Archive for December, 2010

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

Xenonauts

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Ludum Dare Career

Ludum Dare 19 is right around the corner, so let’s take a moment to review my Ludum Dare Career.

LD #6 – Light and Darkness, 2005
Puzzle Bots – Incomplete
There is, amazingly, still some evidence that I particpated in this one. Only the Internet Gods know how long that’ll last, so I harvested the results and added them to my blog under the tag LD6. My idea was to build a strategy game about photosynthetic organisms battling for light. I got an incomplete.

LD #7 – Growth, 2005
Name Unknown
I may or may not have particapted in this one. I feel like I did, but can find no evidence.

LD #11 – Minimalist, 2008
Battle Magic
A game of battling mages with no visuals, just text. It is one of my more successful games, and generated a bit of buzz because people disagreed about the affects the Luck spell had.

LD #12 – The Tower, 2008
Stacker
This is the most playable game I’ve created. You stack small little yellow cubes higher and higher.

LD #13 – Roads, 2008
Iron Roads – Incomplete
LD13 was interesting because I just used the time to start a larger game, and didn’t even try to finish. If you look at the comments it got, a lot of people would like to see it completed. I have continued to work on a post-compo version but it has always suffered from being a low priority. I hope it’ll become my top priority in the second half of 2011.

LD #16 – Exploration, 2009
No name – Incomplete
I tried to make a space exploration game. I was trying to do something like Digital Eel’s Weird Worlds – Return to Infinite Space. I got bogged down by the user interface code and gave-up.

LD #17 – Islands, 2010
Island Airline
Islands was another attempt at a strategy game. The player is in charge of an vacation airline. It is playable, but really isn’t any fun. I think it’ll be a full game one day.

LD #18 – Enemies as Weapons, 2010
Deflector Beam
You’re the tracker beam operator aboard a UFO and must protect your ship by deflecting the bullets of enemy fighters. It is barely playable and really short.

MiniLD #10 – Domestic Violence, 2009
No Name – Incomplete
This was a very hard theme for me to work with. I did some design, but eventual abandoned the whole idea because it creeped me out.

MiniLD #16 – Constraints, 2010
Yet to be Named RPG – Incomplete
I didn’t finish a sort of rails squads tactics game.

October Challenge 2010
Play/Buy Stacker Dev Log
I took LD12’s Stacker made it 3D and gave it obstacles to build around. It is for sale, but it is still very rough around the edges. I have a big face lift planned.

All in all I’ve participated in 10-11 Ludum Dares of some flavor or another. Notice how I used the word “participated?” This is clever of me because several of my attempt are incomplete or ridiculously un-fun. There are a lot of incompletes. I often over reach with my idea and often get stuck pounding out basic infrastructure code. I think I’m getting better, but I certainly don’t think I’ve conquered this problem. I’m considering using Unity this time around as a strategy to keep myself from getting stuck in the code details. I am worried, however, that Unity won’t be flexible enough to execute my ideas in. Unity is a 3D engine, and my art skills are barely only suited for 2D games, much less 3D. Plus, my area of interest tends to be strategy games, which are more about a user interface than a 3D world. I’m not sure how well Unity will serve these tendencies. So, I have my pile of XNA books and code on standby.

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I’ll be participating in Ludum Dare 19 – December 17th-20th, 2010, you can follow my dev diary of  the event at Ludum Dare’s site.

I’m also collecting resources at: Ludum Dare and /r/gamedev
* ANBSoft’s Sprite Manager 2 ($150)
* 3DBuzz’ Simple 2D Shooter
* Unity 2D Tutorial
* Unify Community Wik
* Unity 3d Student

Also here are some Ludum Dare survival guides:
Sol’s “rules” for surviving Ludum Dare 48h
MrFun’s A Guide to the LD48

Have any to add?

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