For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

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Tyranus
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For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Tyranus » Apr 09, 2012 8:08

For anyone interested, I recently discovered an interesting game design competition called the Ludum Dare. The idea is basically this: At the beginning of the scheduled weekend (happens a few times a year), a theme is announced. Programmers have 48 hours to design and submit the best game they can. After that time elapses, everyone who submitted has three weeks to playtest and judge the other entries. I'm not sure that I'm savvy enough to do well, since I'm just getting back into programming and familiarizing myself with FreeBASIC, but I'm planning to try.

One point of interest that I notice is that BASIC is very underrepresented in this contest. There might be a good reason for that, but I'm thinking this may be a very good opportunity for the FreeBASIC community to represent their favored language.

The next one happens in a little less than two weeks.

http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/
Mihail_B
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Mihail_B » Apr 09, 2012 9:07

I'm in for it ... It's just a short time challange so there's no problem with the time !
TESLACOIL
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby TESLACOIL » Apr 09, 2012 18:48

lol....

you A have no life and B no sense of purpose to your life ( = too much time + too much talent )

...sorry, just had to put my troll hat on for this :-p


a spectral analysis of this collective image
http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/wp-conte ... x07681.png

compared with this one...would no doubt yield an interesting dataset :-p
http://www.e-cobo.com/wallpapers/scenery/scenery_1.jpg
Tyranus
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Tyranus » Apr 09, 2012 20:12

Sorry, TESLA, but given some of the stuff you tend to go on about, I tend to think those words apply more to you than anyone else here. :P
TESLACOIL
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby TESLACOIL » Apr 09, 2012 21:04

Im a designer not a coder....thats the difference, lol

i have no life outside of design......this is especially true if your job is designing 'life' itself

whats the difference ? well a designer has to climb down the ladder to get at the nuts and bolts, whereas a coder has to climb up the ladder to see the system as a whole and understand the framework.


Was reading up on the rules, some competitions except teams, might be worth getting an FBteam uptogether.
Tyranus
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Tyranus » Apr 09, 2012 21:26

Yes, the LD Jam is a variant of the LD48, but the rules are a bit more relaxed, and it allows for a team so you can just stick to being the designer if you can find a willing coder and artist/music mixmaster or whoever else you're missing.

I think of myself as a designer as well, but the stuff I design is never going to see the light of day if I don't code it. Design without implementation strikes me as being like a song without an ending: it's just noise. Interesting noise, maybe, but little else.
BasicCoder2
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby BasicCoder2 » Apr 09, 2012 22:11

TESLACOIL wrote:A designer has to climb down the ladder to get at the nuts and bolts, whereas a coder has to climb up the ladder to see the system as a whole and understand the framework.


I would see it as the opposite!!

A coder has to translate down some high level description of what is required into a sequence of instructions that can be carried out by a computer. The highest level description "write a chess program" is the easy part. It has to be broken down into smaller and smaller parts until it reaches the level of a high level language after which the compiler will break it down further into machine code instructions.

Competent coders are also high level designers.
Lachie Dazdarian
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Lachie Dazdarian » Apr 09, 2012 22:38

Never was a fan of such short competitions. They can be beneficial to lurkers and ideas moochers, but it's not something I would waste my nerves on. These type of competitions require pre-equipped (with flexible engines/code, gfx sheets, know how) and experienced developers for ultra-short dev cycles, which I am not nor have affinity to become.
TESLACOIL
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby TESLACOIL » Apr 09, 2012 23:47

They can be beneficial to lurkers and ideas moochers

...i know what you mean. Some people like to orchestrate, but then some people want an excuse to do their thang.

for me , if i was to run a competition especially one with prize money then it would be a compo to make something useful, eg an app,utility or game that peopel would actually play....my focus is on 'utility to mankind' rather than self indulgent nerdgasm,self aggrandizement, lol....but then serious focused play is part and parcel of the learning/bonding process and that's why human & other social animals indulge in it....to what solution is the 'obfuscated code contest' ? lol ...nerdgasms are one of the motivating factors behind learning, its just culture+survival trait.

The colony/tribe is the organism, though we prefer to see ourselves as individual ants....out minds are just a complex orchestration of code. We are compelled to speak our minds, compelled to do our thang. We just forget that this is so because we do it naturally and instinctively day in and day out.....most games are about conquering the environment...or each other. If not that, then the games are about orchestration or empire building.




ref I would see it as the opposite!!

its a matter of 'focus'.....a designer has to stay focused on the big picture ( but must know the breaking strain of a bolt) He must be the architect, and systems analyst, the beta tester, the help desk,the marketeer & the enduser. He must know all these things and know them well. Know the limits and foibles of software,hardware and wetware.

a coder takes the brief, but then has to roll his sleeves up and get down and dirty, knowing full well that that nice little idea is not quite so easy to implement code wise (usually to busy stamping on bugs to worry about anything else...often to the extant of never actually realizing the design shortfalls...indeed the very word design means a different thing to a coder, the design blindness that profound)...and that's where the designer comes in, his mind is fresh and focused on the whole...you dont ask a mechanic to paint your car or a welder to customize the interior

yes, you need both skills to write great software. Uber code with a poopy interface is going nowhere fast, a glossy GUI riddled with bugs sinks faster than a colander. Specialized 'computer artists' can also make a big difference. What looks good hanging on the wall may not be so clever on a heavily worked interface

.....few people ever master the art of all three...and thats why we work in teams....the best software is invariably a team effort






