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Postmortem LudumDare 30 Jam OlymPlanets

Our Ludum Dare 30 72 hours game's postmortem. Our game is a sport game based on Olympic contests, but the difference is that they are in different planets with different races. You represent the human race in the game and must win the challenges to pro

Our Ludum Dare 30 72 hours game's postmortem.

Our game is a sport game based on Olympic contests, but the difference is that they are in different planets with different races. You represent the human race in the game and must win the challenges to prove that humans should be respected in all the galaxy!

It's a game with various (actually three xD) minigames inside. A bit like WarioWare, Mario Party or California Games.

The team was composed by:

Fernando Loureiro - Sound Director, Programmer
Tools: (unity, audacity(sound record), headset philips SHM3550/10)
Liliane Carpinski - Art Manageress, Concept Artist - Characters Designer, Poster Artist, some UI elements, Win/Lose backgrounds 
Tools: (Photoshop, PC with headphones for team conversation and inspirational music, Wacom Intuos Pen Tablet)
Lucas Machado - GameDesign, screenwriter
Ricardo Castro - Graphic Designer - Most UI elements, most backgrounds, Menu
Tools: Windows 7, CorelDraw X6
William O Lacerda (me) - Programmer, GameDesign, Press
Tools:  (Laptop with headphones(Rapoo h6060) for inspirational music and communication, Unity, GoogleDocs)

 

What we have done right:

Preparation for the jam

At the very moment of the jam started, we already had all the softwares  and hardwares installed and ready for use. We hadn't any problem about that. Also, we adviced all our relatives about the jam and then we hadn't anyone "in the way". We had a good food and water stock and also had planed how not to lose time preparing the meals, considering the "real meals" idea, not just junk food.

Comunication

Besides I've had some technical problems with Skype at the first hours, that not damaged the brainstorm, the comunication was successfull. We used Skype and Google Docs at the very start of the jam to discuss about the theme and define the game we've wanted to do. Next it, we only use Google Docs and Facebook Messenger. At the very beggining we could let everybody with the same concept about the game in mind and this made the development of the game easiest, without communicating everytime.

Artistic Style Choice

For the kind of game we thought, we couldn't have a rich and detailed serious style of art, so we went for funny characters, fully of personality.


Best slugs in the universe
Best slugs in the universe

Simple Gameplay

Obviously this game should be easy to play and funny.  The apice of that was the slug race where the player smashed the buttons repeatedly to have a little progress of the slugs in the race.

Unity

I decided to use this LD to test the beta of the new version of engine Unity, wich has a new system of UI, and it was been released a few days ago. At the end we were doing the game in a kind of "force the test of the new UI".
It was easy to do the things works and appears in screen the way we wanted. Unity is turning the ultimate engine for jams and indie development.


Score and informations in the game are made with the new UI
Score and informations in the game are made with the new UI

 

What we could have done better:

Make an estrategy for the game we wanted (and could do) in 72 hours.

This is also known as terror past revealed theme.
This was our first jam and the first game working with college classmates. We had a lot of care about what we could do in 72 hours and this made us delayed to decide. Also, we're afraid of cliche things and try to avoid it, so we didn't want to accept the most obvious ideas that was appearing. This made us to let aside a really good idea that we've had. Then, a lot of brainstorm later, we chosen this olympic idea because this was really original but how the time was short and we had no experience we couldn't explore it in the best way.

Game environment

A lot of graphic and sound details was missed. The game should seems like occuring in a big event like an Olympic game really is, but it isn't. If we had added an audience at the background and supporters sound, this would be better.

Gameplay

The boring "opponent turn" should have a way to be skiped. The gameplay could be more complex. We simplified a lot and the game turned linear. We could have done other mechanics for the game that were simple but fancy. As examples: the player could have some controll about the saucer after he trhows it; the player could have interation with the other runners in slug race; random events in obstacle run and so on.
We lost a lot of time doing details of UI when we could do one or two minigames or even polished the ones we already had done.

 

Summary

We don't think we have done nothing 100% wrong. We did a full game without bugs e no big feature is missing. We had an idea with a purpose in mind and we could fulfil it. The biggest mistake was try to devise a lot. If we've had done a platformer with fire and ice as the first idea that we had, the game probably would be better and a way more funny.

Game on LudumDare(Unity web player): http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-30/?action=preview&uid=39067
Game on itch.io(Download windows, mac e linux): http://hogtrick.itch.io/olymplanets
My Twitter: @hogtrick

 

 

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