One of the things in my mess of being busy in the past couple of months was Ludum Dare, a game jam which is held every four months.
A game jam is a challenge in which game developers must create a video game from scratch — concept, design, coding, everything — within a certain time limit and possibly with other restrictions.
So here are more details about Ludum Dare, specifically. In the month leading up to the game jam, interested participants may submit ideas for themes. These are voted on by the community up until the last minute before the jam starts. Participants then have 48 hours to make a video game, alone, that matches the theme. There are then three weeks of voting by the people who made the games, and at the end the games are ranked. Your prize is that you get a game and hopefully learn something.
The most recent Ludum Dare was held the weekend of December 14th and the theme was You Are the Villain.
I participated even though I wasn’t entirely ready, but it was fantastic. And I now have a game, Decommissioner. I learned much. And I’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback on the game from other participating developers, some amateur and some professional. I’m very happy with the experience.
If you’re interested in trying the game out, here are links to the files:
- Windows (64-bit only)
- Mac OS X
- Python source code (only uses basic libraries, should run on any Python 2.7 installation)
Here are links to the blog posts I put up on the Ludum Dare web site before, during, and after the event:
- Butterflies in my Coding Stomach
- Considerations in Preparation
- Creeping Forward
- Tools Declaration
- Workspace in Progress
- Final Workspace Setup + Starting Food
- Oh-ho-ho-oh God, I’m So Screwed! (Idea Too Ambitious?! Maybe So!)
- Hmm. Well, Progress Has Been Made
- Let it Snow >:D
- Finish Line, HO!
- Five Minutes of Screeching
- Decommissioner Postmortem (48 Hour Compo)
And here’s a link to my official entry page.