Digital Generation Post-Mortem
Originally posted on ludumdare.com
I’ll do my post-mortem for Digital Generation now, rather than putting it off until never.
What went right
- Gameplay: I focused more on simple, achievable gameplay this time. I focused on making the game start out easy, and introduce new elements that you can figure out one at a time rather than all at once. My last Ludum Dare game just dropped you into the middle of everything.
- Sound effects: I was hoping for music (see below), but I settled for sound effects. Even though some of them are shrill and annoying, they make it feel "real". (Turn your volume down when playing my game.)
- In-game help: In the final hour, at the bottom of my TODO list, was an in-game help system. Each level has a list of strings which get printed at the bottom of the screen as help messages. People don’t read READMEs, after all.
- AI behavior on level 2: I just get such a kick out of how the AI behaves on level 2.
What went wrong
- Audio subsystem: The audio subsystem is my most recent addition to the base code library, and it’s got some problems. There are a couple bugs in it that I know for certain can cause crashes. The resampler is also total garbage, and the game only sounds decent at 48 kHz. If your system is set to 44.1 kHz, it sounds terrible.
- Music: I wrote background music, but the audio subsystem doesn’t support it—so it goes to waste. The soundtrack is available as a separate download.
- Sleep: I felt seriously ill half the time I was working on the game, and I think it was due to a combination of excitement and bad sleep patterns. Or I could have been genuinely ill, who knows? If I do Ludum Dare next time, I’m keeping to a strict sleep schedule. It doesn’t help that I’m trying to prepare for 8 hours of jet lag.