Dave Brake Creations
Mind-altering Interactive Entertainment

News

The latest happenings at Dave Brake Creations

LD42 Results/Postmortem

LD42_scaled.jpg

Ludum Dare 42 has officially concluded and the results are in! As usual, there were many submissions (2013 in the Jam category, 3069 total) including my contribution, Screen Space Defender.

Ludum Dare 42 Jam Ranking

SSD_Ratings_Breakdown.png

Postmortem

The theme of this jam was "Running out of space". Participants were given 72 hours to create a game from scratch that incorporated this theme. The concepts and mechanics I came up with were:

  • An Arcade game where the player types incoming filenames to prevent them from being downloaded and having their hard drive run out of space
  • An Action game where the player must eliminate enemies in a specified order to make the approaching spiked walls recede
  • An Action game where colored boxes fall from the sky and must be destroyed by the player by matching their fist color to the box before being crushed
  • A Puzzle game where the player must unscramble images and close panes to prevent their desktop from running out of space

I went with my fourth idea as I felt it was the most unique. I also thought it would be fun to create the simulated operating system in the game.

What Went Right

  • The game was completed and submitted on time
  • The presentation was polished and visually appealing
  • The mechanics worked well and the audio selection complimented the gameplay nicely

What Went Wrong

  • The difficulty scaling mechanic of having multiple versions of each puzzle with an increasing number of pieces made the game too hard and was removed
  • The delay added between selecting the second puzzle piece and the swap occurring was too long and not well received
  • Limited testing time resulted in some bugs making it into the release (patched post-release)

Conclusion

Another Ludum Dare in the books! This was my second game jam, and while it didn't go quite as smoothly as I had planned, it was a great learning experience that resulted in another playable title.

Time is always an issue. The 72 hour window is tight and really forces you to refine your scope. I had planned to add an online leaderboard, as well as additional animation, OS interaction, and puzzles, which didn't make the cut. This is something I hope to improve on in the next jam.

I'm happy to have made progress in the graphics department. As a programmer, art is not one of my stronger skills, although it is something I have been working on. Screen Space Defender rated higher than Deck of the Dead in Graphics and Mood so I consider that a win in itself.

I'd like to thank everyone for playing and rating Screen Space Defender. The feedback is greatly appreciated. I had a blast creating, playing, and rating games during this jam and I can't wait to do it all again for Ludum Dare 43 in November!

Play Screen Space Defender