Ludum Dare Progress Post 1

Okay so Ludum dare has been going about 5 hours. while I wish I had gotten off to a faster start, I think I’m doing okay right now.

So far, I’ve set up some basic movement for the player, I’ve done some planning for what I want to have in my game, and I’ve started working on the weapon system. Currently I’m planning on having 4 weapons with 5 states the player can be in, Unarmed, Pistol, Shotgun, Uzi/Machine Gun, and Flamethrower. Most likely I will either add a melee weapon, change unarmed to be fists or a melee weapon, or switch the flamethrower for a melee weapon.

At this point I’m only planning on having two enemies, Slow Zombies and Fast Zombies, but I may add some others if I come up with more ideas.

Anyway, here are two progress shots. they look lostly the same except for the weapon that’s equipped, and even that isn’t represented on the player yet.

Shotgun UnarmedAs you should be able to tell, I am still using entirely temp graphics. I wanted to make sure that the gameplay was working before I started actually working on graphics.

Right now I have a pretty simple weapon system which allows the player to fire their weapons and reload( not at the same time though). I haven’t setup the firing system yet for the Uzi or the Flamethrower since they don’t work the same way as the pistol and shotgun, but that’s what I plan on doing next. From there I will most likely make some basic zombies to walk around and fight/avoid, and add ammo to be picked-up. Finally, after I have the basic interactive elements down, I plan on designing the level.

I’ll probably do my next update sometime around 7:00. See you then :)

Finally have an idea…

So it took me a while, but I finally settled on an idea for Ludum Dare.

I am going to make an top-down shooter which is a zombie game where you can only do one ting at a time. It’s not the most original game idea in the world, but I think it’ll be fun to work on, and it will allow me to make a horror type game and an overhead shooter at the same time.

Some of the things I want the player to be able to do include scavenge for items, shoot with various types of guns, lock doors, and build barriers. Also, the player will obviously die after 1 hit. There are a lot of ideas here that I’ve never done before, but even if I fail, it’ll be worth it to try and make something new.

Anyway, here are my tools.

Engine: Construct 2

Art: Photoshop

Sound: sfxr

Well, I guess that’s everything. I’ll try to have an update soon on my progress.


Meditating on Ludum Dare Theme…

You Only Get One

That’s the theme of this weekend’s Ludum Dare.

I’ve been meditating on this theme for about and a half, probably more once this post actually goes live, and I’m still not sure what I want to do. I decided to start typing my thoughts out and see what I come up with, so I’m doing that here on my blog. So here’es what I have so far:

A western-themed dueling game where you only get one chance to shoot your enemy. It seems kind of obvious, but you might be able to do cool stuff with it depending on how you built the shooting mechanic.


A rising block puzzle game(I know, big surprise right?) where there are Blocks of various colors and you can only destroy one color at a time. So I guess the Blocks would be rising and they would be varying different colors. At the bottom of the screen, you would have different buttons. each button would be one of the Block colors, and when you hit it you would destroy all the Blocks of that color? Maybe you don’t destroy all the blocks of a given color, but you could destroy groups of blocks as they rise. Choosing a single group kind of fits, but I feel like it’s stretching farther from the theme then I want to go.


What if you only have one life? So I could do a platformer or a shooter and only give the player one chance to complete the game. It could be kind of like a rouge-like where the player has to try and complete the whole thing in a single-run. It seems like an obvious choice but it could still be fun.


Another idea I had earlier was to make an action game where all the enemies were based on a given number, and the player is the number. The idea centered on each number being a weapon of some kind. So 1 is a sword, 2 is a sickle, 3 is a bow and arrow, 4 is an axe, etc. This would probably lend itself to a stylized story about assassins or something. I’m not sure if I have the time to make that much content.


I have been wanting to make a bullet hell game for a while so I could try something like that. You could do something where the player can only shoot one shot at a time. Maybe the bullet has a forking ability and they are not allowed to shoot again until all instances of the bullet have disappeared. the player is trying to make the longest chain of destruction they can. This could be interesting but it would be hard for the player to plan attacks unless the bullet moved quickly or they had some kind of slowing mechanic. You could also do pre-designed levels where the player has to determine the best place to make their shot and cause the largest damage. That could be fun as a problem solving game.

If you went with just the standard bullet hell gameplay though, you might be able to make it interesting by varying up the enemy design. Some enemies could stop the bullet and it might just not fork off of them. You could also have enemies which change the forking angle so that it spreads out in a different way. Not sure what else to do there yet.


You could also do a game where you only need to score once to win. That would probably work best as some kind of multiplayer game. Maybe a virtual board game where the players are trying to eliminate a specific piece?

That’s all I’ve got for now. Hopefully I’ll be back soon with an idea I want to use.

My New Job and Other News…

It’s been a while since I posted on here, but thankfully it’s for good reason. The primary reason I’ve been quiet is because I was hard at work on an article for GameDevTuts dealing with Board Game Design. The article covers how to make a board game from conception, to design, to development, to playtesting, and even touches on publishing your game. I submitted the article to my editors today, and while I know I will have to speak with them and make changes before the final draft is approved, I’d be surprised if it didn’t come out some time this month, so check back soon for more news on that front.


On top of the article though, I also started a new job. As of October 20th I became the Technology Training Coordinator at the East Brunswick library in East Brunswick, NJ. Essentially I am the person who is in charge of all the technology oriented training programs that my library runs. This includes classes we run for library patrons, instructional sessions for library staff, and classes we run for general township employees. My primary duties include scheduling classes on our events calendar, working with patrons when they have issues registering for courses, and, most importantly, making new classes for us to introduce at the library.

Right now our stable of classes is relatively tame and doesn’t include many topics beyond MS Office 2010 and QuickBooks. To remedy this issue I am currently working with my boss to develop a whole suite of new classes for the library. Right now I’m working on a class dealing with Web Design through WordPress, then I’m going to be doing a class on Photoshop or Photoshop express and Digital Photo editing, and then I’m going to eventually do a class on Game Design, and I’ll probably use Construct 2 for that one since it’s so accessible.

It’s a pretty exciting opportunity, and having this job allows me to drastically cut back my hours at the call center, which is always nice. While I don’t know if I’m going to be in this position forever, especially since it’s not full-time right now, I definitely think it’s better than what I’ve been doing, and it should be a great opportunity for me to explore new technologies and meet new people. I’m really excited to see where it takes me, and for the first time in almost 1.5 years, I’m really happy to get up and go to work most days.

Anyway, that’s all I’ve got for now. Check back again soon as I’m going to try and do a post about Path of Exile, a Diablo-esque RPG that just came out of Beta and which I’ve been enjoying a lot so far.


Post-Mortem: Match-3 Tutorial Series

The final article on the site

The day has finally come, after months of work I have officially published the last article in my series about building a Match-3 game in Construct 2. Having finished the series a few weeks ago I’ve now had some time to consider the series from more of an outsider’s perspective and I thought this would be a good place to share my thoughts on it. You can play the final version of the game here and I’ll be including links to all the articles I wrote at the end of the series, but for now, continue reading for an in-depth look at how long it took me to make this series, and what I’ve come away with.

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