Thursday, August 6, 2015

Ludum Dare 32 Post-Mortem

In preparation of another Ludum Dare, I am reposting my post-mortem from the last Ludum Dare.  To those who are joining for the jam or compo, good luck!


Well, It's been a week since we submitted our game, Break A Leg, and it's given us time to think about what we have done.  It was a blast to make and I personally am proud of what we had made.  That being said, I feel like a proper post-mortem is in order.  Let's do this!

The Good:
Playtest the game mechanics the first night.  Most of the Ludum Dares I get lost in the details of making the game that I don't stop to think of whether my game will actually be *fun* or not.  So, playtesting the game mechanics night one made me much more confident about the direction of the game.
I had backup for programming! This one was personally huge for me, since it gave me more time to think about the structure of the code and, consequently, make better code.  A larger group also let us have some backup on each area of work.  The extra help on art and code made a much better project.
The Bad:
Time.  I know this is a common item on the bad list, but having some extra time would have been immense. Everyone had work on Monday, so the last day of the jam really wasn't an option.  We worked as late as possible and got a lot done in the final few hours, but we didn't have time to get the audio that we recorded into the game.
Split work areas.  Since we had a larger group than expected join us at the TinkerMill, we had to move into the main area for the Dare.  We had the people doing art and sound working in one area and the programming group working in another.  That led to a few issues with user interfaces and misunderstandings about what the vision of the game would be.  Although we mitigated confusion by planning thoroughly the first night, some details fell through the cracks.
The Ugly:
Having to move into the central area.  The main area was quite a bit louder than the conference room we were initially going to use, so it affected how focused we were on the game.  It wasn't a huge deal, it just made it take longer to get done.
Not participating in the warmup weekend.  I was a bit rusty on the coding side, so it took me longer to get moving on the code than it should have been.
Next Time:
Reserve the classroom.  I think that this would solve the split work area issues, along with the noisier work area.  This is easy enough to solve, though.
Practice!  Working on games is not a short term endeavor, so not practicing the art really takes it's toll between the Dares.
As always, it was a blast to make this game and we look forward to jamming again next time.

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