3H-GDC m.VII, April 10th, 2100 UTC ($128 of prizes) - Theme: Spring Recommended Posts capn_midnight 1707 3H-GDC m.VII TL;DR Summary: Make a puzzle game in 3 hours. Win GDNet+ Membership. April 10th, 2100 UTC. Prizes: #3: a PayPal transfer worth 3 months of GDNet+ membership ($12.95). #2: a full year of GDNet+ ($39.95). #1: a$75 gift card for Amazon.com (email gift card).
Description: For the seventh competition ever (it seems weird to me that we've done 6 of these things already, and yet the last one was over 3 years ago.), we are going to mix things up this time. I've just open sourced some code for creating grid-and-tile puzzles, ala Tetris or Dr. Mario or whatever. It provides a very basic framework for defining pieces and figuring out different ways to place them on a board. Included in the distribution is an example of the Tetris game. On top of that, there are two examples of UI implementations for the game, using either the system console or Windows Forms, demonstrating a sort of MVC setup for game development. Also, I've included the NUnit tests in the source code; if you want to run them, you will need to install the framework (the solution file is current configured to not build the test project when building the solution, to avoid errors for anyone who doesn't have NUnit installed). It's pretty simple, but if you have any questions, feel free to ask. So, the contest will be based in some way on puzzle games: you can use my library if you want or not, you can spend the next few weeks porting my library to your favorite language if you want (I've released under the MIT license), you can develop your own puzzle game library if you want, it doesn't really matter, as long as you meet the secret theme. If you would use my library, I would greatly appreciate it, to give it a sort of "real world" test, see what people make of it, and see where it should be taken from here. But, it's not required. We usually have prizes for this contest, typically a certain amount of cash via PayPal intended to be used to purchase a GDNet+ membership. Prizes are donated by the community as a whole. I've donated games before as well. At the very least, I'll end up covering 1 year, 3 months, and 1 month of GDNet+ membership fees as the top 3 prizes. I might dig through my hardware pile and find something interesting. Anyone else is free to offer something. Date/Time: Saturday, April 10th. Theme: "Spring" The past six contests were "Black and White," "Fire," "Crackers," "CARTS," "The Stars", and "The Pits". The emphasis is originality in interpretation. With the Crackers theme there were entries that featured fire crackers, saltines, people "cracking" windows open to prevent leathal doses of methane gas, and southern honkeys. I'm getting rid of the ASCII art requirement this time. If you want to do that, that's up to you, I like ASCII art games. I personally think the contest is easier if you do ASCII art, but that's just me. You might find it easier to do it in HTML5 or Flash, which is perfectly acceptable. Rules:
1. Submissions must meet a predetermined theme (which will be revealed 15 minutes before the beginning of the contest)
2. Any Language (C, Java, C#, Python, javascript, Brainf***, I don't care) or API (SDL, Allegro, PyGame, JOGL, even SVG in HTML5 is cool) are acceptable, as long as you handle all distribution yourself (Ideally include all assemblies. You may link to download page, but please, don't just link to the project's homepage). This is especially true if you use a "game maker", I don't want to have to hunt anything down to play your game.
3. Writing the code in the time limit is "on your honor". That's why I keep the theme a secret: you might be able to make a generic game between now and then, but you won't be able to make anything specific to the theme. But seriously, why would you cheat for such a simple contest?
4. Judges will judge on a full binary version of the software. They will not compile the software. Source code is not required, though you may request source code to be posted with your submission.
5. Judging is conducted by a panel of non-competitors
6. Judging is based mostly on overall gameplay and originallity of game design. We understand that content will be light, that graphics will be underdeveloped, that input MIGHT be a bit akward. Gameplay and concepts are key.
7. prizes (when available) are listed above, runners up receive nothing.
Three hours is plenty of time to make a classic arcade game, or something new with simple gameplay. The threads for the previous contests are available below. Unfortunately, all of the links are broken. I still have an archive of all of the games, I just need to find a place to put them (maybe CodePlex?) If anyone wants to volunteer as a Judge, please post here and list your machine specs as well as your pertinent software running on your computer. For example, I'm: Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E8600 Memory: 8GB RAM GFX: NVidia GeForce 8800 GTS OS: Windows Vista Ultimate 64bit Browsers: Google Chrome (default), IE8, FireFox 3.6 Other Software: Whatever the lastest, non-beta versions of Java, .NET, Python, Ruby, DirectX, and XNA are available. I don't remember, but I'll make sure everything is up to date before the contest. Not that it's terribly important, given the low level graphics this contest will require. [Edited by - capn_midnight on April 10, 2010 3:41:54 PM]

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Moe    1256
This sounds pretty interesting. What day of the week are they generally held, or are they generally coded in 3 hours, some time over a weekend (being honest about how much time it actually took you)?

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capn_midnight    1707
Quote:
 Original post by MoeThis sounds pretty interesting. What day of the week are they generally held, or are they generally coded in 3 hours, some time over a weekend (being honest about how much time it actually took you)?

