Posts Tagged ‘post-compo’
This post is more about my plans for my game Matters of Perspective post-compo, and how I want to blow the player’s mind even more
Even if you don’t rate it, any feedback in the comments is very valuable to me!
Here’s a quick gif showing a change in perspective:
There has been a lot of positive feedback about Matters of Perspective. Players seem to love the game mechanic of warping perspective from sidescroller to first person shooter, and where it can go for good puzzle-platforming. So I’ve decided to keep developing it post-compo! You can follow developments on my Twitter account, @llnesisll.
For now, I’m working out a pipeline that’ll make level designs easier to model and iteratively improve. During Ludum Dare, I manually placed every individual block you can see, totalling perhaps 1500-2000 blocks (I didn’t keep count, and won’t bother to check the exact number :p). For more complex levels made with these blocks, making changes to geometry becomes very time-consuming and error-prone. I’m now using Google Sketchup 8 for modelling levels, and the PlayUp plugin for exporting them into Unity. Here’s a screenshot of the second level’s new design, which will hopefully fix two things: accidentally falling out of the world (yikes!), and giving better indication of when the level is in a solved state (in particular, accentuating the size of the path opened when both bridge and wall are moved out of the way), so the player knows when and how they can exit.
This seems to be the way to go. I’ll need to be careful to manually place colliders as needed, though. I don’t really trust Unity’s mesh colliders for complex geometry.
My todo list for further development is currently:
- develop good pipeline for creating and modifying level designs (needs foolproof collision generation!).
- rework sidescroller to use 2D physics (the current solution uses a 3D sphere in sidescroller mode, which can catch on geometry that you can’t see because it extends into the screen…!). This will also need a solution for adding corresponding 2D colliders for each 3D collider.
- create a list of interesting components to put in puzzles – eg, conundrums like level 2, managing blocking off & unblocking the exit until you’re in the ideal position to get to it. In general, problems that benefit from the “working backwards” method to solve them. Mix these together in ascending difficulty to make complex + interesting levels, increasing in challenge.
- add some kind of unlockable reward at the end of the game for collecting all the easter eggs, to serve as motivation to re-play. I planned to include this during the compo, but ran out of time to come up with something worthwhile, so I just left the easter eggs to be interesting to get on their own right.
- add a “kill z” tracker, to handle cases where the player falls out of the level (I’ll do my best to make sure that can’t happen, but a failsafe is always good!)
- add a menu option for adjusting mouse sensitivity (there’s such a wide variety of mouse sensitivities player use that it makes sense to offer this)
- (maybe hire someone) develop aesthetic for tiles that gives one distinct look and feel from sidescroll perspective (eg, feels like you’re in a cave), and a different look and feel from first person shooter perspective (eg, now you can see the sides of blocks that are smooth and futuristic, the cave-like textures on top of them look more like bundled wires passing through… or something like that ). The purpose of this is to really blow the player’s mind when changing perspective from sidescroller to first person.
- (maybe hire someone) get some good eerie ambient music to play in the background as you play. Ideally, it’d be great to have music that changes depending on being in sidescroll vs first person perspective. (eg, 8bit-sounding for sidescroll, then cross-fading to the same track but with more of an electro-synth vibe to it…? Iunno, music isn’t a forte of mine.)
I made a game called Meddle for Ludum Dare 29. It won first place in Innovation. Obviously, I wasn’t just going to let an award-winning idea sit there and die in a little 7-or-so-level game without making something bigger, so I decided to postpone my other projects indefinitely to make a post-compo version of Meddle. I renamed it to “Spanner in the Works” because “Meddle” has three homophones to get confused with (in my accent, anyway): “metal”, “medal”, and “mettle”.
I have many ideas for Spanner in the Works. I have the beginnings of an interesting (and secret) story, and also some new graphical utilities that will let me use SVG graphics with animation from Synfig in HaxePunk. In introspection mode there will be monochrome, pixelated graphics along with the matrix-style text from the original, although I don’t know whether to make the sprites green on black or black on green. I also don’t know whether to give the player just one command slot, like in the original, or multiple. Suggestions are welcome.
And here’s a comparison between the original Meddler sprite and the new, vectorized version:
I think that’s it. There is now nothing else to say. If I say anything more at this point, it’s probably pointless. So it’s a good thing I’m not saying anything. Yup. If I kept saying stuff, that would be such a waste of time. Good job realizing when it was time to stop and stopping, me.
As I received a lot of good feedback on my LD29 entry, “Oh My Oilrig!”, I decided to continue working on it. After rewriting the whole code base, I added more features and designed stuff for upcoming updates. Now, the first release version is up in Google Play! If you have an Android device, go grab it and tell me what you like ^_^ –> https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.manabreak.oilrig
Thank you so much for everyone who played my entry and gave me awesome feedback, wouldn’t have done it without you guys and gals.
