Main » 2013 » October » 12 » October minijam (Homebrew, it's fergylicious!)

3:14 PM
October minijam (Homebrew, it's fergylicious!)

Another minijam, another game!
The themes this time were: Wolf in sheep's clothing, An unexpected take on a classic genre & Can't stop, won't stop. It was great fun once again, so thank you everybody! Being a remote controlled robot was also a strange experience. (Nobody is hearing the voice commands: "Turn, Up! Up! Up! Up! You're doing it wrong! Move body. You're doing it wrong!") So here is what happened from my perspective.

How did we get from theme to game?

Pretty early on we formed a team consisting of: Martha, Max, Rita, Addy and me. We also had help from CRNJstudio, who composed the background music for the game. After the voting process was done we started out with some random brainstorming. Then we took about 15 minutes to come up with ideas on our own and afterwards discussed those and the game design grew from there. It grew in all sorts of directions but in the end we designed the game around the theme: Can't stop, won't stop. One of our interpretations was that of feeling a sense of panic. And from that we focused on a core mechanic of 2 players pitted against eachother in a button mashing contest. Which was actually one of many planned mini game mechanics (imagine a cross between Cooking Mama and Mario Party).

Before all this though we decided to work with Unity. Both me and Addy were interested in learning it and Max was ok with giving us a high speed crash course in the game editor. Downloading and installing Unity took about 1 or 2 hours for me so I was very happy to have started that even before the voting process for a theme had ended.
All in all, with Max hammering out some more design details and me actually discovering MonoDevelop and being pretty slow about getting into the API and C# there was only small progress on the actual interactive part. The graphics and sounds were coming along fine though. So in unity we managed to get a Plane (basically a sprite) on screen that we could move around with buttons but time was running out fast.

With only about 4 hours left I thought it would be a shame if none of the graphics and sounds would actually be used in a game. So I decided to fall back to Haxe and tried to churn out a very rough version of the game design as quickly as possible. In the end there was a two player button mashing game, but unfortunately I was unable to finish the penalties for pushing wrong buttons which results in the gameplay being pure button mashing. On the other hand that gave me time to get all the graphics and sounds into the game before 9pm.
Because I was using a combination of Haxe/OpenFL/Haxeflixel the game is basically cross platform. Unfortunately the windows executable build process took just as long as adding a titlescreen and because I forgot an 's' in the project configuration the executable crashes on computers that do not have shader support. Like mine. So during the presentation we ran the flash version in the browser instead.

Lessons learned?
* The minijam is a great way to get a look at new technology, but it's maybe not the best way to learn enough AND be able to make a game with it in 8 hours. In practice it would probably mean the teacher will be making the game and you trying to keep up. You do learn though.
* Config files often do not get checked for typo's. So if you're stuck on a very fundamental problem, don't forget to look there.
* Developing a 1024*768 program on a pc that does not have that high resolution is pretty rotten. Don't do it.
* Listen to nice music:

Free stuff!
This time I didn't do any of the graphics or sounds, so no free public domain rights to those. But I did code the project so you can get the entire project including the Flash and windows executable (look in the export folder) here. I've replaced all the assets with programmer art though, you'll have to ask the artists on the team for those. But please feel free to use the code and the project in any way you want, the programmer art as well. Please keep in mind though it is very very bad code, constantly modifying arrays inserting elements at the beginning. Loads of duplicated code and hardcoded variables. Stuff like that. But it works.

Also, of course, you can play the flash version of the game right here.
The controls for player 1 are WASD, for player 2 use the arrow keys (up, down, left, right).
Category: Experiments | Views: 563 | Added by: Garfunkel
Total comments: 3
Andree Neemann   (2014-01-10 1:47 PM)
Well, this looks oddly familiar to me my friend....

Capti Rando   (2013-10-13 5:29 PM)
Hello world,

It was great to work on the music part with NJ Khaoz in our CRNJstudio! Thanks to the whole team for a good team work!


Brian Abdoelhak

So I moved all the experiments over from turdparty to here. Which is why all the comments look like they're written by Garfunkel. My apologies to the original commenters, the issue is now solved for future comments though.

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