Ludum Dare 23 – Week 1 Games

This is a list of all of the games I played during the first week of rating. On Sunday I planned to just play two games per night, but Monday decided that I should do five per night, that way I will have slightly over 100 games at the end of the rating period, yet still be consistent in rating games each night.


T-Pod by Spiridos – First Ludum Dare 23 game I have played. A defend the tiny planet game, complete with sound, music, and how to play text. Its a bit on the hard side.

Urth Defense By Kylerhoades– This is a tiny game, about defending a tiny planet, from tiny nuclear missiles, while being inside a tiny ship.


Tiny World Defense Force by Beanalby – This is one of the games that stand out so far. In the game, you defend a large planet…by controlling a tiny planet. The game is a well rounded and complete entry.

When Worlds Collide by AlwaysGeeky – A voxel style game featuring a tiny planet that you goal is to destroy. You can fire asteroids at it, send comets crashing into it, or vaporize the surface, and to destroy the planet within the time limit you will have to use all three.

Creature Collect by Moop – A retrieve and deliver game set in space. You have to collect creatures form tiny planets and take them to a merchant.

Genesis by Tyruspeace – This is a game about guarding plants from buzzsaw robots, on a tiny hexagon grid planet.

Gravity by RÉMI– A really cool take on the theme, that has to making the background music, while defending your tiny world. Very well done entry.


Escape By Chrismcr – This game has you on a mission to collect a number of resources, deliver them back to the starship, and then leave the planet all before your time runs out. No sounds or music, but the gameplay and graphics are solid.

Homedefender by Hopps – A defend the planet game, you use a turret that is mounted to a tiny planet to destroy incoming missiles.

Stade 2 (Mr. Oizo) by 30Dogs – An abstract music platformer, that you have to get the correct timing, and quickly respond. A really cool game, looks great and the music fits really well.

The Tiny World of Fiorella by Strega – A cool rouge-like adventure game, the art and music are great.

Pro Stew Chugger by Tourgen– A shooter game with multiple rooms and doors that link back to each other.


Microbial By Lukrissacher – The first puzzle game I have played. Set at a cellular/ microscopic setting. The game is complete, and has fourty levels.

Tiny World Adventure by Pabloam – A 2D adventure game, you play a cell with the goial of reaching the end of the tiny world.

World Pong by Poohshoes – An interesting interpretation on the theme, that has you playing pong by yourself. Lacks in the gameplay department.

Invasion of the Planet Snatchers! by icefox – Another interesting idea, but lacks in the actual gameplay department.  Has sounds and a solid game idea.

Celluloid2D by Vertebro– An Asteroids style game played at a microscopic scale. Overall a solid game. I found it interesting that it was written in AutoIt3.

Thursday: (Web Game Day…aka being lazy)

Ant Surf Hero: The Surfening by Jigxor – A platform game that has you kicking ass and taking names, while surfing an ant that is larger than you.

Magic House By Vitou3d – A 3D puzzle game that you shrink or grow to complete the room.

Balance by Hadesfury – A 3D game set on a tiny world, you control a ball, and have to herd creatures to the middle point.

Spittoon by Sestren – A 2d puzzle game, using three colors you have to activate colored switches by spitting the colors at them. Lack sound effects and music, but is otherwise a really nice game.

Pet Planet by BMouse– A gameish simulation that has you taking care of a tiny planet.


Nook by POV – A platformer game, that you play a lizard that grows and shrinks to complete the level.

LittlePlanetBigRocket by daredevildave – A puzzle game set on a tiny planet, you are in control of a space faring being, and must escape the planet within the time limit.

A Load of Bulls… by Frib – A 3D survival game, that you have to survive bulls coming after you for as long as possible.

Nineties Holywood Hacker by Casino Jack – A 2D maze like game that you build a maze, using an interface like a pipes game, connecting a start to an end, then you have to fly a ship through it and defeat firewall enemies. When you finish a level you can upgrade your ship with damage, and buy more health. Overall its a good idea, and for a game made in 48 hours its quite good.

The Green Planet by Munch– A 2D score game, that you gain score by forcing the asteroids into Jupiter and picking up the chunks that flake off.