This being my third Ludum Dare I had a decent idea of what I was getting myself into. These game jams are really a great way of practicing on actually making something from start to finish. I think that is what many of us really need to get better at, I know I for one have put tons of time into other bigger projects which never see the light of day, maybe because they are simply too big of projects. Here are some quick tips which I’ve learned from previous mistakes and could be good for newcomers entering into a ludum dare, for starting any new game project I guess.
- Start with making something really simple and make sure the “fun factor” is there early on, the rest is polish!
- Don’t explore some new technology while trying to complete a game.
- Give each aspect (design, planning, code, graphics, audio, testing, etc) enough time each. Don’t spend the first day and a half coding and get the rest done in a few hours.
- Make sure the game is done well before the deadline so you have time for playtesting, bugfixing and polish.
- The most important thing is to complete a game from start to finish, not that it’s the most feature packed perfect game.
So I’ve been playing unhealthy amounts of Spelunky lately and I wanted to make a platformer with a bit of the same vibe, and I’m a huge space fan so I went for that. When the theme got decided I thought I’d make a underground platformer. Since I love the jetpack in spelunky and don’t get it often enough, I thought I’d make a game with a similar feel as the jetpack in Spelunky. I also wanted to make a simple and addicting game with online highscore, so I played around with the idea until I ended up with what the game is now. It could still get a lot better, but I’m quite happy with the end result in just two days work.
Warmup & Making Music
I’m especially happy with having produced music for in the game, and am even quite happy with the end result. Truth is I’ve wanted to learn how to make music for a while now, and started various tutorials but never got very far. The day before Ludum dare I made a warmup game called Space Survivor. It took me about 2 hours to make, and looking at the highscore stats I can say that it’s probably the game I’ve made with best time coded vs time played ratio ever.. which is a bit depressing. Anyway, the cool thing is I also decided I was going to make music for the game. I opened a a music program called SunVox, which is the first music program where I actually like the UI, and decided I’m going to make a song from start to end, it doesn’t matter how crappy it is, but it’s going to be finished. My first song. Instead of trying to learn each aspect of music and mastering it before I even make a song, this technique really taught me how to make music and I put it in the game! And I’m so happy for it! The day after Ludum dare started and I made another track and put it in my Ludum Dare entry, and it turned out quite nice for my second track ever!
For the first time I felt that I was done enough for the deadline. Overall I’m very happy with the end result, here are some points which I’m happy with
- I had a nice balance of time spent coding, making art, making sound, making music, testing, bugfixing and polishing which made all areas good enough!
- I actually made music for my game and learned how to make it in the process!
- I had online highscores – this is something that really makes some games so much more fun!
- The game feels like a complete game and is polished
- I invited two friends over for a little Jam-Lan-Party, this made the whole thing event more fun and I think we made better games because of it!
Although I’m very happy with the end result, there were a few hickups.
- About half way in on day two I began writing ugly code to make things rapidly. This made the final code quite cluddered and just makes it harder to update and improve the game further. I will have to spend a day just to cleanup the code later!
- Lesson: Things don’t have to be perfectly coded, but alteast keep it clean and organized at all times!
- Some MySQL issues have made the online highscores slow/unresponsive sometimes, which results in a lot of statistics/scores have gotten lost. This is really a shame because I wanted to present cool playstats here for you!
- Lesson: Brush up MySQL skills for next time for better highscores/stats!
- I’ve got about 60 ratings to my game and I’ve done 120 on others, so I can’t complain. Still somehow I feel it’s very hard to get people to try my game. I believe this is in large part because I don’t have a web version. I know the feeling when testing games, if you gotta download it, let alone run a seperate redist install, it’s hard to want to try it! I really do think this is a shame, I think games feel better when not played in a browser. And c#/xna is awesome!
- Lesson: Consider using a web-platform next time or accept low play stats. (HTML5, Unity, etc)
- The title. To be honest I suck at titles. It was never really my intention that the game would be named Gravity. I sort of just wrote something while designing the graphics/menu to get the style right. In the end time was running out and I hadn’t thought of a better title and then I forgot. I thought of the George Clooney film and just added a random subtitle since I thought that looked cool too.
- Lesson: Titles can be important, decide on a good one early on and roll with it. It’s hard to think up a good name at the last minute!
Some play stats!
With each play being registered in an online highscore, I can also calculate some play stats from them. Sadly my MySQL skills weren’t good enough in time, so a lot of the stats got lost because of a query taking very long time to load sometimes.. But here are some fun play stats at the time of writing!
