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Tag: game development

Building a Visual Novel game with Renpy and Spreadsheets

After trialing a few different visual novel builders, my team and I settled on Renpy for this game. Using Renpy as our game engine provides most everything we would want to make a visual game very quickly. Speed is a huge plus for us because our team of two artists, our writer and our programmer (me!) are all working on this project in our spare time. Having multiple people working on game assets can cause conflicts. The renpy game engine example game uses a single file for storing the game script – “script.rpy”. This file is used to direct the flow of the game. You can use it to make characters appear on screen and attribute text to that character.…

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Impostor syndrome, learning language programming, creative puzzle pieces and low mood

As you might know from following me elsewhere online, I have been designing a new adventure game with some light puzzle and resource management mechanics. The working title for the project is “Fungi Garden”, and you can learn more about it on my website here: https://mindcauldron.com/fungi-garden The game is inspired by the fascinating interactions that occur in nature between mycelium, mycorrhiza and tree root systems. Currently, I have many ideas for the game. They are unfinished, incomplete ideas. It’s kind of like looking at something, but you can’t focus on it – it’s there, but it’s blurry, undefined. In his book “Spelunky” about the development of that very game, Derek Yu described something that I feel resonates with my current…

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Ludum Dare 46 – Keep it Alive – Day 3 Complete and Game Live!

This is the ending post about my Ludum Dare 46 entry. To start at the beginning, go to Day 1 here: https://darrenk.net/ludum-dare-46/ Ludum Dare 46 was an interesting challenge. There are many things I would change if I were to do it again. That said, I am quiet happy to have finished something – even if it is a sparse experience for the player. You can play the game here: https://darrenkearney.itch.io/toplogs You can rate it here: https://ldjam.com/events/ludum-dare/46/adventure-of-dome Thanks to everyone who hung out in the stream over the Ludum Dare event, it was a bit of fun. Streaming also helped someone from the bitsy community understand an issue I was having, since they could view my screen and I could…

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Ludum Dare 46 Keep it alive Day 1 Complete

I’m streaming development on https://twitch.tv/mindcauldrongames. Head over there and give me a follow! Here’s some progress and process in images. That wraps up my first full day at it. Pixel art took a lot longer than expected. And I spent way too longer deliberating about the idea and how to proceed. I was working as if I had another team member to write stuff. Oh well!

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Streaming, Gamedev and Learning Unity during Covid-19 social isolation

In the past few days I’ve been streaming a game dev series on my Mind Cauldron twitch account as I learn Unity in real time. You can follow along here: https://twitch.tv/mindcauldrongames The stream is a straight-forward live stream of my game development. If watching and chatting with someone while they work on their passion projects sounds like fun to you then your in for a treat. Otherwise it is suspiciously like you are watching a reality show of someone working from their home-office. I aim to stream nearly ever day. That way myself and my team can track progress on the game and hopefully feel something positive amidst the messed up global crisis as we work on our lovely little…

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Ludum Dare 41 – Combine 2 Incompatible Genres (Part 2)

Here I write about my second day of the gamejam weekend. Part 1 is here. Happy Accidents On the second day of the gamejam, I had a scheduling mishap. I had convinced myself that I had band practice and took some notes for the game in the morning. After I went into town and learned of my mistake I decided to use it as an opportunity for learning. Knowing practically nothing about how a cafĂ© or tea room actually works I reckoned it would be a good first step to organize a short meeting with some people who run such a business. My research hat on, I set out for a place that serves tea and has a relaxing atmosphere…

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Ludum Dare 41 – Combine 2 Incompatible Genres (Part 1)

This theme is fantastic – it drives creativity. Simply by getting you to juxtapose genres in a particular way to see what doesn’t fit! Then think of idea’s that are achievable in the given time. Repeat until you land on something you think might be fun and wow, it’s already going to be fun simply on the merit of it’s wacky genre combination. I’ve started to work on a Turn-Based Strategy Game that is actually a Text Adventure made using Twine. We’ll see where it gets to by the end of the jam. I started working on it after dinner. Here’s some screenshots as I log off for the day:

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My Global Game Jam 2018 Post-Mortem

In my previous post, written before the 10th annual Global Game Jam, I mentioned my aims, expectations and excitement about the jam. In this post, I’ve written about the game I worked on at the jam as well as the main struggles faced by the team. More great lessons from just one single weekend! Assembling a team I aimed to make something very small in scope and simple to make. Making things with friends is more fun so I wanted to get a team together. James Ward, a friend with the twinned brain powers of wildly creative imagination and laser beam focus, was on board for the jam. We got in touch with Cathal Duane, another friend who was also…

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Anticipation of Global Game Jam 2018

I’m delighted to be able to attend my 4th Global Game Jam in Galway. I’ll be switching to another game engine for the jam AGAIN – this time I’ll be using Godot Engine instead of Pico-8 (which I have been using these past few months). Since the Previous Global Game Jam I used Godot during last year’s Global Game Jam and I failed hard. A lesson was learned, which is what game jams are about! While an obvious one, let me share it with you: “One should not learn a new game engine at a game jam and expect to have anything more than a Pong clone”. Sadly, since then I have not used Godot for anything, even though I…

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A thought on “Where are Irish Game Devs?” survey results

Recently there was a series of “Who is Irish Game Dev” polls in the IrishGameDev facebook group which had some interesting results. For me the most interesting was the “Where is Irish Game Dev?” which asked everyone in the group to select the province in which they work. The survey results: Location Count Connacht 26 Leinster 109 Munster 13 Ulster 5 Not in Ireland 15 Total respondants: 168 (approx 13.488% of group) Members in group: 2266 This data was used to create a pie chart that showed the percentage of total count spread across each location. For this article I will use a bar chart to represent the data as I believe it has more impact. This helps us get…

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