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LD #37 This Room Is Mine

December 13, 2016

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This School is only big enough for one room, and that room is mine!

Use your R/C and abilities, to move all resources and expand my one and only room. But be ware of pestilent rats and other mined boggled scavengers.

Instructions

Use numbers 1, 2, 3 to select modes.

1. control character. Move with left click, open doors and refill battery with right click. Use abilties by clicking on them.

2. Control R/C. Gather resources and return to Base Camp. Don’t run out of battery. And beware of rats!

3. Build. Build machines for abilities with material.

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Play Online

Ludum Dare Page

Credits:

Game Design, Art & programming
Christoffer Lundberg

Audio & Music
Oscar Lundberg

Made in Construct 2

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Post-Mortem

Different game jam – This game jam game was made a little differently from the other game jams. In Luleå where I live, we have held a locale meet up for Ludum Dare two times before. Both of the other times, we tried to organize teams with varied competences. We usually finish the games but its usually a lot of discussions and opposing ideas, which is time consuming in games jams. Therefor, this time, inspired by the game jam in Boden last week, we used a more add hoc model where everyone how have a idea can start working on it and then can pitch it to the other participants. If they are interested they can join the team. In that way everyone join the team with a fairly similar idea of the game, and its also possible to move to another team if the sound is done, or for other reasons.

Prize of creative freedom – Well, it ended up with everyone starting to work on their own project. One person joined a project as the writer, and the sound music maker dropped his project and made sound to all the other groups. So, it was a little uninteresting to have mostly solo projects. But on the other hand everyone made that choice based on game ideas and technology basis. The one and most important difference with the ad hoc method is that the person working on the project are the leader of the project and have total creative freedom. Its a big difference because you can make a u-turn and totally change the concept. But still the other people can help out if needed. Its hard to draw any conclusions based on a single try, but I would say that it would probably have been easier with more people, but still worked well because of the creative freedom. But maybe not something I would recommend for the first game jam.

The game idea – To the game! The core idea was to make a strategy game based on teenage trying to create the perfect room, based on their interests (punk-rock, sports, cars, fashion, electronics). Its kind of extreme egoistic materialistic world view. Where you take resources from other parts of the house, competing with your siblings, and expanding your room to eventually cover most of the house. It was a ambitious project, so I had to cut the multilayer early, and instead simulate the feeling. I started to build on the core components, moving around, having a helper, exploring. I decided that I didn’t want head on head conflicts, so no combat units exchanging lives. That turned out to be the most challenging decisions, and the one I really didn’t solve.

RTS without combat – Some where in the middle of the game jam, where I had movement, building and a automated vacuum cleaner (a kind of semi random enemy moving around picking up dirt which the R/C would drop, eventually didn’t make it to the game because of level scaling problems) but the game didn’t feel fun. So I tried to look at some videos of RTS design (Source) but quickly realized that the strategy part involved to identify advantages and build different units to counter the opponents units. So even thought the scouting, exploring, resources mining and building buildings was important part of the RTS concept, the combat and handling of a lot of units was kind of the clue which hold together the game play loop.

Door idea – I decided to add doors. The idea was that theres rooms in the level, the rooms all have closed doors. If you don’t open it its going to stay static all the time. But when you open it the enemies are going to get out and harass all over the map. But you can mine the resource inside the rooms. So a slow player can take the rooms one at the time, but a more skilled player can multi-task and open multiple doors and handle the enemies they all release. Also the player can not kill the enemies but have to deal with them in other ways, like locking them into other rooms, or similarly concepts. And the game was to be timed.

Implementing door idea – So I implemented doors, and locked doors, and rats. But the rats don’t escape the rooms, and don’t really harass so much, maybe 2 out of 5. So its not what I wanted, but it was kind of fun to open doors and explore, and multitasking the character which open door, and the R/C which picks up the material but gets battery drained by the rats. This was pretty late into the project so I just decided to add some upgrades as a macro big loop. Which I did, and called it the day.

And I want to add – Theres still a lot of things I want to add. I made a list of upgrades, where like 1/3 got into the game. Most of them are doable. I want to add more helpers, like 1-2 more. And I want more enemy types, and some kind of ending.

Handcrafted random level design – Also, level design was super interesting in this project. Its always hard to build levels while the game is in development, especially when theres not so much components to use. Here, I built the map when we had 15 minutes left in the local event. I had the structure in place, with walls, and then just added resources randomly, boxes and keys. And tried to lock some of the closed rooms but add some keys in the open rooms. So I had literary not played the level, because it took to much time to play test. So when I eventually played it, it felt like playing a level from someone else’s game, because I didn’t know where anything was. I played it eventually, but yes, its good to use the handcrafted random generation when needed 🙂

No time limit – I also didn’t add time, mostly because it felt okay without it. I have figured that time limits are great for competitive player, but a little to punishing for casual players. I think that most first time players would play until the time runs out and not play it again. But now the game goes on and on, because I didn’t put in any other ending. But mostly because I didn’t know what time would be fitting. Like 10-15-60 min?

And the game needs more play test. And I moved away from the original sibling interest fight, I still wanted it in, but it was hard with art direction.

Over all I’m happy with the game, its fairly interesting without combat, and the resource building loop makes the game play interesting a lot longer, but its rough, very rough. But I want to know if its playable for other players as well. And if not, figure out why.

Thats one thing, this game is more casual then starcraft, but I kind of expect people to understand the concepts from starcraft, Like changing between units on 1,2,3 and doing something else while the other unit is moving around. I remember playing starcraft a long time without doing it, and RTS is not exactly mainstream these days, so I think I expect to much of the player already from the start of the game. But I have to check it 🙂

 

 

 

 

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