Nano Ascension by MikeLovesRobots3 – A 3D puzzle game, a very good entry that is complete with voice acting, sound effects, music, and a storyline.

Haxe Planets By jrfoco – A 2D platformer game created in Haxe, you have to guide your character to the end of the level, but the only control you have is jump.

Men Not Wearing Hats by Nilstastic – A 2D platformer game, that you have to steal diamonds from the men not wearing hats, without getting caught.

Rocket Boat by Rhy3756547 – A 2D platformer? (kinda) that you control a boat set on a tiny world, and your goal is to destroy the city.

Tiny Defenders by Raptor85 – A tower defense game, you play ant defending their colony, against other ants. There are three tower types, and they can be upgraded.

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Ludum Dare 23 is over, Through the Blue Sea is finished.

This isn’t a Postmortem post, but I wanted to post a wrap up of my experience this Ludum Dare.

I went to a car show Friday Night, just before Ludum Dare started, I figured it would give me a chance to brainstorm before I even had a computer in front of me. Then the theme was announced, and of all the theme it could have been it was the one I liked the least. The theme to me just inspired you to create a Tiny World that was copied out of Dragon Ball Z. I struggled with an idea that wasn’t to typical

The first idea, that was abandoned quickly was to use the Build It, Then Use It theme mixed with Tiny World. You would have customized a  huge gun turret and had to come in under budget to score higher. Then you would just blow up a Tiny Planet. I thought the idea was to simple, and I hadn’t made anything for it at that point so I ditched it.

The idea for Through the Blue Sea was to make a quick and simple platformer that used the minimalism theme, overall I am happy with it, here are some screenshots if you haven’t seen it yet.

Main Menu

Tiny Green Planet gameplay

You can read my post made during the event, and see the progression at my Ludum Dare author page. I will be playing two five games each night, and at the end of the week I will post a list of the games that I played. I want to be consistent this time, rather than play a bunch at the end of the voting period.

You can view and rate my entry here.

I will also be posting timelapse and gameplay videos soon.

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Ythmeven: Meet Strawberry, and Ludum Dare #23


This past week has been a hard/long one, with testing and reports due. But I managed to get a little of the background story for Ythmeven drafted. Meet Strawberry:

Strawberry was a rival Artificial Intelligence to Aurora, until being absorbed by the Aurora Corporation. That is the one line version of the story, but by next weekend I intend to release a full story that details the creation of Aurora. This will also set the current stage for the game, one corporation will be in control of the economy. I also added a new wallpaper of Strawberry to the Ythmeven Teaser Website. The IndieDB Page was also updated with news renders of Strawberry.

Luudum Dare #23

I will be participating in Ludum Dare 23, using Construct Classic, Photoshop, and some other tools. My goal for this Ludum Dare is to:

1. Make a finished game, I want the game to have a tutorial, as many levels as possible, and an ending.

2. I want to make some kind of art game, and try to get away from the obvious concepts.

The theme voting is on Round 5, the last round before theme announcement. In the last round of voting I gave out six plus 1 votes, and fourteen minus 1 votes.

Build It, Then Use It

This is the theme I like the best, when I saw this theme I immediately had six different game ideas.

Castles In the Sky

I voted for this one because McFunkypants told me too…


A pitty vote, it has made it to the final round a number of times, but has never been the theme. There are quite a few different ways you could interpret and use the theme as well.

Limited Resources

One of my goals with Ythmeven is to create a feeling of Limited Resources, everything would take time to do, and the only resource that would exist would be those the player gathers. I’d be interested to see what I could pull off in forty-eight hours, as a  2D game.


I’m going to school for Fine Art, and my favorite art movement is Minimalism. I associate my own work with minimalism more than anything. The Unknown Puzzle game uses a minimalism inspired art style. Another theme that I have many ideas for.

Parallel Universes

My least favorite plus 1 vote now that I have thought about it. Still there is a lot you could do with the theme.


At the end of Ludum Dare Weekend I will make a wrap up post here, otherwise I will be posting at least nightly on the Ludum Dare website.

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Midweek Update on Ythmeven

This weekend I doubt I will have much time to work on Ythmeven, so I though I would post an update early.