Disclamer: Sadly up to approx 50% of plays may be missing, so stats below could probably be doubled, but this is what I’ve got! (Any new stats should be recorded correctly I believe)
- Total number of unique players: 82
- Total number of plays: 6617
- Avarage plays per player: 80
- Total play time all players: 35 hours 1 min 55 seconds
- Avarage time played per player: 25 minutes
- Player with most plays
- Diamonde: 718
- Rebecca: 595
- Tobias-PC: 587
- Maxime: 549
- Anebo: 517
Check out the timelapse of making Gravity! May contain spoilers!
Lastly, I would really appreciate if you
Good luck in the final results all!
So turns out I had a complete brain fail during the Ludum Dare weekend and totally failed to make the speed of my game’s player character independent of the FPS, which I only discovered when I accidentally destroyed Chrome a bit and suddenly it started chugging horribly, simulating playing In The Blood on a tired old computer.
I’d used the delta for computing velocity… but then multiplied it by 0.000005 for no reason I can actually remember now and the result is that the delta had virtually no effect whatsoever. So.. I fixed it. I REALLY hope this is okay, dear people in charge of such matters. It’s still the same game, no new features, but hopefully everyone playing it will have the same frustrating, tormenting and short-lived experience it was designed to provide. I wanted the game to be a difficult, challenging and hopefully addictive little action arcade game but when you’re moving ten times slower than you should? Oops.
I’ve also added a Post Compo version now! It’s the same game but I managed to add a bit of the visual Woo that I didn’t have time to do during the 48hours. It destroys the mood entirely but things are a lot clearer and hopefully a bit less motion sickness inducing. Again, sorry about that too.
You can play both frustratingly difficult versions on its compo page!
Incidentally, if you like Super Hexagon style ridiculously difficult action arcade games you might enjoy other competition entries Underneath Our Faces and Diver X … and would love to hear about any other games in the compo like this!
I have recently made a small update to my game (post-compo). This update
fixes a bug on android related to putting the game in the background, and adds a much needed tutorial!
(Never underestimate how confusing your game can be, no matter how simple you make it)
Feel free to get it from this link.
And if you haven’t rated it yet, please play it from here.
My second game available to the public, all because of Ludum Dare. Love you guys
“Oh My Oilrig!” is rapidly shifting gears on its post-compo journey towards becoming a full-fledged Android game. While waiting for the release, here’s a sample of the new variety of enemies: a terrifying archer who will cause aggressively mediocre damage to your precious oilrig! BWAHAHAA!!
The first release (I’m aiming for Sunday!) will have nine different enemies (three submerged, three on-the-surface and three airborne) and a variety of different defense towers (a slingshot and “ye olde cannon”, to name a few!), coupled with active and passive on-board upgrades (shields, radar, drill boost…), not to mention overhauled interface. If you’re interested, keep an eye on my Twitter feed (@dManabreak) for updates. Also, feel free to tweet and comment if you have ideas, critique or anything!
faif – Battling with the odds
faif is our entry for Ludum Dare 28. It features a novel combat system based on… gambling!
faif was a 12 hours concept we decided to make because of… well, Ludum Dare! We love the jam and we really liked the theme, so why not? After finishing and sending an early concept version of the game (no sounds and some single-battling against dumb AI), we started receiving really encouraging feedback. Lots of people seem to love the core mechanics we came up to!
What we’re working on (post compo)
Despite currently working on another game (The Narrow Path), we resolved on making a post compo version of faif. So we started working on a to-do list with some specific goals in mind. This is what we’ve achieved so far:
- Infinite Battle Mode: fight one opponent after another until you are defeated! Every opponent has different behaviour and intelligence types).
- New visuals and retrofuturistic aesthetics!
We will be improving and uploading new versions of our weird battle game for players to enjoy it, test it and help us flesh it out! In the next days we will add new tiles and special powerups. (Note: Check our post compo version and please use the comment section if you have any suggestion o want to share any feeling about it).
Thanks for reading and being so awesome! Cheers everyone!
After the ludum 27 48 hour compo, I continued to develop Turn Fighter Foo in order to bring out a version that is closer to what I had imagined.
So whats new?
The first major thing (not visible though) is that the code base has been ported from Flixel with Actionscript/Flash to HaxeFlixel with Haxe/OpenFL. Doing this has the advantage of being able to port it to other platforms natively. Expect something like gamepad support on desktop or a mobile version sometime in the future!
