Saturday, February 10, 2007

This Blog Needs More Pictures, Anyway

Sorry for the delay, but it is time for a Super Game Bakedown Retrospective post!
In general, I'm quite happy with the Bakedown. Out of the nineteen total participants (myself included), three games were released! I've already linked to my own, so here are the other two, with download links and the official choice of the Bake of the Down:

Created by SelectButton forum member "!="
This is, in its creator's own words, barely a game. You walk around, explore, collect some things, then have a bizarre final confrontation. The atmosphere and graphical style are both great, though - the game world feels charmingly surreal and alien, especially for such a simple project.

Created by SelectButton forum member 'Takashi'
Bake of the Down
A gorgeous, simplistic space sim. It may not be fully realized, but the gorgeously austere polygon graphics that are reminiscent of the 3D games of the early 90's are fantastic, as is the prospect of constructing an entire planet. There's not alot to do, but simply designing and building your planet is rewarding enough, thanks to the wonderful visuals. Great job!

Anyways, in regards to the Bakedown in general -
-The basic concept. Turns out a month is just the right amount of time to make a simple game.
-Some actual games came out of it!
-People approached it with the right attitude - saying to HELL with procrastination or uncertainty, just make SOMETHING. Several of the people who participated had never tried to make a game before!

-Publicity. There was going to be a website, but due to reasons that I'm not going to go into here, there isn't, and I no longer have access to the domain As a result, the overall scope of the Bakedown was much smaller than I had hoped. If anyone is interested in making a website for it next year, I am very interested in talking to you about it. Contact me.
-The rules still need ironing out. I can't decide what policies to use regarding code reuse - it's turning out to be a much more confusing issue than I had anticipated.

So anyways!
Now that the Bakedown is over, it's time to get back to work on Zombie City Survivors.
Wrong. Well, sort of.
What I need to admit to myself right now is that ZCS will require a number of skills that I do not currently have. However, I know that if I just shelve the project, then I will never get back to it, and it will rot into obscurity. So, I've figured out a middle ground.
I am going to start work on a series of smaller projects, each one involving one skill that I need to acquire before cracking down on ZCS. I don't know how many projects there will be, but I'll need one each for AI in a Tactical RPG Environment, Sprite Billboarding, and Scripting.
The first of these projects will be SSSSRPG, a sort of sequel to RRRRRPG that will take place on a grid-based battlefield, in which enemies will move intelligently in response to the player's movement and actions. This will help when I get to designing the combat engine of ZCS, and need a lot of zombies to be able to fight effectively and without taking too long to calculate their paths.
I'll talk about this more soon.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Super Game Aftermathdown

Well, the Super Game Bakedown is over now. You've seen my contribution to it already - but what of the others? After all, there were nineteen people racing for the finish line this year. Well, as it turns out, I wasn't the only one to get there! Let's look at the other finalists:

Selectbutton Forum member Takashi created the wonderful Space, in which you mine asteroids to build a planet piece by piece. The mechanics are not all in place, but the graphics are fantastically charming, and it's still fun to muck around with.

Honorary mention goes to !=, who created the demigame bd7007, which seems to be about exploring and picking up objects, then having an incoherent button mashing duel with a triangle. Surreal!

Thanks to all who participated, and I look forwards to whatever works will be spawned from next year's Bakedown.