The teaser website is up, with the backgrounds that I mentioned. There are eight that you can choose from. You can also check out the Indie DB page, that was authorized and has a few render of Aurora not seen elsewhere. Speaking of Aurora here is another render for the blog.

I have turns for the most part implemented, they are subtracted when you gather resources, dock, and trade. This turn is then put into one of the following ratings; Efficiency Rating, Maneuverability Rating, Barter Rating. These ratings will determine how much of a bonus you get. Say your buy price is 20, the bonus would be 10, then if your rating for barter was .5 you would get 5 bonus making your price 15.

The boring stuff was also taken care of, there is a list of online players, that shows players active in the past 15 minutes. The mail system is also mostly finished.

I’ll be working on ships this next week/this weekend. I need to decide how many modules, and what modules will be available. A module will grant an ability to the ship, for example if you want to gather resources you will need a module. There will also be a module to jump to a coordinate in any system (otherwise you have to go to a gate and through another system to move around) The last module that I know will be added is a cargo capacity module, that will double the cargo capacity on the ship. The most module a ship will have is five, and the fewest will be one. The intention is to make you pick what you want on each ship. I also would like to figure out what weapons will be available.

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Art Direction

I didn’t get any coding done this week for Ythmeven, but I did decide on an art direction.

On Thursday I saw a post on IndieDB about DAZ 3D software being free this month, I have been getting emails from Daz for years, but only had version 2.3 and the current version is 4. So I download Daz Studio, Bryce, and Hexagon. I intended to use Hexagon to model the spaceships with but didn’t make it far yet. Instead I started using Bryce, a program I hadn’t used before, and had a decent looking island with two trees on it within an hour. That was when I decided that I wanted the art to be a rendered landscape (rather than a photographic one) I also decided that I would change the background image in the game, depending on your location.

Saturday and today I have continued to learn Bryce, and have made eight renders that I am happy with. They will be available soon on a teaser website.

The following is a list of renders that will be used in the game.

Space: Starfield (empty space)

Space: Asteroid Field

Space: Nebula

Terrain: Desert

Terrain: Grassland

Terrain: Island

Terrain: Metropolis

The four terrains will be determined by what planet you are on. Depending on the type of planet it will produce more or less of a certain material.

I also created a character in Daz Studio, I’m not really sure what I will do with her yet, but I’m thinking she will introduce new players to the game. She will be a projection of a ships Artificial Intelligence as far as the story goes, so she will change outfits quite often.

Anyways meet Aurora:

While I was working on rendering Aurora how I intended I came to another decision. I want the game to use stereotypical characters from an old Sci-Fi movie, coupled with current day trends, hence an Anime styled character. The first renders of Aurora were with a more realistic model, but I switched to a stylized model after deciding on a direction.

This week I plan to catch up on coding, and get the turn/leveling system in, as well as the boring stuff I mentioned last time. I will also be launching the teaser website with the desktop backgrounds using the renders I mentioned above. With any luck I will also get a IndieDB page for Ythmeven up.

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There you have it, the title of the Browser based space game I talked about last week. Ythmeven, a homage to my character from Star Wars Galaxies. I find it to be a fitting name, as I plan to borrow a few other features from SWG that I haven’t seen elsewhere. What you ask?

Well the Crafting system of course. In Star Wars Galaxies there wasn’t just metal, ore and so on, but hundreds of different kinds and quality of metal. It made crafting an extremely time consuming, but very rewarding profession. When you were one of ten people with the resources to craft something, out of hundreds of players, it forced the players hand if they wanted the best. In Ythmeven I hope to capture a small portion of what they obtained. The current plan is that planets will produce crafting resources (different than what you will buy and sell at ports) Weapons, and modals will be craft able, and give a different bonus depending on what resources were used. A planet will produce one type of resource, but to craft an item it may take 2 or 3 types from different planets. It will differ form SWG in that the resource the planet produces will always be the same, rather than changing monthly. I hope that this will be enough incentive to control and build up a planet, cause my current plan won’t make it easy.

