the snap decision (2 hours before the theme announcement) to give it a go just to get a taste.
So I gave up with about 14 hours on the clock, and decided to go to bed instead. I will still carry on with my game, and develop it as a prototype further. But it just wont be for Ludum Dare.
So I think by next time, I will be ready, and will know a bit more what to expect. I get an idea of how long 48 hours actually is, and will maybe use a language/platform I have lots of experience in.
In the end I spent too much time researching possible engines and didn’t get anything finished. A lot of time was wasted trying to figure out how to make Slick2d work in an applet. But really I didn’t have a game to applet…ize.
Game Name: Kitten Alone
Libraries: LWJGL, Slick2d, MarteEngine
I ran out of time leading up to the event to do the kind of self-education that would have made this possible. My current plan is to continue working on the game (and changing the title…) so next event I’ll have a better idea what I’m doing. And if for some reason my Java skills aren’t up to snuff by the next Jam, I may need to make the next entry in Basic. Or ActionScript 2.
Yep Ive bombed out. Got to the point at 4am last night where I realised I more than likely wouldnt have a game worth submitting by todays deadline.
So thats a bit dissapointing. But it was still a good experience. Im determined to work on everything that let me down for this LD (ie time managment, planning and doing things which are too complex) in preparation for the next LD.
Slight malfunction with the space station
So yeh, I at least have a brand new game concept developed, with a great story I want to tell, so Ill more than likely get serious about these leftovers from my LD attempt of a game and make it into something better and an actual game.
I look forward to playing a bunch of games over the next week or so however, to see what all of you successful LD guys have come up with, let the voting commence and Ill be seeing you all again for LD23 in a couple of months
So, My first attempt at Game programming coincided with Ludum Dare #22….Which also coincided with me moving back home from university for Christmas….overall -> massive challenge
My breakdown of events:
- I haven’t produced anything worth submitting – only got much of the backbone finished
- I have learnt a lot about the workings of C++ and the SDL library
- I managed to produced my very first makefile to automate building and debugging
- I have a basis for a game I have wanted to make for a while
- I might still have some time to finish in time for the Jam Deadline
Didn’t finish. I’m just too tired right now, and it’s nowhere near done. Thats what you get for slacking off I guess…
Things that went well:
* Forming idea’s
Things that didn’t go well:
* Always putting my idea’s in and wasting time instead of working on the core game
* Internet on computer
* Notch livestream
Overall a great experience. I feel ready for december. I’ll try not to get distracted as easily.
movement = arrowkeys
rest = R
if Stamina = 0, you need 20 rests. (should have lowered, didn’t… méh)
Turn based gameplay, but with buttonbashing, feels reamtime-ish
TimeLapse day 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZ8XI1YOXMY
TimeLapse day 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjmUgS86rW8