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Week of Awesome II: Post Mortem

Been busy and burnt out during the past two weeks, I finally got some time and motivation today and think I'll finish my post mortem before the results come out.

Thanks to slicer4ever for putting this game jam together. Thanks to all the sponsors, judges, competitors, and everyone, this is a nice experience.

What went Right?

Engine
Having a working engine and editors saved a great deal of time and enables me to spend more time on mechanics.
My engine was intended for platformers, so the platforming mechanics and physics were already tweaked. It would take me a few weeks just to get those jumps right.
UI and other support systems were also done, and it took less effort to re-skin the menu and adjust the buttons.
It also have a replay recording and uploading feature, so I can see how my friends played, what mechanic they fail to understood, and all those unintended routes which gave insight to future designs.
It was also proven to be working on other people's computers, and I think this is really important.

Idea
I was able to came up with a idea that was good enough within the first four hours of the competition. By sticking to to it I was able to spend all my time on real work instead of concepts. I was told the concept was quite fun, and I enjoyed messing around within my levels too.

Arts
I really enjoyed drawing stuffed toys. Cute furry animals with their heads falling off
Ending
Maybe this is a prequel to last year's entry, "Granny vs Zombie Dinosaurs".
Why make a happy ending while you can do otherwise?

What went Wrong?

Engine
Using a familiar and established engine was technically boring. I didn't get to do anything cool because it was already done by me. I still wouldn't consider starting from scrap or using a pure graphic engine for a 7 day game jam, but maybe I'll try Unity for the next time, haven't got any reason to use it before, and it might give me some insight.

Time
Not exactly unanticipated, but I don't get to do much work on the last two days. My cousin was having her wedding during the weekend. Although I was able to remain sober (In fact I drank less then any other family reunions), wearing a tie in these hot, humid tropical summer (Autumn, winter and spring starts at January and ends at February there) just takes away any willingness to boot up my brain.

Although I would like to have more levels, at least the game structure was completed.

What I learned?
1. WoA II was my first game jam ever. Putting a idea together in short time was a great experience. I think I should join more events like this if I have a chance, Although I might try joining as an artist and enjoy watching the programmer suffer. Changing hats would be fun and also want to try this in a team environment.

2. My original project and engine was intended to be mod-able from the beginning, by using it in this project show me a lot of parts that are too rigid and some are working great. Done some refactoring after merging the branch back.

Notes
the other level I planned was to have some platforms move while they are activated. You'll need to use different colors to synchronize their position. Some will also be moving very,very fast and could toss you around.
The original project, "Mikobuster", could be found here
http://azureblaze.idv.tw/gaea/?lang=en_us
[media][/media]

Wrap Up
Thanks to every one who is participating, and congratulations to who have completed.
Thank you for reading my journal and thank you for playing my game.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

 

Week of Awesome II #7 Submission!

As predicted, day 6 was nearly non-existent. Also failed to add more levels. It's 2 am in my timezone now, 10 hours before the deadline, but I really need some sleep and never had the ability to stay up all night anyway.

Was hoping to make some colored moving platforms. Coding will be fast, but designing a level with it won't.

So here is my final submission of "Your Soul Alone", unless I can do some more change when I wake up next morning (probably not).
http://azureblaze.idv.tw/ursa.rar

Dependencies:
DirectX runtime http://www.microsoft.com/en-US/download/details.aspx?id=35
Visual C++ 2012 redist http://www.microsoft.com/en-US/download/details.aspx?id=30679

Install:
None required. extract and execute ursa.exe.

Notes:
Joy Stick is supported. Button names displayed in-game can be changed by config.exe.
By allowing replay auto upload upon first start up I can collected data of how the game is progressed. Please allow it if possible.
Clear time calculation is bugged.

For more challenges:
Every platform has its' own purpose. Try to find it!
Also multiple ways to get back to the beginning just before the end.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

 

Week of Awesome II #5 URSA

Day 5. Not so much progress today.

And I have a title and title menu!

The game will be called "Your soul alone", or ursa.

I think the best part of this theme is that your 3-year-old drawing skill will fit it perfectly.

Also changed the color triggering mechanism into Red-Yellow-Blue instead of Red-Green-Blue. Guess it will be more intuitive for non-programmers.

spent the whole evening trying to migrate the project to my lap top.Got some wierd linker error that the mangled name between libs did not match.
Finally found out one of the lib was targeting x64 while others were x86. This kind of settings for some reasons did not make into source control, supposely is in some of the files that change with every build and got ignored.

I will be traveling for a family member's wedding next two days. Probaly won't have much time or won't be sober. Hope I have enough time to polish it up.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

 

Week of Awesome II #4 beta is out!

Day 4. Completed a level, hacked together some menu codes stolen from previous project, and now I have a playable demo:
Link: http://azureblaze.idv.tw/woa_rev631.rar

Supposedly this is not an actual submission. Didn't even have a title yet.
Just want to test if the game mechanics worked out as intended.

Dependencies:
DirectX runtime http://www.microsoft.com/en-US/download/details.aspx?id=35
Visual C++ 2012 redist http://www.microsoft.com/en-US/download/details.aspx?id=30679

Install:
None required. extract and execute woa.exe.

Notes:
Joy Stick is supported. Button names displayed in-game can be changed by config.exe.
By allowing replay auto upload upon first start up I can collected data of how the game is progressed. Please allow it if possible.
Clear time calculation is bugged.

For more challenges:
Every platform has its' own purpose. Try to find it!
Also multiple ways to get back to the beginning just before the end.

Countless unintended routes are created while trying to design multiple routes.
I guess the only solution is to ban everyone who is exploiting/abusing game mechanics with the might of my EULA.

The CJK font is taking up 95% size of the game. I wish there are some good system font solutions for Windows.

I'll be filling in the story and more contents tomorrow. Also should come up with some good title.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

 

Week of Awesome II #3

Third day!
Seems to have completed all the core mechanics I need and made the tutorial level:
[media] [/media]

Ended up binding some portions of Box2D into the scripting system. This makes controlling those disappearing blocks easier. Maybe I'll bind the whole library someday. The more you can done with scripting the better.


Tomorrow I will be doing level designs. Making puzzles seems very hard to me, especially I believe good puzzle should have multiple non-obvious ways to solve.

I might have to complete before Friday. I will be traveling in the last two days, and will probably be drunk. On the other hand, programming under the influence seems fun.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

 

Week of Awesome II #2

Did some arts today, but lack enough time for more toys.
[media] [/media]
There seems to be a lot of teddy bears entering this contest. After all, who don't like teddy bears?
I am extremely fond of my dying animation.

Animations was done with Spriter: http://brashmonkey.com/spriter.htm
Most of the time was spent on trying to create seamless jigsaw foam mats. There are still some flaws but I don't think I should waste more time on it. Their colors also need a change, feels a bit color blinded right now.

Ended up commenting lots of code in the player entity to allow modifications of animation and actions. Player controlling code is old and ugly and didn't have mods in mind. At least now I know where I would want flexibility.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

 

Week of Awesome II #1

Experimented some concepts and I think I've got a grasp of what I will be doing.

The level will be covered by colored foam mats. Standing on it will bring toys of corresponding color alive.
[media] [/media]
Although the video is bullet-hell-ish, the actual game will take a more puzzling oriented approach.

The engine I will be using is Yatagarasu, custom made engine for another game I am developing: Mikobuster. The game will be mostly coded in Lua, and I will try to avoid modifying the engine side c++ code as much as I can to put the engine flexibility to test.

Next step would be creating art assets that will match the theme better.

AzureBlaze

AzureBlaze

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