30 day game dev

Having done HTML game development for a while, I’ve built up a few decent contacts via Twitter and am amazed at the number of game dev jams that go on, from #indiesvspewdiepie through to 1 game a month #1GAM, though with no fellow dev nearby it’s not something I’ve done. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve taken part in hackathons at work before.
Jams and hackathons, however, teach you a lot of things… quickly. Which can be a great way do learn.

My problem in the past is I take on game dev that would take longer than 1 month. Toobz and Mayhem are examples. Only, I got it wrong. Some jams don’t literally mean 30 continuous days or 1 solid month of dev. Life gets in the way – many of us work full time elsewhere and have families. As a result, the chances of 30 day continuous dev are less than zero.

Mayhem

Toobz

The other downside of jamming remotely (by that I mean rather than 60 devs in a room) is that you really have to keep updating the world on progress. This also takes time, and being game devs, is something we begrudgingly do. After all its not coding, or designing – it’s marketing (dirty word).

Now I get it. Take your time and show the world what you can do in 30 days. It doesn’t have to be 30 continuous days, so let’s see what we can do.

I’m going to pick up #30daydev as my jam and create a game under this banner. Check out @liamtwose on Twitter. He’s a massive advocate of 30 day dev and provides a large amount of advice of devs (especially around tips in staying motivated).

I currently use Phaser for my game dev platform. Being HTML5, it runs in any browser (inc mobiles), but is very fast and structured. Mayhem was the first complete game I used Phaser for and found it pretty easy including homing enemies, gun turrets rotating to face the player and firing in the correct direction.

So, I’m going to do another shoot-em-up. Nothing huge or monstrous, just enough to up my speed and documenting levels. This time, I’m interested in seeing if it’s feasible to rotate the play ship around the outside of the screen and have the enemies come out from the middle – along the lines of Tempest from the early Eighties.

One other reason why I’m doing this is to provide the kick up the arse required on documenting and writing about how it’s going. I keep meaning to do a dev style diary, so now’s the opportunity. Each day of any dev, there will be a new blog entry outlining what I’ve achieved and unless it’s not payable, I’ll update the game online.

So keep checking out this blog and watching Rotate Space for any playable updates. Obviously, it won’t be online yet until I have something to show. So let’s get started…

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