The harsh Fact is that the computer games industry has been decimated not once but twice in my life time, crappy art, crappy code & crappy design to blame (mostly due to crappy management and/or inadequate resources)

Quality software arises in two ways....buckets of talent by sheer happenstance in the same room, or buckets of $ and a bloodyminded determination to deliver #1
Mihail_B
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Mihail_B » Apr 11, 2012 15:57

Guys I think this is just a small competion for a weekend, for folks who work during the week to earn their food ... no need to burph, harsh, murph, tarph, crabph, strooph :))
... but we execuse you from this competiotion ... Any way you wouldn't have the talent nor the brain capacitated to fully comply with building a small game in 2 days .... Hahaha
Have fun ... see ya ;)

We appreciate your contribution to the FB community a lot ... but we all forget ... the code bugs part of our speech :D =)) (I ment the bugs related to logic ... But this is a part of human nature ... No wonder way software companies are spending a lot of $ for bug testing and fixing !) Good luck

so,
ludum dare 3
rest of world 2
Gonzo
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Gonzo » Apr 11, 2012 23:34

I dont think regardless of what time you have, what tools you have, and your possible 20 years of building upon your own toolset, you can still make something WORTH writing down in 2-3 days.. at the very best it will be a good idea
at worst, some resemblance of a half-assed game...
it took me years of rewriting to make a good zelda-game engine thingie, and most of the work really was all about redesigning the whole damn thing to accomodate something that simply MUST be implemented because it made so much sense...
when you add things over time, and you sit back and think: I dont know how i could have enjoyed this game without that new feature
then youll realize how silly and utterly pointless these compos are,

im sorry, but thats my 5 cents of decades of tinkering =)
of course, i never want to impose my thinking on others, that goes without saying
TESLACOIL
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby TESLACOIL » Apr 12, 2012 0:15

I think the point if anything is not the results,ie the product but the process itself.running a marathon is pretty pointless to, ....i always catch the tube, lol

Its a 'shake down/turbo up thing'...we all do it, well anyone with a bit of get up and go does. I call it blitzing, intense sessions of whatever

...if you have a more laid back methodical approach to things, nothing short of a gun to your head would get you motivated to indulge in such frenetic activity. Pedantry is also wasteful of time....but when applied well it too is another method of attaining a high sheene.

If you have ever worked in a kitchen restaurant or a small IT company with ludicrously tight deadlines then compos like these come as second nature.

In RL we tend to hang a round a few subsets of humanity, on the net you frequently bump into all the colors of the rainbow. Takes a while for people to cotton on to that reality.



....IF there is a FreeBASIC team effort brewing i can throw in a few hours to help out. GFX/SFX content, interface design & gameplay...that and a bit of beta testing.
Tyranus
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby Tyranus » Apr 20, 2012 1:40

Well, if anyone's actually interested, it's happening this weekend. The theme will be announced tomorrow sometime. Here's the short list:

Alchemy
Alternate Reality
Artificial Life
Build It, Then Use It
Castles
Castles in the Sky
Death is a New Beginning
Discovery
Evolution
Exploration
Explore the Universe
Growth
Indirect Control
Limited Resources
Minimalism
One Room
Parallel Universes
Randomly Generated
Survival
Tiny World

Don't ask me what the people proposing some of these are thinking. I have no idea. :P
anonymous1337
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby anonymous1337 » Apr 22, 2012 0:37

@Teslacoil:

Have you successfully created any games?
TESLACOIL
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Re: For the Game Designers Amongst Us: Ludum Dare

Postby TESLACOIL » Apr 23, 2012 19:16

yeah dozens , board games, table top games you name it. Not bothered writing pc games for a while though (used to way back) . These days its quite a big investment. Had lots of fun with modpacks/custom scenarios etc on modern pc games. Did a wicked rules.ini for redalert, took me months of graft to get right but was epic fun.

When i was a kid i had the biggest toy army in town. 100 tanks & vehicles several thousand infantry Still got a giant box of it. I used to design easy to play rules sets and all the kids used to come round and we would play for hours.

Ive just got a knack/eye for good game design, i can see the problems and solutions almost instinctively.

Design has always been my thing, not just games.....i can and do design pretty much anything, for me finding the problems and fixing them or taking a base product and improving it is a fun challenge ive been doing all my life.

Ive studied everything, from astronomy to zoology, work with my hands as well as my head, all this knowledge and experience lends its own weight, you get to a point where the feedback loop is complete....pretty much everything becomes possible then, even building the worlds first sentient machine mind.


...im not into hobby coding or writing ' hobby coder games' ....i understand why people do these things but this is of little interest to me. If i create an original 'proper game' it will probably be an open source affair, there are quite a few opensource game projects out there that are creating ' commercial quality' games...that where im at & what im into.

Winning Ludlam dare might be a bit of fun, its certainly a challenge on the design front so if a serious 'team effort' got under way id be happy to chip in.




...with the current complexity of hw/sw and the high user expectations you need to join a team if you are serious about making great games....ive seen a couple of good solo efforts here and there on the interweb but they are few and far between and are mostly microgames as you might imagine....i prefer to play & design the bigger stuff ( though im sorely tempted with smart phones as a platform, big user base )

Its mostly hobby coders here, i dont think anyone in this forum is a professional games coder/artist what have you anyrate and that's the kind of people im interested in working with....i came here so i could knock out some fast readable code for my AI , that's the only reason im actively coding. Though with my skill as designer im fishing around for a worthy game project to start or join.

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