There are a few new hit animations for the fighters as well as new animations for the new moves that they can perform. The background has been spruced up a little to make it less bland and some background music thrown in to accompany the fighting. Here is an example of what to expect:
The first major change is a rebalancing of the play matrix for moves. You might have noticed that kick is probably the most overpowered move in the 48hr compo version. I’ve tried to create a version where there is always a counter to any move. For example, kick is now countered by the low sweep like the picture above shows. And air attacks can now be countered by a new uppercut move. The play matrix is still not perfect but it is far better than the 48 hr compo version. Along with the new normal moves, there are also a couple of special moves that I’ve added which were inspired (aka ripped off) from most fighting games. The first is a ranged fireball attack and a move called the phoenix punch which kinda resembles a dragon punch (very original I know! ). Have a look at the moves list below for how to execute the new moves. More special moves to come in future versions hopefully.
The post compo version now has several options that can be customised such as the ability to hide your inputs from your opponent, increasing/decreasing the number of inputs per turn and changing the turn timer duration (or have unlimited time). The last option enables Turn Fighter FOO to be played in Ippon scoring mode which means that a turn ends as soon as one fighter performs a decisive blow on the opponent scoring one point. The decisive blow occurs when one fighter performs a move that naturally counters the opposing fighter’s current move, thus getting the hit. Score three points and the match is over.
Last but not least, I’ve added an AI player for those that do not have anyone to play with. Yes, there is now a single player mode! The AI is not great but it should be enough to get a flavor of what the game is all about. I’ve gotten feedback regarding my compo version about how some players didn’t have a partner to play with so this one is for those players!
The post compo version of Turn Fighter Foo may be found (along with the original version) at my ludum 27 entry page here.
New Moves list
- Upper cut – down, punch
- Low sweep – down, kick
- Jump punch – up, right, punch (if facing right)
- Fireball – down, right, punch (if facing right)
- Phoenix punch – right, down, right, punch (if facing right)
- Duck – down
- Idle has been removed as an input. Use block instead.
- Controls for player 1 has changed to w,a,s,d for up,left, down,right and j,k,l,n for punch, kick, block, clear move list.
- Addition of new ready button for the unlimited time match. When both players hit the ready button, then the turn plays out. Player1 ready – space, Player2 ready – end.
Focusing on the post-compo is starting to pay off. Except for the HUD, particles and background, every other graphic has been redone. As soon as I finish reworking the graphics, I’ll begin to modify the gameplay. That will be the ‘post-compo version’. I plan to later redo the game itself, adding enemies, waves and bosses (there’s already a new ship, though :)).
I usually make a black and white sprite and then use an “multiply” layer to color it. This helps me to make sprites quickly (as I don’t have to bother select exact colors every time, only the tone) but makes the sprite somewhat plain and boring. Now I’m using 8 tones with 4 shades each, what made everything better looking (and clearer).
Take a look at the boss graphics evolution:
A Music Version, I’d better say. Yeah, that’s 8 bit Skyrim theme by chubbiercherub, making a dungeon exploration process a waaay more atmospherical.
There’s a bunch of new features as well, such as new items and locations. Now you also drop your sword when you’re slain, so you respawn completely defenseless! Oh, and beware of that skeleton guarding your loot!..
Play it here!
Hello people! Remember me and my Ludum Dare 27 game? Of course you don’t! But that’s okay, I didn’t expect you to. In fact, go away, I’m writing this post for myself, as an affirmation of sorts. What? You’re still here? Shoo!
Now, on a slightly more serious note, I am, in fact, working on a post-compo version of my latest Ludum Dare entry, Stator Chronicle, as I consider it to be a rather successful experiment indeed. Naturally, it has flaws, and the feedback that you guys have left is invaluable to me, so I will be grateful if you leave even more, as every new comment either gives me more motivation to continue working on the project or helps me improve the future full game (sometimes both, believe it or not).
Like I said, I’m just trying to be assertive here (and my own blog appears to be broken for some php-related reason), so I needed to write this post to make it official: Stator Chronicle is going post-compo. Be excited. Or not. I know I will be!
Waaay back in December 2010, I cobbled together a horrific ten hour entry for LD19 - http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/2010/12/20/germies/
It was garish, had horrific sound, and played a bit like a mule. However, there was an idea in there… a nice little variant on the usual Gems formula popularised by Bejeweled and co.
So, in January 2013, I revisited it for One Game A Month - http://www.arcadebadgers.co.uk/projects/1gam/january
Several months later, and with Arcade Badgers now being incorporated and officially trading, I’ve released Germies! as a more commercial offering; albeit an ad-supported Mobile/Desktop Web version - http://germies.clay.io/
This time, we’ve got a leaderboard and some achievements added to the mix, as well as general clean-ups throughout.
We’ve only just released it as of yesterday, but it has been a chaotic journey to get here, and proof that if anything, Ludum Dare – and by extension One Game A Month – are incredibly useful for iterating over ideas!
Oh and yes, we will be taking part in the next Ludum Dare! Here’s hoping that anything interesting that we produce doesn’t take almost three years to come out again