Thorsten saw that and approached me to make the art for the Joburg festival, and I agreed with much excitement The A MAZE Joburg unicorn wasn’t gonna fly, so I eventually made this baby:
I’m super excited for this year’s A MAZE Festival! Last year’s was simply amazing as we got to meet, hang out with and pick the brains of amazing people like Rami Ismail of the incredible Vlambeer team, Sos Sowski the Swedish Mad Scientist of Video Games, and many more.
Follow this page for more details of the upcoming A MAZE Johannesburg 2014!
Baxoxe is a creative chit chat show that showcases and highlights creatives throughout South Africa – to show South African creatives the diversity that exists in the South African creativescape. (you know, other than advertising)
For the show, I prepared a Pecha Kucha (a presentation format focussed on conciseness – 20 slides, 20 seconds each) speaking about game design theory and what game design and development and communities are all about in SA. It was perhaps a bit over-ambitious as I went into rattle mode, sang a little song, and attempted some Xhoza clicking, but you can be the judge of that
We also had a blast answering live twitter questions, had a creative quiz-out (chickens DID cross the road), and generally had a lot of fun in the freezing Greenside cold. Ray was wearing shorts. That puzzled me.
Ray spoke about the comic industry in SA in general, and we discuss how we all should be pushing our passion industries forward.
A big thanks to Odd Cafe for the fantastic venue, the boys and gals of Baxoxe for the invite and organisation, and Openroom.TV for the excellent production. It ran like mice who were not blind in the least Baxoxe is a great initiative and I certainly look forward to their future shows!
This was my first Ludum Dare ever, and my 3rd real game jam in total ever (did one Indie Speed Run and one Global Game Jam, and by far my best jam ever – each jam builds on the previous one, and the LEVEL UP that one gets at game jams are just TOO MASSIVE TO PASS UP. I hugely encourage everyone to do game jams as often as they’re able to!
One thing my experience has told me is that I always write postmortem part 1 of my jams and then never get to part 2. So screw that, I’m going to do this one quick and in reverse chronological order like Memento
Another thing I was sad to not have had time to put in was score tracking, so I’m making a competition! Send me screenshots of your high score and the highest scorer this week (ending Monday 5th May) will get to design a level for SUPER LANDSHARK MISSILE ATTACK with me
I didn’t have time to add in sound and music, which disappointed me greatly, so I played the game over some rocking track and made a video of it
Eventually I detailed things a bit more, added more levels (there are three in total right now) and colour and juice and stuff and rushed it out the door in the final 6 hours:
Fleshing it out
I dropped in a bunch of objects, found some homing missile code, and went to town in a gameplay test. AND IT WAS AWESOME. So I pretty much didn’t change the gameplay from this kind of stuff:
And then amped it up in magnitude, and added score tracking and a timer, which made EVEN MORE AWESOME
Then I spent more than half of day one trying to get the physics for landshark working. One of the things I really wanted was for him to swim up walls… And generally defy gravity. Eventually after a lot of maths and help from other people’s maths:
I actually don’t remember where the idea came from. All I remember was that initially I wanted LAZERS. But that was hard so I went missiles This was my “project manager” over the weekend:
What went wrong:
Very little actually, I was REALLY surprised.
Lack understanding of Unity physics (or indeed any maths physics), of Quaternions, of Vectors, etc, made it really really tricky.
Didn’t budget time for sound and interface.
I wasn’t sure what the scope was from the beginning and built as I went
Spent a ton of time on swimming up the wall mechanic… But didn’t end up using it a lot. It was one of those REALLY out of the way mechanics that had all sorts of mad implications that I couldn’t have considered when I was making it. Like falling into the infinite sky But it’s not really so much “wrong” as “something I can explore more”
What went right:
Being surrounded by other jammers, we could all ask each other about things. It REALLY helped everyone Jam in a herd! If it works for zebras it works for jammers!
I let myself go - picked a theme, basic idea, and just explored how it played. The lack of a solid, defined, “dead” goal from the get-goal for me allowed for a refreshing exploratory approach to this jam.
Not having to justify every decision, thing to try, etc in a team made it really easy to rapidly try and discard ideas. Not that I don’t appreciate being in a team. I really missed being able to specialise and do what I do best and let everyone do what they did best. Good for time, less good for focus and attention to detail.
Google Sketchup. Seriously, it’s the only 3D program I know and without it I wouldn’t be able to make ANY 3D. Well, besides the cubes and spheres. Thanks for the fish shark!
Unity. I give it lots of hell, and it gives me lots of hell, but without it I would never ever have made something that looks so big in such a short of time. And this applies to EVERYONE. It’s a great big sandbox, all you have to do is to find how other people did what you want it to do… And remember syntax XD
It was truly fantastic! I’ll never ever miss another Ludum Dare EVER!