Anyways on to what I have actually coded. This past week I continued work on the starports (lots to do as most of your time will be spent at them) I also have ships working (multiple ships can be owned, and changed at the port) For the most part resource gathering and selling to the port is finished. Buying is also finished. The basic Merchant port is finished, with just a few small details to work out. I also started planning out what ships the game will have, and came up with 21 pilot able ships, and 3 capitol ships (more on capitol ships later) With some very generalized stats.

This week I intend to step back from the game a bit, and work on a few of the mindless systems (messaging, online players ect) while I come to a decision on turns. I’m almost 100% sure that I will implement turns of some kind, they serve the purpose of putting players on equal footing. In 3D games you have people with no lives that can play all day and night to finish the content before anyone else. But with a turn based game, I can limit everyone to a set number of turns per day.

I’m not sure if I want to make movement cost a turn, or just trading, mining, and docking. Rather than giving the player more turns in the day to move around, I’d rather limit the number and allow movement to be free. I’m considering tying the turns you use, to your “level” so every time you buy or sell from a merchant and use a turn you gain 1 xp (or turn) in a trading skill. This trading skill would give you a bonus in the ports based on a  percentage. So if you spent 500 turns on trading you would get a bonus of 50% or .5 The percentage would be based off a discount percent of the base price, so spending 1000 turns would give you 100% of the bonus, but it wouldn’t mean you’d get free goods (just cheaper than others). This way you would gain from doing an activity over and over, and make you more efficient, and thus faster. You would also spend turns on mining (asteroid for metal and ore, or nebula for gas) and docking would give you a movement point.

That is the plan for this week anyways, I’m happy with the progression, its going faster than I expected. I’m hoping to be able to start playtesting by summer.

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Redux: Alone In Space

Well lets start from the beginning.

Around 2003-2004 I was playing a game called TDZK (the original tdzk is different than Fleets), my daily routine for the several rounds I played was to wake up 15 or so minutes earlier than I needed to so I could log onto tdzk and see if my ship was spaced, and to donate turns to help the planet level up. tdzk itself was based off of several other games, but tdzk focuses on players working together to accomplish a task, rather than being a solo play game.

The developers of tdzk decided to shut the game down (3 or so years ago) sense then I have wanted to create a game that was similar to tdzk, and attempt to improve on the spots that I found lacking. I attempted several from scratch projects that dealt with a similar style game, but none ever made it past the drab boring stuff like a template system, user system, and a messaging system.

A while back I found an open source project that has been around longer than tdzk, and at first seemed to have a similar premise. I’m talking about Black Nova Trader. I quickly downloaded the code, and had a match up and running to mess around with. It didn’t take me to long to realize that black nova trader while similar was still in a more primative state, and targeting a different gameplay style. I tried to improve on features that I found lacking, but was lost inside other peoples code. Improving black nova trader wasn’t going to happen.

Both tdzk and Black Nova Trader are browser based games, as in real browser based, the game is played by clicking a link just as you could to navigate a website. The most recent game I played that inspired me to make Alone in space is a game called Starport: Galactic Empires. Starport is a 2d topdown game played in short rounds like tdzk and BNT Im spent a while playing starport, and based alone in space on the the concepts in starport. My problem with starport is that there isn’t much variety between the ships, as far as a bigger ship having more weapons. There wasn’t a feeling of a progression from the starter ship to the capital ship, as both only had two weapons.

With Alone in Space being for Ludum Dare I only had 48 hour to make the game, and I don’t think the game accomplished the goals I wanted it to. So on Friday I decided to start on a browser based version of the game, and attempt to capture some of what tdzk had. Rather than building a custom user system I decided just to integrate the game into SMF user system. I then started on galaxy generation, and yesterday (Saturday) I had my galaxy generating out from 0, 0 to whatever number I define. Resource sectors are generated at the same time, and late Saturday I started basic work on star ports, that you can dock with. Today I have continued working on the ports, and have them taking up an actual spot on the map, and the framework is all in for buying and selling resources. In between working on getting the code functioning I am making it use a simple template system so I can have a browser version for laptop,desktops, tablets. and a separate version for mobile. as well as being able to provide different visual looks easily. At this stage its nothing to look at, just black text on a white background. But I intend to have something more interesting to show soon.

As for the puzzle game that I had been posting about, I’m still working on it, I like to have multiple projects so I can pick and choose what to work on.

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