Tag Archive for 'ludum dare'

How to survive Ludum Dare like a PRO!

It’s Ludum Dare time! You don’t wanna be a loser do you? NO! You wanna make some games.

So, how do you survive 48 hours of making games and nothing else?

1. Use the same tools you usually do, unless you have GUTS!

You’ve got that engine and all that software for a reason. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! (Unless it is broke, in which case, fix it, fix it, fix it.) If you have the guts to try something new, get it all installed and running.

2. Food food food

Get food which is easy to make and tasty. It’s not a matter of the time it takes to make food, but the energy you spend preparing it. Use that energy for AWESOME GAMES instead! Buy stuff which will make you fat and happy if you want, or get some ‘real’ food like fruit/salad/veg. I get a bit of everything, ‘cos sometimes you need to eat something which has been alive, and sometimes you want to devour a muffin ‘cos your game won’t start.

3. Have a buddy

Ludum Dare gets lonely. Let’s arrange to be lonely together!

4. Find out the theme, then take a shower

Or take a walk, go jogging, spend far too long on the toilet… Whichever morning ritual suits you. It’ll clear your mind for magical idea time to start! (Note that you don’t need your buddy for taking a shower.)

5. Magical idea time!

Get your design tool of choice and start jotting down ideas. I always write lists and notes on paper, and have a stack of post it notes for designing maps. Sometimes the pad of paper has DINOSAURS on it, because dinosaurs are AWESOME!

If you get really, really stuck, the internet is your friend – just don’t spend too long browsing for inspiration. Or if you’ve got some other LDers around, have a chat about the theme.┬áSometimes an obvious idea is better than nothing at all, especially if you’re in Ludum Dare for the experience of making a game. Don’t stress too much about it.

I often make a list of things I need in the game, and things I would like but aren’t so necessary. Then I make a checklist and tick things off as I finish them. It feels good, and I can give myself a cookie at milestones!

6. Make the game

Now you just have to make the game. Try to get something up an running quickly, either a test or a character moving around. Make art and code you can reuse a lot. Use anything you can to make your life easier. If it absolutely doesn’t work, think about how can you make it more simple.

7. Go crazy

At some point in the weekend, something will go wrong and you will want to give up. Or you will start to feel crazy with the amount of stressful work you’re putting in. Relax, step back, you are not alone! It’s only okay to feel despair if you PUSH IT DOWN and FIX YOUR GAME! Even if that means CHOPPING IT UP a bit.

8. Excuses are for WEAKLINGS!

I’ve had some Ludum Dares where I’ve had less than the usual amount of time. One of my favourite games was made when I had to spend 50% of my day looking after my new puppy, only working in 2 hour shifts. Even if you have less than the whole 48 hours, if you plan around it, you can still make a game to be proud of.


I always give myself a couple of hours before the deadline for making title screens, squishing tiny bugs and uploading and all that. Panicking is well and good, but KEEP GOING!

10. Have fun!

Making games is fun! REMEMBER THAT! :D

Many minigames!

Ah, I did it again! I forgot to update. Eep!

Here’s what I’ve made over the past few months. If you’re paying attention to twitter, you probably already played them all. But if you missed anything, well, here it is!

First up is Quest, a small jam game made super quickly. I mostly wanted to play around with low res faux-Spectrum look (it’s not accurate to it, as I was just having fun).

Next, my entry for Ludum Dare 20, >Start >Fight >Run. I didn’t get to polish it as much as I would have liked, as I didn’t have enough focus this time. Oh well. :)

Also, I made a silly but slightly offensive game about the Rapture. Save Them All! (Except Those Guys, They Don’t Deserve It)

Finally, I started learing AS3. I haven’t got very far yet, but I did make a port of one of my old jam games, Trap. (The original was made in less than an hour, so it’s a little throw-away. But as a test of getting stuff on a screen and working, it did its job. :3 ) Hope to have something more impressive soon-ish :D

It’s been too long!

I don’t know why, I got kind of distracted…

I made a bunch of games, but never got around to updating properly. Chances are if you read twitter you’ve seen all of these already, so this is just a quick post to round up all the games I’ve made since last June, but neglected to mention!

Cumulate Nimble
Enemy of the Solid State
Unko’s Adventure in Magical Land
Bonbon’s Voyage
Happy Kitty Eats Christmas

Hope to have more games soon ^o^

Round up of junky games

I made a bunch of games, but I’m only just getting around to posting them. (They’re all pretty small…)

First, a visual novel thing. I’m not too happy with this, but mostly because I got frustrated with it halfway through. Still, it has some interesting bits I suppose.

Ludum Dare was a couple of weeks ago! I made this. Then…

…I made this in the last couple of hours of the competition.

Ludum Dare was fun. I met up with Terry, Perrin, and a bunch of other guys in CB2 to all work on LD together (but alone, as those are the rules!) It was nice to work in a more social setting, as LD tends to be a lonely lonely experience. XD

Although, this kind of emphasised for me exactly how much I don’t care for the scoring afterwards. I think it took away the fun somewhat.

Ludum Dare 15 – Miner Distraction

I entered Ludum Dare!

The theme was caverns. I made a tiny platformer called Miner Distraction. It looks like this:

The download for it is here. (Windows only, 6mb, was made in Construct so you need you DirectX up to date). Or! There is a quickplay version on Game Jolt here.

For those who do not know about Ludum Dare, it’s a contest in which you have to make a game from scratch in 48 hours. As such, there’s only so much you can do! This game could likely do with a couple of more days of development, as I would have liked to implement dialogue and some sound. But I was trying out Construct for the first time, and fumbled with it a bit, which ate up a bit of time. It was fun to make though, and interesting to design a level quickly and quite organically in Photoshop rather than a tile editor. ^o^ Mostly, I’m happy with the amount I got done in such a short amount of time, even though it’s not perfect. I might clean it up a bit later, but for now, it’s fine.