alxm.org

Ludum Dare 40 Devlog

The theme for LD40 was The more you have, the worse it is. After doing a really good job scoping my work for LD39, it was time to go crazy and attempt an RTS-style game from scratch in just a little over 48h. The game is called Mine Op 40, where you use drones to mine crystals before the enemies overwhelm you.

I got some good parts of it done, but I'm left with a laundry list of core features that I ran out of time for, like enemies that attack your base and building new structures. This one was marked Unfinished on ldjam.com.

Mine Op 40 animated screenshot

Idea

I decided to make a game where you command drones to mine crystals on a faraway planet. The more resources you accumulate, the more enemies attack you and the more effort it takes to keep your mining operation going.

Everything starts in my sketchbook

Subconsciously, I think I just wanted to make my own StarCraft-inspired game, something I dreamed of doing ever since I played the original in 1999. Coincidentally, I recently stumbled on my old geometry set from school - looks like I was a real fan :-)

StarCraft scene drawn on a post-it note inside my old geometry set :D

Back to top


How It Went

Planning

I broke down all my work with HacknPlan, and realized that even if my time estimates were perfect, there was no way I'd finish in the two days that were left. Looking back, I underestimated the time I'd need for each task by about 20-30% on average.

I kept going anyway, because I thought the idea had promise and I'd come back to it later (this would be the 6th prototype I'd like to come back to since this time last year, but who knows). I also ended up with some pathfinding and AI code that will go straight into my main project, so that's a plus.

Engine Improvements

Game jams are great for spotting where your workflow and tech stack are lacking, for me this was mouse support. All the games I made in the past use keys and buttons, and my engine only had some rudimentary touchscreen code that was written for the GP2X Wiz back in 2010.

The GP2X Wiz had a touchscreen

I rushed to make the mouse work in a maximized SDL2 window, but it's finicky and will need more work to feel right.

Burning Out

I was toast for the next couple of days after Ludum Dare, and put off writing this dev log for two weeks. I'll take it easier for LD41 and make something silly and simple instead :-)

Back to top


Screenshot Log

Mine Op 40 screenshot Mine Op 40 screenshot Mine Op 40 screenshot Mine Op 40 screenshot
Mine Op 40 screenshot Mine Op 40 screenshot Mine Op 40 screenshot
Mine Op 40 screenshot Mine Op 40 screenshot
Mine Op 40 screenshot

Back to top