The way it's gone in the past: For a Saturday or Sunday, I pick a time that works for the timezone of the majority of people interested. At the start of the three hours, I post a theme for the submissions. Three hours later, I check my email for submissions. After three hours and 15 minutes, I ignore any new submissions (well, not completely, but they aren't added to the judging pool). Then, the judging period runs for however long it takes all of the judges to get back to me: I always do it right away but some people take a couple of days. I try to write a review of all of the submissions as well.

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ToohrVyk    1596
Sounds like I've chosen a good time for my epic return to GameDev.Net [smile] It's good to see this contest coming back, I will definitely be joining.

Here comes, well, me.

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AndrewBC    280
I'd totally be interested in participating. Hopefully the timing works out such that I'm not asleep! April 10th is fine for me.

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This definitely looks interesting. :P

EST is...GMT-5? I think.

EDIT: Damn. I've just realised I'm in Berlin on Saturday 10th. Ah well.

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capn_midnight    1707
Yes, GMT-5. April 17th is also a possibility. Heck, if there's enough interest, we could do both.

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capn_midnight    1707
So does anyone want to volunteer for judging? Anyone want to donate any prizes? I'd also like to know who is going to compete about a week ahead of the competition, just so I can select a time that suits everyone and get everything prepared.

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Moe    1256
It'd be fun, but I don't think I'll be able to (previous things going on on the 17th, 10th could be a possibility). That, and I really question whether or not I'd be able to actually churn something out in 3 hours...

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Endurion    5411
Ooooh! :)

I'm definetively in! I love those challenges.

Edit: Oh, and my vacation ends on 11th of April, so preferrable before that.

[Edited by - Endurion on March 25, 2010 3:59:35 PM]

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szecs    2990
I'm in. Er... in PM/e-mail? I guess I failed the first test: to sign up :P
10th April is fine, the time won't be fine I guess, but I'll try to stay awake.

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Trapper Zoid    1370
I'm interested, depending on what time window is compatible. It's pretty hard to find a suitable time for both North America and Europe without it being at 3 a.m. over here.

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capn_midnight    1707
Just had a thought. If you guys could post your intended language when you are posting that you're interested in competing, that will help the judges get their machines ready to test your game after the contest.

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Trapper Zoid    1370
Quote:
 Original post by capn_midnightJust had a thought. If you guys could post your intended language when you are posting that you're interested in competing, that will help the judges get their machines ready to test your game after the contest.

I'll most likely use Flash, given I develop on a Mac and need instant cross-platform capabilities. Alternatively I might use Python; it's what I'd like to use if I go with ASCII art, but when I checked a while back there weren't any good cross-platform ASCII libraries.

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Endurion    5411
Most probably C++. I'm not that fluent in C# yet for a 3h compo.
But who knows, maybe also SilverLight (with C# then).

ToohrVyk    1596
javascript!

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ChurchSkiz    1101
I'd love to participate but I suck at puzzle type implementations so I am willing to be a judge.

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6400
Memory: 2GB RAM
OS: Windows XP
Browsers: IE8, chrome, FF, opera
Other Software: Pretty much all gaming run-times (silverlight, flash, shockwave, .NET, physix, XNA & c++ redistributable, etc.) Directx 9, latest Java

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capn_midnight    1707
Ok, so looks like interest is spread out across the world. That means any time I pick for the contest is going to not fit for someone. With that in mind, I'm just going to keep it easy for me and set the time for 5pm EST.

Another interesting development: one of Philadelphia's hackerspaces, Hive 76, wants to promote and host an in-person, live-action contingent for a 3H-GDC. Maybe we can setup a web-cam conference between all of us.

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szecs    2990
Er... I hope the webcam is not obligatory (since I'm too poor to have one).

Midnight yeeaah! Perfect timing.

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capn_midnight    1707
To sign up just sy you're interested in this thread. I'm keeping track of everyone. I'll have a more formal system for the next contest, but this one is too impromptu for that.

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Endurion    5411
Urgh, I hate time zones and summer time. Is it EST (there's about 20 ESTs) or EDT (summer time) now?

Could you specify in UTC please? Just want to make sure, it should be the last saturday of my holiday.

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szecs    2990
If you specify it in an other way, please specify it in GMT too. I'm sure an other North American stuff will confuse me. (EST = GMT+5, I hope...)

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capn_midnight    1707
Okay, so east-coast US is current EDT, which is UTC-4. 1700 hours EDT would be 2100 UTC. UTC is largely the same as GMT.

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szecs    2990
As far as I know, EST = GMT+5, so GMT != UTC. So, I'm totally lost.
How about specifying in Gamedev's server time? Or put a countdown or something on the site, something to synchronize our clocks (or am I the only noob, who doesn't understand what's up with these timezones? Maybe this simply makes me inadequate in the first round...)