Electric Froth

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Ludum Dare 24

by Joel Kleier on 2012-08-21

Every 4 months, or so, the folks over at ludum dare (LD) hold a couple of contests, one for individuals and one for teams. The contest is all about creating a game in 48 (solo) or 72 (team) hours.

There is no prize for this contest, other than bragging rights and a prototype. Really the contest isn't about winning so much as it is about setting some time aside to do realize an idea or concept. But damnit, I want to get into the top 100 one of these times!

This contest is important to me because it gets my mind off of normal work and let's me focus on an idea for more than an hour or two at a time. A nice clear goal is handy too: get a game done in 48 hours, or else! This is fantastic motivation, especially since there are a thousand other people doing the same thing as you, at the same time.

So far, I've entered two of the competitions -- the LD48 #22 and LD48 #23 -- and loved nearly every minute of both.

For LD48 #22 I made a game called ALONE with K.I.T.T.I.. It was an attempt at a pseudo-rogue-like game using javascript. I used melonjs for most of the heavy lifting, but I hadn't ever used it before the competition (except going through some of the code in the tutorial). I spent a lot of my time fighting with everything I didn't know about the framework.

For LD48 #23 I made a game called The Tiny World. It was an attempt at a text-based adventure game, again using javascript. This time I did everything from scratch, and while I was very familiar with the tools, even for a text adventure game, I spent a significant portion of time on developing the framework.

This time around I really need to use a framework that's built for prototyping, and that I'm familiar with. While I LOVE javascript, and I want to pursue it more, I think I'd like to take a step back for LD48 #24, and try out the LÖVE framework. I'm fairly familiar with it, and it's built to prototype. My biggest issue will be getting around Lua -- I just don't use it that often, and I'm not as familiar as I'd like to be with some of the advanced features of the language. Heck, there's still several days until the competition, plenty of time to brush up, right?

Even if my next game still turns out to be complete shit, I'm excited!

If you don't have any plans, give it a shot, what's the harm?