I like playing games, but I was always interested in making games too. Recently a Lisp game jam ended, and there are a lot of cool entries, and its a shame I wasn’t able to participate, as I was traveling. And last year I participated in the Fennel Game Jam 1, which was my first game jam, and while the game I made wasn’t anything special, it was a really fun experience. Though, I usually don’t participate in such jams either because the time is inconvenient for me, or because the time restriction or theme is way ahead of my skill level. But I still want to get into game development, and I’ve decided that if I don’t start now, it will be too late.
So this post is both an announcement of a new series of posts and also something to motivate me not to give up the idea.
Starting next month (because I’m still traveling), I will try to make one small game per month. Nothing is set in stone yet, but I’m imagining the following types of games:
- Small, old-school style, run and jump
- 6-9 stages at most
- Dungeon crawler or roguelike
- Procedural generation
- Interactivity with the environment
- Card game
- Deck builder?
- Puzzle platformer
- Time-based or switch-based puzzles
- Top-down adventure
- semi-open-world map, like in old Zeldas
- Character interactions
All games will probably be 2D and made with rather simple graphics and sounds, that I will also try to make myself. At the end of each month, I will release the complete game code and assets and will write a small post outlining the development process. To be honest, I’m a bit tired of writing libraries, and while I was looking at my projects directory, I noticed how many of my projects are just that. So I’ve decided to force myself into a new field, to learn some new technologies, and maybe try out various game engines and languages, so we’ll see.
As of this moment, I’m thinking mostly about making games with TIC-80 and LÖVE2D. Both are really simple engines, and both use the language I already know pretty well. However, I also would like to try out a different game engine, such as Defold, or Godot, so maybe expect something made with these, I don’t know.
You see, I have a few very particular games I wanted to make for quite some time, and for the last few years, I’ve made some notes on various ideas I had regarding these games. So my plan right now is to make a few smaller games, that utilize many of the mechanics that I will later need for these larger games, thus making it easier for future me to implement them in the correct way. And while these small games will definitively not be the best games, I hope they will still be enjoyable, or at the very least finished and playable.
Maybe I’m overestimating my abilities, and one month per game will not be enough for me, but I’ll never know if I don’t try. I will be publishing these posts under the gamedev category (each category on my blog has its own feed you can subscribe to if you’re interested).
I hope it will be a fun experiment!